HUD Unveils New Business Venture

Norwegian born skin specialist and founder of the Scandi inspired HÜD chats with Anita Quade and reveals her new venture – Profit + Purpose designed for business owners keen to focus on purpose driven business leadership.

My love for skincare started when . . .

“My life changed overnight during a trip to Daydream Island with my then boyfriend (now Mr HÜD!), around 22 years ago. We spent the day sailing in the Whitsundays and when we arrived back at the hotel, I went to get ready for dinner and saw (in horror) that my face was completely covered in pigment! I had developed intense deep brown blotches covering pretty much most of my face.

I had no idea what had happened so I went to the nurse on the island who told me due to my pill (which I was on to control my inflamed acne) I had developed melasma. Ever since this one day in paradise, I became SO obsessed with finding a solution.”

Gry Tømte, founder of Melbourne’s HÜD skin clinic

I’m entering my 15th year of treating skin and the biggest lesson I have learnt is . . .

“That treating skin is an inside-out approach. We used to see the skin as one-dimensional, only treating what we saw on the surface, but now as a result, we see that solutions are often worse than the problem! Inflammaging is a word I always come back to, and in the days of getting my own skin treated for acne and melasma, it was the perfect case-study in how that comes about.

Constant removal of my epidermis with Jessners, TCA’s and Salicylics along with glycolic products at home, meant my skin aged about 10-years in a year. We now know that reducing cortisol (the reason I opened a clinic that looks and feels relaxed 8 years ago when it wasn’t a thing) is paramount to treatment success. And of course, you can’t treat any inflammatory disorders without treating the gut.”

One of the things I wish I had have known when starting out was . . .

“Is not to scale too quickly. I was fortunate enough that I was really clear on my “why,” which meant when everyone around me told me to take a different route, I could stay focused and pace my own way and be an innovator.

As we became busy quite quickly, I decided to build another four rooms – we initially had three and all of a sudden, we had 7! That meant we had the capacity to more than double our clients and revenue so I expanded the team very quickly. Along with that came toxic culture, unclear expectations, messy systems and what I see now as a huge amount of learning opportunities from growing pains. Then of course it was a huge number of sleepless nights, panic attacks, feelings of failure and actual failures. But reflection is a wonderful thing. And all those challenges led me to where I am today!”

Gry believes treating skin is an inside out approach because most problems are interconnected.

The biggest change in the skincare industry over the years has been . . .

“Specialisation. When I started out it was just a given that you’d do a bit of everything. Now, finding your niche is a must. I think it’s an important shift – but I also think a lot of business owners have jumped a bit too quickly. There’s almost a stigma if you specialise in something other than skin. As I see it, it comes down to really defining your “why.” For me it was a no brainer – my years of suffering with my own skin was a constant driver for me when it came to making decisions to specialise in skin. But purpose comes in all different shapes and sizes, and if your only reason for specialising in skin is to make more money, then it will likely fail.”

My biggest achievement to date . . .

“Had you asked me a couple of years ago, when the world was different, I might have said winning one of our many awards… But life feels different now post COVID, and my focuses have shifted too.

I have so many achievements I’m proud of but in this moment, I am the proudest of the way we as a team and business stayed true to our ‘people first’ culture during a full year of lockdowns and challenges that have come during the past two years in Victoria.

We kept the entire team on and working throughout and made sure that we had daily huddles via zoom and did fun things together!

We also had a full team turnover post the lockdowns as our people had settled into their home towns with their families – either overseas or interstate. One year of lockdowns is a looooong time! But with that came an amazing opportunity to find some incredible people who I am so grateful to have on my team today.

We also made sure that we prioritised the other main people in our business – our clients. Our focus was purely to make sure they and our team had what they needed to get through a very difficult, uncertain time.

As a purpose driven business who exists to change lives by changing skin, we made it our top priority to help people remotely. So coming out of the past two years better and stronger than ever is probably my greatest achievement as of right now.”

Profit + Purpose is a combination of private mentoring, coaching and consulting – and a game changing course, designed to reframe the industry approaches leadership and business fundamentals.

Business leadership is important to me and I have set up a new venture titled Profit + Purpose because . . .

“It is my absolute passion project! It’s a combination of private mentoring, coaching and consulting – and a game changing course in the works, designed to reframe how we as an industry approach leadership and business fundamentals.

A successful business has four components – People, Process, Product and Profit. For too long we’ve started at the wrong end of the equation. We look at ways to increase profit and then we create frameworks around that and call it a day, and our people are just an afterthought.

In my opinion, there is no “5 steps to 10x your business” model that works long term without a significant cost to culture and people to create real, lasting impactful change, we need to start with you growing into the most impactful leader you can be, so that you can grow your people to be the best they can be – so they can grow your business to be the best it can be. Imagine if we as leaders and business owners can lead with purpose and find more profit, work life balance and enjoyment in the process?“

Gry believes a successful business has four components – People, Process, Product, and Profit.

Imagine the beauty industry as a serious contender to say the tech industry? Or marketing?

“An industry where people are given opportunities for growth beyond just learning about skin — but developing leadership skills and business skills. That’s my goal for our industry and I’m really excited for it all!”

The ethos of my brand/company is . . .

“It’s a combination of 3 pillars:


We’re in the transformation business – and not just the skin-deep kind. At HÜD we change lives by changing skin. It gives people confidence and courage and vibrancy. We are so passionate about our purpose that we’ve even made it a trademark!


HÜD stands for transparency in everything we do. Real people. Honest feedback. Authentic products. There’s nothing fake about our brand. What you see is what you get. We are anti fads and focus intensely on what gives our clients results rather than what looks cool in the moment.


Perhaps most importantly, more than anything else, at HÜD we have heart. We understand how traumatic bad skin can be. We’re genuinely here to help. And we care about our clients – each and every one.”

HÜD’s goal for the next year is to grow to their fullest capacity whilst maintaining an absolute people first culture.

My mentors along the way have been . . .

”Many and varied, and I have learnt from all of them.

In the past four years, I have been incredibly fortunate to work with a mentor who specialises in mindful leadership from big tech/business background (not beauty), which has been transformational! It’s also what’s led me to start my project, Profit + Purpose.

I have learnt so many things along the way that completely changed my perspective on leadership and what owning a business and defining success is all about.

I’ve consolidated my journey which has resulted in a thriving, successful and purpose driven seven figure business – and of course, a map to help others get there too!”

My goal this year for the brand is . . .

“Is to grow to our fullest capacity whilst maintaining an absolute people first culture.

We’ve changed how we operate post pandemic – we’d actually started before but it’s accelerated the process – and it means our rostering has been optimised for a healthy work/life balance and ongoing training/education. We have a bunch of exciting goals internally.

My goals for Profit + Purpose is to have a positive impact on as many business owners as I can, whilst also being completely prescriptive. I take on a maximum of four clients at a time, and I never found group sessions very transformative – so this means a fully prescribed course that will enable business owners to apply every principle to their specific circumstances or business.

I am super excited to say the least about the future.”

This article originally appeared in the May-June 2022 issue of Professional Beauty.

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