By Alexander Circosta, Social Media Lead, The Brilliant Foundation
Photo : Amy with her son
In the throws of Leederville’s cultural hub I found her. By the window of the chocolatery a friendly, youthful face, a women with an effortless cool who would could just as easily be found in a villa in the Hamptons.
I wasn’t sure what to expect when a colleague asked me to meet her friend, but I was intrigued, for on this particular Wednesday I met Amy Raveendrakumar (nee Found) and she has made a sunscreen with a difference.
‘I have always been a jump in the deep end and then swim for your life kind of person’
Amy is the architect behind emerging skincare brand ‘Found My Skin’ an ethically sourced and environmentally conscious locally manufactured product. I sat inquisitively, was this simply another side hustle in the never-ending trend of internet entrepreneurs dipping their toe into the deluge of the absolutely lucrative billion dollar skincare industry or was this perhaps something else.
Amy and her Father John Found.
So why Sunscreen?
‘Long summers, tan lines, burnt skin, aging faces, losing a friend to melanoma at 39, my inspiring parents, our dying oceans ecosystem, reducing single use plastic and the next generation’ sounds like a reason to me.
As someone who has taken care of their own skin I have rarely taken notice of the greater socio-environmental implications of my purchases at Mecca, Sephora or Priceline.
Of course I don’t want products tested on animals, but to hear about Amy’s environmental and personal consciousness which underpins her business decisions an authenticity was readily apparent and she evidently and thankfully lacked a get rich quick mentality.
How did Amy come up with the name?
‘Well, Found My Skin is a nod to… mentorship in my dad but also a metaphor for loving the skin you are in.’
With social media democratising the accessibility individuals have to market their product there is now so much more opportunity, however this is coupled with an ever increasing over saturation making it hard to connect your product to its core audience.
Authenticity and purpose driven values are key to standing apart, the eponymous point of difference, and to my pleasant surprise Amy has both in spades.
‘Found is my maiden name, given to me by my dad. I was born in Perth “Amy Found”, daughter of formulation chemist John Found. Leanne
Preston married John Found and found great success in the development of cult natural products ‘Quit Nits’ and ‘Wild Child’ leading also to the construction of the only TGA approved clean room ( an engineered space which maintains a low concentration of airborne particles of course!) in Western Australia.
‘And I probably underestimated it before diving in head first. But the good thing about sunscreen is that EVERYONE needs it.’
Found My Skin has however blended that distress buy with a product that is a little more considered and a little more luxurious. By using ingredients like Kakadu Plum, Vitamin E, Coconut Oil, Iron oxides and Zinc oxides they have crafted a product that serves a beauty need in a very purposeful way.
Well I’m inspired, Have you found your skin?
Amy’s 4 Tips For budding entrepreneurs
1 - JUST DO IT! Look, I’m not going to lie. There have been sleepless nights and an enormous financial investment. So, my advice is, risk as much as you can so that you are uncomfortable enough to make sure it works (without becoming homeless over it) … AKA jump in so deep that you have no option but to swim vigorously but not so deep that you might actually drown.
2 - “IF YOU TREAT IT like a side hustle, that’s where it will stay” she told me in order to make it work, I’d have to throw absolutely everything I’ve got at it. Quit your job (or take a bit of leave at least) back yourself and go for it.
3 - ASK FOR HELP when you need it but don’t rely on anyone too much at the end of the day it’s your risk and your gain. Help comes along in the most surprising ways and generosity comes in many forms.
4 - THERE WILL BE DAYS you feel like you can’t do it and then the very next day an angel appears and all the stars align.
Edited by Dr Renee Ralph