Emily was on a personal mission when she started Urban Oreganics. After searching in vain for natural skin care products to use while pregnant, she decided to just make her own. Now, Urban Oreganics sells Emily’s handcrafted line of bath and beauty products online and in stores around the country. Her rapid success illustrates how creating something you love and believe in sets you up to succeed.
Getting it Right
Emily shares that the story of Urban Oreganics began about 3 1/2 years ago. While on maternity leave, she started searching for healthier beauty products to use. As someone who eats organic and natural foods, using healthy products just felt natural. Also, she knew how our skin easily absorbs chemicals and toxins we put on it. Knowing that most commercially produced bath and beauty products contain toxins, Emily began her search for something else.
Unfortunately, Emily says, she didn’t find what she as looking for. So, Emily decided to make her own products – products such as dog shampoo. As her family finished up a product, she’d make that one next instead of buying it again. As it turned out, Emily discovered her hand-made products worked, often better than the commercial ones she’d used before!
Now, Emily worked to get the formulas just right. She tells me she’d test and tweak recipes through trial and error. She’d start by researching key ingredients, such as an essential oil. Then, she’d mix up different batches until she got the consistency and the results she wanted. Once she liked the product, she’d give some away.
One of Emily’s first beauty products was an oat and clay facial cleanser. Unlike most cleansers, this one is a dry powder. Emily shares how a dry product has several benefits, including longer shelf life and being easy to take along when flying. As Emily described the product to me, I knew I wanted to try it. It seems just so simple. Mix the cleanser with water and wash.
Emily told me about another great benefit of her products from Urban Oreganics. Most of them are scent-free. Many people, like me, have allergies or sensitivities to scents. But, finding good scent-free products is a challenge. Instead of putting the scents into the products, Emily recommends essential to add to the products if you want a scent. Emily even provides a list of essential oils and their benefits on Urban Oreganics’ website.
Emily Shines Through Urban Oreganics
About halfway through our conversation, I knew I was talking to a woman on an extraordinary path. She started making some homemade dog shampoo about 3 1/2 years ago, and now she was selling a complete product line of beauty products, with more on the way. Moreover, she’s so busy, she quit her part-time job and is thinking of hiring some help. So, I had to ask what her secret is.
Emily is humble about her success, and she attributes much of it to social media. She reports she gets most of her business from Instagram at this point. But like many other artisans, she started with an Etsy Shop. After using Estsy exclusively for a time, she decided to launch her own website as well. Apparently, she’s an expert at using social media to drive traffic to her website.
Perhaps it’s the generation she belongs to and an innate skill for using social media that drove her success. Or, it’s her past professional experience. Personally, I think she resonates so well on social media because her products are so personal for her. She believes in and uses these products. She created them to fill a void in the market for healthy beauty products. So, this passion shines through in her photographs and posts she shares on social media.
Fortunately for people like me who don’t use Instagram, you can follow Urban Oreganics elsewhere. You will find Urban Oreganics also on Facebook and Twitter, and of course at its website. If you visit the website, you’ll find a list of stores in Oregon that carry her products. I personally plan to follow Urban Oreganics to keep up with what’s new. For example, Urban Oreganics wants to launch a men’s line of products, and a line of baby products is now available.
Where Spirit and Courage Connect
Knowing that success isn’t always as easy as it appears, I asked Emily about the challenges she faces. She says working from home can be a great thing and a hard thing all at once. While she loves being home with her young children and setting her own schedule, she admits that it’s difficult not to leave work at work. And, like most of us who are self-employed, she sometimes stresses while on vacation about the work not getting done.
Now, I only mention this to illustrate just how amazing Emily’s story is. While speaking with Emily, I understood she hadn’t found some magical formula for time management or social marketing. Rather, she faces she same issues we all face, whether employed, self-employed, artists or service providers. But, these obstacles don’t stop her.
What sets Emily apart, I believe, is the connection between her spirit and courage. She has a willingness to try and to try again when she doesn’t get it right. Her passion drives her and gives her this courage. Likewise, her courage gives her the freedom to express herself through what she does – how she makes a living. It’s as if her passion and courage feed off each other in a remarkable way.
The Heart of Urban Oreganics
As I sat down to write this story and reflected on what I learned from Emily, I realized how much heart goes into all of her products. Urban Oreganics is setting an example for how to approach our passions. Go in with heart and just start, even if it’s just with something as simple as dog shampoo. You never know where it may lead.
Featured Image Source: A Visual Anthology