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The Interview: Emma Lewisham on the expansion of her luxury skincare brand

Sophie Smith
06 September 2023

Emma Lewisham launched her eponymous skincare brand in 2019, creating a range of natural skincare products backed by the "highest calibre of green science and innovation in the industry".

The brand's formulations focus on the physiology of the skin, determining how multiple ingredient combinations can work with each other to deliver superior results.

It first launched with a Skin Reset Serum, developed as an evidence-based, natural solution to Lewisham's own skin struggles with hyperpigmentation.

Since then, each of the brand's subsequent products have been created to deliver pioneering, evidence-based results not currently available on the market.

Its range includes a cleanser, exfoliant, serum, eye cream and sleeping mask, as well as face creams and oils - all of which are refillable.

Lewisham speaks to about the inspiration behind her eponymous skincare line, its science-backed approach, the brand's first major roll-out in the UK and more.

Emma Lewisham

What inspired you to launch the brand?

I founded Emma Lewisham to create products that were evidence-based and natural, so people wouldn’t have to compromise, and to forge a circular, climate positive and transparent future of beauty.

The seed for Emma Lewisham was planted when my doctor advised me to avoid using the skincare ingredient hydroquinone, especially while attempting to start a family. Having recently lost my mother to cancer and hoping to become pregnant, my health was on my mind. However, it wasn’t until this conversation that I had considered this to include skincare. I began looking for formulations that I felt comfortable putting on my skin – and this now meant natural.

I was used to using high performing, luxury products and I quickly discovered that natural, evidence-based skincare didn’t seem to exist in the skincare market. I became determined to unlock and prove the intelligence and efficacy of nature, so that people would no longer have to compromise.

What sets Emma Lewisham apart from other luxury skincare brands?

Our products are unique in that they start with the skin. Most skincare formulations start with ingredients. However, we start with a deep understanding of skin physiology, how it works and what it needs. We then use ingredients natural to the skin and the world around us to speak the skin’s own language.

Furthermore, through a deep understanding of the skin, we discovered that the traditional one-to-two ingredient-based approach was limiting what skincare could achieve. To unlock meaningful results, a formulation needs to work across multiple skin pathways in symphony. By harnessing up to 25 evidence-based ingredients, in potencies proven to work, our formulations deliver action across multiple skin pathways while working in harmony with the skin.

Through formulating in this completely new way, our formulations are breaking new scientific ground in skincare, delivering truly pioneering results while leaving the skin better than we found it.

Why are you selective in the products launched by the brand?

Everything we do, developing new products, or otherwise must always align with our core business values. To apply this to our products, this means each new product must be innovative, pioneering, exceptional, thoughtful and have complete transparency.

We don’t develop new products for the sake of developing new SKUs, we only develop products where our research clearly presents us with an opportunity to develop a formulation that delivers pioneering, evidence-based results not currently available in the market.

We are committed to continuous improvements and staying at the forefront of science. Our formulations are enhanced over time to capture the latest innovations in skincare science as new research and technology is discovered.

Why are you expanding the brand’s presence in the UK? What do you hope it will achieve?

We have seen strong and consistent organic growth in the UK through our own direct-to-consumer channels over the last three years, and so we are grateful to be expanding our presence with some wonderful UK retailers as a way to both service this growing demand and harness the opportunity to introduce a new community of people to the pioneering results of our evidence-based, natural skincare.

Why have you chosen Space NK to expand the brand's retail presence in the UK?

Space NK is the UK's leading luxury beauty retailer. As a retailer who engages and nurtures niche and contemporary beauty brands, it is recognised as a place of discovery, making it the perfect partner for us to expand our northern hemisphere customer base. As a retailer who curates highly innovative, boundary pushing beauty brands, Space NK is also strongly aligned with our brand values.

Emma Lewisham refills

What can you tell me about the brand's launch at Space NK?

Leading up to our Space NK launch, I have spent several months here in the UK, visiting stores, engaging with staff and educating them around our truly pioneering, evidence-based formulations.

As a champion of our industry-leading circularity programme, the Emma Lewisham Beauty Circle, I am thrilled that Space NK will be a drop-off point for our refillable pods, making this service even more accessible for our UK based customers.

What are your ambitions for the brand in the UK and generally?

To continue expanding our global community, introducing more customers to our evidence-based, natural skincare so that they no longer need compromise, and to continue championing the transition to a circular, climate positive and transparent beauty industry.

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