Marie Claire talks business with the beauty guru who built her award-winning empire from scratch and created the renowned Cleanse & Polish, beloved of women in more than 90 countries
She’s a natural beauty guru who built her award-winning empire from scratch and created the renowned Cleanse & Polish, beloved of women in more than 90 countries. Introducing the positively radiant Liz Earle.
‘When opportunities present themselves it’s crucial to make the most of them,’ says Liz, who started her business with a friend. ‘Learn from every experience and use your contacts – if you believe in what you’re selling, the products will speak for themselves’
‘The power of two is more than double the power of one, so if you can find a business partner to launch with, all the better,’ she added.
‘It’s great to share the stress, and you can support each other – in the early days, my partner and I would often send each other faxes if we woke up with an idea in the middle of the night!’
It’s also important not to rush decisions, as they may cost you dearly in the future, Liz explained.
‘My partner has a saying: If it has to be now, it has to be ‘no’. At the end of it all it’s your business, so stay in control and don’t agree to anything you’re not happy with. If in doubt, sleep on it!’
With so much to think about, Liz let us in on her top five tips on how to get into the industry:
1.Know your subject
‘There is so much to learn, especially when it comes to botanicals and the way our skin works. Going into something without heaps of research and knowledge is not a good idea.’
2.Crawl, walk, run
‘Take your time. We use this motto throughout the business and it extends to our products too, some of which have taken literally years to develop to make sure the formulations meet our very strict standards. Our haircare range took six years and over 100 formulations!’
3.Stick to your principles
‘From the outset, we established clear guidelines for our company and as we grew we stuck to them. The result is our ‘Precious Recipe’ – the special ingredients that make us who we are. As well as a commitment to the highest standards of quality and service for our customers, these also include a commitment to the people within the company, such as our suppliers. Our core principles define our work ethic and are ingrained in every aspect of the business.’
4.Keep on top of stress
‘I’m a great list maker, with a ‘To Do’ list always on the go. When you’re busy, it focuses your mind on priorities and helps you feel in control. My mother once told me that every hour of sleep before midnight is worth two hours after midnight. She may have just been trying to get me to bed earlier, but I find it’s true. Having at least eight hours a night makes me feel ready for anything that tomorrow may bring.’
5.The customer is king
‘Great service is at the heart of everything we do, from the way our in-house botanist sources our active ingredients, to the hand tissue-wrapping of all our products so that they arrive like a special present. The success of our company is down to customer service – delivering outstanding products that exceed expectations. Because of this we have been rewarded with loyal customers who tell all their friends and keep coming back for more. You can’t buy customer loyalty, it has to be earned.’
Watch our video with Liz Earle here