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Clean Beauty with Connie Lo, Co-Founder of NIU BODY

By Stephanie Jade Wong

Connie-Lo-smiling-at-camera-outdoorsSource: NIU BODY 


Shopping for clean beauty should be simple and affordable, which is why we’re so excited to introduce a new brand to the Love, Indie B. community which provides both; meet
NIU BODY

This skincare brand lets you find natural and cruelty-free products perfect for your skin type with just one quick quiz.

Here at Love, Indie B., we’re dedicated to supporting small businesses and passionate founders like NIU BODY co-founder, Connie Lo. 

We got the chance to ask Connie about building her business, indie beauty, and everything in between. 

Chatting with Connie

LIB: Tell us about yourself and why you started your business.

CL: I'm an adventure-seeking, food-loving, health-and-fitness-obsessed traveler. Oh, and I'm the co-founder of NIU BODY.

I was first introduced to natural beauty in middle school. I distinctly recall making face masks with my mom, mixing egg whites, green tea, banana, and oatmeal. Mmm!

Throughout high school and university, I began launching my own businesses. When I was introduced through a mutual friend to NIU BODY co-founder Laura, who had the initial idea for an all-natural makeup remover, I was sold! This union literally combined my two passions: natural skincare and entrepreneurship.

What makes NIU BODY unique is that we started it out of our own frustrations with the natural beauty market. Options were either pseudo-natural and just greenwashing, or clean but extremely expensive. 

We set out to solve this problem with a line of 100% natural, vegan, and affordably priced skincare all less than $40.

LIB: Describe NIU BODY in 3 words.

CL: Affordable, effective, natural.

LIB: What does “indie beauty” mean to you?

CL: Indie beauty means that you don't have to work within the confines of corporate red tape, or only take direction from retailers. 

We can work hand-in-hand with both our customers AND retail partners to develop beauty products that are actually needed in the market.


Connie-Lo-NIU-BODY-products
Source: NIU BODY


LIB: What’s your favorite part of owning an indie beauty brand?

CL: Directly seeing the impact our natural skincare products make for our customers. Having customers approach us at events or markets showing the changes in their skin. 

Reading online reviews saying how our products make customers feel confident enough to go bare-faced is definitely my favourite part of owning my own beauty brand.

LIB: What’s the hardest part of starting and growing your business?

CL: Ignoring the naysayers and trusting my gut. This was especially difficult in the beginning when I had major imposter syndrome.

LIB: What product from your range do you use every day?

CL: Our Glow Luminizing Facial Serum

It's a light-weight oil-based serum that provides just the right amount of hydration without being greasy. It also helps minimize redness and the appearance of pores, and acts as a natural makeup primer.

LIB: What’s your daily beauty routine like?

CL: Morning:

  1. Cleanse with our Purify Gel Cleanser.
  2. Tone with Awake Rose Toning Mist.
  3. Moisturize with Glow Facial Serum.
  4. Apply SPF.
  5. If I have time, I use highlighter and blush to wake up my tired face, as well as eyeshadow and eyeliner.

Night: 

  1. Remove makeup with our Nourish Cleansing Oil.
  2. Follow with the same steps as the morning  routine. 

LIB: Tell us something about your business we don’t see on social media?

CL: A lot of times, people think businesses become overnight successes and start from the beginning with everything being perfect. This is definitely not the case.

When we first started NIU BODY, I really wanted to have custom-printed product boxes and stickers from the get go. Due to cash flow reasons (we bootstrapped to start our business with $4,000), we could only start by hand-applying labels that we printed from a normal printer! 

Now, we're at the stage where we have everything ordered, but I think that gets missed on social media. I try my best to show our behind-the-scenes on my personal Instagram to balance this out.

LIB: How big is your team?

CL: 3 full-time and 2 part-time. A whole lotta love and hustle.

Connie-Lo-NIU-BODY-products-flatlay
Source: NIU BODY

CL: Our products are all made in Canada. Nothing is outsourced so we can maintain the highest level of quality control. Our products are also sustainably made, with glass bottles and 100% recyclable cardboard boxes.

Another thing to note is our unique formulation process. Every single product we develop is created from our audience's wants, not from what we think will perform well. We do this by sending out surveys and polls on Instagram stories and emails to figure out what products our audience wants. 

We then take the most highly-requested products and formulate with our team of chemists. Afterwards, we send the formula to a group of NIU BODY loyal customers to test, and then iterate the formulation once more after receiving their feedback. 

This process ensures that we are launching amazing products that are highly effective and loved by all!

LIB: Do you believe in beauty from the inside out? 

CL: 100%! I truly believe that beauty starts from the inside. Here are a few of my recommendations:

  • Celery juice - works wonders for clearing up skin and eczema.
  • Dark leafy greens - like spinach and kale.
  • Green tea - high in antioxidants.
  • Water - a basic one, I know, but it really helps with dark circles and dry skin!

I would also recommend avoiding dairy and excessive caffeine.

LIB: Do you wash your face every night before bed?

CL: Yes!

LIB: What's your favorite beauty brand (aside from yours of course)?

CL: I might be slightly biased, but I really love VERB hair products! They're vegan, smell delicious, are affordable, and are run by one of my friends Claire. Definitely check them out if you haven't already!


Connie-Lo-sitting-on-rocks-outdoors-by-waterSource: NIU BODY


LIB: When you’re not working on NIU BODY, what are you up to?

CL: I love going to the gym (Barry's Bootcamp, yoga, and boxing) several times a week. Exercising helps clear my head and get me in a positive mood. 

I also love cooking, traveling (heading to Vietnam soon followed by LA and Vegas!) and journaling/manifesting all the good vibes.

LIB: What inspires you?

CL: It sounds cheesy, but reflecting back on all we've accomplished over the past 2.5 years. If we were able to get this much done in such a short time, I can't even imagine what I can do in a lifetime.

LIB: What’s next for NIU BODY?

CL: We're launching a whole roster of products, including: a day cream, night cream, brightening serum, exfoliator, foaming cleanser, and lip balm.

Dive into Something NIU

As we can see by Connie’s example, following your passions and putting in the hard work pays off. 

Find Connie on Instagram here. Follow NIU BODY on Instagram here, and give them a like on Facebook here.

 

Shop-niu-body-now



About the Author: 

Stephanie Jade Wong is a NY-based freelance writer. She likes long walks to coffee shops, trying new beauty products, and petting strangers’ dogs.

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