POPSUGAR PLAYGROUND: NYC Trip

The POPSUGAR Play/Ground Event in NYC was an unforgettable experience! Thousands of women came to visit the booths at this 2- day festival, and were introduced to MISSIO in POPSUGAR’s Pop Shop. We were honored to be a part and thrilled to be featured as one of their new favorite lifestyle and beauty brands!

Highlights included meeting POPSUGAR staff and beauty consultants, sharing our story, and interacting with other amazing socially conscious brands like ABLE. Also, spotting celebrities like Kayla Itsines and Mindy Kaling, and sliding down the rainbow colored, adult-sized slides into a giant ball pit were some of our favorite things! 

While in NYC we also got to attend an amazing event called the Consumer Discovery show. Here we learned from top business leaders and beauty industry professionals like Bobbi Brown. Sharing our story and purpose in this setting was an incredible opportunity, and we are excited about the connections for MISSIO that may come as a result!

All in all, we are grateful for the opportunity to spread the word about our PRODUCTS WITH PURPOSE, because the more we grow, the more of an impact we can make. Considering that human trafficking is a significant issue in states like New York, we took our platform there very seriously. We are so grateful to have been given the chance to unite people around this purpose and vision- restoring worth where it has been lost. 

CITIZEN SUPPLY CO: Atlanta Trip

A big THANK YOU to Citizen Supply in the Ponce City Market in Atlanta for hosting MISSIO for a pop up a few weeks ago! We had a blast giving free styles, telling people about our products, and of course, sharing about our purpose to fight human trafficking. We can’t wait to come back to Atlanta...what a great city with amazing people. Go check out our friends at Citizen Supply if you’re in the area!

Highlights included meeting people from all over the world that were visiting this market- and doing their hair! Free product demos were super popular among the ladies- mostly beach wave curls with our styling spray, braids and textured styles! 

Atlanta being a hotbed for human trafficking, people were incredibly inspired, grateful and excited to see our company begin to have a presence in the city. 

DIFFERENCE MAKER: Ashley Baxter

"As a survivor of sexual assault, I have learned that some of the darkest actions in this world, like human trafficking, greatly rely on two things . . . for others to be unaware and for them to not get involved."

Criminals need others to turn a blind eye, to think "that subject is too uncomfortable to talk about", and to falsely believe there is nothing they can do to help. But THANKFULLY with organizations and companies like MISSIO bringing awareness and action, we can help take away that power more and more, and help rescue victims.

The beauty of MISSIO is that it allows everyone an opportunity to get involved in the fight against human trafficking. Whether it be buying MISSIO's fabulous products with the knowledge that some of the proceeds will go to non-profits working with human trafficking victims, or hair stylists receiving training on how to recognize and help a human trafficking victim sitting in their chair. 

Not only do I love the purpose of MISSIO, but I also love their products! As I approach (cough) 40 years old (cough), I have found that my hair has become a lot more coarse. I even was resorting to using coconut oil a couple times a week to help! But thankfully the combination of MISSIO's Gentle Cleansing Shampoo and their Luxe Conditioner has my hair feeling soft, moisturized, and amazing!"

Guest Post: Ashley Baxter 

Ashley loves traveling the globe, making people laugh, and has a passion for helping people find hope in the midst of suffering - especially survivors of sexual assault, since that is part of her story as well.  

Follow Ashley @RestoringHeart for when it goes live later this summer on finding hope in the midst of life's hardships.

 

PRODUCT CREATION - Trust the Process!

Slow down. Calm down. 

Don't worry. Don't hurry. 

Trust the process. 

- Alexandra Stoddard

Spring is in the air, and so are new things at MISSIO! If you've been following along with us on our journey, you're familiar with our commitment to amazing products - safe ingredients, excellent performance, and an uplifting experience - YOU deserve the best! 

Well let me tell ya, it has been quite the process to develop them! Whether we've been trying them out with world-renown stylists, on-the-go-moms, cosmetic chemists, or our kiddos in the bathtub, we have definitely learned to trust the process. And it's been totally worth it...we can't wait to get them in your hands! 

So as we anticipate the newness of Spring, we are so excited to share with you what we've been working on for quite some time. MISSIO products not only give you hair life and style, but with your help, we have the opportunity to shine light into a dark place, to help in the prevention, rescue, and recovery of victims of human trafficking. 

Stay tuned for our SPRING release! New products available ONLINE NEXT WEEK!

Photo Creds: Lindsey Pruitt

PARTNER HIGHLIGHT: Five14 Revolution

Five14 Revolution is an incredible non-profit organization in Wilmington, NC that we are honored and excited to partner with! Five14’s mission is to serve as an interruption to human trafficking and sexual exploitation by bringing hope and empowerment to women in places of vulnerability. Their focus is on prevention as they seek to reach out to women experiencing hardship as a result of poverty, substance abuse, prostitution, homelessness, or even the challenges associated with being a single mom.

Five14 desires to meet the needs of women in places of vulnerability so that they do not have to make compromising decisions that might lead to human trafficking or exploitation. One of the ways that they do this is by operating a Storehouse. This is a place where women can come to have their practical needs met, such as: household items, baby care items, and personal toiletry items. These are items not typically covered by government assistance, so they are able to help alleviate these specific burdens and create relationships throughout the process. They also have an outreach ministry to Wilmington/the surrounding area, are a huge resource and connector to any help/services that a woman may need, and have a 24-hour hotline.

We love what Five14 is doing in our hometown and how they are aiding in the prevention of human trafficking and sexual exploitation. It is so incredible to watch organizations each find their specific role in this fight and live it out so beautifully!

 

 

HOW DO WE STAND UP TO HUMAN TRAFFICKING?

Latest research is estimating that around 40 million people are being trafficked today (labor trafficking, sex trafficking, child trafficking, etc.). It exists all over the world and knows no socio-economic bounds. A victim may look like anybody else on the street and might not even know that she/he is being trafficked. About 1 out of every 200 people is a victim of trafficking...let that sit for a second. 

In the past 10 years as we have learned more about the realities and the elusive nature of Human Trafficking, we have had to learn not to allow the overwhelming scope of this injustice paralyze us from taking action. In fact, we learned that we need play our small role, coming at it from our unique angle, while others around the world are doing their parts from their approaches.

A few years ago, one of my friends and a committed fighter of this injustice helped be to better understand what we can do. He said that really all over our efforts can fit into a three-pronged approach: 

1) PREVENTION

The best way to stop human trafficking is to prevent it from every happening. To do this, awareness and education is crucial. We must increase awareness and vigilance in our communities to identify at-risk individuals and red flags. Law enforcement, medical professionals, hair stylists, flight attendants, hotel workers, neighbors are just a few examples of people who are in a position to identify potential victims. It will take many vigilant people in many spheres of influence to help. 

2) RESCUE

Local and federal law enforcement, medical professionals, NGOs and non-profits around the world are doing amazing things identifying perpetrators and rescuing victims. Sometimes, however, rescuing a victims is not so easy as many victims do not self-identify as being trafficked. Often, especially in sex trafficking, women are being manipulated and coerced into these situations through false promises or unhealthy emotional attachments. This is where trusted relationships and encouragement can play a key role in helping a victim find a way out.

3) RECOVERY

Healing from captivity and abuse is a long term process that requires the care of many professionals. Often, the identity and purpose of the victims has been stolen, and they need to believe that they are worthy of receiving the help and healing they need. This takes time and is different in every situation, but there are many incredible people who can play a significant role in this process. 

___

Human trafficking is complex, diverse, elusive, and is so challenge to wrap our minds around and fully understand. However, we believe that many people standing up to it fro many different angles and approaches can make a massive difference! 

MISSIO is committed to playing a small but significant role in the prevention, rescue, and recovery efforts through the power of beauty and the salon industry.

Thank you for standing with us! 

 

 

Denim: It’s "Jeanius"

Raise your hand if you need to do a closet clean out?! I’ve got both of mine in the air. But one staple piece that I will never, let me say it again, NE-VER, get rid of is my beloved denim button-up shirt! They are simple. You can dress them up. You can dress them down. You can tuck them in. You can tie them up. No matter your shape they look good! I seriously could go on and on. I truly believe that there are about four million ways to style a denim shirt but I’ll stick with my top three.

IMG-3011svz.JPG

Right now we’re in that weird in-between of seasons. When you dress for the morning temp you’re sweating and regretting your outfit decisions by the afternoon. Super frustrating, I hear you! For weather like this I grab my denim shirt and tie it up with a fun mini skirt or layer it over a  dress (also my FAVE look for when you’re rocking a baby bump!) This look can comfortably take you through the chilly mornings and into the sunny afternoons of our ever-changing NC weather.

1.JPG

My personal go-to is denim on denim. Lots of people are scared of this look.  The key to pulling it off is balance. Play with accessories, add a fun neck scarf, break up the tones with two different shades or with the help of a white tee underneath or a belt. Just try it! Like, once. I PROMISE you’ll look and feel great and be ever so stylish! 😉

Lastly, layers! When in doubt, throw your denim shirt under your sweaters or over your favorite tee. Whether it’s an open cardigan or you just need some added dimension or extra warmth this is a simple way to add to an outfit.

6.JPG

So easy, right?! Ok you babes, if you don’t own a denim shirt RUN and getchu one! You will not regret having such a timeless piece in your closet.

 p.s. We’ve got some really fun things coming your way over the Holiday season! Be sure to check back here to see what all we’re up to!

xo. casey

8.JPG

Photography: Sophie Van Zandt

DON'T LET YOUR HAIR "FALL" SHORT THIS SEASON

Autumn is definitely being fashionably late here to the coast of NC, while Summer is still trying to linger on. We’ve had a taste of those cool(er) temps and hopefully soon they will be here to stay! Time to break out the cozy sweaters, order a PSL, and call Grandma for her yummiest chili recipe! Fall. Is. Coming.

IMG_0197.JPG

While I love a good chunky sweater, the perfect fitting denim button-up or the most trendy neck scarf, I don’t know about you, but by the end of a windy fall day my long mane is needing some love. What is it about the cooler weather that creates the dreaded tangle to form underneath your hair?! I’m sure there’s some science to it but I find that most days I’m tossing my hair into the perfect topknot or high pony.

IMG_0201-1.JPG


Recently, I have been using (and might I add, fallen IN LOVE with) Missio’s Coconut Cleansing Powder dry shampoo to draw out my wash and create the perfect, textured high hair styles. Cute and simple all while avoiding that knotted underneath mess. Can I get an Amen?!


And not to leave out those babes who like to stick with a lower style hair-do. I've got the perfect and EASY fix for you too!

IMG_0205.JPG

First, part the front sections of your hair from ear to ear. Leave them out while putting the back half in a low bun.

IMG_0206.JPG

Second, take one of the front sections of hair and wrap it above and around the bun, securing it underneath with a bobby pin. 

IMG_0207.JPG

 Continue to do the same thing with the other front section.

FullSizeRender-1.jpg

Now mess it up! IMO, the messier the better! So pull some front pieces down around your face, pull at the top near your crown to loosen up the look or simply just pull your bun apart. And there you have it! Quick and easy!

So Autumn, we welcome you with open arms and fun hair. Check back here in a few weeks for three ways to style my favorite fall staple piece that I bet is already in your closet too!

xo. casey.

 

 

 

photography by Sophie Van Zandt (@vanzandt23)

WHY HAIR PRODUCTS?

Some of you may be wondering - why hair products? It's an interesting concept to pair the issue of human trafficking with hair products… Well, there are many answers to that question, but our purpose is really two-fold.

Firstly, human trafficking is an elusive issue that continues to exist because of the perceived low risk for traffickers and the high profits that it generates. Due to the fear, control, manipulation, and coercion that is used, it is hard to identify victims because they usually do not identify themselves. We believe the beauty industry has a beautiful and unique role to play in the identification and awareness of this issue.

Everyday thousands of women walk into salons, sit down in a chair that naturally feels safe, and begin to open up about things they might not tell other people. There is a beautiful vulnerability that lies within the salon chair. We believe that if stylists are educated on signs to look for and empowered in what to do if concerned about their client, then they truly can play a heroic role in the fight against human trafficking.

Secondly, hair products are an everyday tool that not only everyday consumers, but also the salon industry are using. What if an everyday product can be given a purpose where stylist and community members alike can be apart of this great fight by purchasing them, spreading the word about them, and starting conversations because of them? It creates a world where we are all on an everyday mission together.  

We believe in the beauty industry and we believe in the everyday consumer. We believe that one purchase, one interaction, one conversation can change a life. This is our two fold purpose: to inspire and empower people in the fight against human trafficking. Let’s do it together!

 

 

 

HAIR SECRETS - MISSIO's Guide to Shine

Long or short, curly or straight… SHINY hair is what most women (and a lot of men) want. When you see someone with an incredible amount of shine, you just KNOW their hair is healthy. It probably means they take great care of their hair, right? Perhaps visiting the salon frequently to get that treatment, glaze or color refresh? How does someone keep up that healthy glow? Wouldn’t it be amazing if there was a way to achieve this at home without it being a crazy expense?

So here’s a little hair lesson:

Each strand of hair has a surface of tiny cuticles. These small scales on the surface of your hair lie flat if they have enough moisture. Without the nourishment they need, they will rise, creating a brittle and more rigid surface on each strand. When light hits your hair, a smooth surface will reflect light, causing it to look shiny, whereas a rough surface will not reflect in the same way. Instead it is more prone to damage, frizz and split ends! Yikes!!!

And THIS, ladies and gentlemen is why we decided to pack as many nourishing properties into our products as possible... because we want to leave those cuticles happy and nourished with every use, resulting in shiny and RADIANT hair!

So now you are probably thinking… taking this kind of care of my hair has to be expensive! Well (drumroll please) the great news is, we’ve created a way for you to care for your hair without frequent visits to the salon or breaking the bank.

HERE'S THE SECRET: It can be as simple as the CONDITIONER that you choose. Luckily MISSIO’s Glossing conditioner is FULL of nourishing properties that help restore and strengthen hair with each use. It will boast shine and softness like never before! (And for an extra dose of shine, pair it with our Gentle Cleansing Golden Shampoo!)

So how EXACTLY does it work?

So here’s the deal. There are so many wonderful natural ingredients on this earth that can help boost the SHINE factor for your hair…  so we have curated a special blend for our products. Jojoba Oil, Sunflower Seed Oil, Avocado and Coconut Oil are four nourishing oils that are included in our Glossing conditioners! This incredible blend works wonders on hair! Sounds like a pretty yummy recipe, huh?

And let us just tell you, IT WORKS. We have received so many testimonials and messages about how people are so in love with the conditioner and the way it adds such SHINE to their hair, even from the first use.

So everyone, let’s keep those strands happy and healthy by giving them the nourishment they need. We can’t wait for you to try our conditioner, because we know you’ll be hooked. And not only that, but you will be making a PURCHASE with a PURPOSE!

Because our desire is to not only make hair beautiful, but to do something BEAUTIFUL with each purchase.

Much love,

The MISSIO Style Team

SHOP MISSIO CONDITIONER

 

PARTNER HIGHLIGHT - A Safe Place, Wilmington NC

We are so excited to share our first “Partner Highlight” with you! Our partners are the on the ground organizations who are doing incredible work in the fight against human trafficking. A Safe Place is an organization in Wilmington, NC whose vision is to create a world free from commercial exploitation and human trafficking through community partnerships, empowerment, and opportunity. They are an empowerment organization focusing on prevention, advocacy, and restoration to assist victims of commercial sexual exploitation and domestic sex trafficking.

They fulfill this vision and mission through so many avenues that are such a powerful tool in fighting this injustice. A 24-hour hotline, transitional housing, direct support services, an outreach center, and hotel/motel outreach are some of their main tools. They are truly changing lives here in Wilmington and being an incredible resource to those who want to join the fight.

As partners with A Safe Place we have had the opportunity to glean knowledge from them, as well as connect all of our local partner salons with them. Furthermore, through the vehicle of our products we are thrilled to announce that were able to donate $1,000 gift to them this month and we will get to be apart of their “Day in the Life Luncheon”. We are honored to be in this fight alongside of them, and you are a huge part of it as well as you continue to purchase our products and spread the word about Missio. To learn more or get involved with this wonderful organization, check out their website at

PURPOSE

Purpose: the reason for which something is done or created, or for which something exists. Motive. Intention. Cause. Reason. Resolution. Determination.
 
At our core, we all desire to have purpose - to live life intentionally, full of determination, and aimed towards a cause or reason. It is engrained into who we are as humans. We were created on purpose and with purpose.
 
At MISSIO, that truth resonates into every facet of who we are. Our mission is to live life on purpose and with a purpose so great that it extends far beyond ourselves. Everything that we do is wrapped around the determination of eradicating human trafficking throughout the world. The 29 million victims of this travesty are our motive, our reason, our purpose- and oh what a cause that it is. The beautiful cause of rescuing the lost, restoring the broken, and redeeming millions of identities that have been stolen.
 
We are more than just a product. We are a product with purpose. What if something that we all use every day can be used to truly change the world- one life at a time? We dream of a world where every single everyday product has a purpose greater than itself. Imagine it: every product on your shelf making a difference in the world around you. Every product provides you an opportunity to be a part of something bigger than yourself.
 
What areas of your life need to be filled with purpose? Where can you intentionally make decisions to give vision and goals to your passions? Purpose brings empowerment and change, and it paves the way for lives to be changed.
 
We at MISSIO long to live life on purpose. We desire to live life intentionally for those around us. We want to be on an everyday mission, and we believe everyone has something in them that desires that at well. Our fight is for the victims of human trafficking, and we refuse to back down. We invite you to join our movement and our cause - our purpose, the very thing that defines our existence.
 
Product with Purpose. Fighting Human Trafficking.
 
(Visit our “Initiative” page to learn more about how we fulfill our PURPOSE)

Written by MISSIO Team Member, Mary Freshwater

THE HAIRCUT I'LL NEVER FORGET

The following is a true story told by MISSIO Founder, Lorin Van Zandt. 

I'll never forget the day I received the phone call. There was a woman who needed a haircut. But the reason was one I would have never expected. She needed help with her hair because there had been large chunks of it ripped out by an abuser- her pimp. 

We quickly organized to have a friend's salon space open to only her on a Sunday afternoon. She came in with her head hung, timid and obviously struggling to believe in herself due to the way she looked. She told me "I don't even want to walk outside right now."

With a nod I welcomed her and led her over to the styling chair where she would receive a simple haircut. I worked to carefully blend her hair to hide the bare spots. As time passed, I opportunity to get to know her and to hear her story. She shared about her life of abuse, a situation where she was tricked and coerced through a false relationship into a life of years of forced sex. She shared about her multiple attempts at escape and then enrollment in the rehab program. We talked about her goals for regaining custody of her children and the new life that she desired for her future. As I blended her hair, I was able to let her know that I believed that she could achieve these goals. 

When we finished, she looked at herself in the mirror and her entire countenance changed. Her face lit up and her eyes welled up with tears. She went from not being willing to be seen in public to LOVING the way that she looked and holding her head up high. She laughed and touched her hair, hugged me and cried. She could not stop saying "thank you." It was a very emotional moment to realize that this was the beginning of her believing something new about herself.

It was in moments like this that MISSIO was born, as we discovered how something as simple as a haircut at a critical time could be used in powerful ways to help women believe in their worth once again. 

Today, MISSIO seeks out opportunities to link stylists with situations just like this. In every city where we are found. Thank you for your support of all that is happening and how we are growing. Imagine what we can do together.

What is Human Trafficking?

Our overall goal at MISSIO is to inspire and empower a movement of people in the fight against human trafficking, and it has taken years of research, learning (through both experience and education), and consulting with experts.

Still, it is a very complex and elusive issue. So what is it?

Human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery in which traffickers use force, fraud, or coercion to control victims for the purpose of engaging in commercial sex acts or labor services against his/her will.

In a nutshell, human trafficking comes in many forms and takes on different characteristics in different places around the world...that is why it can be so difficult to wrap our minds around. Also, it does not always involved physical restraint, like we may see in Hollywood portrayals. Victims can often be controlled by fraud or coercion, and sometimes they are even being manipulated into performing these services by a family member or a significant other. 

As our team here at MISSIO has been educating and equipping salons and stylists in how to identify potential victims, this definition has helped them to better understand the grave injustice of human trafficking and the role that they can play to help in its prevention, rescue, and recovery. 

By purchasing MISSIO products, YOU are enabling these efforts in the fight against human trafficking!

 

WHAT CAN BE DONE IN A WEEK.

Wow! We are overwhelmed by all of the support that MISSIO has received in ONE WEEK! And in that one week, SO MUCH has already been done in the fight against human trafficking. None of this can happen without you! 

Here are a few highlights: 

- Our team has been on the ground educating salons and stylists to aid in the interception of victims of human trafficking. So far, we have be able to equip 35 stylist and salon owners. We have at least 3 set up this week and many more to come!

- This past weekend, stylists had the opportunity to volunteer to serve at-risk women who are in transitional situations. We love seeing them empowered to use their gifts to serve others!

- The word is out! People all over the country are catching the vision of MISSIO and inspired to take action. 18,000+ views of our launch video, close to 200 shares, products being purchased from all over the country, MISSIO being sold in 6 local salons and growing rapidly! 

- We have LOVED hearing reports from customers that their hair is healthier and softer than EVER BEFORE using our products! Annnnd there is already a slight obsession surrounding the scent of our Coconut Cleansing Dry Shampoo Powder. ;)

This is just the beginning. Imagine a widespread effort around the country all happening through the vehicle of MISSIO Hair. 

Thank you for an amazing first week...let's do this!

 

WE EDUCATE.

WE EDUCATE.

We EDUCATE stylists & salon owners how to identify potential victims of human trafficking, and how to connect them with HELP in their area.

Human trafficking is a complex and elusive injustice. It is complex because it is a worldwide crisis happening in all places occurring in many forms, most notably labor, child, and sex trafficking. It is elusive because it can often blend in with it’s surroundings and can sometimes be very difficult to identify. In the US, sex trafficking exists and continues to grow because it can generate high profits and a perceived low risk for the traffickers. This low risk is because it can often be very difficult to identify potential victims of human trafficking. 

WE MOBILIZE.

WE MOBILIZE.

We MOBILIZE stylists and volunteers to use their gifts to serve and encourage women who are in RECOVERY from human trafficking.

There is healing in something as simple as a haircut, a style, a manicure, or a pedicure. We believe that there are thousands of stylists and others around the country who have the ability to restore a sense of worth in a victim of human trafficking through volunteering their time and their spaces. 

WE GIVE.

WE GIVE.

We GIVE to non-profit partners who are aiding in the RESCUE and RESTORATION of victims of human trafficking, locally and globally.

We are honored to partner with many non-profits both locally and globally who are working diligently to address the issue of human trafficking in many incredible ways. Having worked for 10 years with various non-profits, we at MISSIO know first-hand the challenges that these organizations face to continue the important work they do. 

THE STORY OF MISSIO

THE STORY OF MISSIO

A lifetime of experiences and a deep passion to stand up for people in need led Lorin and Kyle Van Zandt to start MISSIO Hair in 2016. 

Lorin began doing hair when she was fifteen years old, and she quickly became passionate about beauty. She soon realized that beauty could be used to help people in need, and she began giving haircuts to the homeless, to those in drug rehab centers, and to refugees from around the world.