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Reaching for the Starlings: 15 fashion & beauty entrepreneurs to watch in 2021

Worth more than £50 billion to the UK economy, the fashion and beauty industries are among the most appealing for aspiring entrepreneurs. They allow an entrepreneur to explore their creative minds while offering exciting commercial opportunities. Plus the growth of social media over the past decade has made the industries more accessible than ever before. 

Along with our partners Starling Bank, the Great British Entrepreneur Awards prides itself on supporting exciting entrepreneurs making waves in the UK. Here are our 15 most exciting fashion and beauty entrepreneurs to watch in 2021.

Jezz Skelton - Abbott Lyon

Jezz Skelton is the founder of Abbott Lyon, an accessories brand that offers affordable luxury. Launched in 2015, Jezz created the business to help fashion-conscious consumers keep up to date with the latest luxury fashion trends at attainable prices. It focuses on jewellery, bags and accessories, but also creates dresses.

Michele Scott-Lynch - Bouclème

Michele Scott-Lynch is the founder of Bouclème, a range of natural hair care products for curly hair. She created the business because she couldn’t find products that left her hair healthy and fizz-free, while using natural and sustainable ingredients. Bouclème’s range doesn’t include any parabens, silicones or sulphates to ensure hair stays light and free from dryness.

Brendan McDowell - BPerfect Cosmetics

Brendan McDowell is the founder of BPerfect Cosmetics, a range of “easy to use” and “versatile” cosmetic products stocked in over 2,000 stores in Northern Ireland, Ireland, the UK and worldwide. With a number of award-winning products in its range, BPerfect’s makeup products are certified by Beauty without Bunnies and its tanning products are PETA approved.

Aaron Wallace - By Aaron Wallace

Aaron Wallace is the founder of By Aaron Wallace, a range of skin and hair care products designed and formulated specifically for black men. Inspired by his time as a hairdresser, Aaron saw first hand the challenges his clients felt in finding quality, natural products that suited their needs. Its products use black seed oil and mango butter, which provide much needed nutrients.

Milly Grace - Milly Grace Jewellery

Milly Grace is the founder of Milly Grace Jewellery, an independent jewellery brand which creates collections offering high-quality, unique and dainty luxury pieces that are accessible and eco-conscious. Milly created the brand while studying at university and has since grown a dedicated community of customers and fans.

Cris Beetham - Nakin Skincare

Cris Beetham is the founder of Nakin Skincare, an award-winning range of eco-friendly, anti-ageing skincare products. Using all-natural ingredients, Nakin’s cleansers, moisturisers, creams and treatments are designed to help its customers “achieve smooth glowing skin naturally”.

Alexa & Richard Sutcliffe - Passenger

Alexa and Richard Sutcliffe are the co-founders of Passenger, a sustainable, adventure-themed brand of clothing and accessories that encourages a sense of community and escapism. The pair decided to launch the business during a trip to Canada while chopping wood, surrounded by forest and coastline. For each order, Passenger plants a tree and has already planted more than 100,000 around the world.

Stephanie Cara Bennett & Valentina Muntoni - Rat & Boa

Stephanie Cara Bennett and Valentina Muntoni are the co-founders of Rat and Boa, a glamorous womenswear brand designed to “translate moods into creations that evoke beauty & empower the women of our world”. Each piece is created with bold patterns, luxury fabrics and ‘flattering’ silhouettes that are inspired by nostalgia to lead the future.

Edzard van der Wyck & Michael Wessely - Sheep Inc

Edzard van der Wyck and Michael Wessely are the co-founder of Sheep Inc, a brand of “future positive knitwear” that is the first carbon-negative knitwear in the world and guaranteed to last a lifetime. Each product includes a digital NFC tag that allows customers to track the materials to their source and understand the environmental impact. Each purchase also includes the adoption of a sheep on the farm in New Zealand where the wool is sourced.

Samantha Jameson - Soapsmith

Samantha Jameson is the founder of Soapsmith, an award-winning range of bath and body wash products inspired by the “unique experiences, odd juxtapositions and sensorial moments” of London. Each product is hand-crafted using natural, organic ingredients that are vegan friendly and packaged using 100% recyclable materials.

Michael Chapman & Tokunbo Ahmed-Salawudeen - Soul CAP

Michael Chapman and Toks Ahmed-Salawudeen are the co-founders of Soul CAP, a range of extra large swimming caps designed for people with thick, curly and voluminous hair. The friends started the company after meeting a woman with afro hair who struggled with her swimming cap.

Montana Brown - Swim Society

Montana Brown is the founder of Swim Society, a sustainable swimwear brand created to make swimwear inclusive by default. With no ‘plus’, ‘petite’ or ‘tall’ ranges, Swim Society makes its designs suit every shape and size with no variation. Each piece is made ethically and sustainably, using 97% recycled materials.

Ross Worswick & Scott Shashua - The Couture Club

Ross Worswick and Scott Shashua are the co-founders of The Couture Club, a fashion and lifestyle brand that aims to be ‘affordable, approachable and aspirational’. Its ranges of men’s, women’s and kidswear are inspired by on-trend streetwear, providing premium quality at High Street prices.

Maïna Cissé - the underargument

Maïna Cissé is the founder of the underargument, a lingerie brand designed to ‘advocate the power of individuality and argue against the norm’. On its mission to be more than just another lingerie brand, the underargument is also a content platform sharing authentic and inclusive stories that empower women. Each garment is named and labelled after an empowering quote to remind the customer to embrace their individuality.

Mel Blue - Unicorn Cosmetics

Mel Blue is the founder of Unicorn Cosmetics, a brand of unicorn-inspired makeup, brushes and false lashes. Mel created the business because the “beauty and makeup industry was lacking originality”. The brand has become a huge hit with celebrities and influencers in recent years, which has led to Unicorn Cosmetics growing a strong community of fans.

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