After struggling to find clean and natural wellness products that were both high quality and affordable, Emily decided to create her own brand that would connect body and soul.
After finding that the wellness products on the market were too expensive or often contained some form of unnatural ingredient that irritated her skin, Emily Lynam realised that to find exactly what her body needed she would have to create her own.
In 2019, she began to make her own products from the comfort of her kitchen. At first they were solely for her own use though friends and family soon saw how nourishing her wellness kits were and began to use them too, commenting positively on how the natural fragrances made them.
This inspired her dream to start her own wellness brand.
As a qualified yoga teacher, she knew that she could infuse her brand with yogi values, helping people tune into themselves through natural fragrance, wellbeing tools and practices. Yougi’s products would be vegan, eco-friendly, 100% natural and contain ethically sourced ingredients.
Though to launch Yougi and get the products into the hands of the public, she needed £2,000 which she hoped to raise by crowdfunding with Back Her Business—our initiative to close the gender gap in business.
Emily explained, “My mission is to help people reduce stress and gain a healthy body and mind through natural fragrance and nourishing products.”
“I struggled for years to find clean, high quality, natural and affordable products. I found that the chemicals in synthetic fragrance were irritating my skin and eyes. I searched for an affordable alternative and, when I couldn’t find it, I decided to make my own. My friends and family started using my products and commented on how natural fragrance helped them feel better and boosted their emotional wellbeing. A core value of Yougi is transparency around ingredients. I know how difficult it can be to understand ingredient lists so I explain everything that goes into the products. You know exactly what my products are made of and what their benefits are. Every ingredient that I use in the product is there for a specific therapeutic reason. The products have an emphasis on high-quality food-grade ingredients, knowing that everything we put on our skin or inhaled quickly absorbs into our bodies.”
Within 28 days, £2,637 was raised from 25 supporters, including a match-funding grant of £1,000 from us as part of the programme.
She told us, “I would not have started the crowdfunding campaign if it wasn’t for NatWest. The stories from other female founders gave me the confidence to go for it. It was also great seeing the products pre-selling on Crowdfunder before launch.”
She went on to say, “The match-funding meant that I could purchase the raw materials, packaging, and photography to get started.”
In October 2019, Emily officially launched Yougi and now sells candles, diffusers, oils, soaks, and other products to the public. With categories such as ‘happy’, ‘detox’ and ‘soothe’, she is helping to improve the minds and bodies of her customers with the natural feel-good factor that she found was lacking from other products on the market. She also hosts Aromatherapy Candle Making Workshops.
So, what are Emily’s top tips for running a crowdfunding campaign with Back Her Business?
“Go for it and believe in yourself and your product. Passion and determination do pay off. Do a business plan, find a mentor, meet other people and founders working in your space. Work together and help each other. Step into the unknown and enjoy the ride.”
Got a great business idea but not sure where to start? Sign up to our Back Her Business programme and find out if you could be eligible for expert crowdfunding coaching and match-funding grants of up to £5,000.