Meet Beth Coldrick of BAO natural skincare (listed in our directory here) handmade in Dorset with love and care.
Please tell us a little bit about the story behind your business
I’ve always had a passion for natural skin care & friends used to call me the hippie one. I remember when I was only 10 years old making body Scrubs out of sugar, avocado and olive oil in the kitchen! So when I turned 22 I took a side step from my degree in graphic design & photography and completed a diploma in natural beauty therapy and nutrition.
I did my beauty studies in Australia where I lived for 4 years (age 22-26) so it was wonderful to be exposed to such a natural holistic way of living. After nearly 10 years in the beauty industry and owning my own beauty salon I decided to launch a skincare brand that was simple, clean, affordable and fuss-free. I decided to call it BAO because I wished for it to represent me & my passion – Beth’s Aromatherapy Organic skincare.
I’ve been making skincare products for around 6 years but really started getting into it when my skin became sensitive from the Crohn’s disease medication I have to take. I launched BAO skincare just over a year ago, and my brand is growing each month! My customers tell me they love my skincare because it works for their skin too.
Please describe your work and share a little about your inspiration and ethos
BAO skincare is handmade by myself in my home in Dorset. I make everything in small batches to retain the ingredients’ therapeutic properties. Every product I make is 100% vegan and cruelty-free. I have thoughtfully handcrafted each product from beautifully effective, natural ingredients that are sustainably & ethically sourced, with 95% being certified organic.
I am committed to providing simple, gentle, natural products that are safe for your skin & the environment. They are all free from synthetic fragrances, artificial colorants, parabens, phthalates, sulphates, petrochemicals & mineral oils. I believe in using natural ingredients that are the most powerful healing agents of physical regeneration for attaining noticeable results that you can see and feel. I have formulated all of the products so they can help bring balance to the body’s largest organ — the skin — as an entry to calming and restoring the totality of your body, mind and spirit.
I think what makes my brand special is me. My passion. My years of knowledge in the beauty industry. And the fact I am real, honest and really care for my customers and their wellbeing. As all of my products are handmade by me I think this makes a huge difference too, as many organic natural skincare brands these days are made in factories. So my customers can rest assured I know exactly what is going into every single .
Favourite way to start the day?
I usually wake up the same time each day around 7.30am, empty the dishwasher, feed my cat, I pour a cup of herbal tea or hot lemon water and check my emails. Then I will do some exercise if my body is feeling up to it (with Crohn’s disease, every day I feel different) or do yoga, shower, tidy the house and then start work around 9.30/10am.
What’s your morning routine?
Each day I always have a list of things I wish to complete that day. I am very organised (laughing). I have a beautiful room in the front of the house where I also do beauty treatments with clients 2 days a week. I closed my beauty salon April 2018 so I can focus on BAO Skincare. Best decision ever – no staff stresses now! It is bright and I love it!
What keeps you going through the day?
My love for my brand and business. I am very lucky to say that I have worked for myself full time for 9 years and love it! Having Crohn’s disease it would be very hard to work 9-5. So my business is perfect as I choose my hours and days of work.
Top tips for enabling creativity?
Friends, travel, reading and living life!
What do you do when struggling for inspiration?
Sorry but yes… I go on Instagram or Pinterest. Doesn’t everyone (laughing!) Also I go through all my magazines. I have subscriptions to Natural Health, Liz Earle and Women’s Health.
What’s your creative process?
I guess when I’m creating a new product I think about what I would like and what works. I do a lot of market research to see which products are the most popular and I also get in touch with a lot of my customers. Creating my products and designing them is probably the easiest part of my business.
What I love about running your own business is every day is different and you literally have on so many hats. One day will be spent focussing on social media and marketing. Another day, market research and another sourcing packaging, speaking with designers and print agencies. I would say the main part of my business that I struggle with is printing and packaging. I usually have to find the correct bottle or jar first and then work my design around it. Unfortunately, or fortunately, I am a perfectionist so even when a creation is complete I still pick at it and want to make changes!
Greatest simple pleasures and why?
I am lucky enough to live 10 mins walk from our beautiful sandy beaches, so definitely walking along the shore, either on my own or with my boyfriend or friends. I also love cooking and listening to my favourite bands like The Cat Empire always cheers me up!
What is your approach to achieving your goals?
Lists, lists, lists. And making sure if I say I am going to do something 95% of the time I do! I always make sure I research and really plan on how I am going to achieve my goals.
What do you like best about the area where you live?
The beach. The vibe in the summer and the beautiful sunshine we often get throughout year! Also the fact that within 30 mins of my house I can be in a town, on a beach, in a forest, in a country pub or on a restaurant over looking the sea. Love Dorset!
Please share a real hidden gem with us
I know it’s not local to me now, but when I lived in Australia I fell in love with a really small coastal suburb called Mullaway. Completely off the beaten track, only locals lived there (I was the only English person in the town). It was the most stunning place. I lived a 2 minute walk from the beach and used to surf everyday. It was here I fell in love with natural skincare and the holistic way of life.
Best place to watch the world go by?
Hmmmmmm it depends, as I love to sit at my beach hut in Canford Cliffs (home) on a beautiful spring day and watch the world go by with a cup of tea or glass of wine.
Favourite way to spend an evening?
In the winter, with my boyfriend on the sofa, snuggled up. And in the summer on the beach with friends.
Most treasured possession and why?
My cat, he is my soulmate (besides my boyfriend of course LOL).
Favourite walk and why?
Lulworth Cove – it is stunning! We get the chain ferry over and then park up and walk the coastline
What are you passionate about right now?
My skincare brand. I find myself working on it all day everyday. But besides that, I would just say life in general. But I have been really poorly the past 5 months with my Crohn’s disease so to be honest I am just not to do too much 🙁
But when I am well I love the outdoors, walking, wake boarding and cycling along the beach.
Best local place for rummaging vintage finds?
Molly’s Den in Bournemouth.
Can you sum up your ethos?
I love life and I am positive and happy (when I am not ill). I try and live each day by telling myself not to worry about the small things. And I still do believe everything happens for a reason, so try to live by that. I also believe in treating everyone as I would wish to be treated.
What measures do you take to support plastic-free and zero waste?
I have actually been using re-useable shopping bags for the last 10 years as my mum always did. I also drink a lot of water and of course have a water bottle and do not buy plastic bottles. With my skincare brand I try my best to be plastic-free hence moving all my jars over to glass despite this costing me more per unit and in postage. But it is hard as I am still a new brand and try to keep costs low whilst producing quality products.
For now I am looking into recycled packaging to post my products out in along with actually bottles and containers. I am working towards BAO Skincare being fully stainable and eco-friendly.
Best place to unwind/escape to in the British Isles?
Lime Wood hotel and spa. I am lucky that it is only 30 minutes from me. I go every winter and summer for a spa day – pure bliss!
Best piece of advice you could share based on your experiences so far?
Treasure every moment in life and always try and say yes to everything as you never know where it will lead you or who you may meet.
What are you listening to/reading/watching right now?
I am reading Becoming by Michelle Obama. Absolutely love her and everything she stands for. I watch a lot of box sets and documentaries and recently watched A Plastic Ocean. Highly recommend.
What do you think is the secret to being happy?
Laughter and love.
Your goals for the future?
To see BAO Skincare in Selfridges. To have a hotel skincare collection. To get married and have 3 children one day!
Your tips for finding fresh purpose and creativity?
Sit back, breathe and write down all of your passions and goals. Then look at them and create a plan of action. Don’t spend your life working in a job you hate, or living with people who bring you down.
Lulworth Cove photo credit:Visit Britain/Ben Selway
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