After experiencing years of intense bullying due to her struggles with her weight, acne and a large nevus mole on her face, Rachel knew she wanted to help others by becoming an aesthetician and owning a medspa.
Immediately after completing her B.A. in Sociology from UNC, Rachel enrolled at the National Aesthetics Institute.
After receiving her license, Rachel entered the industry and began working at a medspa as a laser technician, where she quickly discovered the lack of education and services available for treating common concerns and conditions seen in darker skin tones.
Due to this injustice, Rachel committed to ensuring her medspa would service all skin tones.
Founded Urban Medspa and Weight Loss Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Urban Medspa quickly became the top medical spa and laser center to effectively and safely treat melanin-rich skin. Clients and celebrities traveled from out of town to seek Rachel's experience and knowledge.
Rachel and her staff of Melanin Experts performed over 100,000 treatments and learned the most effective ingredients and formulations to improve common skin concerns and conditions of diverse skin tones.
Recognizing the need of her expertise outside of Charlotte, NC, Rachel started Urban Skin Rx with a mission to create a clinical strength skincare line inclusive of darker skin tones.
of Black Beauty
of Black Beauty
Pumpkin Pore Detox
Mask and Scrub
of Black Beauty
Launched in select Target stores
Launched in select Ulta Beauty and CVS stores
Relocated to a new corporate office
Became Leaping Bunny Certified
Launched nationwide in all Ulta Beauty stores
Launched Pro Strength™ on HSN.com and QVC.com
Launched Pro Strength™ on Dermstore.com
Expanded corporate offices to support growing company
Launched Pro Strength™ in select Ulta Beauty stores
Founder & CEO
About The Founder
"I am beyond proud of the work that I and Urban Skin Rx® have done to elevate and expand the category of clinical skincare for melanin rich skin tones. When I started my career as an aesthetician 15 years ago, I was solely focused on providing safe and effective treatments for the multicultural patient at my medical spa in Charlotte NC, because at that time there were no other medical spas doing so. Today, I am thrilled able to be able to leverage that previous experience by providing formulas that address the needs of melanin rich skin that can reach consumers in households across the globe."
Rachel Roff grew up in Northern California, where - at an early age - she experienced intense bullying due to being overweight, struggling with acne, and brandishing a large, precancerous nevus mole on her face. For Rachel, getting a college degree was important; however, her experiences also fueled a growing passion to become a medical aesthetician and open a medical spa. She attended University of San Francisco and later moved to Charlotte, NC, where she attended University of North Carolina at Charlotte for Sociology.
In 2003, Rachel only waited one week after college before attending the National Aesthetics Institute of Charlotte. With a desire to treat her friends and family with skin of color, she quickly discovered the lack of education and services available for treating common concerns and conditions seen in darker skin tones. Shocked and frustrated by this injustice, Rachel made it her goal to make the skincare industry more inclusive. Her unrelenting passion drove her to found Urban Skin Solutions Medspa and Laser Center in 2006 in Charlotte, NC.
Urban Skin Solutions quickly became a huge success, with clients and celebrities traveling from out of town to seek her treatments for common skin conditions in darker skin tones. Rachel’s list of celebrity clientele includes Teyana Taylor, Fantasia, Eva Marcille, Tasha Cobbs and many more.
After treating thousands of patients, Rachel recognized the need for her expertise outside of Charlotte, NC. In 2010 she launched Urban Skin Rx®, a collection of clinical skincare products for diverse skin tones, in order to extend her expertise and treatments to people all over the world. Urban Skin Rx® is now sold online at urbanskinrx.com as well as over 5,000 stores across Target, Ulta, Walmart, Amazon, CVS, QVC.com, HSN.com and & Dermstore.com. The brand also launched its first international distribution in 2020 in Nigeria. Urban Skin Rx® has won numerous beauty awards, including Allure Best of Beauty Award (2019, 2020), Essence Best in Black Beauty (2018, 2019, 2020) and ELLE Future of Beauty (2020).
In addition to being featured in numerous publications, Rachel has been recognized as a leading beauty innovator by Forbes and WWD, and recently featured in WWD’s Master Class. In her personal life, Rachel's first and most important job is being a mother to her young daughter, Rosie. When she is able to step away from the office, she loves traveling to new places, ordering room service and going on long hikes in beautiful places. Rachel is grateful to be able to use her platform to bring awareness and raise money for organizations that support women and children who have suffered from abuse, single moms, and mothers who have lost their children from police brutality. To learn more about some of the organizations Rachel and Urban Skin Rx® support, please visit our Non-Profits We Support + Community page.
q&a with Rachel
Why do you think there is a lack of available treatments and services for darker skin tones? I think it starts with the fact that systemic racism affects all industries including cosmetic dermatology and aesthetics. There are huge disparities in these fields starting with the fact that less than 4% of Dermatologists are African American. Although the field has evolved since I started 15 years ago, it still has a long way to go when it comes to treating skin of color. Even to this day many medspas do not invest in equipment such as lasers that are safe for treating melanin rich skin.
What do you find most rewarding about your role as CEO and Founder of Urban Skin Rx®? Hearing the words "Your products changed my life!" never gets old and is so rewarding! To know that I have made an effective product and helped someone else feel more confident in his or her skin is a true blessing.
How do you manage work/life balance? It’s not easy! Sometimes I feel very overwhelmed and run down. I have been a business owner since I was 24 and running two companies with over 65 employees. When you're a CEO and entrepreneur there is no “turning off.” Texts and emails are 24/7 because, although I have a great executive team, there are many things I still have to approve and things could be time sensitive. Working out and vacations definitely help me regenerate and reset so I try to take 3-5 day breaks every 2-3 months. Plus, great reviews and growing sales keeps me going. I am incredibly proud that Urban Skin Rx® is now a household name. I want to be the go-to brand for diverse skin tones battling uneven skin tone and other skin conditions.
What advice can you give to any entrepreneur who is starting a new business venture? You have to be so passionate about your venture because that passion is what will give you the determination to never give up. Also learn how to quickly pivot, always be thinking about backup plans to every scenario. So many things will not go as planned or promised so being prepared for that is essential.
What’s next for Urban Skin Rx? I would love to continue to expand our presence! Although we ship internationally directly to consumers, and do have distribution in Nigeria, I would love to truly become a much more accessible brand globally.
Licensed Medical Aesthetician, National Aesthetics Institute
Certified by UBS Aesthetics in the application of medical microdermabrasion
PCA Skin Biology and Chemical Peels Certified
Accredited by The Society for Clinical and Medical Hair Removal, Inc.
Certificate in Skin Color and Pigmentation, The International Dermal Institute
Laser Technician Certification in Therapeutic Application of Candela Lasers, Candela Corporation
Laser Technician Certification, Allied Health Association