Monique Low began educating herself on the formulation of topical products to help her son with his muscle strains and aches caused by his repetitive motor tics. Using organic New Zealand ingredients, she was able to create magnesium/hemp balms that were both natural and effective. From here, she launched Happy Happy NZ, offering beautiful balms, skincare products and massage therapy. At Happy Happy NZ, they are passionate about making their customers smile, laugh, feel better and be able to cope with whatever life throws at them. Here, Monique talks to the Natural Parent Magazine about her business journey so far, the challenges she has faced along the way, and her hopes and dreams for the future.
The passion: What inspired you to set up your business?
I have been a therapeutic massage therapist since 2007. Back in 2018, my child had Tourette’s and the repetitive motor tics made his muscles strain and ache. The balms we tried either did not work or were full of nasties. My goal was to create a topical product that would give good pain relief without overloading his system. I started educating myself on formulation and cannabis/hemp and ended up creating magnesium/hemp balms using NZ and organic ingredients. We made and sold these for years. Then during Covid, I couldn’t source my usual face products so I decided to use my knowledge and create my own. Happy Happy NZ was launched and the rest is history!
The launch: How did you start out in the beginning?
Very low-key! I hired a wee cabin at home and set it up as a kitchen workspace. It was perfect for learning and creating. Sometimes it got a bit hot in the Hawkes Bay sun but I felt lucky I had my own space. I did that for years. Now I am in a lease with small kitchen. I structure my time around making products and I also run a massage room part time. It is busy but it works.
There is an amazing local event here in Hawkes Bay called The Wonder Markets. It was the perfect Happy Happy launching platform. In November 2020, we secured ourselves a stall and threw ourselves into talking to as many people as possible. We nearly sold out. That is when we knew we were onto a winner with our products.
The innovation: What was the biggest breakthrough for you with your business?
The biggest breakthrough was when I started working with my business mentor Mac (John MacPherson). He had been a client for a few years and one day he took me aside and ‘had a word’. He could see the bigger picture with my products that I did not have the confidence to see. Having someone believe in me and really pushing me to improve has been a real game changer. Mac pulled a team of top creatives together and that really lifted my business profile. Everything is more professional now and the branding is amazing. I have products that I am extremely proud of. The business has come a long way in a short time and I am very grateful to Mac for that.