Finding Inspiration in Every Turn
Medica Natural Skincare began, not as a business idea, but as a refusal to accept anything less than the best quality of life.
For Medica founder and pharmacist Debs Nguy, continuing to “manage” her son Isaac’s eczema was not good enough. After a particularly frightening night of crying and bloody scratches she decided that, if no one could provide him with the medical solution he needed, she would be the one to find it.
This endeavour, which began with blending home-made balms in her kitchen, has transformed two years later into a business with stockists country-wide and a thriving online store. As a pharmacist and a mother, Debs has found her calling in providing consultation and products that are based in both peer-reviewed literature and the healing properties of the plants that grow on the beautiful Kapiti Coast.
I never set out to begin my own business. All that I wanted was for Isaac to be a comfortable happy baby and for us all to sleep through the night! I never imagined that what began as such a hardship would become a source of joy and fulfilment for us and many others.
From the outset, my husband and I were fortunate to be surrounded by family and friends who knew what we were struggling with and wanted to help. By their suggestion, I researched and experimented with several natural remedies but none of them worked for longer than a week. It wasn’t until an acquaintance recommended kawakawa that I truly felt we had found something special.
At home, I first used kawakawa leaves by blending them with beeswax into a balm that I knew would be gentle on Isaac’s skin, if nothing else. Several weeks passed and I continued to apply it. For the first time in his life, Isaac’s eczema cleared and didn’t come back. I was elated! It was hard to believe that his discomfort was finally over, and he could happily play with water and paint and sand with his little peers. The nurse who had been overseeing his eczema treatment was equally amazed. It was this woman who first impressed on me the significance this treatment could have for other families.
I left the nurse’s office inspired; I was going to share this balm with others in need as soon as I could find a commercial kitchen to make it in. At this point in my journey, I received more encouragement from another women: Susie the owner of Lavender Creek Farm. She too could see the need that existed for this product and cared far more about my success in sharing this remedy than any profit she might make. It was out of her kitchen that my first commercial products were made.
This story wouldn’t be properly told without mentioning one more enthusiastic supporter I had along the way: Gia. Like me, Gia had a child suffering from chronic eczema, and all the specialist help in the world hadn’t been able to make it go away. With daily product use, ongoing consultation, and multiple check-ins, she too is able to have well-controlled eczema. I will never forget Gia telling me how much of a difference this had made for her family. I walked away from that conversation thinking to myself: this is it; I have to do this.
Two years later, it is hard to believe what we have achieved. What was once a team of one has flourished into a small, professional, and ever-expanding business. We continue to work and grow, guided by the philosophy with which I began: everyone deserves to enjoy life to the fullest, eczema-free.