We Are Paradoxx started while Yolanda Cooper was in the process of developing Supernova; a three-in-one cordless hair tool. "I was checking in for a flight at Dublin Airport with overweight luggage, mainly due to the number of hair tools I was travelling with," she says. "I drew the idea for Supernova out on a cocktail napkin, and then set about making it a reality as soon as I got home." It was during this journey that she made a key realisation about the hair products she uses. "I was really aware of taking care of my skin – using natural and organic skincare and cosmetics products and I looked for key ingredients that really worked. My hair had become an afterthought, and I realised that needed to change. I wanted to help others make that change too so I decided to create a high performance, natural and organic hair care collection to compliment Supernova."

But by doing so, Yolanda quickly realised this was going to bring "hundreds of thousands of units of plastic into the world", which was not an option. "120 billion units of packaging are created by the beauty industry every year and in the USA alone, 70% of plastic packaging ends up in landfill. Research told me that aluminium was the way to go. It produces less CO2 emissions than plastic or glass to transport, and can be recycled on an infinite loop without ever degrading in quality. If it does end up in landfill or the ocean, it won’t release toxic gasses or micro-plastics as it breaks down, so it really is the most eco-friendly option." Now, their aluminium packaging is synonymous with the brand itself, making it a haircare brand that isn't only unique in design, but also in their sustainable intentions. 

Not only is she pioneernig meaningful change within the beauty industry, but the self-proclaimed 'accidental activist' – "
I coined that phrase to describe how I ended up being a champion of change within the beauty industry, as I really didn’t set out to become an activist. It happened very naturally and somewhat accidentally in the beginning." – is sharing her knowledge with other brands, as well as consumers, so that everyone can do better. "I started sharing [plastic waste] facts with other brands, as well as better alternatives that I've found for packaging, and suppliers who produce more sustainable options, like the aluminium we use. I've shared information with consumers on how to change their recycling behaviours, and that sort of spiralled into what is now our activism platform, Plastic Free Beauty Day." Occurring on June 17th annually, this day sets to educate those around the misconceptions around plastic.

To learn more about how this anti-plastic activist spends her day, we put forward our 8Qs.

What is a book that you always come back to and why?
When I’m in need of a boost of motivation or up against a particularly challenging project, I love reading a chapter from Richard Branson’s Screw It, Let’s Do It. It gives really practical tips for entrepreneurs and is so inspiring. 

What is your morning ritual like?
I have a newborn so every morning is different, although coffee and reading the news on my phone is always part of it.

What is the best piece of advice you've received?
You catch more bees with honey.

What is an ongoing goal of yours?
Expansion always, in all ways: launching new products regularly, entering new markets and developing current business channels for solid sustained growth. 

What's your party trick?
I can sing the alphabet backwards in 5 seconds. Although I don’t usually whip that out at a party!

If you could travel anywhere right now, where would it be?
Probably New York or LA. I always enjoy doing business and pleasure in both cities, and can’t wait to get back!

Name something that you're grateful for.
My family. I am blessed with two beautiful children and I have a supportive husband, parents and parents-in-law. Without their support I couldn’t do what I do.

Name three things that you can't live without.
My husband, son and daughter. If I can cheat and have one more – also my Super Fuel face, hair and body oil by We Are Paradoxx of course! 

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