Astoria resident Anna Urban is committed to helping women grow healthy hair.
Her company Aviva, founded in late 2011, is a hair nutrition company that manufactures growth supplements that are GMO, gluten- and fish product-free.
The vitamin tablets are comprised of two complexes. One contains 5,000mcg of biotin and four essential elements to spurs hair growth from follicles. The other is focused on nutrition for the follicles.
"Every woman wants longer, stronger, more beautiful hair, and that's what Aviva is primarily here to do," said Urban. "Essentially Aviva is meant for growth and endurance and strength."
A few years ago, Urban wanted to grow out her hair for her wedding but was disappointed in the results from all the products she tried. She is also allergic to fish, which is a main ingredient in most supplements and vitamins.
She is also a co-partner at a packaging design company, QNY Creative, and one of her clients was a vitamin manufacturer. The two got to talking and developed the supplement Urban felt the hair-growth industry was missing.
Along the way she had a baby and experienced post-partum hair loss, further increasing her own need for a product like Aviva.
"At that point I knew we were on the right track," she said.
Originally funded by investors and now through product sales, Aviva has sold more than 25,000 units nationwide since its launch. The company is seeing a 35% growth rate per year, with 10 to 15 new stores and online retailers selling the supplements per season, Urban said.
The supplements, manufactured in California, come in soft gel tablets packaged together to be easily taken on-the-go by busy New Yorkers.
While the Hair Revitalizer supplements are made with all-natural ingredients except for their pink coating, she recently launched a new completely natural version free of added color, flavor and preservatives.
Urban's product works to repair hair loss due to scalp infections, stress, child birth and other causes. It can also be taken by women who struggle to grow their hair longer than shoulder-length, for example.
The supplements are available online at avivahair.com, e-commerce sites such as Amazon, and stores such as Healthfully Organic Market on East Fourth Street.
"Hair quality is connected to hair nutrition," Urban said. "Your body will support your internal organs way before it supports your hair, skin and nails -- so having an essential vitamin that caters to all of that is key."