Emma Lewisham is the founder of her eponymous skincare line that is looking to set a new benchmark in beauty. She sees the potential for a beauty business to not only create a positive impact on people’s skin, but also on the planet. With a range of scientifically proven, 100% natural skincare formulas, the company is leading a movement towards a ‘circular, climate positive, and transparent beauty’ industry. To celebrate the company’s recent B Corp certification, we asked Emma about how a business with circularity at its core went through the journey.
Why did you want to certify as a B Corp?
Certification as a B Corp recognises and reinforces that we meet the highest standards of social and environmental performance and transparency across every aspect of our business. It’s a symbol of our commitment and hard work in always choosing to balance purpose and profit, and using our business as a force for good.
What makes Emma Lewisham unique as a business?
As a company, we have shaken up how the beauty industry operates and pioneered the movement towards a circular, climate positive and transparent beauty industry. In 2021, Emma Lewisham became the world’s first climate positive and 100% circular-designed beauty brand, in turn being endorsed as an industry leader by renowned environmentalist Dr Jane Goodall. All our packaging is refillable and recyclable through our global takeback programme, the Emma Lewisham Beauty Circle. We aim to redefine what it means to be a truly sustainable business within the 21st century, showing that purpose and profit, sustainability and success, can go hand in hand. Through education and collaboration, we hope to demonstrate what a truly beautiful beauty industry can look like.
B Corps want to help transform our economy into one that is inclusive, sustainable, and regenerative. What business practice do you want to see become the norm?
We want to see circular principles become the norm in all businesses. Businesses should have to take responsibility for everything they put out into the world — helping to facilitate its repair, reuse, or recycling in order to eliminate waste and significantly reduce our extraction of the Earth’s precious natural resources.
Was there a B Corp that inspired you to certify, or one that you look to for inspiration?
I have always looked to Patagonia as inspiration. I believe they are a brand that deeply embodies their values and ethos in an authentic and meaningful way. I recall reading a piece on their website that described B Corps as ‘companies that practice “stakeholder capitalism”’, and which they defined as businesses that ‘identify their most deeply held social and environmental values, then abide by them, honouring their responsibilities to their employees, customers, suppliers and communities – as well as to the financial health of their investors’. This deeply resonated with the way I wish to run my business.
Do you have any tips for aspiring B Corps about the certification process?
Working collaboratively with all parts of the business internally and externally. Making sure that everyone involved in the business is on board with what we want to achieve is very important. Do not underestimate the time that you may spend on gathering, consolidating, and analysing information. Building a great relationship with your analyst is also key to success and great communication between all parties involved.