By Margarita Hirapetian
It seems like everyone is taking some much-needed time for self-care and treating themselves these days, and there’s never been a more opportune time for that. And to do it all ethically, too! With artist Autumn Grant’s bath bombs and beauty products, you can do exactly that – pamper yourself without any feelings of guilt. That’s because her business, The Kind Poppy, prides itself on creating products (bath bombs, soap bars, masks, balms) that are vegan, cruelty-free, and all natural. Their packaging is completely biodegradable and compostable as well. What more could you ask for in a world that is becoming increasingly polluted? Autumn recognizes this and takes it very seriously, as she explains, “There has never been a more crucial time to create ethical products. Our planet is at an all time struggle and we all need to rally together to save it. The amount of pollution and plastics in our oceans and land is sickening. The average person exposes their bodies to 500 different chemicals a day. Making an ethical switch and sourcing natural products is better for the environment and your overall health.” She adds, “I think all businesses need to look into ethically sourcing their products, packaging, and eliminating animal cruelty. The whole process makes the world a kinder place.”
Kindness is a major factor in all that Autumn does. For example, in addition to creating handmade, ethical products, she also spotlights companies that give to charity, fights animal cruelty, and sources quality clothing that doesn’t hurt the environment or support sweatshops. This “be kind” philosophy has already taken her far, and is a breath of fresh air in a world where profit margins seem to be the be-all and end-all for many companies and corporations. When you buy from Autumn, you know that you are supporting a benevolent small business and helping the environment at the same time. Talk about a win-win!
Though it may seem like Autumn would always end up in this line of work, she actually found herself accidentally starting her business because of a family tragedy. When her father had a freak medical accident and was told he wouldn’t live, Autumn found herself feeling helpless, especially as she lived in Nashville while her family resided in Illinois. Autumn recalls, “I woke up one day declaring I was going to make bath bombs as a fundraiser for my father. It was a way for me to feel like I was doing something even though I was far away. People all over the country wanted to order my bath bombs.” Her business was thus born and soon booming. Luckily, after five months, her father (whom she calls Poppy) was able to return home. Since then, a portion of Autumn’s sales helps other families in need as well as local and national charities.
Of course, there’s a lot of competition in the beauty and skincare market, and it can be intimidating, but Autumn takes the challenge in stride. She stays loyal to her values, and she’s found that it makes quite a difference in being successful: “All my products are vegan, cruelty-free, and all natural. I use only biodegradable and compostable packaging. I'm not doing this to be on trend, but because it's what I believe and value in. I think customers can feel the integrity of a business. I'd suggest just being true to yourself, your brand, and your own community of like minded people will appear.” Integrity in a business is key, but Autumn also simply makes great products that make people feel good and offer the results they’re looking for. She says, “My soaps and bath bombs are pleasing to the eye, and people can't wait to go home to pamper themselves. We have repeat customers just rave on how soft our products made their skin, or how our products helped them wind down for bed. I think people want to treat themselves and our products are at a great price point for them to routinely take home a little bit of happy.”
With that attitude of having integrity and making people happy, the future looks bright for Autumn. Her future goals for her business include expanding to a brick and mortar store and working with national charities and celebrity collaborations for her new “Kindness Collections.” She explains, “I'm incredibly excited for these partnerships and creating campaigns in 2020. We will curate a custom collection of bath, beauty, clothing, and accessories. Each charity or celebrity collaboration will have a 3-6 month campaign, and 50% of the sales will be given directly to that charity.” There’s really no doubt this will be a huge success and give Autumn’s business leverage to go on to even bigger things, and it all started with Autumn’s vision: “I'm a small person who can create a large impact. I want to inspire young adults and to show them that they can make a difference too. My favorite part is inspiring the community and creating change.”