The Very Beginning
I (Hannah) started making products back in 2016 because I had recently gone plant-based, and I couldn’t find any products that were cruelty-free and vegan.
So I did some research, took a few classes, and started making my own!
Pretty quick into this new endeavor, I realized the difference between natural vs toxic ingredients. After reading about certain toxic ingredients, I decided to only ever use safe ingredients.
Not only safe for human use but safe for the environment.
Almost all of the products I was currently using had the toxins I wanted to avoid, so I swapped everything.
After I had been selling to friends and family, Jaymie (co-founder) started buying products from me. He gave me friendly feedback for a while, and we soon started to dream of what a real business would look like.
Not long after we decided to partner up, we left our jobs and focussed solely on our new business idea.
We started in Jaymie's basement, he then sold his house so we found a place with the cheapest rent.. my parent's basement haha (see photo above!).
By cheap, I mean free. We wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for our family's support!
Fun Fact #1: We built those tables with some old wood we had laying around and even still use one of them in our current warehouse as a desk. It’s a bit uneven, but it’s a great reminder of where we started.
Fun Fact #2: All of the bowls, utensils, measuring cups, spoons, etc in the photo above, we still use in the warehouse today! Why get new equipment when the old stuff still works?!
Looking back, we had no idea what we were doing. We laugh about it all the time. We like to think we know what we’re doing now, but we’re still always learning)
Through years of trial and error, we developed truly natural, safe, vegan, and cruelty-free products. At the time, we weren’t plastic-free. But after diving into the industry, we realized how much we needed to do better.
So we designed packaging out of paper! It was hard at first, and our first few rounds were pretty rough. But they worked, and it’s gotten better and better each time.
Fun Fact #3: If you’ve ordered our deodorant or lip balm, you know they come with a small spacer inside where the product sits on top. I used to cut cardboard, and glue it together with a hot glue gun to make those. Literally. I couldn’t even count how many days I was up until 4 am cutting and gluing those damn pieces of cardboard haha.
The above photo is what our products used to look like! (Before we dedicated ourselves to be plastic free)
Manufacturing & Fulfillment Centre Upgrade
After busting our butts for the first couple of years, doing everything ourselves, we decided to move everything over to a third party manufacturing and fulfillment center!
We thought this was going to be what we needed to scale up and grow, but we soon realized they didn’t know any better than us haha! Not at any fault of their own. They are awesome people and we’re SO grateful for our time together.
Our ultra-natural formulas with our paper packaging require very specific machinery, and that was something that we learned along the way. It resulted in us realizing that we needed to bring all manufacturing and fulfillment in-house so we could keep proper control over our products.
So among a crazy holiday season, a global pandemic, and tough times in business, we made the drastic move and brought everything up to a warehouse we now rent in Langley, BC!
With my baby, I might add! That’s my son, Archer, in the stroller there, napping. Back when we first got this warehouse, I didn’t have any childcare, and my husband was working full time. So I used to bring Archer with me, along with his stroller, playpen, and all.
Fun Fact #4: I was the only one making products at the time, so I would simultaneously formulate everything here while rocking him in his stroller, or carrying him on my back in the carrier.
Talk about hard work. Massive shout out to any parents out there, you’re the real MVPs!
Fun Fact #5: If you join our mailing list, you can give us direct feedback and be involved in the formulating process!
The effects of COVID hit us hard. Not going to lie, we were struggling.
Jaymie had made lots of contacts over the years with other entrepreneurs and mentors, so he decided to do some reach outs.
He asked around to his friends to see how they were doing, and to see if we could help each other out during this stressful time.
He started chatting with his friend, Matt, from Pela Case. Needless to say, the conversation went very well!
A few weeks later, we were celebrating as the new sister company to Pela Case and were fully integrated into their amazing team of individuals dedicated to saving the planet.
Since then, we’ve built an amazing team of 11 people who are just as passionate as us. I absolutely love them.
Now, together we’re on a mission to stop 1 BILLION pounds of plastic from ever being made!
We wouldn’t be here without you - our customers. We’re SO grateful for you and excited for the future.