From Kitchen Table to Clinic Shelves

Vicky Eldridge
By Vicky Eldridge

Vicky Eldridge is an award-winning journalist, editor and copywriter, with 18 years’ experience in aesthetics.

Whether you work in aesthetic medicine or not, it is hard to ignore the importance of skincare. We are in a specialism characterised by innovation and the relentless pursuit of excellence. However, as an entrepreneur in this field, the journey from concept to market-ready product is often fraught with challenges and triumphs alike. For me, this journey has been a remarkable learning curve, marked by a steadfast commitment to quality, efficacy, and placing our customers and their clients at the core of what we do.

I have worked in dermatology, pharma, and aesthetics since 2008, but my first venture into the world of having my own skincare brand began with the idea of WOW facial. I wanted to create a system that helped practitioners build hyper-personalised facials with stages that complemented each other, supported by good training and exceptional service.

WOW facial represented the culmination of years of experience in aesthetic medicine and spotting a gap in the market. During its design and development, I began to appreciate the complexities of creating a skincare range from scratch. The lessons learned from developing WOW facial meant lots of mistakes were made and rectified, giving me a strong foundation to start contemplating the development of our latest skincare brand, Intradermology.

WOW facial
Initially, I aimed to design a WOW facial retail range, but I realised this would limit its reach. So, I began developing a brand name that captured my goal: high-quality skincare sold in professional clinics and salons that truly improved skin health. WOW facial started at my kitchen table in my flat in West London. When I finally registered as a limited company in February 2019, after I paid the registration fee, I had £9.80 left in my bank account, but I didn’t let that stop me. I spoke to my customers and asked them if they would like to pre-order products in return for lifelong preferential pricing, and surprisingly, I started generating enough income to pay my mortgage and start the development of my new products. Working with labs to make small quantities of products and samples that I had to label myself as I couldn’t afford to print huge quantities of packaging, having to learn how to label from YouTube tutorials. Early on, understanding labelling laws and registering products on the CPNP was just the beginning.
When I look back to the very early days, I can’t believe how little I knew, but I just had a determination that I was doing the right thing and that I would learn along the way. I was positive I could make WOW facial a decent brand within aesthetics, and every day was a massive leap forward in my learning. I think if I had really understood how challenging it was going to be without the right expertise or financial backing, I wouldn’t have started, but I am so grateful that I did, and now the WOW brand looks very professional and very different to how it did in the early days.
Intradermology has been 4.5 years in the making, starting with Russell Turner from RWT Creative to come up with a brand name. I wanted a name that reflected the changes I wanted the products to make within the skin. During a brainstorming session, I kept coming back to the word ‘intradermal’, and Russ suggested Intradermology. I knew immediately that we had our name. I sketched a rough logo, and Russ perfected it. Working with a designer is essential. Russ has an innate ability to take what is in my head and get it onto paper.
The first product launched was Synergy 6 NX-GEN SPF. Developed with one of our existing labs, it is more than just an SPF. It includes a pollution filter, a blue light filter, and skin-loving ingredients like vitamin C, vitamin E, squalene, antioxidants, and peptides in a lightweight, wearable formulation. Working on this product and its packaging began after Christmas 2019, with the aim of launching it in March 2020. However, COVID-19 disrupted our plans. With clinics and labs closed, manufacturing was put on hold. This gave the team and me time to work on training, marketing, and regulatory compliance.
Once restrictions were lifted in July, we started manufacturing, and the first 1,000 bottles of Synergy 6 arrived. Our customers loved the product, and selling it to their clients during the lockdown helped sustain our business. Despite the success, the pandemic delayed the launch of the rest of the range. I continued developing the range, focusing on training presentations, marketing, legal contracts with labs, and ensuring compliance. Our operations director, Sarah Brown, insisted on pursuing ISO9001 certification to ensure we worked within a quality management framework. We started this journey and later realised we needed ISO13485 to manufacture the WOW fusion device as a class 2 medical device. We achieved this certification in September 2021.
Post-COVID, innovations in active skincare ingredients, delivery mechanisms, and manufacturing processes prompted me to redesign and simplify the range. I stripped it back from 26 products to three washes, four serums, two moisturisers, three-night repair products, Synergy 6, and our eye serum. Working with my formulators, we ensured the products would be effective, user-friendly, and suitable for different skin types and conditions. The final step, I call the ‘slip and slide’, involved perfecting the texture and consistency of the products to ensure they felt good on the skin and that make-up sits well on top of the products, as this is of high importance to me. This can sometimes result in us making up to 4 versions of a product until I am happy. I enlist the team, friends and some customers to test the products and give me feedback so I can get a better overview of the products rather than just my opinion.
New Wow facial

With the new range finalised, we redesigned all the packaging, reflecting new ingredients, product names, and instructions for use.

I decided on a rebrand, creating a new design and colour identity that encapsulated Intradermology’s essence. This lengthy process involved many design meetings and back-and-forth discussions.

One of the biggest challenges I find in the entire process is naming the products, and there is one product that I am not happy with, but trying to land on the right name for it would have delayed things further, so for now, I am stuck with it.

Ensuring market readiness required navigating regulatory compliance, handled by our in-house regulatory team. They worked on cosmetic safety assessments, PIFs, CPNP and OPSS registrations, stability testing, and designating the UK and EU responsible persons. Post-launch, we conduct post-marketing surveillance and manage complications through our quality management system.
Reflecting on the journey from my kitchen table to the launch of Intradermology, I am grateful for the challenges and learnings that have made us stronger and more resilient as a business. The team at Circa Skin are dedicated to ensuring our business runs smoothly and supporting our customers with new products and great service, and I am so proud of them.
I will not miss the hard work needed to bring Intradermology to market, but I enjoy the positive feedback from our customers and their clients and watching the brand grow. I look forward to seeing how the range progresses.
To find out more about Circa Skin and our products, visit
This article was written for the Consulting Room Magazine.
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