We are pretty proud of our growing list of distribution in Europe. We now are ecstatic to be able to say that our products are available in Sweden, Spain, Iceland, Bulgaria, Finland and most recently, Belgium. Acris Fashion are a fashion agency in Antwerp with a top assortment of high end national and international brands, and we are now one of those brands!
The goal of Acris Fashion is to connect the right brand to the right shop and in order to do this they kick off each season with The Acris Briefing. An opportunity for all of their clients to come and hear about the stories and people behind the brands who they represent. This year, I was the guest speaker.
So, a few weeks ago I boarded the Eurostar heading to Brussels to speak at the briefing. The venue was in the middle of nowhere on the outskirts of Antwerp, but as I pulled up, there was an open fire outside with tipi style tents, full catering and lots and lots of people!
After setting up, with a little spare time as the last of the guests arrived, I decided to indulge myself by browsing the fashion collections housed in the building – and the clothes were stunning. It was great to see such fantastic quality produced by brands from all over Europe. And to know that my own brand was alongside them as the hot new topic of the moment was also pretty exciting! I must’ve got a little lost in it all because before I knew it the sound guy had found me, ready to get mic’d up for my presentation.
I spoke about how it all began and how my brother and I came to be the co-founders of a sustainable beauty brand. William had previously been working at a hedge fund and I was an area manager for a well-known supermarket, so it was quite a change for both of us! I also talked about millennial trends and shopping habits alongside the movement we have been seeing in the beauty industry towards more natural and ethical ingredients. A movement that we are happy to be a part of.
I think that, if anything, the fashion industry began to wake up to the importance of sustainability before the beauty industry, and so it was a good opportunity to talk about the progress that is now being made across wider fields. And with the room packed with concept store and boutique owners, fashion brands and ethical designers, I couldn’t have asked for a better audience.
After my presentation I spent the rest of my evening allowing our products to do the talking for me - I scrubbed a lot of hands that night! All in all it was a pretty great evening, and I always think that knowing the story and personalities behind a brand makes a huge difference in the trust you have in the products they produce.
So hopefully we gained a few new Belgian Optiat fans that night! How great would it be if I could jet off every time Optiat launches in a new country? Yes please!!