Meet Jocelyne Firmin, CEO and founder of Kiyamel, a skincare brand for people who suffer from eczema. Based in Millsboro, Delaware, her company is currently celebrating being the first and only Black-owned brand approved by The National Eczema Association.
Jocelyne migrated from Haiti to the United States thanks to a full scholarship in the pursuit of the American dream. She was born in extreme poverty and was raised by a single mother who understood that the only way out of it was through education and entrepreneurship. From a very early age, Jocelyne was exposed to the entrepreneurial lifestyle by accompanying her mother working in the open markets of Haiti. In retrospect developing her own passion for entrepreneurship, hence the skincare line was created.
Kiyamel is a skincare brand that was founded in 2019 but did not become operational until January 2021. Realizing that nearly thirty million people in America suffer from some form of eczema, several years were spent doing research and development on this unique skincare brand. For instance, fifty-five percent of people that suffer from eczema cannot find an adequate solution.
Moreover, a black child is 1.7 times more likely to develop eczema than a white child, causing experts to believe that it may be underdiagnosed because physicians have been primarily trained to diagnose eczema on white skin. Black children are thirty percent less likely to see a doctor for their eczema than white children, and those who see a doctor have more visits and prescriptions than white children.
Likewise, Kiyamel was created to close that gap by providing wholesome all-natural products, composed and delivered with love and empathy. The natural products not only help heal you but it builds back self-esteem that can be harmed with skin conditions. Kiyamel is easily accessible online and in stores without a prescription. Per Jocelyne, “I’ve always suffered from severe acne and dry skin so I set out to find a solution for myself since nothing under the sun could work. Being a native of Haiti and a lover of nature, I knew I wanted a clean formula. However, when my daughter was born and developed eczema at only six weeks old, the premise of the formula was immediately switched, from acne to eczema. With the help of a chemist, the eczema product line was born.”
Kiyamel’s products are 100% natural, clinically tested and have become the first Black-owned
company to be accepted by the National Eczema Association. Nevertheless, there were many hurdles to overcome, such as gaining access to venture capital. That was and still is the company’s main obstacle.
Additionally, sourcing and packaging clean ingredients as they are is a costly venture. As well as getting the connection and the support needed to get into major retail stores. For instance, last year, funds were invested to attend a tradeshow.
It was quite informative, although, challenges and obstacles still endured; more so than their white counterparts since their product is still fairly new. For clarity’s sake, Kiyamel’s products have been clinically tested and accepted by the highest and most prestigious entity in the industry: the National Eczema Association. Four (4) of the product have endured a very extensive and rigorous process which they passed. Furthermore, by maintaining that the products should work for every ethnicity, the goal has been to focus on serving the African American market to help compete with the lack of products in that industry. This means that most eczema products were not created with the African American consumer in mind furthering the premise that they don’t deliver results.
In the next several years, Kiyamel’s goal is set to perfect the craft with a 2% market penetration which it intends to accomplish by partnering with some of the major retail stores. Giving back to the community is equally important through a mentorship program. Basically, the goal of the company is to become one of America’s favorite eczema skincare brands.
For more details, visit the company’s official website at Kiyamel.com
This story first appeared on Blacknews.com.