Teisha Lowry is bringing back honesty in beauty with her brand INDAH. This natural Australian beauty brand is the brainchild of Teisha who plays many roles apart from being an entrepreneur. An advocate for healthy & sustainable living, Teisha’s story is an inspiring one.
1. What made you want to enter the beauty industry? What was the inspiration behind starting INDAH?
I kind of fell into the beauty industry by mistake, I was on holiday in Bali healing a broken heart. There I accidentally stumbled across a herbalist and healer where she taught me through her craft, which lead me to study aromatherapy and obtain my diploma. The inspiration was certainly a reflection of the “beauty” of Bali and its people. In March 2008 I made the first product from INDAH and that’s where my aromatherapy-based beauty line was launched on the market.
2. What are the challenges of making handcrafted products in Australia itself?
I would say the most challenging thing is that we are so far away and cost of goods is really expensive. I only use the purest and highest quality ingredients (certified organic where possible). My margins aren’t as amazing as say a commercial brand, where they can get away with using cheaper ingredients bought in larger quantities. I hand-make everything myself so I’m always ordering when I require, because I want it as fresh as possible for my customer.
3. What would you say has been the proudest moment for your brand so far?
The proudest moment so far would be when I became aligned with the Borneo Orangutan Foundation, for them to ask me and my brand to be an ambassador was something that I can be proud of forever. I’m trying to make a difference in the beauty industry. Much of the beauty industry relies on palm oil, this is where INDAH can separate itself from the rest and lead by example.
4. Taking into account you play multiple roles—entrepreneur, actor & environmentalist—in your everyday life, how do you define your personal style?
My personal style is very much based on practicality rather than aesthetics, purely because I’m so busy. You will usually find me running around in jeans, a T-shirt and runners.
5. Which brands/designers do you go to for your wardrobe staples?
Decjuba have a D-luxe basics range, they’re super lovely and made so well. Also anything organic from Bhumi Organic, they’re about to launch an active wear range and I am going to invest in one of each! Much like I hope people to support my brand for its ethics as much as it’s products, I try to support brands I believe in whether it’s fashion, food or whatever.
6. Who is an ideal INDAH customer?
My customer is busy making a living and/or supporting their family, it’s someone who invests in quality and likes to indulge in the simple things that don’t unnecessarily impact their wallet and our environment.
7. What are some of your brand’s best selling products?
My recently launched personal parfums, made from the highest quality essential oils comes with monogrammed initials available for each bottle, these are definitely the new fav, but our coconut oil has always been a staple in everybody’s beauty cabinet – because it’s hand-pressed and one of the purest on the planet.
8. What is your vision for INDAH in the coming years?
My vision certainly involves expanding the parfum range, and creating more awareness about quality ingredients. I would love to visit Borneo more than once and support BOSA in my role as an ambassador where I can. I really want INDAH to set a new standard in the beauty industry that drives people to demand more from brands and the governing bodies when it comes to labelling and marketing. My hope is for INDAH to be around for a long long time, I’d love to pass it down to my family for them to enjoy.
9. What is the secret to your productivity?
I spread myself too thin, I am working on that at the moment, so I might not be the best person to answer this one! My problem is I love too many things, but I guess productivity really comes from knowing what your priorities are, particularly if you’re a multi-career woman like me. So I’m constantly re-prioritising and making sure I’m focusing my attention where it is needed the most.
10. What advice would you give to people wanting to start a venture in the beauty & skincare industry?
My advice would be to do your research thoroughly! Ask yourself are you really making a difference or are you just doing it for money? Yes, it has to succeed, but it’s a really tough market. It’s very competitive and it’s far too easy to compromise your values for success. You’ll get hurt more than once, especially if you’re as passionate as I am. I learnt a lot of things the hard way and I don’t wish that upon anybody. So be careful and always make sure you’re in control. And of course, be honest and come up with your own ideas.