How we meandered to where we are today

July 20, 2017

Hey there. I thought I'd do a bit of a recap on who we are, what we do, why we started, and the way we meandered through it all....

I'm Christine, and along with my partner Eran, we are the owners of Sola Skincare, a natural skincare company born out of my desire to replace personal care products with healthy and effective versions.

Shortly after our youngest daughter was born in 2012, I started getting really interested in the ingredients in products we were using. I borrowed the book "There's Lead in Your Lipstick" by Gillian Deacon from our local library, and that was the turning point where I really started getting miffed about all the ingredients in the personal care items we were using. Admittedly we are pretty low maintenance people, but we used the basics and I'd fallen for many green-washed brands and products thinking I was being smart and choosing the healthier, better choice (which I've come to realize happens to so many people with the best intentions).

It was overwhelming and I thought I needed to learn about all the unfavourable ingredients that were in the products I was using. However, I soon realized that I didn't need to focus my energy on those negatives; instead I needed to seek out better solutions, find better ingredients, and I set off to create my own products for our family to use.

After plenty of research and collaboration with my partner Eran, who practices Acupuncture and Chinese medicine, we realized we could mesh our worlds. We would infuse Chinese herbs chosen by Eran for their specific benefits, in oils which I would then use in products I was researching and developing.

I enlisted the help of friends and family to test out what I was creating, and before long they were asking to purchase our products because they were thrilled with the results and trusted us to be honest, truthful and only use ingredients that were necessary; no fillers. After selling on Etsy for a few years very part time, we took the plunge, rebranded our company, and opened up our own website. We are now in about 14 locations across Canada, mostly smaller eco shops, or clinic spaces as well as selling online directly to customers.

As the years have gone by, we've gotten more serious about our environment footprint, reducing wherever we can. We've built our own raised beds in our yard so we can grow our own food. Over the years we've filled them with garlic, greens, tomato plants, beans, as well as a few blueberry & raspberry bushes, and a strawberry patch. We are learning as we go, and each season we add new veggies, try something different, and learn what works and what doesn't.

We've switched to compostable toothbrushes, use Abeego, a reusable plastic wrap alternative, have invested in Lunapads, try to save our water, and we've realized it's a lifestyle choice. We aren't super strict about everything because we're also human, make mistakes, make poor choices from time to time, and believe in balance. If we were too strict, it would be to overwhelming, too difficult. So instead we make manageable changes one at a time, which aren't such a big deal after all.

Creating Sola has kind of changed everything. It makes us look at things differently, makes us evaluate choices a bit closer, and we are constantly working towards being better.

And it all started from one simple library book. It's amazing what can inspire you to make a change

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