Aussie sisters launch ultimate wellbeing gift

Inspired by a trip to Japan and Europe, Margaret Cunningham decided that the self-warming eye masks she had found during her travels might be a great idea for a new business.

Together with her sister Aisling she started developing the business, however, while creating their first eye mask samples, Margaret received the unexpected news that she had breast cancer and just six weeks later Aisling was to receive the same shocking diagnosis as her sister, she too had breast cancer.

“This meant the start of our business was slowed right down but despite the setback, we continued working on our self-care brand when we could, testing and perfecting the warmth and scents during our surgeries, chemotherapy and radiation treatments,” the sisters say.

“We fell in love with our own product finding comfort in our eye masks when feeling unwell during chemo and our times in hospital.”

The Lula eye mask works by opening the pouch and as the mask’s iron particles meet the air it automatically activates the self-warming process. For a minimum of 20 relaxing minutes, the warm mask will help you drift into a daydream or a deep night’s sleep.

“When you can’t sleep or you have a headache, if your eyes are dry or you just need some self-care, the Lula eye mask is a warm and comforting hug for your eyes and mind, helping you rest and relax,” Margaret explains.

“Going through a cancer diagnosis, treatments and now both in recovery we have learnt very quickly the importance of resting. Resting and relaxing is an important key to our long-term health and vitality and this goes for everyone. We shouldn’t have to face a medical crisis to learn this. Women often feel guilty, feel lazy or feel like they don't have the time to rest where in fact they must rest for their health and mental wellbeing.”

Taking business risks and dealing with any business problems that arise has become a lot easier as the Brisbane-based duo often think ‘what’s the worst thing that could happen?’ when the worst thing has already happened, both of them having cancer.

Business challenges will never feel as difficult or stressful as they might have previously. It’s a new perspective in life and business. It also hasn’t stopped them from working on new products including Lula eye mask for kids dubbed Little Lula.

“We’ve had such wonderful, unexpected feedback that the warming eye masks have helped children fall asleep quickly―a parent’s dream. So we are working on a smaller design for children. We have a couple of other products in the pipeline using the same warming technique that will complement our eye masks and our mission to inspire moments of self-care.

“In 2022 we will continue to get back to health and recover from our treatments and business-wise we have big goals. We launched in July this year and have had the most wonderful, successful six months. We have learnt so much in a short time and so we are ready to really see some massive growth in our business next year,” the sisters add.