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The perfect formula

It all started with an idea, but passion drove Frya and Sarah to create an original beauty product

13 Jan 2021 / 10:46 H.

THE hassle of packing all of her toiletries for overseas travel used to bother Fyra Hisham. She loved to travel, but laws and restrictions made it difficult to travel with beauty products.

But one night, she had an idea which she promptly shared with her friend Sarah Kajani, an expatriate who moved to Malaysia five years ago.

The idea is based on a beauty hack, and both Fyra and Sarah knew they had something special. They dove into the endeavour head first, though neither had any business experience.

Fyra grew up in Damansara playing football, racing Tamiya cars, and drumming in a band with her two sisters.

“My sisters and I often did gigs and joined battle of the bands [competitions],” said Fyra.

“She also sings very well,” added Sarah.

Fyra who is a Creative Multimedia in Animation & Advertising graduate, was looking to get out of her comfort zone with the idea for the new beauty product.

Sarah, on the other hand, moved to Malaysia on a whim to get away from it all. She grew up in a family where each child had to have a five-year plan.

“I had to make a presentation about what I wanted to do when I was 13. The plan was to become a physician. Being from an Indian family, I had limited options,” said Sarah.

However, all that changed when she fell in love with communications and marketing.

Her parents didn’t approve. “I suddenly found myself on this journey alone, stitching different life experiences together and slowly unravelling who I was, and the dreams I had when I was a child,” she recalled. In time, Sarah’s parents embraced her nomadic lifestyle.

When Fyra shared her idea, “the tingles just shot across my body and I just knew we had to do it!” exclaimed Sarah.

The very next day the two friends came up with the name Skinfuel Beauty.

It would take them over a year and all their savings to perfect the formula for the product. They made sure each ingredient is natural, halal, responsibly sourced, and safe.

“We wanted to make the product for everyone, all genders, all ethnicities, all skin types,” said Sarah.

To achieve that, they sourced their ingredients from all over the world, but manufactured their products here in Malaysia.

“It’s completely self-funded and we didn’t know how much certain things would cost,” Sarah added.

“We were sourcing our jars, pads, packaging. We didn’t have much [funds] left over to market and we launched our product during the movement control order (MCO).”

SkinFuel Beauty was launched about four months ago with two products – the Squeaky Clean Double Cleansing Pad, and its smaller travel version Squeaks.

Fyra explained: “The idea is similar to having a product that can do multiple things: exfoliate, cleanse, and moisturise. A 3-in-1. But we did it in a pad form because there are so many restrictions to travelling on a plane with liquids.”

When they first unveiled their product line, a lot of Malaysians were asking them if they were the official distributors of a new brand of Korean beauty products.

People didn’t believe that these products were developed and made in Malaysia by these two women.

The women market their products to a diverse audience. One of their challenges was to introduce this product to men. Based on their observations, men are often sold to using the product’s ability to help them attract women.

In contrast, the two want to promote their products based on their strengths.

“I think what helps us the most with this experience is our need to want to create honest products and a brand that we believe in, one that is built on speaking the truth genuinely, and beautifully unfiltered,” concluded Sarah.

As for future plans, both women are excited about their new products coming out this year.

“It is still in the research phase, but we expect to release it in 2021,” revealed Fyra.

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