Retired Duo Starts Skincare Line- Suchita and Pradeep Ullas
The retired duo starts skincare line, Suchita, and Pradeep. After retiring from her job as a PR professional in Bengaluru, Suchita Ullas started making soap and now operates a thriving business out of her house called Suchi's Handmade Skincare Products.
Every now and again, I wonder what my life might be like after retirement would I pass hours in the morning reading the newspaper? Would I be able to read all of the books in one sitting? Perhaps Suchita Ullal, who lives in Bengaluru, considered all of this before retiring. However, it is safe to say that this 64-year-old woman and her husband, Pradeep Ullal, have managed to keep themselves active just enough after retirement.
Suchita and Pradeep run the business ‘Suchi's Handmade Skincare Products,' which produces, markets, and sells natural soaps, creams, and shampoo bars. Suchita, a former PR and corporate communication professional, didn't want to waste time once she retired five years ago. She claims she intended to either create a tiffin business catering particularly to the requirements of Bengaluru's older residents or learn how to produce natural soaps. “I've always wanted to learn how to create natural soaps, and the workshop appeared like a perfect place to start,” she adds.
Her son, who was living in Switzerland, would always request the natural soaps be couriered to him from India. She'd purchase them by the dozen and ship them to him, but she'd always wonder why she couldn't just make them for him.” She subsequently decided to take a soap-making class, which completely transformed her life. “When she joined the class, she had no intention of starting a business." The business was simply a ‘sheer coincidence' along the journey of learning. The venture began with a Rs 15,000 investment, which included the cost for the first training. She went to the course, enjoyed herself in making soaps, and then spent the following year researching online about the ingredients, proportions, uses, and so on. She spent considerable time producing soaps and failing in equal proportion during that time period, which was interesting because that was a try and test period. After a year, Suchita was left with a hundred or so soaps as a result of her year-long experiment. Those were the time before the pandemic when there were a lot of flea markets throughout the city. So it became much easier for her to sell her handmade products.
Their business began in 2016 at a flea market where the couple set up shop. “It was fantastic to see that they had fully sold out the entire stock by the end of the day. Some people tried it once and then came back for more. This accomplishment prompted Suchita to produce more and consider this as a possible business endeavor. From the first flea market, where Suchita sold all of her 100 soaps, they now ship almost 500 items every month. Shampoo bars, highly moisturising all-weather body butters and lotions, underarm cream deodorants, lip balms, and a variety for men including beard butters and shaving soaps have all been added to the line. Their whole marketing strategy has relied solely on social media and phrasal communication.
Every lot is handmade in tiny amounts at the couple's home with extreme care. “One thing about which they are quite picky is the ingredients they utilise. After all, the quality of the things they produce is their most powerful marketing weapon. The goods are made with only the best branded natural and regional vegetable oils, butters, ghee, herbs, flowers, fresh milk, essential oils, fruit and vegetable purees,” adds Suchita. The products are parabens and sodium lauryl sulfate-free. The charcoal soap, the sandalwood soap, Kasturi manjal (turmeric), tender coconut soap, peaches, a cream one, and a Himalayan pink salt bar, which is Suchita's personal favorite, and is the best-selling products. A 100 gm soap bar would set you back Rs 120, with the most costly soap bar costing Rs 200, all of which are available for purchase on Suchita's Instagram and Facebook pages. Suchita's favorite part of running her business is the continual positive comments she receives from her customers.
“It is a story of enthusiasm, profound study, higher quality, and careful execution, after all its the deal with skin, the largest organ of our body''. she adds.