What do you create?
We create naturally inspired spa products & soy candles. The majority of our bath & beauty products are made with 90-99% natural ingredients. We do use preservatives to keep these hand made products free from harmful bacteria & mold. Our soy candles are made with real soy wax and natural cotton wicks. There is no zinc or lead in our wicks, so they safe & healthy to burn.
How did you come up with your company name?
Our business is based on creating fabulous products that are made with natural ingredients. I wanted a name that shouted “I am Natural”. The word “Natural” to me means, unaltered, untouched and innocent. My husband mentioned the word “raw”, so we looked it up in the dictionary. The dictionary defines “raw” as: “Not processed purified or refined”. Raw was the perfect word to define our products, ingredients and company.
When and why did you decide to start your business?
I had gone to culinary school because I fell in love with food and being creative with dishes. I think that culinary school really helped jump start my interest in the beauty industry. Making beauty products is very similar to cooking or baking.
My journey began by making lotion from scratch in 2003. My friends and family would come over to my house and “ooh and aah” over the aroma in the air. My mom works in a hair salon, so she would take the lotion to work and sell them. After creating several different products and having my mom sell them to her clients, I realized that I had some great products and people wanted them. Raw Beauty was fully launched for business in August 2005.
Where do you get your inspiration for your projects?
I have been a girly girl all my life, so, I have always loved spa products & treatments. I was also the oldest growing up, so my brother & sister had to “put up with” my creative side. I would make beauty products from food and make them go to my spa (which just so happened to be my bedroom).
I have learned to really listen to my customers and friends and their needs, which really helps me give them what they desire. I have always had a passion for creativity and beauty products, that this business really fits me perfectly. You definitely have to do your research and keep up with trends as well…but it’s also fun trying to set your own trends too.
What is your main goal for this year?
I would definitely say that one of our main goals is to give back to the community. I have always been fascinated with fundraisers and charity events. Raw Beauty has opened up doors to some wonderful sponsorship for charity organizations. I am a strong believer that if the business is doing well… the business should give back to the community. Since June 2005, we have been able to give over $2500 in charitable donations.
In December 2005, we were sponsors for the Project Angel Food Organization. We were able to donate over $1400 worth of Raw Beauty products that were sold to help feed families that are living with HIV/AIDS. We were so proud to be apart of that wonderful fundraising event and we will be donating again this year as well.
What advice would you give to someone starting a creative business?
Take your time and do your research. Don’t rush it. I have learned that being too excited to get started can really hurt you. You have to make sure that you cover every aspect before going live. That ensures that you are really ready for whatever comes your way, good or bad. It took me over a year of researching about starting & running a business, perfecting my products and price points as well as packaging. There is so much involved in getting a business off its feet, but if you have the confidence and knowledge, everything falls into place.
And just out of curiosity, what’s your favorite tool of your trade?
Our Kitchen Aid mixer. All of our lotions, butters and crème’s are made with this sweet mixer. She does a really good job and we love her.