It’s said that necessity is the mother of invention.
Chris Young agrees.
When Young, a Kilgore High School alumni, was furloughed due to COVID-19, he decided to use the time off to further the fragrance business that he’s been building since 2011.
And that’s how I’ll B DAWG GONE, a hand-crafted fragrance business, got its start.
“When I got laid off, my other half (wife Cori Davis-Young) told me, she said, ‘Well, you have a lot of time on your hands, now you can just really put your efforts and your all into what you’ve been doing all these years.’
“So from April of this year when I was furloughed because of the COVID virus, I put all my efforts into my little situation, and that’s where we are currently now,” Young said.
Young manufactures and sells multiple products under his product line named I’ll Be Dawg Gone, including two air freshener products, all-purpose sanitizer and gel hand sanitizers, men’s cologne and body oil.
“My popular formula is a two in one formula,” he explained. “My second popular is the three in one,” Young said. “The first product, that’s the two in one. You can wear this product as a light body spray or freshen the air. The second formula is a three in one, and you can burn it it in your warmer or your home diffuser, or you can use it as an air freshener, like those little christmas trees that hang up in in your vehicle.
“It’s oil based so you can saturate that and continue the longevity of whatever you air freshener is that’s hanging in your vehicle.”
The business takes a lot of hard work. Young said he gets up at 5 a.m. to work on making fragrances before going into work at 7 a.m., and his partner Cori handles the books.
Young said he’s trying to start a fragrance movement and bring positivity with his business.
“When I was younger I wasn’t always the dapper gentleman I am today,” he said. “I was real rough around the edges... and my grandmother offered me a challenge. And I just lost my grandmother a couple of months ago, and she told me, ‘You know what Chris, if you can put that talent into doing something wrong, I know you can put that talent into doing something positive. So show me.’
“She was a preacher. So I took that advice... I pay a big homage to both of my grandmothers. Not only the one deceased, but the one that’s still living at this time. She gives me great support, she’s a great support team other than my other half, and basically I do this for them. I do this for my deceased mother as well. So it means everything to me. It really does.”
Reaching the youth is another goal of his.
“I have a lot of nieces and nephews, and so I just want to bring everyone together,” Young said. “Right now, we’re living in trying times where everybody’s wanting to be at everybody’s throat, and if I can be a positive shift, a positive movement to let kids out there know to stay in school, do the right thing. You know, college is not for everybody, but the Lord gives you a talent, and when the Lord gives you a talent, don’t waste it. Just put your efforts into something that’s gonna make you successful. So that’s what I’m trying to, I’m trying to reach the youth and let them know there are alternative things you can do, and everyone has a God given talent, just explore it and stay with it and you will prevail. You really will.”
With his products, Young offers an affordable version of what other businesses sell for a lot more.
“Everybody wants to afford what the rich and famous have, you know what I mean?,” he said. “So if I can make an affordable product, ‘cause I make designer cologne scents as well. I mean if you can afford what the rich people have or what you feel like that wealthy people have, then people will be a lot happier.
“I’m just an alternate, affordable route to getting what people want. You don’t have to be rich. You don’t have to be a special someone to have something nice. I feel like there’s something for everybody within my products. I have something for everybody, whether they’re five, or 55.”
I’ll B Dawg Gone fragrances are sold at Lee’s Fashion & Beauty in Henderson as well as NG Tech Auto Glass and Windshield Repair in Longview. You can also call or text (903) 364-4603 to purchase products. His business page can be found by searching ‘I’LL B DAWG GONE’ on Facebook.