Antonette Golikidis is the creative force behind Little Innoscents, one of Hello Charlie's favourite premium organic baby skincare brands. Antonette started Little Innoscents nine years ago in her kitchen. She lives in Melbourne, with her husband Arthur, a systems analyst, and her two sons Alex, now eleven, and Antonio, eight. Antonette maintains her active role as company director, while she continues to grow Little Innoscents.
Earlier this month I caught up with Antonette, and she very kindly agreed to grant me an interview so that we could get a glimpse behind the wonderful Little Innoscents brand!
I first met Antonette at a baby expo, when Hello Charlie was only a couple of years old and Little Innoscents was just starting out. I loved Little Innoscents as soon as I saw it. In fact, when I spoke to Antonette earlier this month, she reminded me that I was her very first stockist!
1. So, Antonette, tell us a bit about Little Innoscents?
The Little Innoscents range caters to those who want to use natural and organic products on their family and for also for people who have sensitive skin. I developed Little Innoscents to help prevent the onset of conditions such as dermatitis and eczema by cultivating products which promote and develop healthy skin.
From the moment babies are born they are exposed to harsh and dangerous chemicals through various forms. In particular, through the preservatives and additives in processed food and the toxic products placed on their perfect, untouched skin.
Little Innoscents products are 100% natural, paraben free, SLS free, SLES free, and most of the products in the range hold Australian Certified Organic status.
2. What’s your background?
I was working in a hectic fast paced environment as a professional sales person in the telecommunications industry. After I had my first baby, I decided to adapt a more holistic lifestyle that would enable me to find a balance in my work, family and health.
So I sought tertiary education and training in health science and natural therapies, which would enable me to work closer to people, help others, treat my children and family, at the same time as feeding my creative and passionate drive for organics.
Since beginning Little Innoscents I have also undertaken a Diploma in formulating to better understand the complexities of formulating innovative natural products.
3. How did you come to start Little Innoscents?
After falling pregnant with my first child Alex, I saw a gap in the market for natural and organic baby skincare products with claims that could be trusted.
When I fell pregnant I was searched for baby products that were chemical free. I was disappointed to find a limited range of products, which were often difficult to locate, overly expensive, or offered misleading information. I was so tired of “pretend organic” companies making natural claims and misleading consumers. Clever marketing has enabled many companies to promote natural and organic without really having formulations that abide to this claim. So I decided to develop my own baby skincare range that could prove its authenticity. I wanted to create organic, natural products with no hidden nasties and beautiful scents.
4. What’s your favourite product in your range and why?
My absolute favourite would have to be our Winter Blues Balm which has no mineral oil, turpentine or petroleum in it. It’s filled with nourishing beeswax and essential oils.
You can put this dynamite product over the chest, back and soles of feet from newborn to help littlies breathe easier and feel more comfortable, and best of all the entire family can use it. And I must say it's getting quite a work out in our own family at the moment!
5. Tell us what you're working on now?
Little Innoscents have just launched a lovely little Cherry Coconut range of products that include a new Hair & Bodywash, Conditioner and Paw Paw balm. They smell divine and are simply beautiful on the body. Our new wash uses a coconut surfactant that now gives us bubbles that has proven a hit amongst our customers.
We're continuing to develop great products that our parents and consumers depend on, and we're continuing to expand the business in different areas. Our latest product innovation will include an eco-friendly laundry and household cleaning line which is so exciting for us.
6. What’s your favourite organic or natural product?
Now that I’m on the flipside of 40 I love the La Mav Hydra-Calm Cleansing Crème – it’s rich yet gentle on sensitive skin, it will make your skin so, so soft, supple and nourished and nice and easy to use to wash off your make-up.
7. What's your guilty pleasure?
Wine and ice-cream, not necessarily together! My husband bought me an ice-cream maker about two years ago and would you believe I’ve only just recently started using it and I’m loving making up new flavours. My favourite is macadamia crunchy French vanilla. Yummy.
8. What is something that’s guaranteed to bring a smile to your face?
I know this sounds like a cliché and it doesn’t matter how much they drive me crazy it’s my kids, we have a rule in our household that all mornings need to start with cuddles and kisses in my bed even if it's only for ten minutes and even if we are running late. They protest and pretend they don’t want to but they love it! That puts a smile on my face.
9. Tell us something funny/unique/interesting about yourself.
I love to play charades, I hate tofu and I once flew to Europe for 7 days and visited 3 countries in cattle economy, watched over a dozen movies inflight and slept for 16 hours when I landed – that was the longest sleep-in I’ve had in my life….
10. What are you reading, watching or listening to at the moment?
I'm reading Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult.
I'm a radio girl, so anything that’s out at the moment I love to sing along to.
I’m a fan of Penny Dreadful and Game of Thrones - got to love HBO!
Thanks so much to Antonette for giving us a glimpse behind the scenes at Little Innoscents.
Tell me, who else would you like to find out more about? Let me know in the comments below and we'll see who else will answer some questions for us!