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Welsh hair products entrepreneur sees demand surge

Elinor started the business with just £100

After years of straightening her hair Elinor ditched her straighteners in 2012, embracing her natural hair.

Elinor recalls not liking her own curls growing up and being forced to straighten her hair, due to a lack of self-confidence and pressure to conform. This carried on for years, until Elinor decided to embrace her natural curl pattern.

However, a few years into her curly hair journey and working in her first Job in London, Elinor was pulled aside and it was suggested that she wear her hair straight as this was smarter for business. So, the idea to create a curly hair brand was born, to give women the confidence to wear their hair naturally.

Coupled with her experience, and frustration at the lack of natural hair care products available on the market. Through extensive research, Elinor found that most products aimed at curls contained chemicals and preservatives that could be detrimental to curl health.

Olew’s support for ‘Natural Curlies’ has meant they have tripled their orders during ‘lockdown’ as UK women embrace their natural hair with confidence.

Originally made from a kitchen with just £100 taking inspiration from ‘The $100 dollar start up’ by Chris Guillebeau, the Olew product range is still proudly made and packaged in the UK, and always tested on Elinor’s own curls. Olew – the Welsh word for oil, pays homage to Elinor’s Welsh roots.

Speaking about her plans for the business, Elinor said:

“Due to the uncertainty of Covid, it is difficult to plan anything; at the moment it is a case of working from one day to the next. However we have had an increase in exports to Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Australia.

“I will be looking to expand further on these as well as looking into more social media campaigns to spread the awareness of Olew in the UK and beyond.”

Olew is manufactured in the UK, and together with a Chartered Scientist and Chemist with over 25 years of experience in the cosmetic industry. Elinor ensures that each ingredient has been carefully selected to be naturally hydrating for your hair but also environmentally friendly too.

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