A Q&A with Evolve Organic Beauty Founder Laura Rudoe
Evolve Organic Beauty create beautiful, artisan beauty products which are natural, organic and sustainable. Their award-winning range are all handmade using the finest quality ingredients and are not only some of the purest, most natural beauty products that you can find but also give gorgeous results. They recently won an Image Beauty Award for their Superfood 360 Serum and Miracle Mask.
Here we chat to Evolve's trailblazing female founder, Laura Rudoe - a former venture capitalist and an alumni of Harvard Business School - about how Evolve came to be and what sets Evolve apart from other clean beauty brands.
Have you always wanted to run your own business?
I have always enjoyed the freedom of creating my own projects - when I was at university I produced dramatic productions - but it was only when I joined the ethical beauty start up NUDE in 2005 that I realised that desire was a thirst for entrepreneurship. I have been interested in business and ethical business my whole career (I was formerly a Management Consultant, Venture Capitalist and studied business at Harvard Business School) but I didn’t actually set up my business until 2008.
How did the idea for Evolve Organic Beauty begin?
I set up Good Ventures - Evolve’s parent company - in 2008 as an ethical development company with the mission to create new organic personal care brands that make a difference. Having been a founding employee of NUDE skincare I knew a lot about what was involved in setting up a business and how to make beautiful, natural products and wanted to make my own. I'm a passionate advocate of ethical and environmentally friendly business as well as natural and sustainable living so all these elements together led me to creating Evolve.
What was your first product? And how did you go about creating it?
One of our first products was our Daily Apple Hair and Body Wash - which we are actually looking at bringing back as a Limited Edition to celebrate our 10th anniversary later on this year. I was inspired by the saying “an apple a day” and wanted to create a clean, green all over wash for hair and body that could be used by men, women and children. It has a fruity natural apple fragrance and contains soothing organic aloe vera and quinoa proteins for skin and hair conditioning.
Can you tell me more about the ethos behind your brand?
Evolve is all about helping people become a little more green by creating high quality, effective, organic products at affordable prices.
Why is clean and toxin-free so important to you?
We live in a modern world that is full of foreign chemicals and toxins that the body doesn’t understand, that cause inflammation and ultimately disease. I am well aware of the impact clean and healthy wellness can have as I have used these strategies to improve my own health and skin.
Do you have a favourite product(s) in your line?
I genuinely love all our products, but my go-to has always been the Gentle Cleansing Melt - another one of the products that has been in the line-up since the start. Most recently I have been loving our brand-new Climate Veil - it’s a tinted moisturiser with SPF 20 - it has taken me a while to perfect but I’m so happy with the final product.
What sets your brand apart from others?
Our artisans hand make all our products in small batches in our studio in Hertfordshire, this not only ensures the freshness and high quality of the products, but by using people instead of machines, we know that our products have been made with care and love. Every Evolve product has the name of the artisan that made it.
You are keen to practice and promote sustainability. What are the key ways in which you are doing this at Evolve?
We feel very strongly about this and are doing this in so many ways... In all areas of the creation and production of our handcrafted products, we strive to ensure minimum impact on our planet and environment while producing natural and organic products that provide the best results. From the start of our products’ life, we source as many raw ingredients as locally as possible. Those that we cannot find locally are sent to us in powder form where possible to reduce our carbon footprint.
We choose to use recycled packaging wherever possible. Our glass bottles are made from 40% recycled glass and are fully recyclable and we use recycled card for all our cartons. When it comes to plastic, we opt for 75% to 100% recycled post-consumer PET plastic, which (unlike PVC) is fully recyclable and if it is put into landfill, it degrades without leaching any chemicals into the soil. We encourage our customers and our artisans to recycle everything they can, and we’re always on the lookout for new ways in which we can reuse or upcycle our used product packaging. We provide our customers with information on how to properly recycle their Evolve bottles and jars and include a link to find their nearest recycling centre. For the more creative amongst our customers we provide a link to our pinterest board that offers some interesting ideas on how to upcycle their empties.
What are you most proud of?
The Evolve team. They help turn my ideas and plans into real life products that can make a difference to people’s skin - which is why I do what I do.
What’s next for Evolve?
We are always working on new and exciting products - whilst also looking for ways to make our existing products even better - and greener. We recently relaunched our Radiant Glow Mask using upcycled blueberry particles that are a by-product from the juicing industry. We will be celebrating our 10th anniversary later this year so have a few new and products coming out in time for that and a lot of other products that are currently being tested for launch next year - so watch this space!
Shop Evolve Organic Beauty on The Clean Beauty Edit.