With the support of my gorgeous family, I launched Holos Skincare at Showcase in the RDS in January 2014 and the following week, I took to the roads of Ireland to make fearful coldcalls to tell prospective stockists all about Holos Skincare. The reaction was amazing and we got 5 stockists in our first week. I say “we” but it was just me. I was thrilled and seeing my dreams of Holos being on shelves come true was such a buzz. I still get a thrill when I see our products on shelves. It never ever gets old. By April, I could no longer cope on my own and I decided to look into the jobsbridge scheme and that’s when Teresa came into my life. Teresa is nothing short of a life-saver. She keeps the day to day running of Holos ticking over. She is head of production and also dispatches all orders so when you get your hand written note, it’s usually from Teresa.

Bella, Niamh & Paul

Teresa the lifeblood of Holos SkincareTeresa worked at HQ while I spent a lot of time on the road meeting new customers and doing in store events in Health Stores and pharmacies all over Ireland. Teresa is with me still and I couldn’t do without her!

Something that stands out in the first year was our first big piece of media coverage. I got a call from a journalist with the Weekend Magazine in the Irish Independent. She told me that the gorgeous Assets Model Karen Fitzpatrick had named Holos Love Your Skin Anti-ageing Facial Oil here in her top 3 products. They needed an image of the product. It was so exciting. I couldn’t believe it! When the piece was printed, the website went mad and we had our first experience of the power of the media.

 

Irish Independent

As the year went on, we got more and more stockists and in the Summer Laura Bermingham chose to take Holos skincare onto Ireland Am. She spoke about Love Your Skin Anti-ageing Facial Oil here and Good Night Body Oil here and again the website came alive. The phone was hopping and so many people wanted to try Holos so we launched our sample sizes which are 10ml so have more than a singular use. These are so popular  and are available on the website to buy here

Try Holos samples

We continued to get lots of support from bloggers and media but the media highlight of the year had to be when Marissa Carter invited me to do her “Ask the expert” segment on Xpose.  I spent the morning in the lovely Cocoa Brown offices being mentored by Marissa as to how to do TV. I learnt so much that morning that set me up for the TV appearances that would follow. Marissa is such an angel and has become a lovely friend and supporter as well as my inspiration. I was so nervous that morning but she put me at ease and it went off without a hitch.

Watch the video here

Holos Niamh on Xpose

Holos Niamh with Marissa Carter of Cocoa Brown and Lisa Cannon of XposeHolos on Xpose filmed in Cocoa Brown Office

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In October we made it through the regional finals into the national finals of the Bank of Ireland Start-up Awards. I will never forget the terror before going in to pitch to the judges. I believed I didn’t have a hope. We were 9 months trading and were up against some stiff competition. I pitched and went along to the awards and what a night!

Start Up Awards Gavin Duffy and Niamh Hogan

 

 

I will never forget the feeling of winning that first award. When Gavin Duffy called out Holos Skincare in the Home/Craft based Start-up category, I almost died. It was exhilarating! You never forget your first eh!

boi-startup-awards

We rode out the year on a high with a busy Christmas and sped into the new year with positivity and excitement but you’ll have to read the next blog post to find out what happened in year 2.

xxx Niamh