Welcome back to our Founder Stories series, where we sit with inspiring and influential women to dive into their entrepreneurial journey and discuss all things business (and wellness). Today, we speak with Alexandra Dunhill, the founder of CBD brand Lady A®.
Having had businesses in interior design and trompe l’oeil before mothering three
children, Alexandra is also the great-granddaughter of Alfred Dunhill – so business, beauty and excellence have always been in her blood.
After discovering the existence of CBD in 2017, when she was visiting her eldest son
in California, and seeing the health-giving effects it had, Alexandra decided that she
wanted to share the power of CBD with as many people as possible. That’s why she
created the Lady A® brand.
Using premium CBD hemp extract, natural botanical extracts and essential oils, Lady
A® makes a beautiful range of products designed to help alleviate the stresses, strains and worries of modern life.
FLAURA: What inspired you to start Lady A®?
Alex: I first came across CBD in 2017 while visiting my eldest son in Los Angeles. He’d been using CBD products to help with his anxiety and I couldn’t get over the genuine change in him. Having seen the positive impacts first hand, I knew CBD was something that I wanted to explore some more.
F: What makes Lady A® different to other brands?
A: Lady A® is made from the best ingredients. It’s an elegant, clean looking and unique brand.
F: What has the journey been like since you started?
A: I’d never heard of CBD until 2017. I had no idea about its amazing benefits for everyones wellbeing. I became fascinated, right from the start, by this magical plant. I spent over a year reading up and researching all about this industry and at the time CBD was really only available in America and so I became a distributor for CBD products.
The inspiration came to me that rather than work selling other people’s products that I didn’t feel completely passionate about, I should create my own unique brand with products that would ensure that I was genuinely helping people. I started off on my own, and then my son Piers joined me.
Having launched in early 2020 and overcoming hurdles like the pandemic, we now have a small team of 4 working assisting with myself and Piers. There’ve been many ups and downs because there are still many grey areas in this industry, like finding correct partners, labelling, compliance, stability testing, agreeing formulas and facing delays in manufacturing.
Against all this there are amazingly rewarding days which inspire you and when things all suddenly start to come together. I really enjoy the whole industry and find it really good fun. There’s no end to the possibilities – if you keep them in the direction of your vision. When I have difficult day, I just think of all the exciting prospects and it keeps me going.
F: How do you stay motivated?
A: By not taking ourselves too seriously and, at the same time, being efficient.
F: What’s the most rewarding part of your day now?
A: When we see the reviews coming in from such grateful customers who tell us how Lady A® products have improved their life.
F: What are the best and worst parts of being an entrepreneur?
A: Being passionate, being well organized and having tenacity. If you want a fourth point, you need a lot of energy!
F: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
A: Michael Wolff’s quote about competitors. It’s not a sprint it’s a marathon. Never lose sight of your vision. Don’t worry if, from time to time, you see your competitors running ahead of you….If you nurture your stamina you’ll soon catch them up and go past them.
F: What advice would you give to other women looking to start their own business?
A: Find something you enjoy! You’ll find a great reward in helping people to feel better. You can’t just start any business. The right idea for our business will come to you at the right time. You can be looking for ideas and not finding anything and then, suddenly, the right thing will come along, and your creative mind will jump into action.
Top 5 Daily Wellness Habits
- Exercising regularly.
- Eating well.
- Drinking lots of water.
- Making sure I have my daily dose of CBD.
- Avoiding conflict.
My favourite product isn’t available to buy yet, but it will be soon. In the meantime, I love my evening ritual of lighting a candle and having a few drops of the Evening tincture, 1500mg, which I keep on my beside table. After about 20 minutes, I always float off into a contented sleep.