Keep it Cleaner (KIC) is a health and wellness app that offers a holistic wellness program in your pocket. KIC was originally launched by Laura Henshaw and her best friend and business partner, Steph Claire Smith, as an e-book in 2015 sharing their healthy and affordable recipes. But as Laura says, at the time social media was “a really toxic space” because it was full of fad diets, skinny teas promising a “quick fix”.
Laura wanted to bring something more by taking a stand against this toxic food culture. Together with Steph Claire Smith, they turned KIC into a health and wellness app so you have Keep it Cleaner as it is today. This self-funded app is now one of the most widely used fitness apps in Australia. She focuses on moving people’s bodies based on how people feel, and not just because she makes them look a certain way.
Here has women love technology, we spoke with Laura and she told us, “Steph and I had personally been impacted by the culture of toxic eating and formed negative relationships with food and exercise, but thankfully after a lot of hard work , we had come out the other side. After seeing firsthand how damaging diet culture can be, we were determined to help other women avoid falling into this trap.
Laura adds that in 2018, she and Steph launched their Keep it Cleaner app, which now hosts over 1,000 expert-led workouts and dietitian-approved recipes: “We’ve got it all in one app – with Yoga, Barre, Traditional Pilates, Cardio Pilates, Power Pilates, HIIT, Strength, Boxing, Bootcamp, running programs, pre and postnatal Pilates, guided meditations and much more in the pipeline!
“At KIC we believe that fitness can and should be enjoyable, it’s not about looking a certain way or fitting a certain mold, it’s about how it makes you FEEL. Our philosophy is to empower people around the world to be confident in their skin – it’s not about scale, it’s about smiling!” Laure adds.
Score goals at KIC
Over the past two years – spurred by the COVID pandemic – KIC’s revenue growth has been 91%, its customer base has grown 60%, and its internal team has grown 142% over the past two years. of the past 18 months – and all of this growth and success has happened when Laura and Steph had no prior technology experience.
Initially, the KIC team worked with third-party application developers, but in early 2021 Laura made a breakthrough investment to bring all software development and operational systems in-house. She says it’s because if these systems are in-house, KIC will be more nimble as a business and able to stay ahead of the fitness tech game and create targeted employment opportunities for women in technology.
“Community is at the heart of everything we do…”
She and Laura told us that she gets so much out of running the business with Steph and her team because, as she says, “Community is at the heart of everything we do here at KIC, so the most great summits for me always involve them!”
“First, our internal KIC community, our team,” she continues. “We work together in the office two days a week now and honestly there’s at least a moment or two every day where I stop, smile and think how amazing it is to be on this ride with a group. such talented and passionate people. people aligned with our vision. In the past 18 months, our team has grown 142%, the office is still buzzing and it’s simply the best!”
“Then, of course, our external KIC community, although the goal of KIC is to inspire and educate them – Steph and I often find that they are the ones who motivate us! We have a private Facebook community with over 46,000 people from all over the world, everyone is incredibly supportive and if I ever feel down I’ll hop on Facebook for immediate support! she says.
“Connecting online is one thing, but nothing beats the feeling of getting together with our community in person. Earlier this year we hosted the KIC Tour in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, where we worked with hundreds of KIC members, hosted a roundtable on health and wellness with amazing guest speakers with a meet and greet afterwards. It’s incredibly humbling and rewarding to hear how KIC has personally helped them, especially during the very difficult last few years,” adds Laura.
But it wasn’t all easy
“My personal low point would definitely be towards the end of 2020, when I was experiencing a self-diagnosed severe case of impostor syndrome. Like many of us, I crave and thrive on connection and Melbourne’s long lockdowns have really taken a toll on my mental health and self-esteem. I found myself guessing at everything I was doing and my abilities in what I was doing day to day. It makes me sad to look back at that time because I had really lost my spark, but on the other hand, I’m so proud of how far I’ve come, and now I know I’m the right person to lead KIC, alongside the best business partner, Steph! says Laura.
“As cliche as it sounds, I’m grateful for the lesson I was able to learn from this time, being that self-confidence comes from within. You can’t put it in someone else’s hands or you rely on external factors. We have to take responsibility for this, and it is so important that we often remember it. Being decisive and clear in everything I do is so essential in my role and therefore it is important to support me so that I can show the best of myself for our team and our community every day. I have accepted the fact that impostor syndrome will manifest for me and that I may never be able to push it away forever , but I don’t let it control my narrative,” she says.
For more information about KIC, you can visit here.
For more from Women Love Tech on women entrepreneurs, go here.