UpCircle, the UK’s #1 upcycled beauty brand, have announced that they are one of the winners of this year’s Sky Zero Footprint Fund, winning £250K in media value to spend on TV in 2024 with their TVC: Forward thinking skincare that keeps you coming back. They are one of five businesses, and the only beauty brand, who received this incredible recognition for what they do for the planet.
“This project has been such a joy and walking away with £250K is the cherry on top. The time is SO right for UpCircle and this investment will be a game-changer for us in 2024.”
“There is no beauty brand doing more than we are, and there are few industries as wasteful as ours. The authenticity and sincerity of this TVC is true to our brand, one thing Sky were big fans of. We wanted to immediately engage with our audience, how do we do that? By using one of our very own customers as our lead talent – meet Kandia!” – Anna Brightman, Co-Founder
Sarah Jones, Director of Planning at Sky Media, commented, “Through Sky’s Footprint Fund, we are able to supercharge businesses like UpCircle that are helping shape a better planet, using the power and reach of TV. I am personally a massive fan of UpCircle’s skin and haircare products and I can’t wait to see them make their debut on TV in 2024.”
UpCircle’s concept for their TVC follows a narrative in reverse, showcasing the authentic upcycled ingredient story behind their bestselling “Caffeinated Duo” – featuring their Eye Cream and Face Oil. The company’s origins began with the story of collecting coffee grounds from cafes and upcycling them into skincare, so it seemed only right to have this as the focus for their ad. Their agency, Toast TV, characterised the original idea for the TVC with intimate storytelling and a strong cinematic sensibility, aligning with the genuine and ‘real’ feel UpCircle were looking for.
UpCircle intentionally chose to cast a member of the “UpCircle Insiders” group for their lead talent; Kandia Appadoo shares that UpCircle is “about resilience and fostering an online community that genuinely cares about the environment and each other. UpCircle is more than skincare; it’s a down-to-earth connection”. UpCircle’s connection is built through the transparency and engaged relationship with their customers. The behind-the-scenes team is a part of their brand identity; to highlight this, UpCircle cast their own team for other scenes within the TVC for true authenticity, including Remi who collects coffee for UpCircle every day! On location, the team felt very at-home – with their scenes being filmed at one of their genuine coffee collection points: Spinach, a coffee shop in Dulwich, London. To add another level of authenticity, they cast Spinach’s own barista to be a part of this TVC.
The Sky Zero Footprint Fund panel of judges were extremely impressed with all the final creatives presented; Jo Fenn, a judge on this year’s panel, shared that UpCircle’s TVC grew “leaps and bounds” from the first round in the process.
UpCircle’s sustainability practices extended beyond and into the production of this TVC, with their total CO2 emissions calculated as a mere 0.0388. According to the BBC, the average (mean) rate of emissions associated with TV production, based on data from about 80 programmes, is about 8.2 tonnes of carbon dioxide per hour. UpCircle’s production was just 0.0005% of a standard TV production.
Looking into the new year, UpCircle has prepared to maximise the potential of the £250K prize. It will offer immense impact for the brand and will be their first significant brand investment. The narrative of their TVC will run a parallel omni-channel campaign, which will support the widespread awareness that the Fund offers. UpCircle has run two successful coffee-themed national out-of-home campaigns in 2023 and they plan to iterate on those moving into next year. They will also be launching into a new category at the end of 2024 which will expand their catalogue and engage a new cohort of consumers. “We are very grateful that Sky has recognised us as a changemaker and offered us this opportunity to have an immense positive impact. This means so much to every one of us at UpCircle.” – Anna Brightman, Co-Founder