The Reluctant Entrepreneur: A Conversation with Ayanna Freeman

Sometimes businesses happen by necessity.  Sometimes they happen by chance. In the case of Ayanna Freeman, it was a combination of both. Tired of western approaches to treating ongoing allergy issues, Ayanna began to study the human body and how it worked. At the time, she was designing clothing for Dillard’s and enjoying the comforts of a high-paying corporate career. She also was a wife and a new mother enjoying the fruits of family life. Then things drastically changed. 

“My ex-husband left me. At that point, just like other women could probably relate to this, you have a choice. You’re at a crossroads.” Ayanna chose to pave a new way. With no business experience and very little resources to draw upon, she started creating therapeutic skin-care products. “I literally didn’t know I was starting a company,” she explained. “But when my father kept asking for my products, I knew that I might be on to something.”

Seven years later, Leela’s Body Cocktails is a thriving small business in the Albuquerque area. As the business continues to grow, she is exploring new opportunities to evangelize about holistic skin care. “As I move forward, my goal is to create a certification program that will educate men and women to reach the human population (underserved populations included) regardless of the industry they come from in efforts to reduce the numbers we see from all continents regarding skin diseases and skin challenges.”

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