I am so excited to introduce you to Jenni Retourné, one of our gorgeous hub members! I loved interviewing her and I am sure you will find her story very inspiring!
Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
"I’m 35, mummy to my gorgeous 2 year old girl and owner of Willowberry natural skincare. I have worked in the beauty industry for nearly 15 years so it’s what I know and love – before Willowberry I was editor of a trade beauty magazine and then I ran my own marketing company for beauty brands for 7 years."
When and why did you launch Willowberry?
'Willowberry has just launched after 3 years in the making. I have always wanted to have my own brand. I have worked with so many beauty brands and I would always think: “I want to do what you’re doing!” In the end I decided to just get on and do it – it would be the one thing I’d regret on my deathbed if I didn’t.
I wanted to create a brand with my own values at its heart:
- Offering credible natural skincare products that really work
- Combining beauty with wellbeing – health & wellbeing are passions of mine and they are intrinsically linked with how you look
- Being completely transparent about every single ingredient we use and helping to educate the customer, so they can make informed decisions about what they put on their skin
- Making real product claims instead of selling a dream or trading on insecurity
- Celebrating natural beauty in all its forms, rather than promoting unrealistic ideals. You’ll never see the term ‘anti-ageing’ on our products. Why be ‘anti’ ageing? Ageing is a privilege, not a right'
Can you tell us about your favourite products in your range?
We currently have a Cleansing Balm, Treatment Oil and Day Cream and I am totally in love with all of our products – no product would make it through to production if I didn’t think it totally rocked. But the hero product of the range is definitely the Willowberry Nutrient Boost Treatment Oil – people RAVE about it. I worked for a long time to create a facial oil that was light enough to be used in the morning before applying your make-up – this is rare. Our Treatment Oil is a powerhouse for your skin and gives it a serious boost. I’m obsessed with it.
What is your proudest achievement in business so far?
'Launching Willowberry was a huge achievement – it’s scary to launch your own business and it takes a lot of hard work and guts just to get it off the ground. Feel the fear and do it anyway! It took me over 3 years because it was important to me that I do it right. I feel so proud to have followed my dreams and stuck to my vision and my values.
I am so proud that people actually have my products on their dressing tables and on their skin. I get a lot of impassioned feedback from people telling me what a difference Willowberry products have made to their skin – that blows my mind. The Willowberry Treatment Oil made it onto British Beauty Blogger’s Top 6 Face Oils and has a permanent place on her bedside table – she is a huge beauty blogger who really knows her stuff, she has tried hoards of products and is no-nonsense and no BS, so that was a huge deal for me.'
What are you goals for the future?
'To build a brand with integrity that people trust and love. To establish Willowberry as a go-to natural brand. Willowberry’s tagline is ‘Your Skin’s Wellbeing’ because we choose natural ingredients that are rich in vitamins, antioxidants and essential fatty acids to nurture the skin’s wellbeing – I believe that we are at the inception of the Beauty Wellbeing category and I would love for Willowberry to become a leader in this field.'
What does SSH mean to you and how has it helped you or your business so far?
I joined Southwood Social Hub on gut feeling after meeting the lovely Hayley at an event – I am all about gut feeling, it has always served me well. My gut proved right - the hub is an invaluable space for women in business to help and support each other and I am constantly learning new things that help me in my business. I have had expert advice and business opportunities come from the Hub, plus I have hired people from the Hub for their services. People are evangelical when they speak about the Hub – it just has that Je Ne Sais Quoi. A sprinkle of Hayley magic.
To checkout the beautiful Willowberry skincare range for yourself just click HERE