We love interviewing inspirational entrepreneurs on our blog and finding out what their secrets are. Today we have a special interview with Kealie from KeKe Soaps. Kealie is 15-years-old and runs her own soap and beauty business which she started to give back to a very worthy cause.
So when we saw the KeKe Soaps Instagram account, we knew we wanted to speak to Kealie and ask her to share her story on our blog here at Formula Botanica.
Hi Kealie, you are one of the youngest beautypreneurs we’ve met! How old were you when you started making soap?
I was 13 when I started making soap. Art has been a passion of mine for sometime and handmade soap was another creative outlet for me to transition into. I dived into researching soap, the process, and the many varieties, then set off to create. I’m still in my first year and I’m still learning, everyday!
What made you decide to turn your hobby into a business?
I knew that eventually I was going to have to do something with all of the soap I was making. I do gift a lot of soap to family and friends, as well as local organizations and shelters, so decided to add an online shop to sell my creations. I decided that along with selling my handmade soap, I would also find an additional way to give back and that is where PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center comes in.
Your business partners with PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center – can you tell us more about the support you give to this great organisation?
PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center is an organization that educates and raises awareness about bullying prevention. PACER works with schools, community programs, and families to understand what bullying is and offer ways to prevent it from happening.
I was bullied in elementary school and although I had my mom for support and to help me fight the battle, the school I attended didn’t seem too interested in helping to alleviate the issue. I use my handmade soap as a benefit for those that have been and continue to be bullied. I donate a portion of each soap sold to PACER and bullying prevention efforts.
What is your favourite thing about running your own soap business?
I would say that my favorite thing has been creation. I’m currently actually working towards a “local” line of soaps where I learn about local business, boutiques, and such, and create a soap based on the business. I needed to find a way to set myself apart from other soapers when it came to creating soaps.
What are your favourite products to make?
I don’t know if I have just one product I enjoy over another. Each has it’s own pros and coons, I guess. Soap can be a bit stubborn, and not always turn out the way you want. But I think it’s the constant try and effort that puts this one one top.
I can say that I love making bath bombs, but they are difficult to get right! I live in a southern state, so it’s very humid and that is havoc for my bath bombs. So, when I get a batch that is perfect, I’m ecstatic!
What advice would you give to other teenpreneurs who want to start their own skincare or soap business?
First, don’t be afraid! Second, never second guess yourself. I wasn’t scared of my business until I started second guessing myself after my soaps weren’t turning out right. My mom (my cheerleader) would give me pep talks all the time and eventually I learned this is what happens, you will have fails but they only make the triumphs that much better. Just keep moving forward.
And third, there is paperwork and homework! Business is not all about the creating side. Although my mom handles a lot for me, I have had to learn and do: bookkeeping, accounting, ordering, researching, website changes, customer service, social media… and the list goes on. And, do this on top of school. A to-do list has become my best friend.
It is truly inspirational to hear from someone so young already running their own business to sell the handcrafted artisan products they make. Here at Formula Botanica we are regularly approached by teenpreneurs who want to start their own beauty business and we hope that Kealie’s story helps show that now is always the right time to start your business.
Kealie is also a shining example of someone who gives back to the community, by donating a percentage of her sales to the National Bullying Prevention Center. We wish KeKe Soaps a huge amount of success and we hope that you head on over to Kealie’s website to purchase one of her beautiful soaps.
If you want to connect with KeKe Soaps, head on over to:
- Website: http://www.kekesoaps.com/
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kekesoaps/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KeKeSoaps
- Twitter: @KeKeSoaps
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Lorraine Dallmeier is a Biologist, Chartered Environmentalist and the CEO of Formula Botanica, the award-winning online organic cosmetic science school. Read more about Lorraine and the Formula Botanica Team.