Having healthy skin and taking care of my wellbeing has been important to me from a young age. Amelia Nour was born in 2015, however, the story of how my company was founded goes back to when I was a little girl. I have always struggled to understand the concept of how an animal can be harmed for the benefit of a human being. It’s becoming common knowledge now that the meat, dairy and beauty industry have exploited animals for years. And as a little girl, I always had a burning desire to bring about a change to this, even if it was only a small one. Being brought up in a vegetarian household may have had something to do with this, but my views remained firm.
In 2011, I went to study Law at Oxford Brookes University. I got my very first part-time job at Lush Cosmetics (which I loved)! I was able to be myself and express my views about animal testing and have discussions about how changes can be implemented. After graduating in 2014, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to pursue my legal career. I decided to take a year out and worked at Harrods in Fashion Lab. During my shifts I started to dream about and envision a place where a shopper could have the luxuries they enjoyed, but strictly by brands that adhered to ethical criteria. The definition of ethical started to grow in my mind and most importantly, what it meant to me – This grew into my business philosophy and that’s when the idea of Amelia Nour was born in 2015.
With only having an idea about Amelia Nour at the time, I applied to the University of Law to study for my Legal Practice Course (a requirement to enter the legal profession) and to complete my Master’s degree in Law and Business – This seemed like the sensible thing to do at the time.
But, soon after, a beautiful shop on Leicester’s upmarket Francis Street became available. I knew this could be a space where we could all grow together with insider beauty and wellbeing knowledge and feel safe about the products we choose to use regardless of age, gender or background. The week I had accepted my place at the University of Law was the same week I accepted the keys for the shop. I then decided to study part-time whilst simultaneously creating my magical space.
In 2016, I opened the doors for our flagship store that specialised in vegan and vegetarian beauty and wellbeing products from around the world that are luxurious, cruelty-free, green and ethically sourced. The range varied from skincare, bath and body, hair care, nutrition and home fragrance.
After obtaining my qualification for my Legal Practice Course and Master’s degree I knew I could focus on the store but wanted to complete my journey of qualifying as a solicitor as I was already on my way…
In 2017, the Niche Business Awards nominated me for Young Entrepreneur of the Year and Best Independent Retail Business. During my presentation of Amelia Nour, little did I know that one of the Judge’s on the panel was the owner of a law firm located in the heart of Leicester. I mentioned that I had just completed my Legal Practice Course and Master’s in Law and Business and would be looking for a Training Contract (all solicitors must train for 2 years before they qualify), and the Judge who owned his own firm set up a meeting with me the following week - The rest as they say, was history! I was fortunate enough to receive excellent training and I am now proud to say I am a newly and fully qualified solicitor!
Naturally, this career juggling made running Amelia Nour challenging. With late nights and early mornings of packing up orders, keeping on top of admin tasks and trying to manage our social media along with all of the responsibilities that come with running a business, these times were difficult; especially whilst I had to work full-time at the law firm. But it couldn’t have been done without my mum, Raksha, who has run the store on Francis Street for me for the last 2 years and Leonie, who has helped me tremendously with everything behind the scenes.
Having come to a point where I have now qualified as a solicitor, I have decided that my heart lies with my company. It has always been by passion to create an experience that made everyone feel good and to provide self-care solutions - This is why Amelia Nour is my chosen path.
It takes many hats to balance the business and creative aspects of the beauty industry, all while maintaining originality. I can’t wait to get back to helping my clients be their best and feel gorgeous. It’s been a dream come true and it’s only going to get better with our hotly anticipated expansion plan launching later this year… Keep your eyes peeled!