SA woman uses the lockdown to create new skincare range which has already received international interest
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The Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns has financially devastated scores of individuals and households, but one South African woman has used it as an opportunity to launch her own skincare brand.
Smooch Skin, a proudly South African brand which targets millennials or those between the ages of about 25-42, is now also in the process of launching in the US through a partnership with one of the largest beauty platforms in America.
The facial range prides itself in being easily absorbed, highly moisturising, gentle, and ultimately delivering on the promise made on the fun and feminine packaging.
Founder Alisha Ramasar told The Saturday Star this week that Smooch Skin was born in lockdown, as she and scores of others around the globe were contemplating their futures.
“I believe that the halo effect of Covid-19 had given me the opportunity to think beyond my current career path,” said Ramasar, who also has a successful career in marketing, media and advertising.
“I got to the point where I was asking myself, ‘what else do I wanna do?’, ‘what else do I love’ and ‘where do I want to be in 5, 10, 15 years from now?’”
Her lifelong obsession with skincare then decided this new venture and Smooch Skin was born.
“By having a close and clear understanding of the marketplace I wanted to enter and not being distracted by the saturation of such a space, I knew that if I wanted to do this, I needed to do it from my heart and develop a range that I would personally love to use.”
She then consulted with those women close to her and started working on the skincare range which she was determined to make “fun, fresh, true, natural, beautiful, affordable and most importantly – a range that actually works”.
“The Smooch formulas and application had to be the best combinations of the most imperative ingredients.
“We had to ensure that our products do not destroy the integrity of the epidermis and that they are light-weight and that they are developed and formulated to help achieve maximum effectiveness.”
Ramasar’s experience in media and marketing also aided her with this new venture as it helped her with the development and growth of her business as well branding and communication.
But despite her decades of experience in the corporate world, Ramasar conceded that launching her skincare range was not without challenges and that she had to continuously apply herself.
“You need to research, read, ask around and keep reading – you need to become the expert of the field you are about to enter.”
While the countrywide shutdown was challenging for Ramasar, she believed that it created a hunger for budget friendly self care, which is something that Smooch aims to be.
“As an era that sparked the self-care movement, Smooch stands for affordable skincare that is focused on delivering cruelty-free, and natural treatment based skincare.”
After its official launch in January this year, the skincare range has already garnered interest from leading retailers, salons, spas and other online beauty platforms.
Ramasar said the overall feedback for the skincare range exceeded her expectations, with their Honeymoon Glow Brightening Serum the current best seller.
She added that facial serums in general were a big part of the Smooch skincare range due to the product’s popularity and because she was determined to provide women with affordable options.
“When you look at what’s available to customers in terms of serums, the good ones are largely overpriced and the more affordable ones are basic serums without the full spectrum of ingredients that the premium serums offer, so we wanted to create a set of serums that were the most incredible combination of ingredients, that was natural and that felt and looked premium.
“The other notable reason we started with the serums is because they are the ultimate beauty secret, because the lightweight product with a high concentration of active ingredients absorb quickly into the skin, that works from the inside out.”
While Smooch Skincare is still relatively new on the market, Ramasar is thrilled by the support the product has been receiving both in South Africa and abroad.
“The brand's impact locally has been phenomenal which has now grasped the interest and attention globally.
“We are currently in the process of launching Smooch Skin in the US as a partnership with one of the largest beauty platforms in the US as well as exploring options for expanding into various parts of Northern Africa.”
Ramasar said her ultimate goal with Smooch Skin is “to grow our brand with humility and integrity while delivering consistently high-quality products that provide lasting value to all the people who use them”.