East Lothian Courier: Entrepreneur enjoys invite to House of Lords

East Lothian Courier: Geraldine McCullagh at House of Lords business event

by Avril Campbell

East Lothian Courier wrote a feature about my visit to the House of Lords in June 2023.

Me Time Therapies at the House of Lords

A Musselburgh entrepreneur attended the House of Lords to mark the end of a programme to support the growth of small businesses.

The visit by Geraldine McCullagh, founder of Me-Time Therapies, followed her involvement with Small Business Britain’s Small & Mighty Programme.

Having won several awards for her products, which are sold on Amazon, Geraldine continues to make all her natural products by hand at her Denholm Avenue home. Offering a range of natural products that enhance relaxation and rejuvenation, including massage balms and gift kits, Me-Time Therapies is “committed to providing individuals with the ‘me-time’ they deserve”.

Geraldine discloses all the natural ingredients used with her products and, with a commitment to sustainability, almost all the products are vegan. Every product is handmade, chemical-free, gluten-free, skin and eco friendly, she said.

In addition to promoting the importance of self-care, Geraldine is a current mentor at Musselburgh’s Queen Margaret University, supporting students who are looking to start their own ventures.

Enrolment on the Small & Mighty programme has supported Geraldine and other small firms with ideas for business growth and their decision-making processes.

The end of the six-week programme was celebrated at the House of Lords in London.

Geraldine, a Musselburgh resident for the past 20 years, said: “As a qualified clinical aromatherapist and reflexologist for the past 27 years, I embedded my expertise into a unique range of handmade natural products six years ago to deliver self-care and support to as many people as possible.

“The help given throughout the programme has been amazing and to cap it all off with an invite to the House of Lords is incredible.

“I am proud to have been part of the Small & Mighty Programme, who all share the passion small business owners such as myself have for our local community and economy.”


Luxury Adviser: How I Transformed My Therapy Business

Luxury Adviser Feature: How I Transformed My Therapy Business Online During The Pandemic Article

Luxury Adviser Feature -July 2021 

When I launched my business Me-Time Therapies 24 years ago, my main offering was in-person massage and therapy treatments. For these appointments, I had developed a range of natural, sustainable massage balms to use on clients.

The rise of clean beauty

Over the years I noticed that there was a huge demand for clean, eco-friendly beauty products using natural ingredients, something I was already making on a small scale for my clients. In 2017, I refined my products and their packaging and started selling on Amazon as an additional source of income.

People really care about what what goes into their skincare products so I am completely transparent about the ingredients I use. Similarly, the packaging used for all of my ranges is reusable and eco-friendly and everything is handmade with care by myself.

My massage balm, body butter, lip balm and self care kits, all use eco-friendly and 100% natural ingredients. What sets my products apart is that, given my aromatherapy background, I can create aromatherapy blends that will help customers feel relaxed or invigorated depending on their needs.

The impact of the pandemic

The client side of the business was still my primary source of income, so when the pandemic hit last year forcing me to halt all consultations I went into panic mode. I had appointments booked in that had to be cancelled and I had to completely rethink how I was going to make an income.

I refocused my business strategy on my products and doubled down efforts online. People were becoming increasingly conscious on mindfulness during a time of isolation, and demand for products like mine increased. People were either looking for something to use themselves, or as a gift to check in with loved ones.

How I shifted to sell clean beauty online 

Thanks to having established a small business Storefront on Amazon, the pivot to a more product-led business model was fairly straightforward and it became my main source of income. This meant I was already in a good place to reach new customers and fulfil orders. Amazon’s distribution network was one of the ways I could maintain sales with a good service to customers.

With Amazon handling fulfilment, it meant I was able to focus more on making the high-quality products that my customers have grown to expect. As I am the only person in the business, it is reassuring to know that this aspect of my business is in capable hands.

There were several key ways I adapted my strategy to not only sustain the income I had lost from therapies, but make my products a more prominent part of my business and continue to grow during this time:

  1. I solidified the relationships with suppliers and placed more considered orders for materials strategic order sizes to ensure I was always properly equipped and limiting wastage.

  2. I doubled down on production and increased the inventory held with Amazon to meet the increased demand for my products. This helped me to not only meet delivery deadlines, but also expectations of my customers.

  3. I expanded my product ranges to cater to new customer needs. As we emerged from the first Lockdown in July 2020, and massage therapists were returning to work, I developed the Muscle Relax Balm for more professional use. Similarly, in the run-up to Christmas, I launched the Self-Care Kit which proved as a popular gift as people isolated over the festive season.