Native Detroiter is Creating A Natural Beauty Empire

By Yvelette Stines on March 6th, 2015 / Comments

There are many times that we see a need for something and see a void on the market. Then, there are the innovators that see the opportunity and create what is needed for themselves and others. This is true for Detroit native Chris-Tia Donaldson. It was her senior year at Harvard Law School in 2003. She started transitioning her hair and going natural.

“At the time, I had this small afro and was hired into this prestigious law firm in Chicago, there were limited resources out there about caring and styling natural hair,” she reminisces. Donaldson needed resources, so she started researching. From her research she realized there needed to be a guide book for women who have natural hair. She wrote the best-selling book Thank God I’m Natural. With the book came a movement and a strong following came right behind it.

As Donaldson continued to educate others, setting up demo’s all over the world, she saw another void with hair products.


“I saw my hair needed something more with the products I was using, so I started making my own,” Donaldson said. She researched different ways to create products for hair and body. As she continued, she found a chemist to help with the details and Thank God It’s Natural (TGIN) hair and body products were born. The all natural and organic beauty line has become a household name. The popularity of the product grew so much that Target noticed.

“We were contacted by a representative, given an opportunity to make a presentation, and continued with the process that took about a year,” she says. Now you can find this native Detroiter’s TGIN hair products at Target stores around the U.S. starting this March 2015.

With the growth of her company and many accomplishments, Donaldson knows there is a lot of work to do. Using this opportunity as a reminder that great things are possible, the entrepreneur has big goals for her company. Still working as an IT Attorney, she knew CEO was a title she would hold.

“I was always interested in business even in law school, I would attend business summits. I also read a lot of books about entrepreneurs like the Fords and Rockefellers. It is intriguing to read about people creating companies and breaking barriers,” she says.

Donaldson also loved the art of problem solving and creating solutions.

“I love all of this stuff, so I knew if I had to apply for a job it would be CEO,” she says laughing. She didn’t have to apply she created her dream job and thanks her Detroit roots for her work ethic.

“Detroiters are unapologetically authentic and real, we hustle harder and get things done. I think this helps us in a big way. My customer base has seen me from the beginning to now, and they are like our team and family,” she says.

For those who are looking to start their business Donaldson offers the following advice.

  • Start – Stop talking and get to work.
  • Maintain high quality
  •  Get your finances in order
  •  Create a business plan
  • Don’t quit your day job.

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About the Author

Yvelette Stines

Yvelette is an author and freelance writer. Her blog Calming Corners helps readers stay calm and healthy. Follow her at @YveletteStines + @CalmingCorners.