Vanilla Blush and Bullen Healthcare have a lot in common, even though Bullen was founded in 1858, and Vanilla Blush 150 years later, in 2008. 

For they both put the needs of their stoma customers first and are acutely aware that those customers expect, need and receive the very best, personal service, as well as high-quality products. 

That meeting of minds was very much in evidence when Sue Blackwell, Bullen's digital marketing manager, and Dan Walmsley, the company's marketing director, popped into Vanilla Blush's Bridgeton headquarters in Glasgow, to meet Blush's founder and director, Nicola Dames and business partner, Simon Dames, the company's director of global communications. 

The Bullen team is based at the fourth-generation-family-owned major, home-delivery supplier of stoma, urology and wound care supplies, in Liverpool, where an automated warehouse ensures a speedy home delivery of products. And they were not far from their company's Scottish, Cambuslang base, and a chat with Nicola and Simon soon had customer needs under discussion over lunch.

"We pride ourselves in the personal service we give, by dedicating a member of staff to each customer," said Dan. 

"That way, our stomas product users get to know who they're dealing with and are secure in the knowledge that it's a sensitive and caring person, who understands perfectly what a stoma user needs and the anxieties they can experience, especially in the early days of use. 

"We're delighted to find a meeting of minds at Vanilla Blush, and we're looking forward to working with the company, for example, to direct stoma customers who would like to wear attractive under, sports or swimwear, towards Nicola and her team, for we know that they will receive first class customer service and excellent products."

Sue is herself a Vanilla Blush customer, and found out about the company on social media. 

"I wear Vanilla Blush garments, so I know all about the company's quality products and personal care approach as a very satisfied customer. It was great to meet face-to-face with Nicola and her team in the company's headquarters. We'll be keeping in close touch as companies and as friends, and we know that both Bullen and Vanilla Blush customers will benefit from that networking." 

Nicola Dames said: "We were delighted to welcome Sue and Dan to our headquarters, not just to see how we operate at first hand, but to chat over how we both put our customers first as succesful businesses in complimentary fields. We will continue to work closely together and we can bounce ideas off one another, swap experiences and customer feedback. 

"That, plus a friendly, working relationship and a great deal of shared expertise in the field of stoma care, will help us both deliver an even better service to our customers who want and, rightly expect the best, whether in home-delivery stoma care products from Bullen or in accessing the attractive, quality lingerie and underwear that is the hallmark of Vanilla Blush." 

(Article and photos credited to Hugh Dougherty)