Twenty-eight-year-old Seeza Bhardwaj had just delivered a baby girl in February 2018 when she decided to heed her long call as an entrepreneur. In the following 50 daysof her birth, she unveiled her D2C skincare line- the Green Loom.
Today today, this Panchkula-based startup has created an assortment of 31 quality natural cosmetics, that range from facial creams and creams, to cold-pressed oils. The company is present both in offline and online space all over India.
It wasn’t a simple phone call. The mompreneur was mulling about the idea of creating simple and transparent and universally applicable cosmetics for quite a while when she was looking at the overcrowded D2C market for skincare, specifically organic.
The most commonly used term in the world of skincare is organic. Everyone is selling one thing or another based on the word. It’s become an image of status or some kind of. However, the truth is that consumers do not want to be misled and are looking for simple product, says the founder.
The term organic refers to how the ingredient is grown. organic is a reference to the way an ingredient is grown (must be prepared and raised with no pesticides) while natural is a reference to the product was not chemically processed, but it might not contain organic components. Therefore, all natural products do not have to be organic.
Refusing to adhere to that thin line Green Loom has picked up on the notion of being ‘quality natural’ i.e., free from any artificial ingredients like parabens, petroleum chemicals, sodium lauryl, synthetic colors and dyes.
It is particularly careful not to generalize its products as organic and only those which have the appropriate certification.
Half the items on the market are labeled organic, but they are not the truth. You shouldn’t gamble with deceit. It is essential to tell the public the products you offer, says Seeza.
The shelf life of the shelf-life of a Green Loom product, which is blended with preservatives made from plants, ranges between 6 and 18 months, based on the kind of product.
The company’s founder ensures that all clients are informed of the ingredients of the product and the features that they prefer even if that results in recommending zero Green Loom products.
Sometimes customers are enthralled and purchase multiple items. We attempt to guide them through what type of skin and requirements prior to making an purchase. There were times that I’ve discouraged people from purchasing my products. Take a test and then buy another. Says Seeza.
This ethos of not disseminating new products for large but immediate gains and keeping things transparent has earned Green Loom a dedicated community of more than 800 loyal customers.
Engineer, activist, & entrepreneur
Born and brought up in Pathankot, Punjab, Seeza, an engineering graduate, was always inclined towards sustainable agriculture/farm practices, farmer’s rights and issues around soil depletion, among others, and donned the educationist-cum-activist role after her graduation.
She was also able to study organic farming under the guidance of renowned environmental activist and writer the Dr Vandana Shiva at Navdanya in Dehradun as well as organising various workshops (around sustainable farming techniques) throughout Punjab.
“The concept of creating an skincare company was born quite a while later. I always wanted to become an agriculturist but I couldn’t do it or join the community of farmers in one way or another,” says Seeza.
In the year 2018, Seeza, a certified formulator, bootstrapped Green Loom with the sum of Rs 1.5 lakh. The company has not taken a single dime from the company to this point, and has kept investing.
In the beginning she functioned as an army of one man and carried out all of the tasks, including creating, purchasing marketing, packaging and more.
In 2020, she was hit with massive losses because of the rain that destroyed nearly 90% of her stocks. “I was forced reconstruct everything. The numbers on the financials were the dump,” she says.
Future plans and business
Presently, the start-up is comprised of a 10-member team is active both in the offline and online space. It owns its own website, and is available on e-commerce platforms such as Flipkart and Amazon. It also has a shelves in stores such as Gormetgarh in the region. It plans to increase its offline reach to a wider extent in the coming months.
There are a myriad of top brands in the world of natural skincare such as Khadi, Biotique, Kama Ayurveda as well as Mamaearth, Green Loom faces up against local brands such as Simply herbs Tvakh, Betty’s Holistics and Skincare, Hanoor, Pahadi Local as well as other brands exploring the ayurvedic, organic, and natural market.
Green Loom is making an average income of around Rs 3-4 lakhs per month through its channels. It has customers within the tricity area (Chandigarh, Panchkula, Mohali), Kolkata, Mumbai, Hyderabad, and parts of Gujarat.
The founder organizes DIY micro workshop as well as shows as part of a the hyperlocal marketing strategies and research. Through this, the company has created a tiny but important community DIY skincare enthusiasts, which has added to the value of the brand and its recollections.
The company is outsourced manufacturing of around 10-11 items (units located in Punjab in Punjab and Faridabad) from a 31 total products, while the remaining are created in-house by its owner at her office and workshop in Panchkula. The components used to make in-house products are sourced directly from labs and farms.
Additionally, the packaging of the product is 100% non-plastic.
However, the manufacturing process is a totally different game to the company’s founder, she is planning to take on the task herself in the future.
Presently experimenting with oil serums. Seeza states, It’s a never-ending learning curve. We’re constantly creating and scrapping products. gathering data through hyperlocal meetings and understanding the needs of consumers, as well as educating ourselves and our customers while keeping everything clear from the ingredients and their effects to labeling and the source of.
This is the primary reason we’ve been able to leave an impression in this competitive D2C market and we’ll continue to build on the same premise. It is essential to have a solid foundation to build a sustainable brand, she signs off.