Almost 30 years ago, I began making my own jewelry and skin care. I was obsessed with skin care, because I have such sensitive skin, and commercial soaps literally stung and burned my skin. I sold my products at craft fairs and street fairs as a teenager, and I don't think I realized then how I was laying the groundwork and foundation for Badan Body to become the global brand that it has.
Years later, working as a professional makeup artist has put me in contact with a lot of amazing people. I have traveled all over the world, and everywhere I went, I studied what natural resources each country had to offer in terms of skin care and beauty.
At the end of every photo or video shoot, I would leave little "thank you" gifts to my clients for hiring me. After a while, clients started requesting certain items they had been gifted, which were their new "must have" candles, soaps and lotions, and then one client in particular insisted that I start selling my creations. Shortly after that, I relocated cross country to Los Angeles, where I began selling my products at various outdoor markets and events.
Soon, I found myself not only selling my products, but designing product lines for other "Celebrity" owned beauty companies, landing high end product lines in stores like Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus Japan. It was fun for a while, but once a line takes off, small companies like mine are traded in for overseas mass production, & the quality & purity of the creation is lost. "Organic" gets put on the label, but only about 2% of the ingredients truly are. Pure high quality organic oils are traded in for cheaper oils and synthetics, as well as cheaper manufacturing methods.
You see, my great-grandmother trained me in what I do, and truly believed I could make it into something great. She was an amazing woman and herbalist. I still use many of the same methods and techniques that she taught me. My effort in creating each of my products cannot be duplicated on a mass level, and I soon realized that while I enjoyed the money, I missed meeting my end-user customers at shows, getting their feedback and opinions. More importantly, I refuse to compromise the integrity of my products for a buck.
So I went back to my small workshop, and I went back to my markets and art shows. I re-invested in the power of building an online presence, and the world of new customers it opens a small company up to. Now, I continue to create my products my way, and I haven't looked back since.