It all began when owner, Trixie Cruz started to have sensitive skin in her early 20’s. “My skin became very, very delicate. My dermatologist advised me to switch all my personal care and beauty products (eventually even the detergent used on my clothes and bedsheets) to natural products. My skin improved drastically and my obsession for natural products began,” she recalled.
A graduate from the University of the Philippines Diliman with a degree in BA Speech Communications, she actually started her career as a merchandising assistant and then eventually got promoted as an associate merchandise manager under the Rustans–SSI group. “I specifically worked for the Specialty Food Retailers Inc. (SFRI) I was responsible for everything sold in the stores for the brands I handled. That meant, acting as a buyer for the retail items, menu development for the F&B side, working on sales analysis, pricing, stock monitoring, promo creation, store display, etc.” In 2018, after five years working in the corporate world, she decided to take a leap of faith and come up with her own skincare products.
In 2019, Claeneorganics Skincare Products was finally launched. “Our name is derived from the old English form and meaning of the word clean (clǣne), which means free from impurities and unblemished. Like the definition, our products are free from harmful chemicals and focus on natural ingredients to produce effective results,” she pointed out. In the last couple of years, Trixie established her own skincare and self-care routines which gave her a different level of satisfaction. “I wanted others to feel this way too. When I decided to resign and start my own business, it was like the culmination for my love of natural products, skincare and self-care,” she added.
According to Trixie, there is a clamor right now for natural and sustainable products especially when it comes to personal care and beauty products, “you’d be surprised with the ingredients used in what appears to be a simple, basic item. I think consumers are becoming more conscious of the products they use and the ingredients used in making them.” Since its launch three months ago, Clǣne offers a collection of natural skincare and wellness products such as body scrubs, massage oils, balms, inhalers, and the like.
For Trixie, she knew that she had to start somewhere even if the road was challenging and difficult. “I began selling a few items or giving some away to family and friends, just to let them try. Now it’s really nice to have some of those first family and friend customers as regulars not just because of our connections but because they actually like and use the products,” she shared.
According to her, it’s the small victories that keep her going. “I’ll never forget my first customer who wasn’t a family member or friend and the level of kilig I felt when she completed her transaction. It’s the small things like securing all the permits, my first customer, customer feedback, things like that hold a lot of meaning to me because they all help me grow, not just as a startup business owner but also as a person,” she recalled.
The future is bright for Clǣne Organics. “This 2019 the plan is really to get the brand out there and develop more repeat customers. I definitely plan to release more items, join bazaars and weekend markets for sure and hopefully a physical location too,” she concluded.
From working in the corporate world to taking that risk of creating her own brand, Trixie’s journey proves that it takes a lot of courage, hard work, and drive to start a business. Her motto throughout her journey is, “be afraid and do it anyway.”
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