Meet the Founder
Our founder and celebrity hairstylist Helen has always been passionate about clean hair care that works, she couldn't find any for her clients and so decided to create Act+Acre: The world’s first Cold Processed® hair wellness brand that focuses on your scalp.
Originally from Ireland, Helen and her husband Colm created and patented the Cold Processed® technique to create their plant-based products. This avoids the traditional heat-based production, which can lessen the potency of nutrients in seed oils. Sustainability is key to the brand, through the packaging we use, the ingredients we include, the use of 90% less energy to create our products, and the wind farms we fund in Mumbai.
Act+Acre is a reaction to an existing category, and a promise of what it can become.
What attracts you into hair wellness?
Hair wellness is a long-term approach instead of a quick fix. We want to help you feel amazing about your hair, which is not just about how your hair looks, but more about how your hair feels. Wellness is a lifestyle, an all-around approach to all forms of health. With hair being so important to so many people, it was natural to think of this as a much longer-term approach; scalp health is hair wellness, which leads to overall wellness.
What inspired you to start your business?
I grew up in a very small town in Northern Ireland called Armagh. From a very young age I would work in my dad's local corner store. He was the first of his family to start his own business and as a young girl, I recall looking up to him and admiring his entrepreneurial spirit. I knew then that someday I wanted to start my own business, just like my father did.
I suffered from scalp issues my whole life and I am an avid believer in treating your scalp with the same degree of care and attention as one treats their skin. The scalp ages 6x faster than the face!
From there, I started looking into the haircare production process, and I found that all hair products were made through the addition of harsh chemicals and high temperatures. Meaning that all the natural ingredients that were initially included are boiling off, reducing the potency and effectiveness of the products. It was then that I was inspired to challenge the science behind the process and carve out a new category within the beauty and hair wellness space that focuses on all-natural, chemical-free, clean ingredients.
Why did you decide to start Act+Acre?
After 15 years as a fashion and celebrity hair stylist, I wanted to create a new playbook for hair wellness. Having worked worldwide on all races, genders, nationalities, the one thing that I noted as being common across the board was poor scalp health. Thus, I decided to delve deeper into the haircare industry and really examine the products that we use every day. Her research unfolded that the industry was serving up a selection of sub-par products that do not serve to nourish, balance and stimulate the scalp… enter Act+Acre!
What makes your product or business unique?
For years now we saw brand upon brand reinvent aesthetic, packaging, and branding but to date, no one has challenged the science behind the process. The industry had just accepted that traditional processes using very high levels of heat, sulfates, parabens were the only way.
That was something I completely disagreed with and as a result, I spent 18 months challenging the science with the most incredible people. I worked with a team of 31 PhDs, including chemists, physicists, chemical engineers, biochemists and botanists in order to develop our patented Cold Processed® method.
Why do you love what you do?
Building the Act+Acre brand has been one of the most exciting, rewarding and challenging experiences of my life. I have loved being pushed to my limits in order to create and re-create our process, from the customer journey to the internal processes that support it. However, the reason that I enjoyed building this brand so much was because I knew the impact that it could have on the life of others. Every day I’m making personal connections with consumers and having the ability to impact someone’s day in such a positive way.
The biggest reward for me is making them not only look good but to also make them feel good inside. I see this when I am personally styling hair and also creating haircare that allows others to have their best hair day yet. All in all, I love what I do and wouldn’t change it for the world!
What is, in your opinion, the future of haircare?
I imagine that a lot of hair care and beauty brands will start speaking about scalp health. I see the scalp as an extension of your face, but it ages six times faster than your face. Therefore, we should all be nourishing and taking care of it. But more prominently, I really see the future of haircare being focused on the methods and processes behind how products are being made.
There are breakthroughs in new ingredients, but no one is thinking of the actual mechanics and science behind it. As previously mentioned, to date the industry has been satisfied with using heat and chemical emulsion to formulate their products, now we (Act+Acre) have changed the game with our Cold Processed® Method.
A Cold Processed® ritual for healthy hair that begins at the scalp. Never again will you simply wash your hair, or strip your scalp of essential nutrients. Today, you begin a new hair-wellness journey.