When did you first start your business? Why?
Officially, I started Jordan River Soapworks in August, but the planning and development process continued for quite some time after. I began making soap and body care products out of necessity. For years, my skin would react with most commercial products. While there are many beautiful handmade products on the market, I found that the majority had more fragrance and colour than my sensitive skin could handle. This is why Jordan River Soapworks products are made without artificial fragrances, colour, preservatives, or additives. Many of my products are not scented at all and those that are, are scented with pure essential oils or the natural essence of a specific ingredient.
What is the benefit of using your product?
Ingredients! My products are made with very few ingredients. Many of my products are vegan friendly (though some use local beeswax), and they all are gluten free. Ingredients are sourced with quality and sustainability in mind and many of them are organic. I also strive to source packaging that is plastic free, reusable, or recyclable.
As a self-proclaimed “soapstress,” how much work goes into making one bar of soap?
My soaps are made in the cold process – the way soap has been made for hundreds of years. This means that after a batch is prepared and mixed by hand, it then takes about a month before it is ready for use. Sometimes, I will french mill the soap after it is mixed to add a specific essential oil or botanical. Each bar of soap that you use from Jordan River Soapworks has endured several hours of personal attention, and has spent weeks in my forest soap shop.
Out of all your products, what is your favourite item to give as a gift this holiday season?
My recommended gift this season is one of my gift packages. Displayed in a handmade wooden soap tray, your natural product loving friends and family will enjoy a variety of Jordan River Soapworks goodies, including pure soap, lip butter, and body butter. Also, my products are not heavily fragranced, so they can be bought for both men and women. These will be available at the market ranging from $15-$50.
Why do you think it is important to shop local?
It’s common sense! If we want to live in a healthy and vibrant community we need to support each other. In addition, I find that artisanal and local goods are of an incomparable quality compared to mass-produced products.
What is the next step for Jordan River Soapworks?
We are preparing for a pop-up shop in Vancouver running December 15th – 20th at The Chinatown Experiment.
What are you most looking forward to this holiday season?
Time with loved ones, good food, and mulled wine.