Botanycl spreads hormone harmony with natural solutions for acne

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Both an e-commerce and physical retail operation, the company’s signature SkinClear Elixir spreads hormone harmony by selling directly and is also stocked by Holland & Barrett and Superdrug. Founded in 2018 by former NHS mental health worker Caroline Sims, Botanycl offers Vitamin D and C ranges too.

Further plans are underway to introduce a hair growth product before Christmas and the west London-based business is forecasting a £1 million turnover next year. 

An acne sufferer herself, first-time entrepreneur Sims has grown Botanycl from a standing start, using her social science background and trialling plant-based formulations often in classic kitchen table fashion to devise a spot-on solution. 

“Before SkinClear Elixir it wasn’t clear how the ingredients could work together in balancing hormones. That is why I have been able to patent the formula,” she explains.

“I wanted to find an alternative to the harsh chemical prescriptions, lasers and antibiotics I had tried to solve my skin problems.

“I looked into the science and that led me to plant-based ingredients. These cleared my skin with no side effects and improved my quality of life. 

What Botanycl needs next is an angel investor with £300,00, an expert in health and beauty retail to open more global doors

founder Caroline Sims

“Botanycl’s formula works from within, balancing hormones at source. The vitamins help clear existing blemishes and the products have no synthetic, lab-made fillers or boosters – something hard to find in supplements.”

The Vitamin D range also solves another problem, says Sims. “Our Vitamin D3 is vegan, while the vast majority on the market comes from sheep’s wool.”

Given the hormonal differences between men and women, Elixir is advised for females only. Typically they are aged from 25 to 35, but teenage and menopausal acne means there is a broad spread of customers.

Social media has played a vital role in spreading the word, enabling the company to compete with bigger brands and attract repeat clients.

“The body-positive movement and improving self-esteem have been very important for Botanycl, people share unfiltered images about bad skin days,” observes Sims, who uses an outsourcing model working with a network of UK manufacturers and distributors.   

“Diversity is the key to e-commerce, never be reliant on just one to grow the business and find the free resources – there are plenty,” are among her telling business insights.

When health products walk the talk and are transparent about their ingredients, keep their presentation online clear and simple, the sales will come, she advises. “Customers are looking for straightforward information they can trust, not arty distractions.”

She has her late grandmother to thank for a £12,000 legacy that has funded her efforts to build Botanycl. Now with the US website launch, followed by plans to move into retail there, she is in talks with Boots at home. Growth is her central focus.

“What Botanycl needs next is an angel investor with £300,00,” says Sims, “an expert in health and beauty retail to open more global doors.”

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