INTERVIEW: IN THE NUDDY
We get the dirt about soapy plastic free success nuddy from founder Kassi Emadi. She wants you to lather up and get in the nuddy…
Tell us all about in the nuddy and how you got into such a soapy venture…
We launched the nuddy range in the UK in July. Our products are vegan-friendly soap bars. We found that the majority of soaps and body washes on the market are not only full of rubbish, but also packaged using plastic materials. nuddy is proud to be 100% plastic free and created using only the best ingredients, right here in the UK. We use a vegan-friendly Shea butter base, so our soap is inclusive to just about every Tom, Francesca + Harriet. Since launching, the response has been amazing – we’ve been shortlisted in the ‘Best new British beauty brand’ category in the Pure Beauty Awards, featured in Harpers Bazaar, Marie Claire and Refinery29, as well as making an impact on social media.
I was working in London as Head of PR at a creative marketing start-up when I first started working on nuddy. As a self-confessed soap bar addict – whenever I used to go out to buy a bar of soap from any large retailer, I’d find a selection of maybe 5 outdated brands on the bottom shelf. This literally broke my heart. None of the brands were even trying to form a connection with me as a consumer. I was totally uninspired. I couldn’t get my head around how or why we’d let this amazing product die a death. So, I decided to quit my job and move back home to North Yorkshire where I started nuddy and developed my own brand of soap which I hoped, would transform the market, re-connect with consumers (particularly the millennial generation) and make soap bars cool again.
Was there a particular moment that inspired you to start it up?
It sounds so cliche and almost unbelievable, but I genuinely had a ‘light bulb moment’ whilst I was in the shower. I was holding a bar of soap and I sort of just looked at it and thought ‘why don’t people love soap?’ From there my mind started unfolding all of these ideas. I jumped out of the shower, ran to my diary and started writing things down. I then rang my mum and started shouting ‘SOAAAAAP’ down the phone. I wish someone had caught all this on camera, cos I would have indeed been #inthenuddy
Your ethos and products are eco friendly, is that an important factor in all things nuddy?
SO important. We identify as a mission brand – we want to help change consumer behaviour when it comes to purchasing goods. The reason I created this brand was not only to bring life back to the market but to also start a movement. We want to encourage people to switch to soap when they wash, to reduce the amount plastic used when getting in the nuddy. It’s widely talked about that there’s an excess of water bottles and plastic bags – these are common everyday single-use items. But what about the other plastic containers people are taking for granted – shampoo, conditioner, body wash?
What are the big problems you see women facing in business?
Fear and lack of self confidence, I feel, is one of the greatest. Most people are, unfortunately, exactly who they’re told to be – this is inbuilt from infancy and people rarely break the mould. You’re told to act in a certain way and do certain things, in order to achieve x,y+z. For a long time, women were told that they couldn’t lead and influence – it wasn’t expected of us. Well some bloody great women broke that mould, and gave more women the confidence to do so. It’s important for the women who have found the confidence to encourage others to do the same.
Are there any issues you see people face in your day to day life that the world can find easy to ignore?
Mental health issues. I know there have been some amazing campaigns in the last year or so to increase awareness of mental health and the effort to ‘normalise’ and remove the stigma. This might suggest that the world is not ignoring it. But I still feel that day-to-day people do ignore it, and a lot of people just don’t get mental health and the effect it can have on a person. The mind is an amazing, powerful and beautiful thing. I don’t think we know enough about what our minds are capable of, good and bad. When I worked at my first job in London, I was told that I was being kept from progressing because I wasn’t as ‘happy and excited’ as I used to be. At the time I was suffering from anxiety due to certain life events, yet, at work I was performing better than ever. I felt so let down by the ignorance of my manager that I ended up deciding to leave, which was really sad. As individuals we should try to be better at understanding each other.
Tell us about a campaign/advert that made you angry.
I used to HATE the old Yorkie adverts. ‘It’s not for girls’ – it still makes me angry because I used to love Yorkie bars and I can’t think of a more ridiculous and offensive advertising campaign to upset an 11 year old Yorkie loving GIRL. I still used to eat them though, just to prove a point. If I had social media back in the day, I would have been tweeting them pictures of me eating my Yorkie bar.
Are there any soapy facts we don’t know about? Tell us the dirt!
I love soap facts, there are so many. Ok, my favourite is that ‘soap operas’ are named that because the earliest dramas from the 50s & 60s were sponsored by soap making companies. Everyone uses the phrase, but honestly, I bet hardly any millenials know why.
What are your three favourite smells?
Real Christmas trees, nuddy mango soap and petrol… (I’m just being honest)!
EDITOR: a lot of people say petrol, including REEK co-founder Molly, you crazy bitches. Maybe we need a blog post about that…
What nuddy soap would be the biggest bitch?
Less bitter than your ex – FACT. That’s our Pink Grapefruit soap. I love the phrase. Sometimes you just gotta be a sassy bitch, right? I know my ex is bitter, and I’m pretty sure that everyone else can relate to that too.
Are you more of a witch or a bitch?
My dad has always called me and my mum witches, so I’m going to have to say witch. Although if needs be…