Jules Miller is the founder of organic, food-based supplement company The Nue Co. She raised $1.5M in one round to back her quickly-growing brand, which just launched an incredible nootropic blend called Nootro-Focus, the first supplement of its kind to provide a lasting, non-jittery, immediate focus while contributing to the well-being of your brain over time.
"I set up The Nue Co inspired by my grandfather, who like me - believes that there is no better way to nourish your body than through food. He spent the majority of his life as a pharmacist, yet even today refuses to take any vitamins. Isolated vitamins can be hard for your body to digest, and the added fillers and chemicals make the process counterintuitive. I set out to develop a product that was minimally processed, as close to its natural state as possible. Following tried and tested formulas, delivered through natural organic foods.
At the heart of everything we do is one word. Redefining. We want to prove that natural can be effective. That ethical can be luxurious. That beautiful can be sustainable. Wellness speaks to people in different ways and it is not my intention to push my philosophy onto our audience. For me, sleep, food and exercise is a catalyst for doing what I want to do in real life. The parts of life that I want to focus on. Right now, that is growing my business while still having the energy to spend time with my friends and partner. I believe it’s important to direct your attention and focus on the things that really drive us. I’m a passionate lover of brave brands and individuals. I’m inspired by the wave of bold female entrepreneurs who are redefining what is expected of us as women. Perceptions are evolving, and it is up to us to drive change and not settle.” We chatted to Jules about building her incredible brand.
What was the inspiration behind your brand?
JULES MILLER: My background is actually in marketing and advertising, but supplements are sort of in “the family”. My grandfather was a chemist and lecturer at Cambridge University who was part of the team who discovered Vitamin B12.
When I was in my mid-twenties I developed really bad IBS – I ended up being hospitalized a few times, and I was constantly bloated and uncomfortable. I was taking endless supplements to help deal with my bloating and cramps, which actually made them worse, but didn’t have a second thought about what was actually in them. I didn’t look forward to using a single one of them and they were all so medical-looking that I hid them in a cupboard and inevitably I stopped taking them pretty quickly.
But the whole process got me thinking about what was wrong with the market. Why did they have to be such huge, hard-to-swallow capsules when drops would be so much easier? Why did these products have to look so awful? Why did they have unpronounceable ingredients that I would never eat in a million years?
Congratulations on the Nootro-Focus launch! Tell us more!
JM: The word nootropic was coined in 1972 by Romanian psychologist and chemist, Corneliu E. Giurgea, from the Greek “nous” meaning mind, and “tropein”, meaning to bend or turn. A nootropic is defined as something that can increase or aid cognitive function.
When we look at the products available for cognitive health, they fall into two distinct groups - they’re either instant effect, i.e. make you sharp, then leave you crashing down with no lasting effects. Or they’re a long-term commitment (read: years), with little indication of whether or not they’re working. We set out to make something that ticked both boxes – helping you power through to a deadline, but that was also aiding memory, brain cell repair, and neurotransmitter function long-term.
Our version of a nootropic, Nootro-Focus is designed to help you when you’re on a deadline, but also support your brain health long-term. The caffeine-free formula works immediately to reduce anxiety and restlessness, whilst aiding focus and attention. The ingredients in our formula are clinically proven to increase the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), the compound the fuels the brain by 13.6% in six weeks, and increase the formation of brain cell membranes by 26%. People report feeling fast motor responses, better memory, focus, and attention, basically feeling more switched on that before.
Nootro-Focus has been in development for close to two years, it is our most technically advanced product to date. Our formula contains just six ingredients, five of which are totally natural – the hero ingredient in this blend is a compound called citicoline.
Citicoline is produced naturally in our bodies but we’re unable to up our levels through diet since it’s not found complete in any food sources, and like lots of elements, it decreases as we get older. We are using a ground-breaking form of citicoline which is 99.8% pure, created using a patented fermentation process.
What's the best part about being a female entrepreneur?
JM: It’s an amazing time to be a female entrepreneur in this industry. Some of the most disruptive brands are run by women and I am eternally grateful to those who have paved the way. Thanks to Emily Weiss, Charlotte Tilbury, Amanda Chantal Bacon (I could go on) the concept of me in a boardroom is getting less and less foreign.
However, I champion the concept of being gender-agnostic. The celebration of women needs to, and must, include men. The success of The Nue Co. is in equal parts thanks to my (mostly) female team and (mostly) male investors. Together, we are paving the way to what I believe should be the future of the beauty industry, and in fact, any industry.
Which product helped you be a better leader?
JM: Our signature Prebiotic + Probiotic. As someone who suffered from IBS for over 5 years, I know the difference to your life a product like this can make.
The probiotic we have used has been specifically researched for those who suffer from IBS. Rather than live bacteria (which usually dies in transit and digestion), our formula is a spore forming complex which is activated in the small intestine. Our capsule has a delayed response technology, meaning it breaks down in your small intestine rather than your stomach.
What are you excited about for summer 2019?
Deeply rooted in everything we do is our approach to innovation and growth. The day this falters is the day we die. We’re investing heavily in research and working with some of the world leading labs to develop formulas that complete change the status quo. Products you can feel working in real-time and make a real difference to people’s lives.
Photography by: Photography Courtesy of Jules Miller