Business profile: Sally Robertson – Organic at Heart
The founder of this organic skincare company says caring for her own baby inspired her business.
When you visit the website for skincare company Organic at Heart, alongside the pots and jars of gorgeous mother and baby products to buy, the company also celebrate pregnancy health and well being, and the virtues of organic living in general. Because to this company, launched in 2008 and set up by mother of two, Sally Robertson, organic ingredients are not just a gimmick but an essential starting point for everything they produce.
How did you get into setting up Organic at Heart as a business?
Sally: I started blending essential oils when my baby son started suffering from colic and sensitive skin.
I had always been interested in holistic therapies and in Asia, when I was working in Hong Kong years ago. I had plenty of opportunity to explore them. When I returned to the UK in 1996 my young son Sam was a colicky baby who also suffered from sensitive skin. I became frustrated by the lack of healthy products available for bath and massage time. They were generally full of artificial colours, perfumes and harsh chemicals and I wanted to find a more natural alternative.
I also went to a post-natal mummy and baby massage morning based on aromatherapy and it all seemed ever so good. I thought it would be great to create an easy solution for other mums, and after months of research and development, I launched a healthy and natural based skincare range for mothers and babies. The brand was called Footprints and I worked very successfully with retailers including Tesco and the John Lewis group. That was the origins of what we now do with Organic at Heart.
What do you think makes Organic at Heart stand out from the rest of the market?
Sally: It took two years of hard work to get Soil Association organic certification on our products, but having achieved our goal, we are now proud to be able to produce exceptionally healthy products, blended using the finest and freshest organic plant essential oils, butters and waxes.
We were the first skincare range to secure the full UK Soil Association stamp certifying that not less than 75% of the product ingredients are sourced from truly organic methods.
What aspects of your previous work did you bring to setting up Organic at Heart?
Sally: In the early 1990’s I was in Hong Kong as head of sales and marketing for Virgin Atlantic. Hong Kong is a very dynamic and exciting environment – you either sink or swim in business. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Virgin and I think the company gave me some great tools as well as the confidence to have a go at running my own business.
Do you have any plans for the coming year that you can tell us about?
Sally: I’m now working to expand the range into a much broader selection of organic lifestyle products including children’s skincare, general body and bath range, household cleaning products and candles.
For more about Sally’s work and Organic at Heart visit the website at www.organicatheart.co.uk
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