Karmyn Wynyard from Waitakere first made a skin cream with kawakawa, a versatile herb that’s one of the most important in Māori medicine, to treat the eczema and sensitive skin that was bothering her and her children. It worked so well, she decided to try out more recipes, and anti-aging products, natural deodorants, and bath oils were soon added to the range.
When the global pandemic hit, Karmyn took redundancy from her job with Air New Zealand to further build up her natural health company. She follows her instinct when creating the products and says it’s largely intuitive. Karmyn uses what her ancestors have always used, and the most prominent ingredient is Aroha.
The way the plants are harvested for the products are in accordance with rongoā principles. This means offering appropriate karakia and ensuring sustainability of the sources to ensure the maximum healing potential is activated.
When Karmyn decided to take her practise further in 2020, she took over the KawaCure brand from a respected tohunga [expert Māori alchemist]. It came with a DIY website on Weebly, and she says her biggest challenge was the technical aspects of it all.
“I’m not good with computers. I really don’t like them. Although I knew that selling my products online would make sense, I wasn’t keen on dealing with a complicated system and loading all the content and new products myself,” Karmyn says.
“I got chatting to Venessa Minkley on social media and she explained what could be possible.”
Venessa helped Karmyn set up a new website, on a better platform and with better hosting. The set-up is on WordPress with WooCommerce, which means Karmyn has full ownership of the website, and managing it is easy.
“I am really pleased with it, and I have received great support from Venessa and her team along the way. Nothing was a problem.”
With guidance from Venessa, Karmyn has progressed from selling part-time at the markets to running a full-time successful e-commerce website and business. She’s still not keen on computers, but it has accelerated her business.
“Everyone's shopping online now, and it's made a huge difference for KawaCure. People can now access my products with ease, without having to come to the markets. The relief they can get for eczema, arthritis, gout, and so many other issues is something I want to share it with everyone,” she says.
“Our whānau Tohunga and our local Māori healing collective recommend healing remedies utilising natural traditional rongoā, which is why all our products are completely natural, freshly harvested, and created from resources that are readily accessible,” she explains.
Things took a turn for the better, and Karmyn took part in several radio interviews and did a feature with Shilo Kino of current affairs show Marae.
Recognising the uniqueness of Karmyn’s story and to find further reach for KawaCure, Venessa suggested to engage a PR company and put together an approach for NZ lifestyle magazines and media.
A press release was recommended by Venessa and she engaged a Copywriter write the press release. It attracted interest from several publications. An exclusive 4-page editorial was secured with Woman’s Day, NZ’s number one weekly lifestyle magazine.
A day shoot was organised with photographer Kerry Howard, and journalist Cloe Willetts interviewed Karmyn and wrote the story. The feature was published in Women’s Day in February 2021, and it has led to a noticeable increase in enquiries and sales.
With her new brand 369° Collective, Venessa will continue to assist Karmyn with the growth of KawaCure’s success and online sales. Venessa’s passion and greatest strength is supporting small business owners, and she enjoys nothing more than seeing them grow and succeed.
“I takea mai ngā rongoā i a Papatūānuku, i a Ranginui; nā rāua tahi ngā rongoā katoa i whakatupu mō te oranga nui o tātou katoa.
Ko te aroha te taura here!”
All cures are provided by earth mother and sky father as a medicine for healing, and as a cure for us all, love is the conduit.Visit kawacure.co.nz