As a small business owner and self-taught soap artisan, I strive to maintain integrity and achieve excellence in what we do. My goals are pretty simple: treat my animals with love, provide the best care possible for them, and give them the best life possible. I think we check this box daily. As for the actual business, I strive to, first and foremost, provide excellent products that are made with care and pure ingredients, and we keep it as simple as possible. There is no need to muck things up with a bunch of ingredients one cannot pronounce or understand at a glance. I see no reason to "cheap out" and buy substandard ingredients. Secondly, my soap family is at the heart of what we do. The Bibbed Wonder and I will take great strides to provide the best customer service, support, and care to the people who make our dream a reality. We can also check off this box on our list of accomplishments. However, sometimes, one needs validation from outside sources to know one is on the right path.
A few weeks ago, I received this much-needed validation. Several of our soap family members have found us by a referral from their dermatologist, Lindsay Smail. I have always wanted to meet Lindsay, and a few weeks ago, at Ligonier Country Market, I had the opportunity. This lovely woman and her husband were chatting and sniffing the different scents at our booth. I said good morning to them, and we chit-chatted a bit. She then introduced herself as Lindsay Smail, a physician's assistant with Forefront Dermatology. Lindsay told me that although her job is to prescribe steroids and prescription-strength medications, she always recommends our products to her customers who are looking for a more natural approach to their skin issues. Lindsay then went on to thank me for making high-quality products that are beneficial to many. She also encouraged me to keep doing what I am doing and keep up the excellent work.
Although I receive wonderful messages from our soap family members professing their appreciation for our products and the benefits they experience from using them, this genuinely makes my day, my week, hell, and sometimes my year. Having a board-certified skincare professional who believes in my products and my company and recommends our products to their patients means the world to me. Lindsay and her husband purchased several soaps and appeared genuinely happy with their choices. I know one is not supposed to need outside validation for self-affirmation, but this boost from a skincare professional was precisely what I needed to hear. It makes me feel as though I am indeed doing something right. Not to get too self-important, but it shows that even a blind squirrel gets the nut sometimes. I feel like I am mostly running around feral, smacking into trees and falling off high branches. My eyesight definitely went downhill after turning forty...insert a wink.
Ironically, a few weeks prior to meeting her, I made an appointment for my bean with Lindsay. My little buddy is suffering the less-than-desirable side effects of growing up in the form of stubborn acne. Although The Bean has free access to all our skincare products and uses them faithfully, sometimes even the best natural products won't do the job. However, I am confident Lindsay will help her strike the right balance with the necessary medication and natural products. It's good to have knowledgeable professionals in your corner and have choices for natural products.
On this lovely fall day, stay safe, be smart, appreciate when you do something right, and be grateful to those who offer you needed validation; it's okay to receive that validation, and of course, keep washing your hands. Covid has reared its ugly head once again, so wash those hands.