Skin Deep With Pulp

Skin Deep With Pulp

Fresh, fun, exciting, playful – Pulp Cosmetics is way more than your ordinary skincare brand. Read on as we speak to the founder, Goutham Uppaluri, on how the brand is redefining beauty and more.

When it comes to the Indian skincare market, it's a little saturated, to say the least. Earthy packaging, minimal fonts, same old ingredients. I mean, we get it. You're organic. But there's a new player on the block, and it may just be the respite the market needs. It's bright, it's playful, it hits all the right Gen Z-spots, and most of all, it's fun. I am, of course, talking about Pulp Cosmetics.

Ahead of my conversation with the co-founder, Goutham Uppaluri, I did my own research on the brand. With poppy, colourful packaging, attractive names, and products that seemed chock-full of superfoods, I was definitely intrigued, albeit a little intimidated to interview someone who had a brand that could only be described as cool. Goutham Uppaluri, of course, turned out to be nothing but cool himself.

Having started Pulp with his partner, Deepti Alapati, fascinatingly enough, he never saw himself going into skincare – he actually wanted to do a fitness startup. But as things didn't pan out, he realised he could work with pharmaceuticals and cosmetics, and found that while cosmetics was slightly saturated in India, there was room for skincare products that appealed to the younger generation, were cruelty free, and vegan. But his association with skincare runs beyond just having an audience who craves good skincare products.

"I had acne, and between the ages of 14 to 20, you’re very sensitive. There are friends that pick on you for your skin, something that you cant control. You get acne, you get eczema, and stuff like that, and its necessarily not your fault – it’s the changes inside. So, I kind of went through that. I have become a person now, who doesn’t really care about how a person looks, or what the colour of their skin is. I look at them, and motivations and inspirations are, and what do they want to do with their lives."

Goutham Uppaluri, Founder, Pulp

And in a country with unrealistically high, Eurocentric beauty standards, it's refreshing to hear someone who actually is in charge of some skincare products that we use, to talk this way. Goutham's accepting philosophy delves into his brand as well. Here to normalise skin as a whole, rather than preaching things others may only half-mean, Pulp is just skincare. You can live without it, you can live with it, but at the end of the day it's skincare. And it's really good. With products containing different superfoods like spinach, turmeric, chocolate, kombucha, kale, green gram, that can do wonders for different skin types, Pulp is certainly making its mark on the industry too. According to him, the superfood element in his products provide nutrition for your skin, and each superfood translates into the specific corresponding products.

"We have spinach in one of the masks, and we wanted to make sure it gave the skin protection against UV radiation. So, the mask, called Day After Binge, by definition, is something that protects your skin against your computer screen. I mean, after binge watching and pizza eating, you’d want to take care of your skin, as it probably gets affected by it right? So it was always clear as day for us."

Goutham Uppaluri, Founder, Pulp

Another fascinating thing that sets the brand apart is their cruelty-free, vegan approach to skincare. Too often, people don't stop and wonder about the makings of the product they're all too happy to consume; however, with unhealthy chemicals and even products tested on animals, people don't fully understand what they're signing up for. Pulp, on the other hand, is pretty up-front about its ingredients, and doesn't test on animals. Goutham believes that this isn't even a unique factor; in his opinion, it's the way things should be. His clarity about his brand really shines through in his opinions, and his clear-cut ideology, of it being as simple as – if we had a product to sell, it would be cruelty free – is reflective of that.

And if you believe that the Indian market may have a learning curve when it comes to cruelty-free skincare, Goutham has done his research. With sub-Reddits like 'Indian Skincare Addicts', he believes that now, the Indian consumers are doing their own research when it comes to new products. Instead of getting intimidated by ingredients with technical names that mean who-knows-what, consumers too, are becoming more educated, and the market is evolving in a way where people are conscious about what they're putting on their skin.

"Unlike previous times when people would just see an ad, or a billboard, and go and buy the product because you think it’s going to help you, now it’s more of you look at the ad, you analyse what all ingredients are there, you put it out on the forum, you ask others’ opinions, and then, you probably buy the product. So, there’s a lot of information being exchanged, and people are pretty knowledgeable about what a product does, and what a brand does."

Goutham Uppaluri, Founder, Pulp

As a brand that portrays itself as a BFF over everything, Pulp is definitely switching up the status quo of the beauty industry. Creating products for Gen Z over creating just anything, Goutham believes that the future of the skincare industry is also going to be similar. He thinks that the key is to treat skin as just that – skin; nothing more, nothing less. He sees the industry becoming more transparent in the future, more innovative, even become better at marketing.

He hopes to reduce the westernised eye with which the Indian beauty industry views itself, and understands that while there may be a learning curve, his contribution to the culture is just to treat others as humans, and be nice to people.

"Right now, I feel like people need to empower others and themselves, and there need to be brands that help you do that. I mean, there are a lot of people who are down, and going into depression. When they go on Instagram, I hope Pulp makes them feel better. That’s the best we can do right now. In the future maybe depending on how we evolve, we can do much better things. Right now, I hope we stay strong and get through this as a unit."

Goutham Uppaluri, Founder, Pulp

Head over to the brands Instagram to check out all their latest products.

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