What better place to test our coffee-based skincare concept than at a Coffee Festival? The scrubs flew out the door – whoosh! We came, we scrubbed, we conquered. Maybe, just maybe, we were on to something.
LET'S DO THIS!
It was time to take the leap…the UpCircle sibling co-founders Will and Anna quit their jobs and risked it all to nurture their by-product beauty baby!
URBAN OUTFITTERS - OUR FIRST PARTNER
We sent hand-sealed, sellotaped up prototypes to UO HQ, perhaps we were too optimistic? Perhaps not. They loved the scrubs and became our first retail partner.
THE PORTFOLIO GROWS
To meet our ever-growing list of retailers (including Thrive Market and Pharmaca) the coffee shop portfolio had to expand. By the end of 2017 we are regularly collecting coffee grounds from 100 artisan coffee shops.
We achieved our crowdfunding target of $260,000 in just three days and closed the round overfunded by $22,000. Mic drop.
The return of the soap bar. We’re saving coffee, but why stop there? What’s next on our hit list? Chai. We begin salvaging the aromatic spices brewed to make chai syrup, transforming them into new soaps.
DIVING WITH SHARKS
The co-founding siblings take their chances against the Sharks in the UK version of Shark Tank…and walk away victorious. The duo received investment offers from 3 sharks and shook hands on a joint offer with 2 of them!
NAME CHANGER GAME CHANGER
As our product ranges expand we take the opportunity to unify the brand, unveiling a fresh new look and name. Our circular economy mission is now front and centre: we’re ready for world domination.
NEW YEAR NEW HOME
The brand has far outgrown the siblings parents’ home. It’s time to move out. We leave a trail of coffee footsteps and set up in a railway arch...half office, half warehouse!
A panel of retail buyers listen to fast-paced pitches from six beauty brands shortlisted from over 60 companies. UpCircle is chosen as a winner! We make plans to roll our products out in hundreds of stores later in the year.
SCOOPING UP AWARDS
We now have more than 10 brand awards and product-specific awards from more than 50% of the range - buzzingggg!
Anna and Will flew to San Fran to help spread the UpCircle story, weeks before borders began to close. UpCircle is available in Whole Foods and Credo Beauty - yessss!
NEW HURDLES, NEW HURDLERS
As we navigate the many challenges that 2020 throws at us, we decide to bring in some new team members to assist! All via Zoom interviews we grow from a team of three to a team of eight between April and June.
We release THREE brand new products AND moved our Scrubs to glass jars! Chaotic, but worth it. We also broadened the team again by welcoming a new marketing team member and another pair of hands at our main warehouse.
We become Leaping Bunny approved as cruelty-free and certified Plastic Negative. This means that we remove more plastic waste from the environment than we create in our packaging and operations.