Indie Beauty Profile
Ester Larrosa, Hyalurgie
Hyalurgie is a genderless, ageless, vegan skin care brand, as are many new brands today. But this brand champions Hyaluronic Acid in a whole new way. Hyalurgie product formulations are 100% original; the brand does not rely on starter formulas or turnkey solutions. “My goal,” says Founder Ester Larrosa on the brand’s site, “is to make high-performance cosmetics for real people….I run away from stereotypes,” she says. Here, the beauty entrepreneur shares a profile of herself and the Hyalurgie brand.
Name: Ester Larrosa, Founder and Formulator
Indie Beauty Company: Hyalurgie
Launched: Hyalurgie will officially launch in November 2020; although I started prelaunch activities in June 2020 and prototyping and proof-of-concept earlier in the second half of 2019.
Headquarters: Barcelona, Spain
Cash flow: Hyalurgie is funded with my own personal savings, for now, and is 100% owned by me. I am proud to have been able to do a preproduction and a first production without external financial support.
Indie how? The first 2 ideas that come to my mind [when I think of ‘indie beauty’] are start-up and disruptor:
A micro- to medium-size business where founders have full control of the strategic decisions and are the driving force to deploy their vision across functions and customers. This doesn’t necessarily mean that an indie brand can’t have shareholders or investors. Disruptor in the sense that [it] is not following the mainstream brands (small or big) but challenging and shaking the status quo.
Teamwork: 3 persons all working part-time: myself, a sales partner in Madrid, and a journalist supporting [the brand] on social media
Distribution: In the long term my scope is global, but being realistic I must start where I am, focusing on Spain and Europe markets through my ecommerce at www.hyalurgie.com and also through beauty salons and spas. I am planning to contact selected retailers as soon as I have gained some relevance at least in the Spanish market and the product portfolio is developed. Scaling up shouldn’t be a problem. I am at the stage of proofing and refining the viability of my concept.
Years in beauty: None. I am a total outsider, but I see it as an asset rather than a drawback. I have an industrial background mainly in Automotive and Chemical multinational industries. I have worked in sales and in strategic procurement global roles for more than 20 years. One of the main pillars of my brand is to offer outstanding ingredients from outstanding suppliers (including toll manufacturer and packaging) my experience developing suppliers (in Asia, Europe, and the US) is definitely helping a lot on the operational practicalities.
Years at Hyalurgie: Prior to launching my company I have worked for more than 4 years, learning formulation skills and researching on ingredients and most important, developing the concept. At the very beginning I wanted to sell personalized products when very few were talking about it.
Entrepreneurial experience: This is my first owned company. 12 years ago, I participated in launching a Biotech start-up based on PGA production. I learned some lessons from that experience.
The business: My vision is to have steady, self-sufficient and sustainable, durable growth in time. I am not in a hurry. Carefully and lovingly curated ingredients and Team. I do not pretend to change the world but aim to offer opportunities to all kinds of talents and to create wealth in my community.
The wow-factor: Hyalurgie is born around a product concept and a very simple but sophisticated formulation. [It is] minimalist, high-performance skincare products for all types of skin and people. I want my products to be recognized as a basic, [like] classic [wardrobe pieces in a] closet: very functional from day to night, multitasking but based on timeless, luxurious ingredients.
The consumer: My persona is multicultural and international with no specific gender nor age. The buyer persona between 40 to 85 years old with many interests in life and not much time to spend on complicated or long skincare regimes.
Milestone moment: Still ongoing! For now my customers are the FFF: friends, fools, and family.
Advice for fellow beauty entrepreneurs: Very humbly as I am still on a learning curve, but what has helped me most is being persistent, focused, consistent, and extremely passionate about your project, as there will be many times you would give up. Also have the courage admit when you are going wrong.
Just one: Asked about her go-to product, Larrosa says, Definitely a Lip balm and (or) lipstick, I can’t live without them!