Speaking about the Journey so far, Vanity Wagon’s Co-Founder Ms. Naina Ruhail said,
Vanity Wagon started operations in Sept ’18 and we have had a great ride since. With traction flowing right from start we have grown 50% on an average month on month with our users. Our customers love what they get at Vanity Wagon and have since been coming back for more. The team has grown from 4 to 11 and we create all our content and graphics in-house. A key growth metric for us is also the number of brands we house and the wide range of products we offer. Vanity Wagon has grown from 10 to 28 brands now and we offer products in over 65 categories.
Did you face any challenges?
A startup journey is all about overcoming the challenges and we have had our share too. A few worth remembering are as follows –
Partnering with the right brands:
Vanity Wagon is all about offering the best natural-organic personal care products to the men and women of India. While doing so we need to have the right balance between affordability and quality (in the products we house). The team has worked its way around the initial challenges in getting some great brands on board to now, where more than 3-4 brands approach us every day for partnership.
To find motivated team members who are as passionate as you are is not easy. Our task here was cut out and we knew what we were looking for while meeting these amazing professionals. Today we stand tall with an in-house graphics, content, marketing, finance, and operations team.
Natural-Organic Beauty is still new to India and the biggest challenge we faced in our journey is the lack of information on these products. Most individuals who see our website, open our social handles are not very aware of how to replace the chemically driven options in their lives with natural products. Vanity Wagon has since worked hard at delivering as much information as we can and trying to overcome this obstacle.
Why Vanity Wagon?
Vanity Wagon is India’s 1st Natural-Organic Beauty Market. We are an aggregator for natural personal care products and offer them to the men and women of India. The online portal is www.vanitywagon.in and we deliver to approximately 40000 pin-codes across India.
The name “Vanity Wagon” is derived from the essence of a woman’s everyday life – her Vanity and Wagon symbolizes us being able to travel across India to service this need.
While I was finishing up my specialization in beauty at the London School of Makeup, I realized how developed was the natural beauty market in the UK in comparison to India. I saw an opportunity and further research made me realize the potential in a venture like – Vanity Wagon.
What is so Unique about Vanity Wagon?
Vanity Wagon is a Niche Market delivering Natural-Organic Beauty in India. Our USP is that we ensure No Misguided Purchases unlike the large e-commerce players in the market and enable our users to buy anything from the website and still be assured its without harmful chemicals and naturally driven.
With Vanity Wagon, our next few steps include – bringing international natural beauty brands on board, shipping to over 10 capitals around the world, launching our mobile app and in-house developed chatbot, and launching offline stores to better serve the needs of our users.
I definitely believe in this, and make it a principle to live by. While Vanity Wagon being a startup takes a lot of my time I still ensure I have time in the day to take care of my health and also spend time with family and friends. A start-up involves being at your toes all the time and that is something that does keep me involved a lot but again I do try having some me time whenever I get a chance and recover to go back stronger and more focused the following day.
Out of the busy schedule, how much time do you take out for yourself to focus on your health and inner peace
My day starts at 6 in the morning with a glass of coconut water and green tea. I then either gym or go for a pilates session (as per my schedule) and head to work post that. This routine defines my life in a lot of ways; the balance I try to strike in life is the same I bring to Vanity Wagon. A healthy diet, routine and recovery time ensures I remain focused at work and give my 100%. On a daily basis, I spend about 2-3 hours on all these activities, including workouts, healthy eating, and timely work breaks.
How do you manage Work-Stress
The beauty of a startup is that the stress it brings comes with a million motivating and positive thoughts. I usually don’t get worked up quickly and have a calm demeanor. However, the little stress I do feel, I overcome it by spending time with my family. Positive thoughts enable me to think straight and overcome any issues that are causing a nerve wreck at work.
Vanity Wagon is a bootstrapped company at present with one round from family and friends. We are running strong and expansion would definitely entail bringing in some additional funds, which the founders are working towards.
Any misconceptions about the industry
One big misconception that we, at Vanity Wagon, are trying to overcome is that – Organic products are expensive and don’t smell or feel as good as their chemical counterparts. The cost misconception is largely due to the organic foods market, where the natural products are more expensive. Natural-organic beauty brands in India are producing some amazing products that are not expensive and are more effective than any product one has ever used. The range of products is as cheap as Rs/- 50 to as high as Rs.15000. There’s something for everyone and we are letting the Indian community know that
As a startup, calling ourselves a success right now will not be ideal, as we are very young. However, we have seen our share of the limelight with over 15 media coverage, high user growth rate and great traction from brands across the world. This momentum carried forward with the hard work of the team at Vanity Wagon will definitely drive us to our goals.
Anything else you think is important to highlight
The journey at Vanity Wagon has been terrific and with the help of an amazing team, we are trying to create a special community here. Our forums, blogs, vlogs, magazine – all come down to one thing – creating that special space for our users where they find the best natural products for their daily lives!
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