You launched Sally B Skin Yummies in 2005. How has the beauty industry changed since that time?
Not a lot. We still see makeup ads with flawless, airbrushed models claiming that their chemically laden makeup products will make any skin type of any age look just as beautiful. We still have beauty aisles filled with mass marketed products filled with chemicals and marketing claims to make you believe that they aren’t.
Ten years later, I am excited to see that the conversation about chemical ingredients and a natural, more organic lifestyle is happening. Consumers are becoming more informed and conscious of what they put on their skin. While I hope the big skin care manufacturers will back of their promises of creating healthier formulations, we have yet to see them put their money where there mouth is. Until then, it’s up to Sally B’s Skin Yummies and other organic skin care companies to give consumers the products they want and prove that organic skin care products are beneficial and they work.
I love that you created your company name from your childhood nickname. When you were starting to experiment and create some products in your kitchen, did you know then that this would be the name for your brand, or did it come to you over time?
When I started making products I had no idea I was launching a brand. I started by making lotion bars as Christmas gifts for friends. Pinterest, or blogs for that matter, weren’t around at the time, so I really had to do a lot of research and experimenting on my own to make these gifts happen. My friends adored the products I was making, so I kept it up. When I finally launched Sally B’s, it just made sense to use Sally B’s – my friends had given me my name and they gave me the encouragement to start my new company.
What is your company’s mission? Can you share what it means to you?
The Sally B’s mission is to create effective, non-toxic alternatives to everyday products using the highest concentration of certified organic ingredients available. This has been our guiding vision since the conception of the company, even when organic ingredients were few and far between.
Over the years, however, our mission has grown to include more than just the integrity of our product formulations. We realized we are just as much educators, helping to inform consumers about personal care products, ingredients, and trends to empower themselves to become more conscious consumers. The organic industry is in its infancy (relatively speaking), and oftentimes consumers don’t know where to look for information or what to believe. Like we tried to fill the void in 2005 by introducing organic products to the market, we are trying to be a reliable source of information for consumers.
Your products are “of the highest quality, most effective, organic ingredients possible”. What do you do with your packaging so that it is eco friendly? Explain.
We say that our products are people and planet friendly, and they are. Our products are beneficial to consumers in the sense that they do not expose our bodies to unnecessary, harmful toxins. At the same time, when the product is washed down the drain, it will not harm our ecosystems or wildlife. We choose ingredients that are sourced organically and responsibly, which means we are not contributing to the worldwide pesticide problem or uprooting ecosystems.
and its will not harm our ecosystems or wildlife when washed down the drain. Our packaging is also a non-negotiable in this arena, too. We take the extra step to ensure that our packaging is made from recycled materials, recyclable at the end of its life,
We make the earth-friendly choice whenever possible, even if it does cost a little bit extra on our end. One area that we do not compromise our environmental integrity is product packaging. Our landfills are packed to the max and we have plastic garbage patches floating in our oceans. We do not want to be a part of the problem, so we use packaging that can be recycled to be part of the solution.
First, we do not package our products in unnecessary boxes. We include all our product information on our product labels to eliminate the need for additional packaging, which is one less thing for you to throw away or recycle. Plus, we believe that you should have all the information about your products readily available to you. We use glass jars, BPA-free plastic containers (for those products used by wet, slippery hands), and aluminum lids, all of which can be recycled at the end of their usefulness. We also believe reusing containers whenever possible.
As a small company, when it comes to product packaging we are limited to what is available Our packaging changes from time to time because we have found a new, better solution or found a new, recyclable option.
How do you embrace sustainability in your company? What do you do with your packaging so that it is eco friendly?
Sustainability is so important to Sally B’s. Simply speaking, without a healthy and thriving world we would not have access to all our wonderful, nature-made ingredients. We go the extra mile to ensure that our Planet is being taken care of so it will take care of us.
Aside from our commitment to using organic and sustainably sourced ingredients, we also believe in reusing, reducing, and recycling whenever possible. One of the biggest avenues for this is in our product packaging. (see above)
In the Sally B’s kitchen we recycle, we reuse boxes and shipping materials from incoming mail, we avoid one-use plastic at all costs, and we use non-toxic cleaning supplies. And we’re an almost paperless office! Everyone on staff is environmentally conscious and we all work towards doing our part to improve the health of our planet.
What makes your brand unique in the arena of green beauty and where do you think it is headed?
First, Sally B’s is transparent. We want you to know exactly what you’re putting on your skin, so we list every ingredient on our packaging and on our website. We don’t use vague or misleading marketing claims, we love to answer customer questions, and we would never recommend a product you didn’t need. Unfortunately this is not the norm in the beauty industry. There are very few regulations that manufacturers have to adhere to. Aside from including the ingredients, which is a must, there can add whatever they want to their label.
Secondly, we’re all about research and looking ahead. As Chief Formulator, I’m always on the hunt for the next “miracle” ingredient or a new product idea. This is why we create our products in small batches. If we find that ingredient y is better than x in a certain instance, we may swap it out. Or if we want to incorporate a new, beneficial ingredient we can.
We hope more companies follow suit. Right now companies are jumping on the health revolution train the wrong way. Instead of investing money in research and development, they are tweaking product packaging to look more nature-derived. Be wary of marketing claims, especially the term “natural.” Keep in mind that poison ivy is natural and so is carmine, which is a color made from ground up bugs. Look beyond the word natural and become educated on how to read an ingredient label so you can decide for yourself if the product is for you.
What is your favorite healthy ingredient, and why do you love it? What products feature it?
If you listen to me long enough, at one time or another, you will hear me say that every ingredient is my favorite. But my all-star ingredient is organic Tamanu Oil. It is in several of our products – including our Tamanu Luxury Facial Cleanser, Eco Body Lotion, and Tamanu Neem Healing Bar – to help fight inflammation, heal, and balance skin. It’s gentle so it can be used with almost any skin type.
Your company supports EWG and the Breast Cancer Fund. I assume it is your own journey that lead you to want to support these amazing organizations. Is there anything else you would like to share about what these two organizations mean to you? Are there other charities you are also passionate about?
Are Sally B products featured in spas? If so, which ones and what are some of your favorite treatments featuring Sally B products?
About a year ago we created our own facial studio at Sally B’s Skin Yummies. Together with an esthetician, I created several facial treatments that each target a different skin need – cleansing, balancing, anti-aging, and calming, for those with eczema or psoriasis. Our efforts weren’t in vain and we were named “Best Facial in Atlanta” by BestSelf magazine. We’re proud of our facial program and do hope to roll it out in spas across the country.
Your products look amazing online! Where can I find Sally B products displayed so I can touch and smell the entire line (is there anywhere in addition to the Atlanta flagship store)?
We have several retailers in Georgia and across the country that sell Sally B’s Skin Yummies. We even have a distributor in Hong Kong and another in New Zealand. You can see a list of stores on the “where to buy” page on our site:
Your company is based Atlanta, Georgia. Can you tell me a little bit more about Sally B headquarters, your team and your company culture?
We’re a small team made up of diverse women who are passionate about a healthy, balanced lifestyle. What I love most is that we are all in different stages of our lives, each with a distinct skin type, so when I develop a new product we are the testers. When I make a product that everyone loves, like our most recent Peptide Booster Serum, I know we have a product that our customers will love, too.
How would you describe your ideal customer?
This is a trick question for sure! There is no one profile that defines the Sally B’s customer. The wonderful thing about our product collection is that it is beneficial for so many skin types, young and old. Ideally, however, we would like to see more people embracing organic skin care while they are young. Too often we see women wait until they are already developing wrinkles or are undergoing a health issue before they seek out a non-toxic lifestyle.
Do you have any new products or launches that we can expect to see in the near future?
We are working hard on a sunscreen. This requires a lot of testing but we hope to have one out next year. We are also working on a new line of product specifically targeting ultra sensitive skin and skin going through changes.
Do you have any personal or professional mantras that you love?
We post quotes regularly on Facebook and Instagram. It ‘s a fun thing that we do to collect sayings and mantras. I do think my favorites over the last couple of months are the following.
The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it….Robert Swann
Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear…George Addair
What is your favorite product in your line?
This is like asking a mother to pick her favorite kid! I love all our products for different reasons, but the product I’m currently most proud of is our Peptide Booster Serum. It’s a product that everyone can benefit from. Apply it once a day for instant moisture and a boost of peptides, which helps collagen production. I’m envious of the 20-somethings that can start using this product now. I can’t wait to see how their skin looks in 20 years.
What is your favorite way to relax?
Baths. The answer of a true product girl! I try to take one at least once a week and because I think it is a fabulous way to unwind I created our organic Tub Teas filled with botanicals and herbs to make a bath even more relaxing.
What are your goals for your company in the future?
We are in a growth mode. Trying to judge the best way to ramp up production and continue producing products of the same caliber is a challenge. We are working with some great minds to get this accomplished.
How do you find balance while juggling life’s needs and work’s responsibilities?
I am big on sleeping and I try to take at least one day a week for myself. When you have your own company, this is challenging. I would love to say that I exercise, meditate and get ample sleep daily. That is only the goal at this point.
What is your favorite edible ingredient to both eat and use on your skin?
Coconut Oil. I drink it in my coffee, cook with it, and use it in skin care formulations.
What are two to three things you feel are important to share with your customers?
First, our products work. Even though the organic market has grown by leaps and bounds over the years, there are still customers who need to feel the sting of the alcohol in their toner to think it’s working or smell Clorox to believe their house is clean. We are out to prove their assumptions wrong.
Secondly, Sally B’s Skin Yummies is not your end all be all solution for acne, eczema, and other skin ailments. While our organic products play a huge role in creating healthy and happy skin, you also might have to make changes in your lifestyle. Think, diet, exercise, stress, etc. Life is a balancing act and in order for our skin to look its best, our body must be at its best, too. We claim to be an effective addition to your routine as you make other changes in your healthy lifestyle.
Abby Mason, AADP, INHC Certified Holistic Health Coach