The founder of Spacemasks talks us through Prince fixes under water to blissing out amongst the stars.

‘Interstellar relaxation’ is what Spacemasks, the award-winning, self-heating conduit to absolute bliss, promises on its website. And it delivers. All you have to do is to hook one over your ears, wait for the jasmine-infused mask to work its magic and start warming up, and drift off heavenward for fifteen lovely minutes.

It’s a brilliantly simple idea, bringing a moment of calm to stressed-out people across the globe. And it’s all thanks to founder, Harriet Inglis, who scooped the GWG 2019 People’s Choice Award. A mum of four, the struggle for balance is an ever-present one, and it was in striving for that prompt to take a few minutes break that led to the breakthrough idea for her now legendary Spacemasks. They have, to Harriet’s surprise and delight, had beauty editors abuzz ever since she launched the business in 2017.

Rewind a few years, and life for Harriet, though thrilling, didn’t factor in much designated ‘me-time’. She worked as the manager of high-end restaurant, Foxtrot Oscar in Chelsea, before moving over to restaurant PR for the likes of Hakkasan and Nobu, all of which spelled hard work, high glamour – and precious few moments to switch off.

Harriet’s ‘eureka’ moment came when she discovered the potent combination of jasmine with iron powder which, on contact with oxygen (i.e. as soon as you open your mask), begins to self-heat. Like all the best businesses, Spacemasks began in her sitting room, with her struggling to keep up with the unexpected demand, after it transpired that Harriet, far from alone in pining for a moment to unwind, had tapped into a gap in the global market.

Here she tells us why simplicity is key when creating a user-journey, and how she’ll never forget the transformative moment when Mother of Daughters donned a Spacemask for the first time.

My favourite website...

I have lots of favourite websites, but ones I use most frequently are probably Opentable and Seetickets. Being able to book tables and theatre tickets 24/7 is exceptionally useful.

My favourite app...

Instagram, of course! I’m also a big fan of the Trainline app as I’m forever visiting other small businesses around the country.

My favourite podcast...

Don’t laugh, but I’m yet to listen to a podcast. I know, I know! But when I start, I’m heading to Dawn O’Porter’s first.

My favourite YouTuber...

I tend to only really use YouTube to look up instructions for pesty electronic equipment, but that’s probably not the answer you’re looking for!

My most recent buy online...

Yet more skincare from the lovely Willowberry.

Last book you downloaded or read...

Our House by Louise Candlish. Best book I’ve read in decades.

Favourite Instagrammer...

Dawn O’Porter. I’m also very keen on watching Kerri Northcott’s stories.

What is the first thing/app you look at on your mobile when you wake up/in the morning?

My bank feed to see which orders need to be dispatched.

Social media allowed me to meet...

Too many epic women to mention here. Seriously, I have made some friends for life all through Instagram. Meeting in real life is important though, so I make a conscious effort to get out and about. Small business owners can really, really help one another.

Other than a smartphone/tablet, what digital device can you not live without?

My underwater headphones, so I can listen to Prince as I swim.

The last thing you binge-watched...

The Handmaid’s Tale. It was brilliant and just as I watched the last episode I glimpsed Max Minghella in Liberty’s and got very over excited.

Brands have you discovered online...

Too many to mention; Muthahood, Neon Marl, Oilixia, St Berts, HAM (I love rabbits).

The best digital advice I've been given...

I’m not sure I’ve ever been given any digital advice but I do strongly believe a fast and efficient checkout is absolutely essential.

My screensaver is ...

A photo of my mother who died from breast cancer when she was only 48. She never grumbled and was one of the most positive, perkiest people in the world.

My standout online memory...

When Mother of Daughters posted a photo of herself in a Spacemask when I’d just launched and I had about 600 orders in one day. Forever grateful.

My pet online hate...

Being constantly asked to review things.

Do you have any online rules or resolutions (such as a time you religiously switch off devices, for example?)

I no longer keep my phone on my bedside table, which I think was a good move.

As someone who runs a business at least in part online, what are your best bits of advice/ most interesting things you’ve learned?

That people are lazy and busy so make things simple and easy.

March 2020
By Nancy Alsop


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