A Monday Update

I’ve been meaning to put together a quick update, but have yet to get to it until today! I wanted to let you know what’s going on at the store…

::Lip balm updates

Some of you may have been around for the whole debate about whether or not I should include the compostable lip balm tubes in my line. As you know, I did end up purchasing a box of them as an experiment and have been disappointed – though not for any fault of the tubes! I have found that my current lip balm recipe (one developed over two months of testing) is too soft in the tubes! (There is enough mass in the tins to keep them hard, but in the small, thin tubes, they are way too soft.) This is why I am offering them at 20% off and will continue to do so until they are sold out. I would give them away if I could afford it, but the tubes are actually more expensive to buy than the tins, so on sale it must be! :) (And please be assured that this is a purely aesthetic problem – the balms still work perfectly.)

I’ve also been dissatisfied with the “look” of the tubes. I don’t like the pattern (the only one you can buy without having them printed by Eco Vision), and have found out why they offer printing in the first place – because the tubes are slick and do not grip the adhesive side of the sticker labels! Ack!

The truth is, I’ve been very discouraged with the way my lip balms have been turning out. As far as the tubes go, I have decided that until I can afford to have them professionally printed, I’m going to have to let them sell out and just keep on offering the tins.

As for the lip balms I have now, I’m seriously debating what to keep and what to scrap. My Chocolate Mint Lip Balm seems to be a favorite, though I did not plan on continuing to offer that (for the simple reason that EVERY bath and body shop offers a chocolate mint lip balm). However, I’m reconsidering my decision on that and may (perhaps) restock the Chocolate Mint.

The Vanilla Woods lip balm became a fast favorite, but I have had nothing but trouble keeping those balms consistent and smooth. Each batch seems to turn out vastly different (which doesn’t usually happen), and too often, the cocoa butter clumps up, making the lip balm grainy. You may have noticed that Vanilla Woods is currently not in stock and that’s because I pulled them until I can figure out what’s going on. (If you don’t mind the clumpiness and are planning on making an order soon, leave me a note with your order stating that you’d like one and I’ll throw it in for free while supplies last.)

Finally, my other lip balms, while lovely, aren’t totally, wholly, completely satisfying to me. Lip balms are difficult in many aspects – for one thing, it’s hard to develop a unique, reliable, consistent recipe without using chemical stabilizers. It’s also hard to find unique lip balm blends. This is something that I’m still working on, eleven months later.

The bottom line is that I want to sell the best of the best. This is really hard when you are on a tight budget, but I feel I have put the money and quality where it counts the most – in the ingredients, in the products, themselves. My packaging isn’t always as pretty or perfect as others, but I’ll get there someday. But my lip balms….now is the time for me to pull back and get it just right before going any further. A friend who has been around since the beginning of Five Seed told me she still has my original lip balm that I sold back in January and that it is the most perfect of all the lip balms of mine that she’s tried. I told her I also still have a tin of that same batch and mine is still perfect, too. Hmmm…maybe I got it right back in the beginning. The problem is that that recipe is not vegan (and people have been begging me for vegan lip balms), and that I don’t want to have to always use cocoa butter in recipes, as the scent is too strong to blend with certain other scents.

To make a long story longer, I’m going back to the drawing board on lip balms! Please bear with me – I’ll get there! And just know that I don’t know what I intend to do with the current line. Once it is sold out, I may decide not to restock those same scent blends. So if you really liked the Wild Patchouli or Sweet Rosemary, grab ‘em while you can.

::Coconut Vanilla Bean Balm

Over the summer, I had a few odds and ends of different ingredients laying about and thought I’d try an experimental recipe. Like another experiment (Rose Hip Calendula Balm) I never intended to restock this item. I figured it may or may not sell, and afterwards, I’d discontinue it. Again, like the aforementioned Rose Hip Calendula Balm, this experiment was wildly popular – every single person who bought it has written me to ask me to make more! So….rest assured, I will have it back in stock within a week or so.

::New Herbal Aromatherapy Perfume recipe!

Some of you may remember that a concerned customer wanted to know if it was safe for the environment to harvest castor oil, and if not, if I’d be willing to cut it from my line. You can read about that here. I have thought a lot about this and though I am confident that my supplier is ethical, I thought it might be prudent to cut back on castor oil in my products – just in case. I hardly ever use it, but it is a major component in the Herbal Aromatherapy Perfumes. I have recently made a new batch of Sveva using a new, castor oil-free recipe, but….will people like it as much? In order to find out, I’ll be offering the next batch of Sveva at a discount – all I ask is that you drop me a line and let me know how you like the new recipe. I’ll let you know when Sveva is back in the shop.

I’m sure I’m forgetting something here, but hopefully, that will cover things until my next update. I do have more skin care posts in store for you – some of them are a bit time-consuming to write, though. I’ll try to get to them soon. Other than that, I’ll be working on lip balms and some new perfumes this week.

Have a wonderful second week of November!