Stressed, anxious and overworked, Laura was starting to feel burnt out, and was suffering from the physical effects of the strain she was under. The wake up call came when her hair started to fall out dramatically.
Searching high and low for an organic and cruelty-free solution, Laura discovered not only a gap in the market, but also a considerable demand for such a product, when she realised many of her friends were struggling with a similar problem. Teaming up with hairdresser husband Kieran, CENTRED was born from the belief that real haircare comes hand in hand with overall health and wellbeing. Designed to nourish, protect and strengthen your hair and scalp, the range is created to tackle the root of the problem instead of simply masking it.
Tell us about your background.
I actually come from a design background, having previously owned a business in the fashion industry. Working 15 hour days, I became so tired and eventually burnt out. I decided to close my business, which was a really stressful time, but it was only a few months later when I started to experience some pretty dramatic hair loss – which was really worrying, as you can imagine. Married to a hairdresser, I was coming home to him asking what was going on and what I could do to stop it. I went to the doctors to have blood tests and I tried every product I could. I was looking for natural, vegan, and cruelty-free hair care products that actually worked to help me regrow and care for my hair, and I was really struggling to find what I was looking for on the market.
How did CENTRED come about? Why did you see a gap in the market?
I started to research natural remedies to help regrow my hair, testing out lots of different ingredients and variations. I talked to my friends about my experience and I couldn’t believe how many of them had been through the same problem or knew someone that was going through it now. At the time, I was working at a market intelligence agency and one day at my office desk I had a light bulb moment: I needed to go out and make my own products. From there, CENTRED was born. Fast forward almost 3 years and I am so proud of what I have created. We have helped so many people with our products and I am walking evidence that my products actually work! We take an inside out and outside in approach to hair care with both our supplements and our hair products. We have a huge focus on Scalp Health as hair growth starts from the scalp; my favourite product is our En Root Scalp Treatment, a luxurious oil that includes ingredients such as Salicylic Acid, Peppermint, Rosemary and Tea Tree oils – we call it ‘Skin Care for Your Scalp’. It’s an absolute must-try!
What’s been the biggest challenge you have faced as a brand so far?
Finance. We have been bootstrapping (self-funding) everything ourselves, which has meant that things have been very tight for us for the past few years as we have been investing everything into CENTRED. I don’t know what I would have done without the support from my husband and family. We’re actually fundraising at the moment so we are very excited to see what the future has in store.
What inspires you and motivates you?
I love art and design, but I also love sustainability and I believe in a circular economy. When I started designing CENTRED I took a grassroots approach. I visited several waste and recycling plants to really understand what happened to our products after we had used them. Every single component of my packaging has been carefully considered to reduce our environmental impact to be as sustainable as possible. For example, our bottles are made from 100% Post-consumer recycled PET (PET is the most universally recycled plastic, making it the easiest for our customers to be responsible and recycle). This is why our bottles have this sort of grey tinge to them, as this is the natural colour of all the recycled plastics when they are mixed together. By printing directly on the bottles, we avoid the use of labels which, again, helps avoid contamination when in the recycling process.
What are you most excited to work on over the next few months?
We launched CENTRED in February last year, so now I am really excited to meet people and finally show our products face to face in a post-covid world. We also have some very exciting new products that we are due to launch later this year.
What piece of advice would you give to someone who is looking to set up their own company or starting a new project?
Network as much as you can – you never know what door it can open. Being an entrepreneur can also be quite lonely, and I can't tell you how much I have appreciated speaking to others in similar roles who are going through the same thing.
What does sustainability mean to you as a brand?
Sustainability means everything to me, and it is embedded deep within our brand DNA. Every decision that we make has sustainability in mind.
At A LITTLE FIND you can find brands and products for all your home and beauty needs, with a particular focus on sustainability and being kind to our planet. What would be your top tip to help encourage others to live more sustainably and mindfully?
Honestly, if you are really interested in sustainability visit your local recycling centre. I got in touch through my local council and it was one of the most amazing experiences. It was fascinating! In a 2 hour tour, I learnt so much about how I could be more sustainable in my own life but also what I could do for my business. I would highly recommend it to anyone.
What do you look for when finding the perfect gift?
I always look for experiences rather than just buying unnecessary ‘stuff’ for the sake of it. I hate buying plastic toys as I know they will probably end up in the bin, so I normally buy children plants. I think about what the person I am buying a gift for loves and what they will cherish. For my friends I look for self-care experiences such as a wonderful candle or amazing bath oil – I love helping my friends de-stress.
What are your LITTLE FINDs (Top 3 favourite products on our site)?
- Plenaire Rose Jelly Face Cleanser
- Bamford Bath Salts
- Has to be our En Root Scalp Treatment
It’s always fun to end on a quickfire round...
- Favourite TV series right now? Explained on Netflix - 20 mins explaining super interesting topics, such as bitcoin, the stock market and the pay gap - I love it!
- Last thing you cooked? Carrot Cake - Yum
- Favourite Instagram account to follow? @SophieHellyer - she is an amazing sustainability activist/surfer living in Cornwall, she is hilarious
- Best book recommendation? How To Heal Your Life by Louise Hay – it literally changed my life
- Perfect way to spend your weekend? In the garden with my husband, friends and growing my plants. Heaven.
- Best restaurant you’ve eaten at? Oh so many! Recently Circolo Popolare - It’s an Italian. My mouth is watering from the thought of it.
- Country you’d love to visit? Mexico - I’ve been dreaming of going for some time