After having nurtured a baby within you for nine months, the body and skin invariably go through many changes. Sometimes these changes are not welcome and can leave one feeling depressed even. The skin starts to look dull, one may experience hair fall and even feel that the once taut looking skin is beginning to sag.
In the case of Anubhuti Jain Mishra, a new mother from Lucknow, she experienced all this and more when she welcomed her baby into this world.
Speaking to The Better India, she says, “My baby was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease. We were referred to a hospital in Lucknow and that is where he was born. I had to resign from my well-paying job at Google to be able to look after my son.” In the initial few months, Anubhuti recalls having no time for herself.
“I was experiencing hair fall, acne and various other skin issues. Not wanting to resort to regular commercial products, I started making my own (DIY) skin packs at home,” she says. That was how Anubhuti – An Experience, came into being.
‘Stress and anxiety made my skin lose its glow.’
The rest that a new mother gets after childbirth is important for her quick recovery. In Anubhuti’s case, she says that she couldn’t find time to rest enough. “My child was born premature and since he had health conditions, he required constant monitoring. This left me with no time to care for myself. I gained weight and felt under tremendous stress and anxiety all the time.”
With her child being admitted into the Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICU) after he was born, Anubhuti says that she met many other young mothers with similar issues. “Many of us were ourselves on medication and none of that helped the skin and hair fall issues. The natural skin and hair care brands in the market were very expensive and not something that everyone could afford to buy,” she says.
It was with this realisation that after almost six months Anubhuti started preparing her own products at home.
“Anubhuti was born out of the need to make a natural skin and haircare brand that was affordable and budget-friendly for all.
‘I started from my home kitchen.’
The brand was started as a means to find solutions for her own problems and Anubhuti says that she found so many others in a similar situation. That is what she attributes the success of the brand to. “I started with making a lip balm. This was all done from the comfort of my home kitchen. The lip balm is preservative-free and has a shelf-life of up to one year,” she adds.
With an initial investment of Rs 2,500, which Anubhuti’s sisters gave her, she says, “Once a few people used the lip balm they started asking if I could make skin and hair care products as well. All the products I make have been driven by what my customers want,” she adds.
She says that the journey so far has been filled with trials and tribulations. “I did not know anything about making these products — what kind of raw material to purchase or even how to set up the brand. These were all small lessons along the way for me.”
Speaking about the raw materials, she says that since she was only looking at making small batches, she needed small quantities. But this was proving to be another challenge.
“I had difficulty in convincing the vendors to provide me with smaller quantities of raw material. They were not confident of whether I would continue in the business. My gender in a way was coming in the way of me doing business. I am glad I have crossed that stage now,” she says.
An Array of Products
Currently, Anubhuti offers a wide range of products from soaps, lip balms and tints, creams, hair care products and even bamboo toothbrushes and combs. The brand has also recently introduced a child-friendly product range.
All these products are packed either in glass or aluminium tins. No plastic is used for any packaging. The products are made with natural ingredients and do not have any chemical or artificial ingredients. The products are also pocket-friendly with the most expensive product being Rs 499. “Everything is under Rs 500 and we now have close to 60 products on our portal,” she says.
She continues, “The lip and cheek tint, anti-hair fall tonic, shea butter shampoo and the aloe vera gel are some of the bestsellers.”
From hearing relatives chide her for doing business to building a brand making a revenue of Rs 11 lakh since its inception — Anubhuti has been steadily growing. Today, there are five other employees associated with the brand who help in packaging, taking orders and coordinating with clients.
The products at Anubhuti are currently being audited by the International Standardisation organisation (ISO) and is likely to receive the certification in the next few months.
To check out these products, click here.
(Edited by Yoshita Rao)