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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Product Review: Dr. Jekyll Apothecary

One thing that we're doing a little bit differently at Things Liz Loves in 2012 is that we are going to start including some small business product reviews. This is an effort to help spread the word about some small businesses that are doing amazing things and to help support the handmade movement by promoting businesses that feature handmade products.

The first business that will be a part of this new feature is Dr. Jekyll Apothecary. Dr. Jekyll Apothecary specializes in handmade, vegan, paraben- and sulfate-free soaps and body care products. All of the products are hand made by my dear friend Elena, who started Dr. Jekyll Apothecary in her spare time between work, motherhood and hardcore gaming. First up, we have an interview with Elena about her amazing products.

Tell me a little about Dr. Jekyll Apothecary. What got you started?
I always wanted to start my own business, and I hate being a paper pusher, but I could never really figure out exactly what I wanted to do.
The internal monologue went something like this...
“Hey there you”
“What's up”
“I really hate this day job crap”
“And, just in case there's an apocolypse or something, I really need a trade skill too.”
“mkay” some googling a soaping book later.....
“Soap, eh?”
“ MUAHHAHAHAH!! I've done it!”
“Stop talking to yourself. Weirdo.”
So, I made soap for the first time, loved it, then realized theres a multitude of things I can do in the same field. 

What sets you apart from other similar businesses?I really wanted to step away from all of the harsh chemicals and toxins that we put inside and all over ourselves every day. We are all-natural, paraben-free, sulfate free, and 100% vegan. We dont even use beeswax. All-natural is a marketing term loosley used and there is no actual enforcment of who gets to use it. When I say all natural I mean it. I don't even use most pigments because although they are “natural” they are now only produced in laboratories.

I also strive to produce products and packaging that are eco-friendly. Everything is glass, metal, or recycled paper and I have a container return program. Return your empty containers and I will give you a $1 credit, per container, towards your next purchase.

What kind of ideas and products can we expect to see from you in the future?The next thing I'lll be rolling out is my Legendary Locks Shampoo Bars. The bars are formulated specifically to work with your hair color. These are super gentle, effective, good for the environment, and most of all good for your hair. I'll also be offering a line of massage oils, and some new soaps should be out by the end of January. I have many planned additions to my product line, so these are just the near future, keep and eye out for LOTS more to come. Salves and pet sprays and bath bombs, Oh My!

Of all your products, which one do you like to use the most and why?I can't even convey how much I LOVE the body butter bars. They moisturize really well but still absorb into the skin and they last SO LONG. They just make me feel decadent and fabulous. I personally love to use them on my feet and legs after shaving. I also dont need lotions, cuticle oils, or anything like that. Those bottles take up space. Now its just one bar, one tin. Awesome.

This interview sums up why I freaking adore Elena. Isn't she great? 

And now, the product review. Dr. Jekyll Apothecary supplied us with 2 bars of their amazing vegan soap in Ambrosia Lemon Tea and Ocean Rose scents, as well as a Bewildering Body Butter Bar in Rose. I did a side by side comparison of the Ocean Rose soap with my regular soap, and the difference was truly astounding. The first and most noticeable difference between this soap and the standard Caress body wash I had been using was how clean the Ocean Rose rinsed away. Compared to the Ocean Rose, the Caress made me feel like there was a filmy layer on my skin, and the Ocean Rose made my skin feel incredibly soft and clean. The scent of both soap bars is incredible, and the herbs in the bar add a bit of exfoliation to the mix. The bars take a little more work to create a lather because of the lack of sulfates, but the delicious scent and wonderfully soft skin are totally worth it.
The Bewildering Body Butter Bar is a personal favorite of mine as well. I have chronically dry skin here in Utah, especially around my heels and elbows, and this bar totally fixed that. The rose scent is lovely and mellow, not overpowering. The bar smooths onto the skin easily because of the low melting point of the oils used in the bar, and the moisturizing properties of this bar leave other lotions in the dust. My skin has dramatically improved since I started using these products, and I'm definitely going to continue to use them as long as Dr. Jekyll Apothecary is making them! And with prices as low as $2.50 per bar of soap and $5 per body butter bar plus shipping, switching to these incredible products is easy on the wallet. You can get a basket with all of Dr. Jekyll Apothecary's incredible products for $25 plus shipping, which is an incredible value!

Head over and check out the selection, which includes bath salts, lip balm and a clay mask that will wow you. Visit the Dr. Jekyll Apothecary Facebook page to show your support for this awesome business and get a coupon code for 10% off of your purchase!

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