To celebrate International Women’s Day on the 8th March, we spoke to some of the women behind our best-loved brands. From what it’s really like in the industry and the biggest lessons they’ve learned, to what advice they would give to other females, join us as we celebrate our leading ladies.
After being involved in an accident, Katie used Chinese medicine during her healing process. Aware of the common misconceptions surrounding these practices, she set out to fill a gap in the industry while encouraging people to master their own health.
Today, her brand - Hayo'u - is the UK’s leading name for Gua Sha and wellness tools, helping people to understand the power of Chinese medicine and how it can transform your health and beauty. We caught up with Katie to discuss what it’s really like as a woman in beauty, what’s next for Hayo’u, and her best piece of advice for other females in the industry.
What's the biggest challenge you've faced in your career as a woman?
I could write you a book! I’ve made every mistake you can make. I think the biggest lesson I’ve learned is who to trust – both in terms of employees and competition/agencies.
I also have dyspraxia and dyslexia which means that I’m not the most organised person. Thankfully, I have a PA to help me with that! I struggle to read spreadsheets and I have no concept of how long it takes people to do things. It’s very annoying for my team! Although, it has also made me quite good at explaining things in a way that’s simple to understand.
"I'm not a businesswoman. I'm a woman in business. I'd like to think that my story illustrates that anyone can do it."
What's your biggest achievement?
Thanks to the feedback from the lovely people who joined me for my free lockdown Qigong class on Instagram, I have confirmation that the wisdom of Chinese medicine - that I knew to be true - really does work at a fundamental level. The preventative healthcare techniques that have guided my life for the last 20 years are as valuable now as they have ever been - and that I have a part to play in that.
Another one has to be the fact that I have a chance, and the ability, to help people to master their health. It’s truly an incredible feeling. Whenever I’ve felt tired, I just get powered back up by the hundreds of emails a day from people saying how practicing these self-care techniques has transformed their lives. When we have awful days, I just pause to look at the flood of gratitude and it feeds me, it keeps me going and literally makes my heart sing.
"Trinny Woodall is a real supporter of female empowerment - and I respect that hugely."
Who's your female role model?
I think I’d have to say Trinny Woodall. I know that might be a surprising answer, but it’s because she’s so generous in terms of what she does and how she’s achieved what she has. Trinny is a woman who works for the good of her community. She’s really intelligent, works phenomenally hard and is very open to helping people. I love her products too - she’s come into a crowded space and aced it. As a time-poor woman, they work for me so well. She’s a real supporter of female empowerment – and I respect that hugely.
What piece of advice would you give to other women?
I always say that I’m not a businesswoman, I’m a woman in business. I’d like to think that my story illustrates that anyone can do it. I had no training, just a good idea and I got on with it and stuck with it. I have gumption, tenacity, passion and integrity. Those qualities in modern business are just as important as understanding how to read a spreadsheet!
What's next for you and Hayo’u?
We’re planning to launch in America this year, which is hugely exciting - and we’ve also got some pioneering NPD in the pipeline. So, growing the business, and also making progress with our sustainability goals. Once the business is solidly established, the first thing I’m planning on implementing is a charitable foundation too.
Boasting a range of restorative skincare and crystals to de-stress the body and mind, Hayo’u offers tangible results and a soothing ritual. Proven to boost relaxation, circulation and detoxification, 80% of women said their complexion was more radiant after just one use. So why not try these completely natural solutions today and shop Hayo'u.