A Decade of Change: A Conversation with Daria Prochenka, Founder of the Natural Cosmetics Brand Clochee

A Decade of Change: A Conversation with Daria Prochenka, Founder of the Natural Cosmetics Brand Clochee

The Clochee brand started when few people in Poland reached for natural cosmetics. Today, it is one of the established companies in this constantly developing industry. Daria Prochenka, the founder and owner of the brand, talks about what allowed it to survive the changes in the market and why it was… a change.

The Clochee brand was created in 2013 and it was not only a spontaneous but also a bold idea: at that time, ecological care was not as desirable and obvious on drugstore shelves as it is now. However, it turned out that its idea hit the mark, gradually (and successfully) developing its business for over ten years. Entering the next decade of Clochee’s activity became a pretext for us to talk to Daria Prochenka about what has changed in this time in the approach of Polish women to beauty care, what we now reach for most in cosmetic stores and how, as well as what new the brand is preparing for this and the next seasons.

Directly: The Clochee brand has been successfully operating on the Polish market for over a decade. How would you, as its founder and owner, assess these passing years – more as a series of continuous successes or rather a business school?

Daria Prochenka: 10 years is a long time. I think that although I could talk about this period for hours, for the sake of summary I will sum it up in one term: transformation. The past decade was above all a time of learning. And not only for me, and later employees, but also… for our clients. When we started in 2013, there was no talk of entire shelves of natural cosmetics, of such popularity of care in the spirit of eco as now.

We were one of the first Polish brands to focus on nature-inspired, high-quality and transparent compositions. As pioneers in this area, we undertook to educate Poles, to convince them of how valuable and effective ecology is in the context of beauty. Today, natural care is a strong trend, which is strengthened by influencers, the Internet, and numerous applications from which you can draw knowledge. What makes me proud is the fact that we survived this decade, although many of our competitors have disappeared from the market over the years.

Directly: How is the Clochee brand perceived today, after 10 years, in the context of the new group of consumers from Generation Z growing before our eyes?

Daria Prochenka: With the diverse needs of our customers in mind, in addition to the main Clochee line, we have created two others: Pure by Clochee and Simply Nature by Clochee. The first of them is currently undergoing its rebranding. The packaging, previously minimalistic, in a classic white tone, now gains neon colors and a refreshed visual identification. This is a nod to, among others, representatives of generation Z, who like their cosmetics to be distinguished not only by their content. And these are exceptionally demanding recipients. Especially younger people like to “call us out” on the internet, asking about the compositions, effects or methods of obtaining individual raw materials. We are very happy about this, because it is a pretext for our constant development.

Directly: Was it only the Internet and the educational activities undertaken by the Clochee brand that influenced consumer choices throughout this decade?

Daria Prochenka: Not only that. One of the phenomena that influenced the average shopping basket of a Clochee customer was inflation and, more broadly, the economic crisis that we have been struggling with since the pandemic. Today, most consumers declare that eco-friendly values ​​are important to them, and that’s true, but the prevailing factor is… price. Fewer and fewer people decide to make spontaneous, impulsive purchases – our customers buy more rationally, most often waiting for promotions both in our online store and in our partners’ drugstores. In parallel with the economic challenges, a trend towards minimalism has emerged, which encourages reaching for fewer things, so today we choose one cream, not five, which we will eagerly test.

Directly: Does this mean that the Clochee brand, as a business, is facing profitability issues?

Daria Prochenka: Absolutely not, quite the opposite, because customers appreciate the fact that they can buy really good quality products from us, which they treat as the best investment in care. It simply motivated us to think creatively. Listening to the needs of consumers, we decided to create the two lines I mentioned earlier: Pure by Clochee and Simply Nature by Clochee, available exclusively in popular drugstores. We wanted to meet the expectations of those who wanted to take care of their beauty with our help, but for whom buying premium cosmetics, such as those from our main line, is a challenge.

Directly: How did you reduce product prices while maintaining quality?

Daria Prochenka: We still focus on the highest quality, ecological raw materials, but we have simplified the compositions. As a result, our cheeses or creams from cheaper lines have, for example, a few, not a dozen active ingredients. However, the action is still just as effective. We have also chosen simpler, plastic packaging that is suitable for recycling.

Directly: Are these all the changes that the Clochee brand is experiencing as it enters its second decade of operation?

Daria Prochenka: No. We try to respond dynamically to everything that happens on the market, both to customer expectations and European Union guidelines for the cosmetics industry or simply industry trends. What is important to us at this point in our activity is primarily this flexibility and investment in innovation. For example, we have recently noticed an increase in the importance of protection against ultraviolet radiation and this is precisely the area we are focusing on. We know that this results not only from a more conscious approach of Polish women to care, but also from the realities in which we live – climate change forces us to use increasingly specialized cosmetics with SPF filters. We focus on those that combine mineral and chemical filters – our research shows that they guarantee the best effectiveness and are the most pleasant to use. Our latest hit has just seen the light of day: an SPF 50+ filter in a mist, which can be applied directly to makeup. In our feminized office, it is already an absolute hit and we believe that it will also be a bestseller with our female clients.

Directly: What can we wish the Clochee brand for the next decade?

Daria Prochenka: The same intuition and enthusiasm to transform our observations into specific products that can be found on store shelves. And the constant play with transformation – we believe that constant change is the key to success in business. Stagnation is not a threat to us. I can already reveal that our main line of premium products will also have a small “update” in December, but for now I will keep our clients a secret.

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