A few years ago Sam and I started making the switch to living more green. As I mentioned the other day, I buy or get most of my clothes and household objects used, we make most of our house cleaners, we primarily use cloth diapers for Eve — which is not as difficult or gross to do as you might think, and has the added benefit of saving you money in the long-term! — and we try to buy and eat organic as much as possible.
It has taken me a little longer, but I also started to make the switch to natural both and body products. I began learning more about all the chemicals that are in many of the products we use, and it freaked me out. Our skin is our largest organ and absorbs what we put on it, including all those not-so-awesome chemicals that can potentially lead to major health problems.
While I have found it easy to find bath products, such as soap and shampoo, that are free from the list of chemicals I refuse to use, which include parabens and fragrances, I have found it more challenging to find makeup that fits my criteria and is affordable. So when my friend Dana over at Kiss My List — who has never steered me wrong on a book recommendation or a product she loves — shared on her Love List last month about Moody Sisters Skincare, I immediately jumped over their website. It was EXACTLY what I had been looking for! As they describe on their website, Moody Sisters Skincare is “Real ingredients for real families made by real people. Helping you save money, balance your moody skin and love the earth– one bottle at a time.”
As per Dana’s recommendation, I bought their dry shampoo, plus liquid foundation, eyecolor trio, and mineral blush. I paid less than $65 for all of it, including shipping — that’s less than I paid for my previous bottle of foundation alone from another company! I have been so excited to use their products and to be able to support two fellow small handmade business owners, that I asked them to share a little bit more about Moody Sisters Skincare with you today.
Tell us a little bit more about your business and the story behind it. What inspired you to start your business?
Younger sister Whitney called her big sister Jess one day in 2010 completely fed up. Whitney’s skin had always been sensitive, but shortly after her first daughter was born, it became unbearable. She was at the point where she couldn’t find a single commercial deodorant that wouldn’t cause a painful rash, and her dry, itchy dermatitis was made worse by commercial lotions.
She mentioned that she was going to try to make her own lotion and deodorant that weekend with all natural ingredients and she was going to buy some essential oils. Jess got excited — she had quite a few essential oils she had been using for aromatherapy, so the dynamic duo got together and made a complete mess of Whitney’s kitchen.
It took a LOT of trial and error, but over time we had a very nice Dry Skin Cream and Powder Deodorant that Whitney could use. Success! We soon started to try out products that would help Jess out too — she suffered with PCOS and oily, acne prone skin.
Soon the sisters had a nice little selection of completely natural products they could use and their skin was starting to look better than it ever had! We started up a shop on Etsy, and would get together on the weekends once a month to make products for our orders. Customers raved about our products, which inspired us to keep learning, continually improving recipes, and coming up with new, natural products to help our customers and families. Eventually we grew to the point where we launched our own website. Today we offer a full line of natural skincare and body products that are fun and fresh, and our Deodorant and Dry Skin Cream are still some of our best sellers!
What do you love most about having your own small business? What is your biggest challenge?
We love the flexibility of owning our own business — we both work from home and we are able to take care of our families and be involved in our kid’s activities. Owning our own business also allows us to be very creative — Whitney designs all of the product labels and website layouts and Jess writes the product descriptions and works on new delicious Essential Oil blends.
Our biggest challenge would probably be the fact that we live across the country from each other — Whitney lives in Washington state and Jess is way down in Florida. We hold weekly meetings on Facetime and we send a ton of Facebook messages and emails back and forth!
I have a sister also, and while we love each other dearly, I’m not sure how well we would work together! How has it been for you two to be related and work together?
We work surprisingly well together! Jess is 10 years older than Whitney, and we are very different. Whitney is the optimistic, outgoing sister with a strong entrepreneurial spirit who often comes up with crazy, zany ideas. Jess is the pragmatic, introverted sister with strong analytical skills. If it wasn’t for Whitney, Jess would probably be stuck analyzing numbers and wouldn’t take enough risks to grow the business. On the other hand it is Jess’ job to help keep Whitney’s head out of the clouds and figure out which of her crazy ideas are realistic. We split the day to day work up according to our strengths. And, sometimes, it does actually help that we’re in two different places. If we get annoyed with each other, we can just walk away from the PC for a break. If we were working at desks next to each other all day every day, we might get a bit irritated with each other!
I am on a big kick personally to get rid myself and my family of any unnecessary chemicals and use products that are safe and all-natural, especially with bath and body products since we absorb so much through our skin. What advice would you give to someone who wants to but doesn’t know where to start?
Definitely start small. Choose one or two products you’d really like to replace — maybe something you use the most like your deodorant and body lotion. Keep in mind that your skin will naturally have an adjustment period when you change products, so try it for a few days before you decide you don’t like it. (Unless you’re having an allergic reaction — by all means, stop using it immediately!) Shampoo and Deodorant can have the longest adjustment periods – so hang in there. It can be hard to get used to sweating after years of using an anti-perspirant.
[Tweet “Switching to natural beauty products? Start small & give your skin time to adjust! @MoodySisters”]
What is something people might not know about you?
Our last name isn’t actually Moody! We named ourselves the Moody Sisters because our skin and our lives are sometimes very MOODY. We make these products to help relieve the moodiness in every aspect of our lives. (Plus, our maiden name just doesn’t roll off the tongue very well!)
What tips would you offer for other small business owners?
Make sure your business is a true reflection of yourself and your values, and don’t give up! It can take a lot of time to build your business, but it’s worth every second if it’s something you truly believe in.
[Tweet “”Make sure your business is a true reflection of yourself and your values.” @MoodySisters #smallbiz”]
Thanks for joining me on my blog today, Whitney & Jess, and be sure to check out their website. By the way, since Dana told me about them, I encourage you to use her referral code KISSMYLIST and get 10% off your first purchase!