AS THE wind in the city began to change, Gibran Registe-Charles was faced with a dilemma.

Either attempt to reignite his career as a wealth manager in a now turbulent and hostile climate, competing with emerging new talent – or try something new.

When his Jamaican grandmother visited in Christmas 2011, she inadvertently set the ball rolling on what would become a dramatic career change.

The 38-year-old said: “My grandmother is from Jamaica and every Christmas she makes us homemade carrot juice as a present. We were in the kitchen and I was looking at all this carrot pulp when I had this bizarre idea about using carrots to make soap.

“I contacted a friend of mine, who made two bars of soap straight away using carrot seed oil as the base. We started making more, adding different ingredients such as lavender and called it Carrot Candy, and I began selling it in Camden Market.

From working in the city to working on a stall, it was life-changing.

“We started to gets lots of questions, such as whether the soap was good for children or people with acne or skin conditions. In fact as I got more and more questions, I decided I needed to do more research.”

After dipping his toe in the world of skin therapy through his organic soap, Mr Registe-Charles enrolled in the London College of Beauty Therapy to increase his background knowledge.

Despite being the only man in a class full of girls, the former banker thrived after receiving positive feedback – particularly for his facials.

He began to divert his thoughts away from selling soap and started to focus on the more medical side of skin care and analysis.

He said: “I started the course with the idea of researching the soap but as it progressed I became more interested with specialist skin care. I did about 70 facials in that time and I was getting really good feedback. As a man in that female dominated world, that really gave me the confidence to go forward with the idea of opening a specialist skin and facial therapy clinic.”

After graduating, Mr Registe-Charles put all his time into his fledgling business, Skin Plus Group, searching for the right location in west London.

Noticing a gap in the market, he was fairly confident that a facial-only therapy clinic could flourish, but he had niggling doubts about how clients would respond to receiving treatment from a man.

After finding an ideal location in the back of the Fitrooms gym, in North End Road, Fulham, he opened the doors to the public last month, albeit with some trepidation.

He said: “I was very nervous as I didn’t know what the public perception would be about a man giving facials, it’s very new. But the response has been amazing so far, a lot of my female customers don’t mind. I was worried about how I was going to be perceived but all my clients have come back and now in the space of a month I’ve got 30 regular customers.”

While his previous life as a City high-flyer was one of long hours, networking and multi-million-pound decisions, his new one is a lot more tranquil.

His Fulham clinic has been kitted out to create a Zen-like haven for clients and this relaxing atmosphere has helped Mr Registe-Charles make the life-changing transition. However, he has not lost any of his business acumen and after one month is already planning to expand.

He said: “Investment pretty much just came from me and from my friends. They saw how passionate I was about it and how hard I had worked, they wanted to be part of it. They knew I’d be able to create a good business. I’d like to expand into other gyms and start taking on staff and open my own shop in two years.”

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