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03/09/13: Getting to know Souk - Interview with Victoria Wright!

I am beyond excited to share this interview with everyone.  We've had the wonderful Lindsey and the fab Suzanne and today we're rounding out the trio with a Q and A with the founder of the little green beauty box aka SoukSouk, Victoria.

Hello!  Firstly, the interesting name – what made you decide to call your beauty box SoukSouk?
I visited Morocco a few years ago and ended up spending most of my time there exploring the Souks. They are covered markets selling spices, clothing, lanterns and jewels. I liked the connotations of discovery, excitement, indulgence and the exotic.

That sounds fantastic; is that when did you decided to set up a beauty box scheme?
It was a couple of years ago, when I first came across mainstream beauty boxes. I thought the concept of receiving a regular box of beauty treats was utterly fantastic. However I personally wasn’t comfortable with the contents of those boxes. The majority of products within them would have involved animal testing at some point, or would have been owned by corporate giants that sell into China where animal testing is mandatory in many instances (so therefore I wouldn’t want to try products associated them.) I was also uncomfortable with the level of synthetic ingredients in a lot of the products.
So there was this great service that I didn’t feel I could take advantage of, and I knew for sure that other shoppers would feel the same. So I thought, why not create something I’d be happy to receive, and SoukSouk was born!

What's the process for selecting products – do you approach companies or they approach you?
It works both ways. We spend a lot of time researching into new brands and approaching them but we are also contacted by brands who’d like to be involved. We feel very passionate about supporting the industry so we’re constantly talking to new and existing brands. We do have a selection criteria but it is flexible enough that we can accommodate brands who may not have certification but whom we believe are ‘good’ and are trying to do the right thing.

So what are the most important criteria for choosing items to make it into the box?
Oops! Think I just answered that above  We prefer certification but understand it’s not always viable for small producers. We like high organic and natural content. We don’t tolerate green-washing and our biggest no-no is animal testing.

Yay! I really enjoy not knowing what's coming in my box and getting a surprise on the day; but how far in advance do you know what you’re going to be presenting each month?
It really varies. Sometimes we know two months in advance (that’s when I have really nice sleeps) and sometimes we can be faced with a last-minute change, days before everything goes to print! Either way, we are constantly mindful of our subscribers and asking ourselves ‘what’s going to be the real treat in this box?’ and ‘what can we find that’s going to really surprise them?’ It gives us a constant buzz and is definitely what drives us.

Which month has been your favourite?
This is a tough one! We’re only onto our sixth box but each one has been memorable for different reasons. For nostalgic reasons I’d have to say our first one, the April box, simply because it was our entry into this exciting market and high expectations were riding on it.  From a feedback point of view, it wasn’t our best but we’re constantly learning about what makes our subscribers tick. They’re an incredibly well-informed bunch which definitely keeps us on our toes but when we get good feedback from them, it’s exhilarating. That’s when we know we’ve done our job well.

What’s been the hardest moment so far in SoukSouk?
The hardest part was probably the administrative side of setting up a business simply because it’s a bit boring and we just wanted to get out there finding beautiful brands and creating magazines.

What’s been the best moment so far in setting up SoukSouk?
There are really great moments every day! But if I have to narrow them down, probably my top 3 would be: 1) Launching at the Vitality Show – explaining the box to visitors and getting instant feedback 2) Working on the development of a Very Posh website (only one week to go now!) 3) Getting our first subscription.

Any finally, last but not least, what are your plans for the future?
We’re about to launch our brand new, fancy website which will offer different ways to subscribe to the Little Green Beauty Box as well as lots of other different Beauty Boxes. For the first time ever, we’ll be offering Limited Edition beauty boxes; a Bespoke Beauty Box service, where we can tailor one-off boxes to customers’ preferences; and also a green beauty gift shop where visitors can pick up handmade, natural products and gifts.

Visit SoukSouk:  The Little Green Beauty Box here, and find them on Twitter or Facebook.

And that's that!  I'm excited to see these new boxes and the gift shop coming soon - how about you? :) 

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Thanks for commenting! For quicker replies find me on Twitter @gfmgfy.

  1. I am really looking forward to the new site all the new developments sound amazing, I have to say something I really like about Souk Souk as a company is that they have taken peoples feedback on board and I do think we can be a hard bunch to please the green beauty crowd but I appreciate the effort that goes in to the boxes and the magazine. These interviews are fantastic Hephzibah :) X

    1. Definitely can be a hard bunch - especially since I think we all have our own personal ideas about what green/clean involves. They're doing good though! So glad that you enjoyed reading :) x

  2. Amazing Q&A! I haven't yet subscribed to Souk Souk (yet!)but it sounds like the launch of this fancy shmancy new website will be the perfect time to do so. Loving the sound of 'bespoke beauty box'...yes that does roll off the tounge rather nicely :)

    Mayah x

    1. :D Thanks so much! Definitely, am really intrigued as to what's going to be available... can feel my purse starting to burn a hole in my pocket already... :) x


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