The Beauty Behind the Brand – Neom Organics
Everyone loves gorgeous beauty products, but we like to find out who’s behind the brand too.
We spoke to Nicola Elliott, the co-founder and director of Neom Organics, and discovered everything from her holy grail products, to the inspiration of creating her very own. 100% natural and 100% gorgeous, it’s no wonder why Neom is a firm favourite of Kylie Minogue and even HRH The Duchess of Cambridge!
Pink Box Cosmetics: Tell us a bit more about you – significant others, and where you live.
Nicola Elliott: I’m a former journalist who set up the home scenting and organic brand Neom. I live in North Yorkshire (moved after 12 years in London) back to the country with my husband David and two children.
PBC: What inspired you to set up Neom Luxury Organics?
Nicola Elliott: It was something I felt passionate about and was hugely influenced by my sister. At the time we launched Neom in 2005, there was a growing awareness of green and organic beauty which wasn’t necessarily in easy reach for consumers, so I knew there was a little gap where Neom would sit perfectly. I really wanted to buy my product and it didn’t exist! I met Oliver, my business partner and combined, we thought we had the skills to make this happen.
It was at the time when I was working at magazines and wanted to buy a beautiful pampering gift for my very green-minded yet glam sister. I found the task (something green yet very sophisticated and luxurious) near impossible, and I thought it was pretty mad I had to buy her a) a synthetic body lotion full of chemicals she wouldn’t want to use or b) go to the health food shop and buy something that smelt foul in a brown paper bag. So the concept of Neom (merging luxury with organics) was born.
PBC: What are the key features of Neom Luxury Organics?
Nicola Elliott: Neom is the result of our wish to create products that are genuinely different and as close to perfect as we can possibly make them: a range of home fragrance and body care products whose credentials are unequivocal, which are truly organic and effective. We are at the forefront of natural scent and because we never use synthetics and only use pure essential oils – our fragrances are made with a real purpose – they change your mood.
We are probably known most for our candles. They were the first products which Neom launched back in 2005 and when Kylie Minogue said she loved them – things went nuts.
We often get such amazing feedback about our candles because they truly are the cleanest burning you can buy. Unlike many candles, which are made with paraffin wax and synthetic scents, Neom candles are hand-poured in the UK, made from 100% natural vegetable waxes (sourced from sustainable and renewable annual crops from long- established farms) and at least 10% pure essential oils content – that’s all. And furthermore Neom never use any chemical fertilizers, pesticides or artificial chemicals like binders or glue (and only ever use cotton wicks unlike some which use tin), so when the candles burn they do not release any pollutants, toxins or soot. And having 3 wicks with 380g of wax we get amazing feedback about how they really exceeded customers’ expectations.
PBC: Tell us about your typical day.
Nicola Elliott: I honestly love that I don’t have a typical day. Every day is different. Our head office in based in Harrogate where we have 20 staff, however I often travel to London to meet with journalists or my business partner Oliver or take part in sales and business meetings with our fab stockist such as Selfridges, John Lewis or Heals to name a few. If I am Harrogate, I make sure I drop the kids off at school and then head to the office for 9am where, at the moment, I am living most of the time in 2014. Watch this space for lots of lovely new and exciting products.
PBC: What advice would you give to someone starting out in business?
Nicola Elliott: If you are looking to start your own business I have 3 main tips. 1) Do something you enjoy – you will be spending a lot of time on it 2) research your market, but don’t take things personally – what other people actually like is what it’s all about and 3) make sure you can sum up your own USP in one sentence – it needs to be that strong.
PBC: How do you take time out / hobbies?
Nicola Elliott: To switch off from the day I have to read. Even if it’s 2am. I read for 10 minutes and then I can sleep. I also use Neom’sReal Luxury Candle in my bedroom – it has potent yet gentle lavender which really helps my shoulders drop and gives you a truly relaxing treatment.
PBC: If you had to pick your essential beauty products that you just can’t live without, what would they be?
PBC: Have you got any beauty secrets you want to share?
Nicola Elliott:Keep it simple and utilize what nature has to offer – there really are some great things out there. I have never been one to have lots of potions and lotions in my bathroom cabinet. Invest it a handful of quality product that really work. My top tip is to use grapeseed oil as make up remover – gentle and not expensive.