Our Latest Baby Heirloom Herbs

In the previous post I talked about boring artificial flavors versus using real botanicals. Beyond sourcing ingredients directly from farmers when possible, we’re also growing our own uncommon heirloom herbs from seed. These little babies are for future experiments with flavors and fragrances, and they’re off to a great start.

Artificial Flavors vs Real Ingredients

Food flavors used to be incredibly diverse. If you track down old cookbooks you really notice the incredible range of ingredients that used to go into food. (If you want to look into this directly a really interesting read is The Compleat Cook by W.M. It was originally printed in London in 1658 and covers ways to cook with a massive number of grains, spices, and animals, as well as including recipes for things like vinegar that most people now just pick up at the grocery store when needed. The whole thing is online for free at Project Gutenberg: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/10520) In our modern world (and especially in the US) where more food is being manufactured by fewer companies, it only makes sense that the range of things you eat is decreasing.

Lip balms are usually flavored (though we do plan to offer an unflavored version) and choosing those flavors has been a project we’ve taken very seriously. The easy version is to go to a wholesaler of artificial flavors, pick up some strawberry banana and call it a day. But the easy way is kind of depressing. They taste artificial, flat, and just generally boring. There are so many unusual flavors that no one even thinks about anymore, and by obsessively using real botanicals we’re coming up with unique flavors that aren’t available any other way. Everything we’re making is totally free from artificial flavors. After working through dozens and dozens of combinations we’ve come up with some things we absolutely love. I’m really looking forward to announcing the range (which we’re so close to being able to do!)

The Beginning

We started to develop a beauty line out of personal need. We were both experiencing irritation, allergic reactions, and dryness from the products we were using. Our original intent was to use try to understand what ingredients were bothering our skin so we could avoid them, but ended up replacing the skin care we were using with products we created.


I was traveling a lot for business, and being at the airport a few times a week left me dreading every TSA line. I had heard of solid lotion bars and they seemed like a great way to ditch a liquid item from my carry on. I couldn’t find a brand who’s ingredients I felt good about, so I made my own. After trying lots of different balances of pure botanical oils and beeswax I found one that I really like. I liked it so much that I started using it all the time, travelling or not. As my chronically dry elbows and ankles softened into distant memories I was inspired to try more products. Lip balm was next (did I mention I was flying a few times a week? Ugh, all that dry airplane air.) Living without cracked lips makes me wonder how I managed for so long. At that I was fairly sure what oils would get the job done, so I moved on to perfecting a face wash and moisturizer.


While I was doing this, Carly was on her own mission to start growing healthy plants for eating and using in beauty products. She was also developing formulas for soaps that carried that same clean ingredient simplicity, relying on the perfect balance of natural ingredients to be cleansing without drying. Carly’s a natural at combining different botanicals to make delicious and intriguing fragrances, so she was making thing smell great, too.


After developing a group of formulas we were using all the time and receiving some really flattering comments about fresh looking skin, we started giving some to friends. Everyone we gave it to made sure we knew when they were running out, reminding us that they needed more of this or that, and sometimes that it was urgent.


We were making more and more all the time, adding in new flavors and fragrances, and receiving request from friends, and friends of friends, so we decided to make it available to everyone.


We believe in:
Products that are small batch, hand made, composed of clean and natural ingredients, with no artificial flavors, fragrances, phthalates , sulfates, or parabens. All real things that feel great on your skin.


We’re using this forum to talk about our process of going from beloved private products to a line that’s available to anyone, click the link under “newer” below to keep reading and join the email list for new updates.



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