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Listen to the POC Podcast | POC talks to Floral Street founder and CEO, Michelle Feeney

Wed 27 Oct 2021 | 07:37 am GMT
Rob Hutchins | Products of Change Writer

Michelle Feeney, founder and CEO of Floral Street

With an illustrious career heading up some of the biggest names in the beauty sector, including Estee Lauder, Mac, and St Tropez, all behind her, Michelle Feeney, founder and CEO of the sustainable fragrance brand, Floral Street is now on a voyage of discovery with Van Gogh. She’s doing so in the name of clean fragrance, a term that thanks to her own efforts in promoting the concept of sustainability across the beauty space over the past four years, is now wafting its way across an industry on the precipice of a narrative switch-up. Because Floral Street goes against the grain of the premium fragrance sector, it is a brand that uses responsibly sourced ingredients, created 'pulp not plastic' packaging, opts for vegetable-based ink and knows that what you don't put into a product is just as important as what you do put in.   It hasn’t been an easy ride, and Floral Street has done its fair share of door knocking since the concept was first launched circa 2017. In fact, Feeney has made no secret of her disappointment that the that the beauty media has been 'too slow' on the sustainability uptake. However, through her passionate commitment and the inspired new licensing partnership with the Van Gogh Musuem, Amsterdam, the message seems to finally be getting through.  “It was our initial licensing partnership with the RHS that I think got us noticed with the team, they spotted something in us,” Feeney tells Products of Change in a conversation recorded as part of the platform’s latest Future Of podcast series. “And I feel like I am in a movie or something. Our little brand has ended up putting Vincent Van Gogh on the bottle and re-energising the brand in other categories.  I think they spotted our sustainability commitment, and equally as important, our independence.  “I feel like I have got to know Van Gogh – what he stood for is so much of what Floral Street stands for, which is why we took the quote to include in the collaboration bottle ‘If one truly finds nature, one finds beauty everywhere’, because how right is that for today?” Inspired by the cottage industries of the 1980s, Feeney began her whirlwind career in fashion show production. An era defined by creatives and innovators – the likes of Vivienne Westwood – pioneering new ground from their kitchen tables, it engrained an ethic that has stuck with the beauty industry entrepreneur ever since. Today, Floral Street is active in 22 markets across the globe and on the cusp of further growth thanks to the Van Gogh Museum partnership that appears to have inspired an industry the world over. “It’s been fantastic to see the reaction and the write-ups that the Floral Street Van Gogh partnership is receiving,” says Feeney. “We’re seeing articles that ‘Van Gogh has finally got a fragrance – it really seems to have captured people’s imagination.” Not only this, but its is taking the company’s message of ‘clean fragrance’ far and wide. “We are taking the message of sustainability, nature, and fine fragrance to a wide audience, and it is giving us the opportunity to showcase what sustainability means today. A beautiful meeting of science and nature, sat alongside the story of Van Gogh.” To learn more about Floral Street’s ground breaking partnership with the Van Gogh Museum, the company’s efforts in bringing sustainable fragrance to the global beauty scene, and to be inspired by Feeney’s career history that has seen her head up some of the biggest and most impactful campaigns in the beauty industry, ready your ears and hit play on the podcast below.
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