Sustainable skincare brand Herbal Essentials expands global reach during pandemic

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For small businesses, getting into retailers is key for consumer awareness. The touch and feel of a brand is just as important as the products effectiveness. So, with our favourite high street skincare and beauty stockists forced to close their doors, traditional revenue streams on the brink of collapse and those valued customers losing their jobs, how does any small business survive in this climate?

Herbal Essentials is a classic example of how a small independent brand has managed to generate growth despite the Pandemic.

Made in France and with a USP of pure Himalayan spring water, an essential ingredient in every single product, Herbal Essentials skincare has been clinically proven to visibly support skin cell turnover. This key element is blended with unique combinations of Ayurvedic natural active botanicals to create targeted, effective & sustainable skincare, that doesn’t break the bank.

The news of the pandemic didn’t stop Herbal Essentials and they decided to switch their focus to global markets. Founder of the brand, Aly Rahimtoola, a UK-educated and Pakistani-born entrepreneur, along with his small but entrepreneurial team based in Kensington, have opened 7 global markets in 2020 including some potentially lucrative territories such as Russia and China through a mix of online and retail channels. Sales were up 21% year-on-year in CY 2020 and are expected to more than double in 2021 on the back of new launches in Japan, France, the Middle East and the United Kingdom scheduled for this year.

Aly Rahimtoola was born in Pakistan and educated at Westminster School in London and then Brown University in the US. He worked for his family in the shipping industry for many years until he founded Herbal Essentials. Realising there is a value in the vitality and simplicity that the Himalayas bring from its purity, Aly decided to create a unique brand that harnesses the power of the Himalayas to address modern-day skin concerns brought about by the pressure of our lifestyle. His aim is to address the imbalance of modern stressors and help people improve their wellness through ancient beauty wisdom fused with French technical know-how at an affordable price point.

Rahimtoola commented: “It’s no secret that COVID 19 has changed the world we live in. The question is for how long? I’ve been lucky enough to work all over the world and can see the opportunities that are available in new markets. As anyone in business knows, building relationships is incredibly important and I’m proud to say that the  team have been able to do this throughout Europe, the Middle East and Asia in a very short time frame. We’ve been flexible in our approach while keeping our core values and I’m confident about opening more markets and innovating new products  in 2021 and 2022.”

What next? Whilst many companies have furloughed staff, Herbal Essentials has regularly been adding to its team and will continue to hire despite the recent  Lockdown. “We know that (since Covid-19) there has been a shift in consumer demand, not only for a simpler lifestyle but also for a more simplified, no-fuss skincare routine. Herbal Essentials spotted this early on and have been working on an innovative products to revolutionise the way we select, think and use skincare.”