Aviela Shea Butter Products

Me & Patricia

Me & Patricia Monney – Aviela Founder

My current favourite product for moisturising my body is the Avelia Shea Body Butter, I use it every day (Ingredients Butyrospermum Parkii(Shea Butter) Oil, Vitis vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Shea Olien,  and Persia Gratissima (Avocado) Oil).

I first came across the brand at the professional beauty show last year where I met the owner Patricia Monney. Like many a natural entrepreneur Patricia started making her products in her kitchen at home in Hemel Hempstead. This month she shared some delightful news with me so I decided to have a quick catch up with Patricia to find out more…

Patricia Monney

Patricia Monney

So for those who don’t know your brand, Aviela is 9 years old. What inspired you to start?
Aviela Shea butter products started as a result of my daughter Charissa .  Even though I knew a lot about Shea butter because I come from Northern Ghana which is the hub of the Shea tree, I paid no attention to it at all.  But when Charissa was almost 2 years old and was still not walking as a new mum, I became worried.  While on holiday in Ghana I decided to visit a doctor to examine my daughter’s condition. The first doctor I saw confirmed that there was something wrong with her left ankle and she would probably need surgery. He then referred me to a bone specialist. When I met up with the bone specialist, he examined Charissa’s foot and asked me if I had ever heard of Shea butter. I excitedly told him that it was my mum’s favourite remedy for every skin and hair problem she had. He advised me to take Charissa home and massage her ankle with it twice a day and after 2 weeks he would determine whether an operation on her ankle was necessary.

I was quite upset about the prescription I was given and was thinking of not returning to see him. When I got home, I told my mother about my prescription and she said to give it a try. My mother took charge of it and massaged her granddaughter’s ankle with the Shea butter every morning and evening.

Three days afterwards, I saw Charissa on her feet trying to walk. By the 4th day, she was walking without any aid. I was so shocked and could not wait until the following week to see the doctor.

When I met the doctor after two weeks I asked him how the Shea butter had solved the problem. He explained to me that the cartilage in her ankle was very stiff, causing her not to stand properly, but the anti-stiffening agent in the unrefined Shea butter helped to induce some softness into her cartilage which helped her to stand on her feet comfortably, to allow her to walk. That very night when I got home I started calling all my Aunties and Uncles to find out more about Shea butter.  When they told me about some of the benefits and the many ailments it had helped healed I knew I had to find a way of bring it to the whole world.

The stand at the professional beauty event

That is incredible, the power of Shea!! So now you are an expert what is your favourite product in your own range?

I love all the products in the range, and what I use depends on the weather and season, for instance during the winter I can’t live without my body butter and foot butter for my feet, in the spring it will be my lotion and oil, then getting into Autumn it will be the body crème.  As for black soap I use it all throughout the year, morning and night.

So what was the good news?

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That’s fantastic news is it in all Superdrug or are there certain ones we should head into?
Currently our products are being sold on their website, superdrug.com, but Superdrug have 4 types of stores which are respectively the Premium stores, the Prestige stores, the Family stores and the Travel stores, we have had discussions that the products will sit in either the Prestige or Premium stores but most likely in the Prestige stores.  We are still awaiting confirmation as to which stores it will be and where those stores are located.

How important do you think it is for our natural products to get into mainstream stores?
More and more people are becoming aware of the benefits of natural products and would want to buy them, but they sometimes find it daunting just to go to natural product websites or stores and get them.  If the product is easily available to them they will much prefer that, so I believe it will be helpful if we made it more easily accessible by putting our products in the mainstream stores so they can easily get want they want and enjoy the benefits natural products has to offer.

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Any advice for a natural product company trying to follow in your footsteps?
We all know that running a business is not easy, but you have to be able to define what you want and what you want your business to achieve, and be persistent and determined in achieving what you want irrespective of what people will say or think of you.  There will be a lot of ‘No’ but just remember that ‘No’ means not now but later.  I initially approached Superdrug a year after I started my business and never got a response, 8 years on I went back again and this time the decision wasn’t difficult for them to make.

Congratulations Patricia.

Readers to find out more you can visit www.aviela.co.uk

You can also visit www.superdrug.com to find the range on their website

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New Dove Film – Why the hate?

Perfect

I have always admired Dove for their real beauty campaign and using real women in their advertising. So I was delighted last week to see their latest film by marketing company Ogilvy & Mather entitled Love your Curls.

The ad starts with a statement saying that “Only 4 out of 10 curly haired girls think their hair is beautiful”. Then it shows clips of interviews with young girls, who feel sad about their curly hair and believe they would be more beautiful with straight hair.  After this the girls friends and families are dancing with them down the street and leading them into a surprise party where everyone there is celebrating their curls (this bit is a little cheesy but sweet). Everyone is singing and dancing to the song  ‘We all love our curls’, which was especially composed for the advert. A final statement states that “Girls are 7 times more likely to love their curls if the people around them do”. You can watch it here.

Rob Candelino, VP of marketing for haircare at Unilever, spoke about the new film in an interview with Adweek. They noted that quite a few black girls and women were featured in the advertisement and wanted to know if Rob thought the advert made a particular statement about the discussion regarding natural hair versus relaxed hair in the black community—or women who relax their hair or their children’s hair. He said “The ‘Dove Hair: Love Your Curls’ campaign was crafted with an emphasis on encouraging all women to embrace their individual curl type and texture, regardless of race or ethnicity… Beauty, confidence and self-esteem are wide and far-reaching topics. Dove believes that every woman has the opportunity to make a difference in a girl’s life and have a positive impact on her self-confidence. The Dove Hair: Love Your Curls campaign is intended to motivate and inspire all women and girls with curls.” [Source]

I liked the advert a lot and shared it everywhere. So I was very surprised by the negative response from many of our natural sisters. They said they were suspicious, that Dove had ulterior motives and that Dove was taking something from us, something that we created. They said that the natural struggle was ours alone and no one should be trying to get in on this struggle. There was so much anger.

I even saw people complaining that they even didn’t use particular hair types. Natural’s we need to get away from this hair type business if it is going to divide us.  I saw many different hair types right here…

Dove - Love Curls
Dove have done a number of campaigns highlighting natural beauty for women of all nationalities, shapes and ages. Off the top of my head I can’t think of many other mainstream beauty companies that have any interest in promoting confidence in women. Yes they are company but if they’re putting out a positive message for our young girls to love themselves, why should this be a problem?

When people that say that Dove are “taking our problem”, I find it a hard concept to understand as when we are fighting for something we want as much support as possible. For example, there has been a long struggle against racism in this country. Would the struggle be more successful if it was only black people could support racial equality? Or would there be more support wheelchair users in the office if they were only supported by other wheelchair users? I don’t believe so.

Others have said that Dove doesn’t know the problems of black women. It seems to me that Dove have done their research and have determined that that there is an issue with curly hair across many nationalities. I believe that although this is a big issue in the black community, accepting curly hair is also an issue with women outside our community as well. Dove won’t know the story in the black community as well people in the black community, but that not the most important thing.  The important thing is that the message about accepting natural beauty and celebrating it has just got a tiny bit louder.

Imagine what a generation of young girls could achieve if they loved their hair, eyes, body, skin, etc etc. Perfect this way? Yes we are!

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A rapper releases a natural product….

When I think about rap music lately, I usually think of over sexualised videos, degrading women by calling things that we wouldn’t usually accept from anyone. Needless swearing, guns violence oh and don’t forget they either sold drugs or were in a gang. So as you can tell I would probably have to do a double take if they told me that a rapper launched a natural product.

Really??

Really??

Yes Philadelphia rapper Freeway alongside his long-time business partners Gary Parker and Jason Hertzog  has launched an all natural hand crafted beard cream. Yeah beard cream…so dont worry its not for your head curls. This organic cream is supposed to replenish natural oils and as a bonus it can also be used on a dry scalp.

Best Beards

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Now I haven’t heard his particular music but as you can see this dude really cares about his beard.  Look this is one serious beard!

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It has also been endorsed by Rick Ross and Snoop Dog or is he Snoop Lion now? With sales of over 1200 since launch it must be working.  Perhaps gone will be the days of the scratchy beard and women with bearded men will be able to snuggle next to a fluffy cloud.

The product is called Best Beard Cream and can be purchased online here on the website it looks like they have three different types, original, holiday spice and blueberry (yum).

So gents would you buy it? Ladies would you give it to someone? Do you like beards, do you like Freeway’s music? looking forward to your comments.

 

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