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Zena Bratcher, Founder / CEO at Ink Illusions

Great Companies: How did you get your idea or concept for the business?

Zena Bratcher: Having worked with skin since 2013, I came across a Brazilian guy called Gabriel Renaud in 2018 (when Ink Illusions was founded) offering treatments to camouflage stretch marks and scars which seemed to be different to traditional camouflage. He taught me a lot and we planned for him to come to the UK to teach this under Ink illusions. Sadly he passed away in 2020 and this never came to fruition. On another failed attempt to get a replacement trainer over to the UK, I ended up travelling and taking other courses in Brazil and the USA, as well as the UK to get as many perspectives on the treatment as possible. This led me to teach the subject and have been doing so for 2 years now. I now run a clinic in the city of London offering both training and treatments.

Great Companies: What are the various services provided by Ink Illusions?

Zena Bratcher: Medical tattooing treatments to help disguise scars, stretch marks, vitiligo, and hair loss. Skin needling treatments for skin rejuvenation and to help heal scars & stretch marks.

Fractional Radiofrequency Micro-needling for skin tightening and rejuvenation.

Great Companies: What makes Ink Illusions different from hundreds of other similar service providers?

Zena Bratcher: No other company has worked so hard to gather information from no less than 8 training courses to have a complete picture of the safest and most successful way to perform the treatment. This has led to a consistent success rate for our clients. Other artists are taking x1 course and just regurgitating information without pushing the treatments to be better, and continuing to learn. Ink Illusions also has spent thousands of pounds on developing skin tone ink mixing charts across various brands, and developed the world’s first skin tone colour theory course, to help practitioners accurately match any skin tone.

Great Companies: What were the struggles and challenges you faced and how did you overcome them?

Zena Bratcher: Trying to dispel opinions that you should not camouflage stretch marks – this is because historically people have performed this treatment with a lack of knowledge on how to perform the treatment safely and accurately. This led to some examples online of bad results. We are still working to educate people on how this is a life-changing treatment through our training courses and our client results.

The biggest challenge, as with all businesses, was trying to grow the business during COVID. However, this time was spent learning and developing online training to come out of lockdown even stronger.

Great Companies: How do you plan to grow in the future? What does 5 years down the line look like for Ink Illusions?

Zena Bratcher: I plan to expand to another larger premises to offer larger training facilities and more treatment rooms. This way we can employ further practitioners to offer the treatment to meet the demand of the clinic.

In 5 years I hope Ink Illusions will be known as the leader in this field, with several premises across the UK and possible in Dubai.

Great Companies: If you had one piece of advice to someone just starting out, what would it be?

Zena Bratcher: Most businesses give up too soon. It takes getting past at least 3 years to see the hard work pay off. There has to be some risk involved, and to come out of your comfort zone to be able to grow as a person, and as a business. Don’t give up! If you put your mind to it, you can do it. Even baby steps each day is better than standing still.

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