If you have a passion for plant based products, then you are in good company with Sasanna. She is the owner, designer, and crafter of Olive & Yew Botanical Skincare. Join Sasanna as she talks about her love for creating holistic skincare products.
What inspired you become an entrepreneur?
Becoming an entrepreneur always excited me because one gets to share their passions and creations with the world! I feel I get to do this exactly with selling my holistic skincare products.
Working from home always seemed like a dream to me, so I decided to make it happen! I love the ease and flexibility of running my own business. I highly value family time and giving time to our community. Running my own business allows for me to manage these areas. It’s truly amazing how far one can strive to go further in their own business, but I have learned that opportunity cost plays a major component.
Giving and spending time with family is so important to me and I must spend less time with something else to achieve this. There are after all, only 24 hours in a day. I have found contentment with selling at a local farmers market with here and there sales online. There are many other roads I can focus on with growing my business, such as spending time on more social media to advertise my business or selling at another farmers market, but I realize it’ll take time from the balance and rhythm of what I want life to look like for me. Being an entrepreneur has attributed the flexibility to achieve true happiness in life. I am very satisfied.
“A quiet secluded life in the country, with the possibility of being useful to people to whom it is easy to do good, and who are not accustomed to have it done to them; then work which one hopes may be of some use; then rest, nature, books, music, love for one’s neighbor — such is my idea of happiness.”
What is your business mission?
At Olive and Yew, our mission is to offer a healthy, natural option to the community so that people feel safe with soap that they put on their skin. I believe that what we put on our skin is as equally important as what we put into our bodies. It takes 26 seconds for products that we put on our skin to become absorbed into our bloodstream…wow! By hand crafting holistic skincare products, I can of course control what ingredients go into my line. Using plant oils in my product-line as well as herbal tea infusions and organic milks, make these bars of soap a most definitely purer bar. The soaps are also fragrance-free and dye-free. They are instead scented with plant essential oils and colored with herbal infusions and clays. These ingredients make them mighty wholesome bars of soap that allow nature to speak for itself.
A side note?
Have you ever taken the time to read any skin-care product ingredient label? Please, beware of the harmful, harsh chemicals that are in many. The synthetic detergents, fillers, and other carcinogens are entering our bloodstream upon use. I would like to raise awareness concerning this matter. Choose to become aware of ingredient labels and eliminate the harmful ingredients from your life!
Another side note?
If you have Netflix, I highly recommend watching the documentary called “Stink!”. It is very insightful, and I hope will open your eyes to harmful substances found in cosmetics and clothing as much as it did mine.
How did you decide on the name Olive & Yew Skincare?
When I first started selling soap, I had another company name, but didn’t “feel” it. I wanted to express the feeling I felt when making soaps into the name, because a name expresses a lot about the feeling of a product.
The soaps I make contain between 50-60% olive oil. Olive oil is highly moisturizing and is considered an ancient oil, dating back to before 2000 BC. I love olive trees and the history aspect of olive oil. Being dated back to ancient days, olive oil has been used successfully for so many generations, and that is statement enough for reinstating the quality behind it. Olive trees give me the Mediterranean vibe of Biblical times and crystal blue waters which are a part of my true happiness. The moisturizing aspect to olive oil gives my handcrafted soaps much nourishment for our skin.
“Yew”, which is a tree found predominately in Europe, is often mistaken for “You” when read quickly. This is part of the character behind my company name. Olive & Yew, when spoken quickly often makes people think “I love you”. The twist behind the name made it a perfect fit for the character behind Olive & Yew Skincare. Also, I must state that I love nature and trees in general. The beauty behind them and benefits they give us amaze me. The yew tree has a history sense behind it as well and I liked that “feel” to it. So, there it was!
Where do you find inspiration when cultivating new soaps?
My inspiration when creating new soaps surround nature and cultures/countries. Nature has given gifts all around us, and I find myself often inspired by this. I love incorporating REAL dried leaves, fruits, flowers, and teas on/in my holistic skincare line to deliver the meaning of the soaps’ story. All our soaps are colored naturally with Earth’s clays, herbal infusions, or from just the color of the plant oil itself, making our product-line DYE FREE; therefore, paraben and synthetic free. Olive & Yew Skincare expresses and uses what nature has provided versus using man-made products.
Travel and cultural learning are a true passion of mine. I just had to incorporate this in my business! Many of the soap’s creations are based off a country through smell and/or appearance such as our Norway’s Glacier, or The Pacific Ocean soap. My plan is to create many more soaps in the future connecting countries and its culture.
What is unique about your company?
Though many advertise products as “natural”, one must really have the knowledge and become aware of ingredient labels. Olive & Yew Skincare is pleased to use most ingredients that are paraben and synthetic free. We truly believe in using what the Earth has given us, and what it has given us has purpose for our health. Using high quality plant oils, plant essential oils to scent our products versus lab-made synthetic fragrances, clays, and herbal infusions to color the soaps instead of synthetic dyes is what nature intended for us to use.
Remember, within 26 seconds, whatever we choose to put onto our skin, our largest organ, goes directly into our bloodstream. When I learned of this, I became inspired to raise awareness regarding what we put onto our skin is critically important. Through my handcrafted holistic skincare line, I choose to focus in on health and use ingredients that ALL have a TRUE PURPOSE that nature has given us to use. It is so much better for your over-all health down the road. Eliminate those carcinogens and use what earth gives us.
What do you attribute to your success?
You must believe in what you do. I absolutely love using what the earth provides through nature in my products. If I chose to use synthetic ingredients, I would not feel as strongly about my product line. Sharing nature’s ingredients and the benefits they reap is so exciting to me! For example, in just a few ingredients that I use in my soaps, such as olive oil and shea butter, the benefits are extensive for your skin. Helping others by using what nature intended, is a true joy.
If you have one piece of advice for someone just starting out, what would it be?
Believe in your product and know your purpose. If it gives you true joy, it will shine in how you deliver.