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IWD: meet the women of UpCircle

  • 6 min read




Here's to female empowerment! This International Women's Day is about how we #ChooseToChallenge and each of us can make a difference – After all - ‘A challenged world is an alert world!’ So, let’s hear from the Upcircle gals about their inspirations, ways to challenge and their achievements! (Not forgetting their favourite UpCircle product – it would be rude not to!)



The Sales Superstar


Sophie H UpCircle Sales Superstar


How would you forge a gender equal world?

I feel this would be achieved by individuals and society being a lot more respectful and accepting towards one another. The most suffocating and frustrating struggle in life is when one is judged or not allowed to be true to themselves. Whether it’s with goals in life, personal opinions or simply saying ‘no’ to someone or something. If we allowed everyone to have the freedom, acceptance and respect they deserve - I feel the world would be a lot more balanced.

What is something you are most proud of?

Due to our current climate, still smiling through all the uncertainty and enjoying life as much as I can!

Who is a woman that inspires you?

I don’t have anyone in particular; a person inspires me when they remain true to who they are and runs with it no matter what other people’s opinions are!

What's your personal failsafe UpCircle product?

The Body Cream - I love the smell, texture and the way it leaves my skin silky smooth!



The Operations Officer 


Juliana UpCircle Operations Officer

How will you help forge a gender-equal world?

Supporting, encouraging, empowering, celebrating all women! Educate myself and the ones around me – my dad is finally doing the dishes at home, I guess slowly but surely, we can get everyone on board. I’ve been reading more books from female authors as well – highly recommend Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls for kids, and Girl, Woman, Other for us adults. Both written (and illustrated) by women, and with stories about women.

Tell us about a woman who inspires you.

It’s impossible for me to name just one. My mum is a wonder woman and huge inspiration, but I’m so easily impressed that basically every woman that walked in my life are/were inspiring – my sister, my aunties, teachers, friends. Each one of them showed me their own unique qualities of resilience, kindness, hard work, knowledge, it’s all very inspiring.

What's your personal failsafe UpCircle product?

The Face Serum– it smells amazing, and it works so well on my combination skin, which was unimaginable to me!



The Story-teller 


Anna UpCircle Story Teller

What impact have you made as a leader in your business or field?

As a female founder a personal target of mine is to speak purely on female-focussed issues once a week. I’ve given careers lectures in girls’ schools, I offer mentorship to teenage girls looking to start their own business, and have done many podcast episodes as a guest speaker, often on the subject of female empowerment or women in business.

What are the biggest challenges that you have overcome as a woman in your field?

I co-founded my brand alongside my brother. We have separate roles but we run the business as an equal partnership. I find continually that people view him as the true “CEO” which is obviously frustrating. When someone calls and asks for the “person in charge” and are met with a female voice, I have been shocked at how frequently that results in me being asked to take a message before my brother is available. This only makes me even more passionate about using my platform to hopefully inspire women.

What's your personal failsafe UpCircle product?

At the moment, our Eye Cream. These lockdowns are tough on businesses and I’m probably not getting as much sleep as I should be. The caffeine brightens up dark circles and gets rid of any puffiness – plus the cream smells like a caramel latte which is a huge bonus!


The Marketing Master 


Laura UpCircle Marketing Master

Who is a woman that inspires you?

I don’t think there’s one person I could pinpoint, rather all the women I’m surrounded by, like my Nan, Mum and close friends and family. Every one of them takes on a different challenge, life path or job role so very different from my own, meaning I can learn something from all of them.

This year’s theme is #ChooseToChallenge. How will you help forge a gender-equal world?

For me it’s about conversation and simply talking with those around you, both educating and learning from others, on topics like the gender pay gap, internalized misogyny and other societal barriers that prevent us from being a gender-equal world. By addressing the barriers in everyday conversation and collectively understanding where those barriers come from, we can start to unpack and dismantle them - easier said than done!

What is something you are most proud of?

Turning into a jogger during a pandemic! I know this was the same for a lot of people, but for me I could never jog far, like AT ALL. The other week I hit my first 10km in just over an hour, a huge milestone given I couldn’t run for longer than 2 minutes this time last year. It’s also a milestone in not caring what I look like exercising, which I think for women can often be a worry when jogging and getting sweaty - no one cares half as much as you do about what you look like!

What's your personal failsafe UpCircle product?

For me, the Face Moisturiser is the most important part of my skincare routine, and I can honestly say anytime I've been without this moisturiser for a couple of days my moisture barrier suffers and I always breakout. This is the holy grail product everyone needs!



The Community Chief


Kathryn UpCircle Community Chief

What is something you are most proud of?

Starting to accomplish a life goal of mine – to learn another language! For the past year I have started Spanish classes. Having always been passionate about languages, but never taking them further than school lessons, I decided to take the plunge! 

Who is a woman that inspires you?

I couldn’t name one person; I am inspired by many women in my life including family, friends, female bosses and leaders, who display inspirational characteristics that I admire; courage, determination, compassion amongst many more!

This year’s theme is #ChooseToChallenge. How will you help forge a gender-equal world?

I think it’s so important to keep the conversation going and to also not be scared to ask questions. Discussion is key to making a change and listening to those with different opinions to yours, to understand where differences in opinion come from – a world where we normalise changing opinions when learning new information is a step in the right direction. 

What's your personal failsafe UpCircle product? 

For me it has to be the Face Mask, it’s like nothing else I have ever tried! The mousse-like texture is divine and gives my face a few treats through the week, leaving it feeling cleansed and refreshed! 



The Customer Care Champion


Sophie L UpCircle

Who is a woman that inspires you?

 I think Brenda Hale, Baroness Hale of Richmond is incredible. She has been a trailblazer in her career and has worked to make the world a better, more caring place for others. I don’t think there is much (any) chance of me becoming a supreme court judge, but she is a great example of what we can do and achieve.

What is something you are most proud of?

I’m a big fan of celebrating the little things so my most recent ‘big achievement’ was finishing embroidering a bag for my sister- it has taken me a couple of months but several hundred stitches later I am so happy with it. One of my friends didn’t believe I had made it and thought it was shop-bought as it was “so good”, so I’m feeling incredibly proud right now!

How will you help forge a gender-equal world?

I think it’s great to engage in discussions with everyone even if they don’t share your point of view. This can help to encourage them to look at how change in a world where we’re all equal brings benefits to everyone. I always try to support and encourage my friends and family in their decisions and life choices but when I don’t agree with their views I speak out and I’d expect them to do the same for me. Sometimes we may not even realise the impact of our words, actions and learned behaviours but educating ourselves, apologising if necessary, and becoming a better person is never something we should be ashamed of.

What's your personal failsafe UpCircle product?

The Cleansing Balm - the smell is amazing, and it makes my skin feel so soft and fresh! I would wear it instead of foundation if I could!