Nurpur Khemkar was formerly a banker specialising in mutual funds and investments before she left to launch her own company selling handcrafted soap bars.
She began making soap bars as a hobby for a couple of years before deciding to invest in the business.
“I passed the soap onto family and friends and they saw the difference immediately. When you start using handmade soap from all these natural ingredients, you wouldn’t be able to go back to using mass market soaps. That’s when it struck me that there was a business opportunity there,” said Khemkar.
She explained that handcrafted soaps like those she produces contain high glycerine content which do not strip the skin of its moisture. “It won’t leave you with that irritating tight feeling on your skin. It feels rich.”
Since the launch of Mira Skincare, the brand has added facial serums and all healing balms to the range.
However, Khemkar told CosmeticsDesign-Asia that her goal was to create as many solid products as possible.
Aside from the soap bars, she has developed lotion bars and will soon be launching shampoo and conditioner bars.
“I’m very focused on creating zero-waste products because I believe there is a market out there. The zero-waste movement is booming and there are a lot more people looking for such products. But there are still people out there getting used to the idea of using solid products. It’s a niched market, but I believe it will grow and I see a huge potential in it,” said Khemkar.
She added that it is just a matter of time before more people catch on and open up to the idea of using solid bar-type products.
“I think we will see more people joining this movement because there’s higher awareness on issues like climate change and sustainability. In Singapore, we are seeing more sustainable markets sprouting up and there’s always good turnout of people who are interested in meeting vendors and learning more.”
Khemkar added she believes soap bars will rise in popularity because they are becoming increasingly cool and fashionable to use.
“I put effort a lot of effort into making my bars look good aesthetically because I don’t want people to think of soap bars as the old boring things your parents used decades ago. I want it to look good so people who use it will want to come back to it.”
Mira Skincare is currently available on its online store as well as two boutique stockists.
Khemkar said she was in talks with more retailers to expand the brand’s retail footprint and strengthen the brand’s profile in the market.
“To be honest, the kind of commission these stores take from vendors really eats away at your margins. So, I look at these expansions as a marketing expense to get my brand out there.”
The biggest goal for the brand now is to secure its own space.
“I’m looking into getting my own studio which will operate as the manufacturing site and as a shop where I can also hold workshops,” said Khemka.
Additionally, this will also allow the brand to scale its production up and give the brand the chance to expand overseas into markets such as Hong Kong.
Khemkar said: “Scaling the business is the big challenge. Now, I’m the only one making the products so with a studio I will be able to hire more people to help with that.”