I always wanted my own makeup line, but started heavily thinking about it in 2017. I had partnered that year with someone wanting to launch a makeup line, amongst other things, but it fell apart fast.
Enter 2018. I started my organic beauty journey, ditching regular products for clean ones and launched a blog called The Golden Compact. I wanted it to be a magazine because I’ve always wanted my own magazine. It’s currently on hiatus as I grow Inaygia (clean custom makeup!) though. But alas, it was the turning point in my life as it led me towards people that would change my life forever.
As a blogger, I attended some events. One event in particular, led me to someone who had be taking organic product formulation classes at Formula Botanica. I had seen this particular school advertise and could barely find much reviews on it at the time, so it was like a godsend to get to talk to someone in person about it and its courses.
I was sold after meeting more of the students in person. I enrolled in two diplomas that year for organic formulation. I could barely afford it though, but knew this is what I needed to do to turn my life around. I tried crowdfunding to no avail, and eventually had to borrow money to do it. The classes were $1000 each.
Now, I hadn’t had a real job since 2012 at this point in time, so $2000 wasn’t exactly something to sneeze at. Little did I know, I had to buy everything in the courses to actually complete them! This raised my investment in myself to another level. It took me two years of saving whatever I could to buy only the necessary ingredients and equipment and to complete the two diplomas. This was not easy with a limited income…
But after completing the first diploma in December 2018, I started the process of getting Inaygia up and running for January 2019. I told myself I would only try it out for one year and if I didn’t make any sales, I’d close up shop. Sticker shock again hit me. Luckily for me, I had just gotten a new credit card and was able to pay for insurance and packaging, which was well over $500.
In January 2019, I set up my Etsy shop with my first product. No sales that month. Of course I wasn’t surprised. Etsy failed me before many times… Anyways, I decided to try out a local craft show in February 2019. I wasn’t going to take this lying down. I had invested so much into learning how to make unique products. So I bought a Square. Then, I went with products in tow. There was a snow storm. Barely anyone showed up. I made one sale. One. For the whole day. But you know what? That was the first sale I had made in my entire entrepreneurial life. This was big for me. I celebrated my win.
February went and past without another sale. I was discouraged to say the least. Was it me? Was it Etsy? I didn’t know, so I started to create my own stand-alone website. I launched this website in April 2019. People came, but sales were only trickling in from Etsy.
Then in May 2019, I accepted a real job, the first time since 2012. I lasted 5 months; til the start of October 2019. From June to October 2019, I made nadda. I was too focused on working my day job, that I didn’t have any time for Inaygia. I’d get home late (after 8 or 9 p.m.), sometimes eat, go to bed without lying down (yes really), wake up super early (4 a.m.), and do it all over again. I made zero dollars at this job because commuting to it ate the majority of my pay unfortunately. The rest went to bills and completing the final diploma.
In October 2019, I entered an entrepreneurial program with the hopes of winning $1000 to invest into Inaygia. I failed miserably by the end of the program in December 2019. Yup, did not get the money, but made a couple more sales before the end of the year, which meant I was not packing up shop.
I then spent over $200 on another entrepreneurial program (this time 12 months) that has not started yet, but will before the end of January 2020. Will it do anything for me? I really don’t know, but December 2019 also led me to a rebrand and a list of many goals for 2020.
So yes, Inaygia is my fulltime focus right now. It’s officially year two and I am not taking this laying down.
I have many new products in the works but alas, I have to bootstrap. No one is helping me. I am doing every single thing on my own on a non-existing budget. Hello, no job.
I tried getting funding from many sources to no avail. One guy even told me that I didn’t have a business; just an expensive hobby and refused to give me anything at all.
One of my goals was to change to sustainable packaging for 2020. I can’t even do that right now, so I will be implementing a “beauty take back” program in February 2020 to recycle my unrecyclable plastic packaging with TerraCycle’s ZeroWaste Box. It will cost me around $80, but I cannot do much else right now. I have a box full of unrecyclable packaging that I need to use up, unless someone is going to offer me sustainable packaging at an affordable cost and low MOQ (minimum order quantity) so I can switch over.
I did manage to get access to rent a space on a pay as you go term for my custom clean makeup shade matching service though. It is official. I have my first location in TORONTO as of January 2020. If you’re in the area and ever wanted a custom makeup shade just for you, book an appointment with me and stop by.
For those not in the area (that’s you USA), I am looking to recruit beauty reps to travel to you to shade match you. If interested in this opportunity (Canada and USA only), please email me here.
For more about Inaygia’s custom clean makeup, read our story.