After spending 30 years in the beauty industry pioneering her concept of holistic therapies to the Western world, Bharti Vyas, 68, is a well respected guru in her field.
Aside from establishing the Bharti Vyas Method (BVM), which aims to heal people by beginning with their mental state, she is the skin consultant at Tesco’s which sells her ‘Skin Wisdom’ range. In addition, she has written six books and worked with celebrities including singer Cher and Tony Blair’s wife Cherie Blair.
Here she shares the secrets of starting a new beauty business:
- There’s no need to reinvent the wheel:
Many successful ventures discover a new perspective on an existing concept. In Bharti’s case, she noticed that people were paying far too much attention on external appearances, instead of treating themselves from within. Her basic principle is: ‘beauty on the outside begins on the inside.’
- Practice what you preach:
Bharti introduced relatively unknown ancient Indian therapies and concepts to the UK, such as the age-old practice of Ayurveda. When asked how she helped people to understand this, she says: “Let them feel the benefit of it. But before I tell anyone anything, I would try it myself. If I feel the benefit, why would you not?”
- Build trust:
Bharti says that many of her clients have stuck with her for a number of years because of the close bond that she has established with them. She says: “When you make anyone feel like they’re looking better, you are worth a million to that person.”
- Don’t be afraid of hard work:
“Hard work actually keeps you going,” says Bharti. Even when she is not at her salon, she keeps herself busy with writing books and indulging in her unusual love of housework.
- Finding your passion in an unlikely place:
“Beauty was never my passion,” says Bharti. She wanted to become a doctor but knew that, according to the Indian tradition that existed at the time, entering into such a high-level profession would be seen as compromising the status of her husband.
All was not lost, however. She veered away from medicine and into beauty and has not looked back since. Also, having grown up in an Indian family who practiced natural beauty therapies, she unexpectedly found that she already had the basic knowledge that she needed.
- Feel happy:
Inner happiness is something Bharti cannot emphasise enough, even for the ability of a beauty practitioner. She points out that in the industry, people such as therapists and hairdressers have to take in a lot of negativity from their clients. People usually do not come to them unless they have a problem that needs solving.
Therefore, if a practitioner is not happy and settled within themselves, they end up feeling drained and unable to offer an adequate service. Inner happiness keeps you stable amidst the instability of others.
- Age is just a number:
Do not let age be a deciding factor of what you can or cannot do. “I personally do not have the word ‘retire’ in my dictionary,” says Bharti. At the age of 68, she does not look old and neither does she feel it.
She says that the mindset of thinking we are old and therefore need to slow down must go. Although she has cut down on her workload compared to her younger years, she still keeps on working. She is a true believer in being as old as you feel.
Even speaking with Bharti can leave someone feeling energised and inspired: her positive energy is infectious. Judging by her worthy example, it also seems that being a successful entrepreneur begins with what lies inside us, which then affects what materialises on the outside.
Find out more about Bharti Vyas: www.bharti-vyas.com
By Monica Sarkar
Photograph courtesy of Bharti Vyas