The Commonwealth Bank team reflects on 31 years with the Australian Export Awards program. The Bank shares 5 important questions that drive innovation for Aussie business. 

16 Dec 2021

All-Aussie skincare company Clean & Pure creates trusted products synonymous with health and natural beauty. 

Clean & Pure is making an impression on the global natural beauty business. 

Since its beginnings in 2004, this WA-based skincare company has featured Aussie-sourced, 100% certified organic ingredients in its products. 

Founder Melanie Chapman is a lifelong sufferer of eczema. She created Clean & Pure to answer her personal need for quality natural skincare that was kind to her severe skin condition. 

Clean & Pure has since established its own manufacturing facilities and dedicated workforce. Its range includes lip balm, baby balm, skin conditioner, handmade soap and moisturisers. 

The beauty of exporting 

Clean & Pure started exporting in 2017. Today it has agreements in New Zealand, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, China, Macau, Hong Kong, Indonesia and the US. 

Melanie’s husband, Clean & Pure director Mark Chapman, says exporting has generated much-needed initial income for this up-and-coming company. 

‘You’ll dominate the world before you dominate the Australian market,’ says Mark. ‘It’s very difficult to break in domestically. Without export, it would’ve been very difficult to survive and become income-generating.’ 

Clean & Pure earns around 80% of its revenue through export. ‘The domestic market is starting to grow now because of the recognition we’re getting through exports,’ says Mark. 

A loyal US following 

In October 2020, Clean & Pure formed an exclusive partnership with US distributors. The partnership was based on mutual admiration for Australian-made natural skincare. Clean & Pure has fast gained a loyal following in the US. 

‘Our Australian team has worked around the clock to provide seamless integration with our US distributors,’ says Mark. ‘We have been involved in every step of our international launch. That includes midnight Zoom conferences, gaining US packaging compliance for offline retail and establishing social media platforms. 

‘In good faith, we provided our US distributors with more than $100,000 of product for launches, PR and giveaways, with great success.’ 

A fresh face in manufacturing 

In 2020, Clean & Pure set up a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility complete with laboratory. To keep up with demand, it started to automate production in March 2021. The facility allows the company to stay true to its name. 

‘We strive to produce all-natural products that we are happy to use,’ says Mark. 

‘We have a moisturiser on the market that took 3 years to produce. We kept failing lab tests because we wanted to make it without preservatives. We could have easily added a preservative and put it out in the market. But we’re not doing that. We’re very picky, but that’s what we do.’ 

Clean & Pure sources its ingredients in Australia wherever possible. It is the only brand in the world to use real Manuka honey in its solid lip balms. The Australian Government has granted this unique manufacturing process R&D status. 

A 1,000% increase in online sales 

Clean & Pure’s main demographic is women 35 years and older. 

‘Company market research shows that customers are actively buying our Australian-made products for a sense of buyer protection,’ says Mark. ‘They also wish to support local business. ‘

A recent unsponsored and unpaid post from a customer supporting Australian-made led to a 1,000% increase in online sales. This number increased with repeat customers and online shopping during the 2021 lockdowns. 

The Australian Export Awards as an opportunity 

Clean & Pure’s win in this year’s Australian Export Awards aside, Mark saw true value in the process. He says it was a great opportunity to think through common problems. 

‘’Problems I'm looking at, other people have solved.’ says Mark. ‘It is well worth it.’ 

Mark also encourages aspiring exporters to reach out for government support. 

‘Participating in this award and finding government departments wanting to help my business has been such a positive,’ he says. ‘Now I'm talking to Austrade in Japan, South Korea and the Middle East. It’s great to have help, because doing it on your own is a hard way to learn!’

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