You could be forgiven for thinking Leah gets more done in her sleep than the rest of us do in the light of day…and with new baby Gigi arriving in March this year, Leah is possibly getting decidedly less sleep than ever! But the Adelaide mum’s brands are booming as she and her partner (and co-owner of her businesses) Mitch, settle into life with baby G as one big happy (and healthy!) family.
We chat with Leah about the transition to mum life, the incredible resources offered in her BARE guides and just how she harnesses her motivation into such success.
Congratulations on the birth of beautiful Gigi! How are you settling into life as a new mum?
Mum life is a whirlwind, I can tell you that much! I knew it would be a life change, but I didn’t (probably naively) think it would be such a crazy change…in a good way, of course. Gigi had a few issues at the start, so I was thrown in the deep end really quickly and had to just try to survive the day. I think I’ve been super lucky because my fiance Mitch and I have been able to work from home, so we’re really working as a team and learning as we go, but also giving each other a break when we need it, which has been really good for the both of us. Mum life, while it is a crazy whirlwind of emotions, is honestly the best and I really feel like I’ve got the hang of things, and I’ll only learn and change as we move through. I do love it, and am already thinking “but what’s just one more…?” haha!
You’re at the helm of three amazing businesses, BARE, Yes Please and Soli Sleep. Tell us about them!
Our businesses are our other babies! Our BARE Guides are online healthy eating guides that are designed to allow women to enjoy all of their favourite foods and get the results they want. I’ve always believed that healthy eating doesn’t need to be complicated or boring. BARE teaches you how to enjoy a balanced and healthy relationship with food without restriction. All of our guides include a variety of exclusive recipes, flexible weekly planners and an abundance of educational resources, BARE focuses on taste and ease just as much as nutrition. From burgers and curries to pancakes and banana bread, each recipe is quick, easy and, most importantly, super delicious! I’ve worked with an in-house dietitian to ensure BARE gives your body all the daily macronutrients your body needs to thrive.
Yes Please was created as a natural progression from BARE, where we want to provide our community with delicious treats with benefits, foods that they love and supplements to help their journeys. We absolutely love Yes Please, and the amount of support we’ve received has blown us away. Our famous Sleepy Hot Chocolate has been a crowd favourite, having sold out four times! The product pipeline for Yes Please is all about TASTE, so you can prepare yourself for some seriously delicious stuff! Soli is our other business, created in the midst of COVID where we wanted to challenge ourselves and flourish in an industry that we usually wouldn’t have, and we are obsessed with it!
Soli is all about comfort, quality and dreamy clothes that you don’t ever want to take off. The growth of this company was incredible to see in the first two launches, and we’ve now got so much in the pipeline to give our community more! All three businesses are something we so passionately love and we can’t wait to build them!
You’ve recently launched BARE pregnancy guide – this is a guide to fertility and pregnancy nutrition so for expecting mums and hopeful-soon-to-be mums. How will the BARE pregnancy guide support future mums in their pregnancy journey?
A big part of why we created the Pregnancy BARE guide is to help and support soon-to-be mums as much as we can! I know first hand when you find out you are pregnant that there is so much information to take in that it can be super overwhelming and felt almost unrealistic with my morning (or all day!) sickness.This guide is much more than a ‘what you should do’ list, but a true accurate reflection of the realities of pregnancy. Writing this guide was an incredible experience that I felt really connected and passionate about, because I was really living what I was writing! The Pregnancy BARE guide includes a realistic approach to fertility and pregnancy nutrition with 60+ recipes designed to have you feeling your best in each trimester. It also includes fertility resources, first, second and third trimester resources as well as postpartum recovery nutrition, a note on PPD, breastfeeding nutrition, and supporting milk supply.
You’re an incredibly successful young woman! What did you want to be when you were growing up and how does that translate to where you are now?
Thank you! Growing up, I wanted to be a chef, but one of my aunties told me I wouldn’t like the hours or the pressure (and for some reason, I believed her?! haha). I had ALWAYS loved cooking with my mum, so this was a passion for me. After putting the chef idea aside, I had my eyes set on being a police officer. I couldn’t tell you why, but I just loved the idea. I ended up getting into Criminal Justice at university but then at the last minute changed my mind (mum was not happy about the police, she said it was too dangerous!) so I went to university to be a teacher like my parents. I lasted almost two years before I deferred and became a personal trainer, then moving into social media and cooking/recipe development. This sparked some serious fun in my life and I finally got to cook again, and felt free! As I continued my journey online, I started to be really interested in business, creating, products, manufacturing and I am so proud to say that Mitch and I learnt everything from scratch by just trying and doing our best in whatever we chose to do. We’ve had some serious lows, and some incredible highs so I’m very grateful to be where we are now.
Where do you get your motivation from and how do you harness it so successfully?
My motivation comes half from an absolute passion for food, health, wellness and business and the other half from seeing my community thrive, change their lives through using my products. It’s an incredible feeling, and I use my passion and my community’s success in their own lives as motivation to do more for them everyday.
What advice would you offer to other young women in business?
Try anything and move with speed. The one thing I regret in business’ and still to this day that I get frustrated with is that Mitch and I took too long to make decisions, which slowed us down. Maybe it was a little bit of imposter syndrome, but I feel like now I’m confident enough to try something and if it doesn’t work, learn and then try again but better this time. If you truly love something, you CAN do it – don’t let people put you in a box and say that you can’t because there is nothing stopping you, but you.
What’s next for you and your fam?
That’s a really good question haha! At the moment I’m really looking forward to taking on life as a new mum. Since having Gigi I think the biggest thing I’ve learned is you never know what tomorrow or next week will bring so I’m looking forward to taking on all of life’s new crazy adventures with Mitch and G. We have some pretty exciting things coming for BARE, Soli and Yes Please so I’m also really looking forward to the second half of this year and seeing all of that come to life! After having Gigi and the rocky start we had, I just want to make her life experience the best, I want her to be involved with everything we do, so we can really watch her grow and flourish as her own little person. Onwards and upwards from here.
Leah’s top tips to staying happy and healthy during pregnancy
1. Listen to your body
I found this was so important for me as everyday was a new day. The things that worked for me one day didn’t work the next so it was really important that I take everything day by day and adjust my routine and life as needed. For example, one day I would have a mountain of energy so I’d ride that wave and get things I wanted to do, done, but the next day I would have much much less energy so I’d work in sprints.
2. Take time for self care
Again this was super important for me as I found doing something for myself made a huge difference in how I was feeling! This meant doing a bunch of different things like cooking my favourite foods, having a bath, going for a walk or getting a massage. It’s not always easy, but if you can do a little something for YOU everyday, that is important too!
3. Take each day as it comes
As I said earlier each day is going to be different so don’t let yourself get too down if you’re having a bad day. Allow yourself to rest and take care of yourself but know that things will get better and not everyday will feel like that.
Finish these sentences
I can’t live without…
Gigi and Mitch! Or my animals!
My morning starts with…
A high pitched wake up from gigi haha! A little feed for her and then we get ready together.
Female role model…
Incredible! I don’t think there is a better way to describe them.
My legacy will be…
That I was a kind, caring and free spirited person who built a wonder.