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All for The Juice: Fayetteville State student launches The Juice LLC to spread health and wellness

By Eddie Velazquez, posted 4 months ago
Pruitt stands beside his products located inside of local shop Curate Essentials - PHOTO PROVIDED BY JUSTIN PRUITT/ TAKEN BY JENSHOTIT

Justin Pruitt has to manage a busy schedule. The 19-year-old from Colorado has a full-course load at Fayetteville State University, where he is also a defensive back for the Broncos football team. He has to follow the National Collegiate Athletics Association’s (NCAA) rigorous practice schedule to be ready to lock down opposing wide receivers on Saturday. 

But perhaps the most impressive – and what Pruitt would say is the most important part of his busy schedule – is that he owns and manages up and coming brand The Juice, a line of environmentally conscious, vegan, organic wellness products. 

“The Juice,” the product the brand is named after, is an organic and vegan hair growth oil, specially formulated with eight herbs, including rosemary, rose petals and lavender. It also contains five different natural oils, including coconut, grape seed, tea tree, jojoba and olive. 

“This formula helps promote healthy hair growth and nourishment,” Pruitt said. “I formulated my product to work with all types of hair, all types of people.” 

Pruitt also manufactures and sells two healing-infused body butters with pumpkin spice and peppermint bark scents. 

Pruitt’s products are at two stores in Fayetteville – Curate Essentials and Divine Doula Goddess. His next step is to continue expanding into other historically Black colleges and universities. 

“My target market is really the college environment. That’s really where I usually sell my product and that’s how I really started,” Pruitt said. “I am at an HBCU (Historically Black College and University), so it naturally became my target market of people,” Pruitt said. 

He shared that the idea for his products came from his mother’s battle with cancer and the adversities she overcame. Pruitt said he researched the effects harmful chemicals can have on people, including research on increased risks of cancer. 

“Once I started really looking into what we eat nowadays, what we drink, what we put in our body, it all kind of made sense to me,” he said. “I wanted to create something that could find a solution for those problems. That is what we do as entrepreneurs. We find a solution to problems. I saw that there was a problem within our communities within the world, so I wanted to create a solution and that is why I wanted to choose vegan and organic products.” 

Pruitt’s path to entrepreneurship was forged when he worked at a Chick Fil-A. 

“I started my brand because I wanted to improve my reality and escape the grind of the 9 to 5 job,” Pruitt said. “With dedication, discipline and consistency I know I will accomplish all my goals and manifestations in due time.” 

That is where he learned to take risks. 

“I saved money from that job to start my business,” he said. “I tried making my first batch of the products and I burnt it all. I had just wasted $400. After that, I made another batch and it went perfectly. It was like the perfect formula. I had found my recipe and I loved it. I made all the money back and more. That taught me to take calculated risks.” 

The natural evolution for The Juice, Pruitt says, will be to have it sold in different stores and to manufacture a whole line of holistic and environmentally friendly products. Beyond that, he would like to create a holistic health center. 

“I want to be able to create my own holistic health center and heal people around the world. That might be traveling to help people heal, or it might be creating a retreat for people to come to. I have a lot of ideas and visions. I’m just trying to really bring it all together,” said Pruitt. 

In the end, Pruitt’s vision is to inspire a new generation of leaders and entrepreneurs, by providing a successful model of a Black business leader, something he said he did not see much of growing up. 

“In our generation, African American people are really seen as rappers, comedians, athletes or entertainers. We don’t see a lot of our people represented in the entrepreneur community,” Pruitt said. “My goal was to go and create a line for people to be represented in a positive way. I want to be an inspiration to my generation. We are not just entertainers, we are business owners, we create our own legacies.” 

Pruitt said he has found his own identity in his work. 

“I found my identity outside of being an athlete and I found my identity through my business and my purpose. That is to inspire and help the next generation heal,” he concluded.

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The Juice’s website can be found at: www.sites.google.com/view/the-juice-llc/home

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