Ericka Rodriguez, founder of Axiology – after finding out most lipsticks contained animal products and by-products, Ericka started creating her own lipsticks in her kitchen, which became very popular and Axiology was born! She is an inspiration to women who want to create a business yet be true to themselves. Axiology is PETA approved, repurposes rubbish found on the beaches in Bali and will soon be 100% plastic-free, zero waste. She is the nicest human, she babysits pigs on the weekends!
Ericka’s top advice: “Find people you can talk to and bounce ideas off of. Ask everyone you know to tell you about their life and just listen. Ask the owner of your local bookstore what it’s like to run a business, talk to the friend of a friend who owns a tea company, chat with the tour guide next time you’re on vacation. It’s amazing how hearing other people’s stories can help you clarify what you want to do with your life.”
Anna Brightman, co-founder of UpCircle – she founded UpCircle with her brother and they now repurpose over 10 ingredients which would usually go to landfill – so far they have saved over 400 tonnes! Her ambition to save as much as possible from going to waste, whilst creating amazing skincare and a truly circular economy is truly inspirational
Anna’s top advice: “No one knows your business, your personality or your life like you do, so trust your instinct. There’s no harm in listening, but you don’t have to take everyone’s advice and run with it! Instead, be bold, have conviction and don’t be afraid to be the first to do something.”
Suzie and Olivia Gillespie, founders of Moo & Yoo – mother and daughter team. Suzie owns her own salon but couldn’t find quality hair products that were sustainable so created their own! Empowering women is at the core of what they do. Their Marula Oil is from a Fairtrade women’s collective in Africa, giving women a purpose and a vital economic lifeline. For IWD, they are donating to their local women’s refuge to support in need women and children
Suzie’s top advice: “Women need to support each and work together. Some of our most successful collaborations have been with other female owned businesses. Too many women suffer from imposter syndrome and feel they haven’t earned the right to be where they are so be confident and believe in yourself. Don’t be afraid to step outside your comfort zone, this is where we grow the most. It can feel uncomfortable but real growth occurs only when we are challenged and when things are not always going smoothly. Self care is a priority. Make sure you take time to prioritise your own physical and mental health as unless you are rested and fully charged, you will not be able to run your business to its full potential.”
Laurie Mias, founder of MONO skincare – Laurie has founded a few successful businesses in her lifetime so far, all whilst raising her two children. MONO is a true innovation, the world’s first skincare tablet which saves on water, a precious resource which is essentially wasted in most skincare, when we can just get it out of our taps!
Laurie’s top advice: “In the past I realised I had to say NO when I started asking myself « would this happen to me if I was a man? » But also I often realise what defines me is not my job, nor my responsibilities nor my position in a company.. what defines me, who I am really is: a mum, a girlfriend, a sister…my soul and what I made of it is what defines me; we are what we feel, what we vehicle, what we decide to be. Let’s not ashamed of doing what you feel is right in our heart, let’s trust our guts; because at least you will live the life that you chose with no regrets.
It always seems impossible until it’s done. (Love this quote).
Kassi Emadi, founder of nuddy – on a mission to make soap bars cool again and give people as many plastic-free options as possible, Kassi was only 24 when she started, taking on the ‘big boys’ and has just launched into Sainsburys! She is award-winning and has huge aspirations for the brand, which has definitely succeeded in making soap super-cool again!
Kassi’s top advice: “Always be unapologetically yourself. In life, in business. No success is worth sacrificing your soul, ethics and morals for. Stick to your guns and be true to yourself. People will always respect that and in the long term you’ll come off better.”