This week we took our Facebook Live on the road to meet Make it British member Bee Good, to talk bees, brands and creating a buzz.
July 10th was ‘Don’t step on a Bee’ day which is part of Bee Week, a week dedicated to raising awareness and taking care of our fuzzy friends.
Most of us use bee products in one way or another, even if it is just eating honey, but far fewer are aware of the importance of bees in our ecosystem, or of the falling populations of bees in the UK.
Premium skincare brand Bee Good specialise in products using British honey, beeswax and propolis. Their co-founder Simon Cavill, is a bee keeper, which means there is not much they don’t know about bees. Who better to visit during Bee Week?
Watch our video with Simon (and the bees) below to find out more about the bees themselves, and how following his passion for bees drove him to start this unique skincare brand.
Then our interview with the team at Bee Good to learn more about why they only source ingredients from British bees and advice they would give others looking to start their own skincare brand.
How was Bee Good launched and what inspired the brand?
Like many good ideas, Bee Good started at the kitchen table. Harvesting honey provided large quantities of honey and beeswax and co-founder Simon and his wife Caroline were looking for ways to utilise these skin friendly ingredients.
Using ‘recipes’ dating back to the 17th century they started making and selling their lip balms and hand creams at local fairs and farmer’s markets; winning awards five years in a row.
In 2013 Bee Good was formally established to produce industry standard skincare on a national level and we haven’t looked back.
What is unique about Bee Good?
Bee Good is the only premium skincare brand in the UK to use exclusively British honey, beeswax and propolis, botanicals and skincare technologies in their award-winning formulations.
We also actively support British bee causes through the education and apprenticeship of young beekeepers and the planting of wildflowers. Simon, our bee expert and co-founder is solely focused on promoting the security of British bees.
Why Bees? Tell us what makes bee products so beneficial to our skin and what products you use?
British bee sourced ingredients have an important role to play in supporting the overall health of our skin. From the outset we made the conscious decision not to use Royal Jelly and Bee Venom in our formulas. This is partly because the safety and health of our bees are paramount, but also because we believe the combination of honey, beeswax and propolis in the right quantities, and supported by relevant plant oils, provides our skin with supremely effective, intelligent, natural skin healing benefits.
You source ingredients solely from British Bees, why is that?
All of our bee based and core botanical ingredients are sourced exclusively from the UK where we are able to work in partnership with farmers and growers to ensure the best quality ingredients go into our formulations.
Where it isn’t possible to buy British (Shea Butter for example) we still ensure we have full traceability and always source the most premium quality we can.
We are extremely proud to directly source all of our bee ingredients exclusively from British beekeepers so we are able to directly contribute to the sustainability of our precious bees and their environment.
How did you test the effectiveness of the products when you first started the brand?
At the very start we gathered an enthusiastic band of friends and family who volunteered to test our formulations for us. We sent out product samples in little jars along with information and a survey for our testers to complete anonymously so that we could gather independent feedback.
As the Bee Good brand grew, so our group of testers grew and now we include as many willing volunteers as possible at each stage of our product development to make sure that the products are the best they can possibly be.
Who is the main target market for Bee Good? And how do you promote your brand to this audience?
We have a wide audience – from teens who are new to skincare and looking for a simple, effective regime, to young professionals looking for quick, convenient skincare solutions. To those with more mature skin, looking for natural products that will help to address the visible signs of ageing.
Our products truly deliver results for all skin types and ages because they address the issues that create so many skin concerns; hydrating, balancing and calming skin.
What would be your key tips for someone else thinking about starting their own beauty brand?
You really need to be passionate about what you’re doing – a must-have when faced with the inevitable challenges and frustrations that come with starting your own business!
My top tips for starting your own British beauty brand would be:
- Surround yourself with a great team of experts
- Listen to your customers
- Find a mentor who you can learn from
- Be tenacious
- Live your brand!
Great advice for anyone wanting to follow their passion and set up a business, we think!
If you want to find out more about becoming a Make it British member Click Here.