In talks with Ambika Goel, Founder & Partner, Hydra by Ambika
Hydra By Ambika is a licensed manufacturing brand of handmade, organic, chemical-free, natural, and luxurious skincare. Their products are certified as chemical-free and are tested for the presence of bacteria and PH levels in the products. They are therefore safe and our products do not cause side effects.
Q1. Can you tell us about the current natural cosmetic industry in India? What are the major trends, opportunities and/or challenges?
A1. With an increasing number of brands trying to address the specific needs of consumers, skin care has emerged as one of the fastest-growing segments in the personal care category. Data by Research and Markets shows that the skin care products market in India was worth $6.53 billion in 2022 and is expected to reach $8.84 billion by 2027 at a Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 6.25%. Many Indian customers are aware and conscious about what they consume and what they apply.
Holistic Wellness is a defining character for most skincare that consumers ask for. This approach is really instrumental in shaping the Skincare industry. Focus has moved from one-item-fits-all to a more personalized and clean skincare for all. This approach definitely posts challenges to the manufacturers. Having personalized skincare which carters to customers need and is holistic and natural; requires a lot of personal attention towards the ingredients used, formulations made, and defiantly client handling.
Q2. How does your approach creating and developing new natural cosmetic products?
A2. At Hydra we are committed towards serving the community with skincare developed out of all natural, plant sourced, organic ingredients. With every product being developed the utmost priority is having no side effects post usage, no harmful substances should be used, the products should be easy to use yet effective.
Q3. Can you walk us through your process for sourcing and selecting natural ingredients for your products?
A3. Hydra’s all organic and handmade products are made out of natural luxury plant ingredients. In order to maintain the authenticity of the ingredients we source them from the country of origin or the region they are grown/ found in. For example - Shea nut is grown in Africa therefore the source of our Shea butter is African regions. This involves complete paper work and licensing.
Q4. How does your brand approach sustainability and ethical practices in the production and distribution of your products?
A4. Sustainability for any organic skincare depends upon its ingredients, right sourcing, no use of water, and the correct concoctions which can deliver products with sustainable and long-lasting shelf life. Hydra’s skincare is free from presence of any water, chemicals, and parabens; hence the shelf life is easily 1 year plus. Manufacturing is done with hand mixing technologies using minimum machine intervention. All products are filled with the mentioned net quantity and distribution is managed in-house in order to maintain the right channel. This ensures client satisfaction and products being delivered intact.
Q5. Can you talk about the marketing and branding strategies you use to reach and connect with your target audience?
A5. Most of hydra’s clients are organic. When the brand was launched it was a small group of women entrepreneurs who used the products and they spread the word as they loved the product. It was a one product brand and it reached a good number of women who were happy with that one product. Eventually clients started demanding more products and we created the best in class keeping in mind daily needs of anyone for skincare. Also, an important USP is - ease of use: in a busy life no one has time to sit and use and apply products or do skincare. Therefore, Hydra products proved to be handy and of quick rescue to everyday skin woes.
We are currently distributing though our E-commerce Platform, personal orders via social media and what’s app; we are also present on Amazon and other market places. Hydra also participates in exhibitions, and shows. We have a client retention rate of more than 80%. We personally connect with clients and do a skincare talk, analysis and suggest products accordingly. We also run a Hydra by Ambika Exclusive SPA SERVICE where we send our therapists to clients with all necessary stuff including, bed, towels, disposable sheets etc. and needless to say Hydra Products as per the service. Thus, giving a hydra experience and showing the efficacy of the products.
Q6. What is your opinion on the significance of platforms such as NATURAL EXPO INDIA in terms of discovering new and innovative technologies, fostering community connections, and creating business opportunities?
A6. Participating in expos, exhibitions, trade shows like NATURAL EXPO INDIA give a great know how of the latest trends, helps brands to get known in the fraternity. They also make it convenient to understand new ways of working and using technologies in manufacturing. Also, it's a great way to connect to clients, buyers and work on B2B tie ups, thus creating growth opportunities and connections.
Hydra participated at the NATURAL EXPO INDIA co-located with BIOFACH INDIA 2022 and it was a great platform where we got to interact about our processes, brand sustainability and the gave a Hydra experience to those visiting the booth. Visitors also enjoyed the Hydra Spa corner with foot & Hand massages.