23 July 2021
Multi award winning skincare • Personally formulated • Organic & natural • Ingredient Led • Results driven • Skin nutrition
It’s a two-way thing actually, supporting the industry and being part of the force that is the British Beauty Industry AND to have access to some of the most well respected, experienced, seen it all, done more, amazing people that make up CEW. Being able to say that you are part of this and maybe to help or share situations and experiences to bring confidence to younger members just embarking on their beauty journey – and I don’t mean just younger in years but newcomers of any age. To be able to share the good the bad and the ugly amongst like minded people is invaluable. Having an ‘ear to the ground’ on what’s happening, the changes and the new developments is invaluable both as manufacturer/brand and a user. And we cannot forget the awards, recognition for the hard work, dedication, sheer blinkin’ mindedness of our industry is celebration every day but to have a dedicated awards event is the culmination of everyone’s beauty year. And then, because we are an indomitable tribe of like-minded women, it’s on to the next year.
The sheer determination and variety you encounter, the brand owners that have a vision to bring a product/range to market, the ways this can happen and the skins it can help. No formula is the same, no brand is the same, nothing is the same but we are all in the same industry. We are all in the same beauty boat but the boat is never the same. From a wood crafted, hand made yacht from the 30’s, a sleek white million dollar cruiser, some are ocean liners and some are lifeboats but we are all the same in some way and it’s this internal curation that delivers the variety our customers need. It’s very inspiring.
Hearing how we have changed people’s skin for the better, how this affects their lives and how it brings confidence back and healthy skin to the front. I love formulating, if I had the choice, it would be the only thing I do, pottering about in my head to find a blend that on paper works, mixing the physical formula and applying and then watching it grow (after many incarnations) - I think I made that sound like a straightforward process – which belies the pages screwed up and thrown out, the pots of something very odd that won’t stay blended and the textures that would challenge even the most dedicated of users – until you have a finished product that gives results on application, time after time. That’s what excites me, it is alchemy and it is beyond exciting in a quiet, happy way.
Just START! I’m not the best person to give advice on this, I’m not structured and I don’t plan anywhere near as much as would be good – I don’t actually plan, full stop (!) But just START and surround yourself with people that DO, get a team that you trust and allow them to do their work. So often you hear of people afraid to take the risk, jump in or start something new but they have an idea and a passion. Stop looking in, join us and start looking out, it’s the best view. No one in the industry, no one that took the risk truly knew what would happen and I bet you can’t find anyone that regrets it or would have it any other way.
Resilience, the ability to keep taking steps forward as most days there will be knocks back, challenges and trials but most days these are balanced with mini victories, massive discoveries, and huge learning – plus the occasional award. No day is the same, no brand is the same, understanding that there isn’t A WAY to do this but there is YOUR WAY, for today and tomorrow it may be different but as long as you believe in what you are doing (and when you have a wobble, you find your way to getting the belief back) CEW is testament to the fact that there is group thinking but there are times to be individual and times to come together. Honesty too. Some of the best and most useful conversations I have had is with friends in the industry – sometimes people I have only met by chance and unexpectedly but sharing the same industry means there is a common language and an innate understanding of what we all do. It helps a lot to hear other experiences and to see that you are supported and you aren’t alone.
It’s been a salutary lesson in everything I have said before, no one truly knows what is going to happen, when or how it’s going to surprise us, so if you are waiting for things to get back to normal then you will be waiting a long time. We learnt to change, to adapt and respond on a pin head. We all had different experiences and we all dealt in different ways and none of us expected it. Some businesses literally started on lockdown day 1 and they are thriving. Some struggled and most were shut down without knowing if they could open again. Many experienced losses, personally and professionally. The support from the industry and within the industry from the likes of Beauty Backed and Caroline Hirons and of course CEW was striking. Pulling together to support and literally getting up every day and finding a way to keep business going. Midnight doorstep deliveries, facials on zoom, phone calls to shielding clients, long conversations with stockists, we all care and if anything it has proven that it might be a multi billion pound industry but it is made from individuals whose sum is most definitely greater than the part.