Indie Beauty Profile
Alison Crumblehulme, Veriphy Skincare Inc.
The women behind Veriphy Skincare are no strangers to science. In fact the three of them all have day jobs at Mirexus Biotechnologies, a Canadian company founded in 2008 following the discovery (at the University of Guelph) of a nano-sized form of glycogen in corn.
Veriphy’s team, beyond Crumblehulme, comprises Jessica Kizovski as lead formulator, and research scientist Carley Miki. Besides using their knowledge to put this unique ingredient to work, the team is also hoping to help put more women to work in STEM fields.
Here, the beauty entrepreneur leading the charge shares a profile of herself and the brand.
Name: Alison Crumblehulme, Founder and President
Indie Beauty Company: Veriphy Skincare Inc.
Launched: November 2017
Headquarters: Guelph, Ontario, Canada
Cash flow: My partner and I own 100% of Veriphy Skincare. We received start-up funding from Mirexus Biotechnologies Inc., who was instrumental in developing the main ingredient utilized in our products as well as seed funding from Innovation Guelph’s Fuel Injection program.
As a privately held company, we do not disclose financials, however, in the first two months we surpassed our sales target by 20 percent.
Indie how? To me, an indie beauty brand is an identity that goes beyond simply being independently owned and operated. It encompasses a passion, lifestyle, and ideals that consumers can relate to and feel part of. Indie beauty brands have a uniqueness that appeals to the individual instead of the masses.
Team work: 2 full-time employees
Distribution: Our products are available through our own ecommerce site veriphyskincare.com, Amazon.ca Luxury Beauty Department, and Amazon.com Indie Beauty Shop.
Years in beauty: Officially 4 years, but I have been a skincare junkie my whole life.
I struggled with acne and scarring from adolescence through adulthood. This contributed to my personal interest and passion for skincare. Understanding what ingredients work and what ingredients don’t work for my skin has been very important.
Years at Veriphy Skincare: 1
Entrepreneurial experience: Creating my own business is something that I have wanted to do for a long time. I spent the bulk of my career working in early-stage companies developing and commercializing new products and technologies and after completing an executive MBA I was more determined than ever. Veriphy is the first company that I founded and built from the ground up and it has been a very rewarding experience thus far.
The business: Veriphy harnesses the power of PhytoSpherix (phytoglycogen), a breakthrough material extracted from plants that delivers impactful clinical results. This natural ingredient replaces synthetic and animal-derived alternatives while delivering superior performance and aesthetics. Canadian-made and cruelty-free, Veriphy is a natural beauty start-up led by a team of women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math).
The wow-factor: Veriphy Skincare possesses three distinct values and features that differentiate us from the competition.
We use plant-based glycogen (phytoglycogen). Glycogen is the stored form of glucose or sugar that the body uses for energy. The concentration of glycogen in your skin decreases over your lifetime. Adding glycogen topically provides the most efficient energy source to your cells for a multifunctional effect improving overall skin health.
2. BACKED BY SCIENCE
We are powered by nature and backed by science, our products only contain ingredients that have been clinically proven to benefit the skin.
3. We support women in STEM.
Veriphy Skincare was founded by a team of women in science. We are committed to promoting women to enter STEM fields, as we are still underrepresented today. To support this commitment we established “The Veriphy Skincare Award for Women in STEM” through the university where PhytoSpherix was discovered. The scholarship was awarded for the first time this fall to a young woman entering a STEM program.
The customer: Our products are for anyone looking for effective and natural products that are able to energize and revitalize their skin. Whether you are looking to prevent or repair, our products are formulated to work for all skin types and ages.
Milestone moment: Being featured as a trending brand at IBE NY 2018 was a very exciting milestone for us. We worked so hard to build our brand and products and it was very rewarding to be acknowledged at such a key indie beauty event.
Advice for fellow beauty entrepreneurs: Be very careful in selecting your manufacturing partner. As an indie brand with small MOQs it is very difficult to find a reputable partner that is willing to give your brand the love and attention it deserves. Take your time and do your due diligence to avoid surprises and hidden costs.
Just one: Asked about her go-to beauty product, Crumblehulme says it’s my moisturizer. Moisturizer is such a versatile beauty product and just like your body needs water, your skin needs hydration. In a pinch you can use your moisturizer as your eye cream, body cream and after-sun care.
Deanna Utroske, CosmeticsDesign.com Editor, covers beauty business news in the Americas region and publishes the weekly Indie Beauty Profile column, showcasing the inspiring work of entrepreneurs and innovative brands.