By Rishabh Naudiyal Last Updated:
The cosmetics and skincare industries in India have experienced remarkable growth in recent years. Indian consumers are increasingly seeking high-quality skincare products and fragrances, leading to numerous international and domestic brands entering the market. Other than that, e-commerce platforms and social media have also significantly attracted sales and increased brand visibility. One such brand, which has become a part of so many Indian households, is Forest Essentials.
Forest Essentials is a renowned skincare brand which is deeply rooted in the timeless concepts of Ayurveda. With a focus on luxurious Ayurvedic practices, Forest Essentials has emerged as a leading beauty brand in India.
One of the biggest factors behind its success is the way Forest Essentials blends the traditional beauty rituals of Ayurveda with an aesthetic style. The brand's commitment to providing natural products wrapped with a modern approach has made Forest Essentials a go-to choice for consumers, who are seeking a balance between the age-old wisdom of Ayurveda with a touch of modernity and luxury.
One of the richest women in India, Mira Kulkarni is an inspiration for so many young entrepreneurs. The visionary businesswoman behind Forest Essentials has single-handedly made Forest Essentials India's foremost luxury Ayurveda beauty brand. From crafting fragrant candles and soaps to establishing a billion-dollar company is a testament to her creative genius and entrepreneurial intelligence.
The founder of Forest Essentials, Mira Kulkarni's life is nothing less than a Bollywood film. Not much is known about her childhood and personal details, but as per multiple reports, at the age of 20, she left her parents in order to marry her then-lover.
The entrepreneur chose marriage over education. However, soon the cracks started appearing in her marriage. Despite giving birth to two kids, Samarth and Divya, things were falling with the passing of each day. Finally, after some years of their marriage, Mira parted ways with her husband and started her journey as a single mother of two children.
Mira Kulkarni's journey began with a simple candle-making gig that soon ignited her passion for creating handmade soaps. At the age of 45, when most people stopped trying out new things, Mira embarked on her entrepreneurial journey. It was during a visit to her son, Samarth Kulkarni, in the United States that she received the advice of her life about soap-making and decided to pursue it further.
Mira Kulkarni was fascinated by the art of soap-making and even took training in this craft, which marked the turning point in her journey as an entrepreneur. Finally, it was in the year 2000 when Mira took a leap of faith and launched her business with an investment of Rs. 2 lakhs. Initially, she focused primarily on handmade soaps and candles.
However, her major breakthrough came when the prestigious Hyatt Regency hotel in Delhi placed an order for her soaps to be used in their rooms. It was a significant milestone for Mira Kulkarni and her company, Forest Essentials. By 2005-2006, the brand had achieved impressive sales of Rs. 6 crores, which directly indicated that Forest Essentials’ popularity and demand for their products were growing in the market. The idea of Ayurvedic-inspired skincare products resonated with customers, and it is now a leading name in the cosmetic and skincare industries.
With an initial investment of just Rs. 2 lakhs and a team of two employees, Mira Kulkarni embarked on a remarkable entrepreneurial journey. Today, her brand, Forest Essentials, boasts a presence in over 110 stores across India and multiple international locations. The brand has established itself as a trusted supplier to renowned hotels like Taj and Hyatt, along with nearly 150 spas.
The company's impressive growth is evident in its revenues of Rs. 253 crore in FY20 and Rs 210 crore in FY21. Mira Kulkarni’s accomplishments have not gone unnoticed, as she was recognized as one of India's wealthiest women, with a net worth of Rs. 1,290 crores, earning her the Kotak Wealth Hurun - Leading Wealthy Women 2020 accolade. Her entrepreneurial spirit and dedication have propelled Forest Essentials to heights in the skincare industry.
At the age of 45 and despite being a single mother of two kids, the way Mira Kulkarni has built Forest Essentials is truly remarkable. What do you think? Let us know.