Start the week with a startup: Selfnamed

By Kirsty Doolan

- Last updated on GMT

Selfnamed said it's aimed at entrepreneurs looking to start or expand their skin care business; to enable them to sell their own products and build their own brand
Selfnamed said it's aimed at entrepreneurs looking to start or expand their skin care business; to enable them to sell their own products and build their own brand

Related tags Startup company Entrepreneurship beauty tech personalised beauty Skin care

Every fortnight we talk to a game-changer startup business about why it exists and how it plans to transform the industry. This week we spoke to CEO and co-founder of Selfnamed, Anete Vabule, about how it plans to make it easier for budding entrepreneurs to enter the beauty industry.

Startup Selfnamed is a platform designed to offer entrepreneurs and brands of all shapes the opportunity to start their own sustainable skin care business or grow their current business.

The company says that by eliminating minimum order requirements, it plans to ‘open the door’ for entrepreneurs from all backgrounds to enter the beauty industry.

The business itself has MADARA Cosmetics as its parent company – an already well-established natural cosmetics company in its native country of Latvia. MADARA was an early adopter for the naturals trend and Selfnamed plans to use natural ingredients and renewable energy and said it aims to be “a beacon for sustainable business practices in beauty.”

How Selfnamed is changing the game…

"We are offering a platform that allows skincare enthusiasts and professionals the chance to sell their ‘own’ branded beauty products. They can choose from the products and formulas and can personalise the designs and branding of the packaging and product labels as well.

The service is aimed at those looking to start or expand their beauty business, enabling them to sell their own products, building their brands along the way. Our platform simplifies the process by allowing users to choose formulas, customise product labels and boxes, and order quantities that align with their needs and budget. We think this approach is particularly beneficial for small and mid-sized businesses, as it gives the tools and flexibility to launch their product lines efficiently.

We offer a fully automated ‘clean skincare’ process. Entrepreneurs can select from a variety of products and packaging options, upload their designs, and integrate their product portfolios with e-commerce platforms like Shopify or WooCommerce. The platform handles order fulfilment automatically, emphasising the use of sustainable and ethical practices in manufacturing and packaging.

Our platform is designed to offer flexibility in order quantities, catering to the budgetary constraints of different entrepreneurs. This approach allows the cost for setting up a natural skincare line to be tailored to the financial capabilities of each entrepreneur, making it more accessible to a wider range of individuals.

To ensure the sustainable democratisation of owning a natural skincare line, we are focusing on ethical and sustainable practices and helping others, regardless of where they sit on the cosmetics food chain.

Our principal efforts include prioritising recyclable packaging, using clean energy sources, and adhering to stringent environmental standards. We are aiming to “empower entrepreneurs to create sustainable skincare brands without contributing to environmental degradation.”

How we started…

"Selfnamed launched publicly in October 2023,  but we started up in 2022. We were very fortunate to have received support from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Union (EU) funded Horizon 2020 programme.

Our motivation was to address the challenges faced by small and mid-sized businesses in the traditional private label industry, which is typically geared towards large enterprises with high minimum order quantities and substantial budgets.

Together, our team and our ‘parent company’ MADARA Cosmetics recognised the need for a more accessible, environmentally sound and inclusive solution that supports clean beauty entrepreneurs, all of which led to the creation of Selfnamed."

The challenges we faced…

"As a growing brand from Latvia, we recognise the challenge of establishing ourselves in the expansive beauty industry. We also know that the beauty industry's landscape is ever evolving, and that it’s imperative to stay ahead by continuously engaging in market research and leveraging customer insights to drive our product innovation.

We have to be able to meet the changing needs and preferences of our customers. But on top of that, we are facing competition from established global brands, with loyal customer bases and deep reservoirs of capital.

With these challenges in mind, our strategy involves leveraging the legacy of MADARA Cosmetics, our parent company, to build trust and recognition while offering a new, exciting proposition that is good for people and good for the planet.

As with many new product launches and service offerings, from tech to mobility, for us with ethical personalised skincare solutions, a key challenge we are faced with is a change in mindset for the customer. People simply don’t believe that this way of doing things is possible – it truly is a change in mindset – it’s an educational effort before mass buy-in for a new way of approaching life and business." 

How will we disrupt the industry…

"What you find in the traditional private label industry is a paradigm designed primarily for large corporations. This is marked by significant minimum order requirements, extended lead times, hefty financial demands, and a system that can be both outdated and difficult to access. Such a landscape offers limited opportunities for smaller enterprises, which often find themselves at a disadvantage due to limited resources and a lack of specialised knowledge needed to compete successfully.

We provide the total opposite and aim to disrupt the beauty industry by democratising the sector’s merchandising, production, and fulfilment. Our products offer a sustainable and inclusive alternative, empowering entrepreneurs of all scales to launch natural skin care products without barriers of cost or minimum order quantities, and that is a key differentiator.

We are dedicated to aiding entrepreneurs, regardless of who they are. Sustainability is also a non-negotiable aspect of our ethos, and we consistently uphold our commitment to ethical practices, surpassing stringent regulatory standards – we meet all European regulations and rules. With all of this in our locker, we certainly believe that we are positioned to positively disrupt the cosmetics industry."

Where we are heading next…

"Looking towards the horizon, we envision a future where we serve as a digital playground for skin care creation, accessible to all, and our ambition is to become the premier one-stop platform for establishing and nurturing clean beauty businesses. We will provide skin care entrepreneurs with a suite of options for creating their own products and branding, encompassing everything from formula selection, fragrance, packaging, and print style to diverse design ideas."






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