Growth & Jobs | Yanique’s Ravishing Natural Cosmetics - Left her full-time job as a nurse to launch successful skin-care brand
A desire to find skin care products that would not harm her children led Yanique Barrett, in 2012, to establish her own product line, made from natural ingredients.
Her Ravishing Botanics brand, located off Shortwood Road, offers soaps, deodorants, shampoos, lotions, body butters, conditioners, lip balms, body mists and a range of other skin care products. And, all of these products were inspired by the fact that her children developed allergies from products with synthetic chemicals.
"My children have eczema and every time I used commercial products, their allergies would be triggered," Barrett explained. "I researched how to make skin care products that would not harm them, and Ravishing Botanics emerged."
She then began making basic skin care items for her family and friends.
"Everyone I shared my products with, especially those with skin issues, kept saying to me, 'you need to do this as a business, because they are good and it doesn't affect my condition'," she related. "Actually, I wanted to work for myself; therefore, when this opportunity came along, I took it."
The mother of two left her full-time job as a nurse to focus on her new business. And, the actual name of the business came about as Barrett sang part-time, using the stage name "Ravish." She modified her stage name and added "Botanics," to highlight the fact that she used only natural products.
Ravishing Botanics now employs four persons; and Barrett plans to grow her operations even further, for it to become a household name; as she diligently source ingredients locally and overseas.
"In many cases, we have facilities to make essential oils locally; and we have the plants," she stated. "I am surprised we aren't making more oils here; and I hope that at some point we do, because that would reduce manufacturing costs."
Barrett says that demand for her products is high, based on the numerous orders she receives from hotels and shops across the country. She has also learnt to adjust her prices to suit the pockets of her customers.
"Not everyone can afford soap for $1,000. Therefore, I do smaller items at lower prices," she said. "And, I also buy in bulk to reduce production costs."
Her products go through rigorous testing to ensure the safety of her customers.
"I test my products, on a monthly basis. Some customers watch me as I work; and, so far, I have had no complaints. It has been compliments and more orders," she related.
'This industry is one that can grow'
Yanique Barrett explains that there is still room for growth in the natural cosmetics industry; and plans to seek support from JN Small Business Loans (JNSBL) to assist in purchasing raw material.
"JNSBL has been helpful to me," she explained. "They gave me excellent advice at a time when I needed guidance. And, I was able to finance the bulk purchase of raw materials, allowing me to expand production cost effectively."
Thelma Yong, deputy general manager of JNSBL lauded Barrett for her decision to enter the natural cosmetic industries.
"More and more consumers are choosing natural products when it comes to skincare. Yanique should be commended for carving a niche for herself in this industry. We are confident that her business will continue to grow and we wish her all the best," Yong said.
To market her brand, Barrett attends expos and trade shows; and mounts displays at major hotels. In addition, direct referrals and exposure via social media have also played a part in her success. And, she now plans to develop her website, so that customers can place their orders online.
"I see myself manufacturing cosmetics to supply a global market," she says. "This industry is one that can grow; and I plan to nurture it for years to come."