Anastasia Beverly Hills, The Beauty Chef and Kester Black Founders Share the Biggest Challenge They’ve Overcome in Business

Ahead of International Women’s Day this month, the founders of some of Australia’s (and the world’s) most respected beauty brands have detailed where they have hit roadblocks in their careers, and how they’ve come out on top.

Read on for their stories:

What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced and overcome as a brand founder?

Anastasia Soare, founder of Anastasia Beverly Hills said: “There are certain challenges you encounter while navigating a new country that only other immigrants can truly understand. I was constantly on a mission – to convince the bank to give me a credit card, to convince the landlord to rent me the salon space, to convince detractors that eyebrows could be big business. I believed in my vision, and that is what kept me going. I’ve learned to never give up and never take no for an answer. Skills you can learn, experience you can gain, but determination and passion will be your guiding lights.” 

Carla Oates, founder of The Beauty Chef said: “By far the biggest challenge initially was that there was no category for the product when we launched in 2009 — the buyers were stumped about where to put it within their stores. The concept of inner beauty was very left of field and the idea of an inner beauty powder formulated from fermented foods with probiotic bacteria for gut health and glowing skin was even weirder! I was told by numerous people that it was too strange a concept and wouldn’t ever take off. But I felt so passionate about what I had discovered—a real solution to skin and gut issues that I knew worked. If you look after your gut, your skin will not only be healthier, but your body and mind will be too.

Since then, the inner beauty category has continued to grow and grow. I truly believe that “beauty is wellness” and “wellness is beauty” and it’s this ethos running through everything we do at The Beauty Chef that has set us apart from our competitors.”

Anna Ross, founder of Kester Black said: “Kester Black was actually originally a jewellery line. I wanted to add some colour to one of my sterling silver rings designs. I then found out that you can colour silver with enamel paint, so went out and purchased some nail polish (which is also enamel paint) to test the theory. After not loving many of the nail polish options out there, I began researching further into the beauty industry and was appalled that no cosmetics on the market seemed to take ethical production seriously. Sourcing sustainable packaging options was very difficult to begin with, however after investigation I found something that worked and launched 6 colours in August 2014 which tripled my turnover within 3 months – and look where we are now!”

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