Maker of the Month: Goat to Bee Natural

Coby with Goat to Bee Natural never planned on making bath and body products. After her children left home, she was looking for something to fill the time. What started as a hobby soon turned into a passion. She now sells CBD bath bombs, beeswax candles, and soap, and hopes to bring business back to her local downtown. Get to know Coby below!

coby with goat to bee natural | bramble berry

How long have you been making bath products, and how did you get started? How long have you been selling your products?
I started making bath products about 5 years ago. The journey was not planned, but just kind of came into my life. I am a mother of four and all my children are grown and live on their own. Making quality bath products for the people I love filled the empty space I had in my life after my last child joined the service. After two years of making products for family and friends, my children encouraged me to branch out. In July of 2019, I went public with my products and there hasn't been a day since that I regretted that decision. 

What do you love most about making bath and body products?
Well, that's a tough question. I love the whole process! I absolutely love the research behind making my various products, and the creative aspect of adding unique details to my products. But most of all, I love the feedback from my customers. Hearing about the improvements to their skin with simple skincare products really makes all the long work days worth it. 

What inspires you to create?
Inspiration comes from all around me. Something as simple as a random flower that I see while on a walk can be inspiring. Certain scents remind me of people or places I love, and that is also inspiring. Many of my ideas come from listening to my customers and learning what they really need in a product. Without customers there is no need to create, so I really love creating something for everyone.

goat to bee natural heart bath bombs | bramble berry

Heart bath bombs

What advice would you give to someone who wanted to get started?
The best advice I have to those who would like to get started making bath products is to watch as many videos as you can, read as many books as you can, and join as many groups as you can. People in general are extremely kind and love to help one another. There isn't a problem or question that I haven't been able to resolve or find by following that advice. Start small, master the basics, and build from there.

Bath bombs can be tricky. Do you have any tips for beginners?
Okay, tricky might be an understatement. Know your environment. Weather is the biggest factor whenever I have issues. If it’s too humid, switch out your binder for rubbing alcohol. But here are the basics: start with a simple recipe. I started with a recipe from two 12-year-old girls off YouTube. You can always tweak and upgrade it when you are feeling confident. Milk powders (I prefer buttermilk) are an easy addition (I use it in place of SLSA) that will take your bombs to a whole new level. Also, if you are trying to save a little money and help the environment - apple trays (that most grocery stores just toss out) work excellent for drying your bombs on and have the perfect indention to keep your bombs from getting flat bottoms.

goat to bee natural white bath bombs | bramble berry

Bath bombs with dried flowers

Why do you like adding CBD to your bath bombs? What benefit does it provide?
I enjoy adding CBD to my bath bombs because it's such an easy step and it adds so many extra benefits that my customers really enjoy. Some of those benefits include: reducing stress, improving skin health by adding soothing properties, as well as nourishing the skin. I firmly believe that finding the perfect CBD company is key. Green Thumb Naturals is a local company who uses locally-grown hemp to make the highest quality of CBD that I've found. I really couldn't make everything that I make without them! 

Who is another maker you admire? What do you love about their work?  
There are SO many wonderful makers out there! One of my favorite makers is Clyde Yoshida from Vibrant Soap. His use of color in cold process is always inspiring to me. He is the first maker I ever saw that was able to make gold pop in the making of cold process soaps. Some of the soap he shares are years old and they still look absolutely amazing! I feel like his creations belong in an art gallery. 

goat to bee natural melt and pour soap | bramble berry

Melt and pour soap

Have you ever experienced a failure? How did you work through it and what did you learn?
I don't know a maker who hasn't had a day filled with tears and disappointments. My biggest failure as a maker was about two years ago. I was very new to using lakes as a colorant. I made my batch as usual and added the beautiful pink and molded away. After drying was complete, I tested a bomb in my bathtub (with me in it) and was pleased with the vibrant water I was bathing in. After the blissful bath, I discovered that my skin was stained pink everywhere. I looked like a mythical creature out of a Dr. Seuss book! Lesson learned... don't forget the poly 80 in your mix.

What plans do you have for your business moving forward?
I've lived in my small town all my life, and when I was much younger our downtown was the place you would shop if you were interested in amazing customer service and quality items. Over time, with the addition of an outlet mall and online sales, our downtown dwindled away to almost nothing. Slowly, in recent years some brave citizens have opened businesses back in our downtown, and I really hope to join them. My dream store would have displays packed with one-of-a-kind items and an open viewing window into the maker's area, so my customers can see the whole making process.

goat to bee natural colorful bath bombs | bramble berry

Colorful bath bombs

Coby's top Bramble Berry picks

  • Goat Milk Melt and Pour Base and Honey Melt and Pour Base - First of all, (not related to bath bombs) the goat milk and honey melt and pour bases are at the top of my list. I have not found any other that perform like these when combined. The lather is super creamy and hydrating.
  • Fragrance oils and essential oils - Second, your fragrance and essential oils are of such a high quality that even my customers with sensitive skin are able to use products that contain them. I think I have at least 100 bottles on my shelves and I love each of them!
  • Powdered goat milk - Third, your powdered goat milk is something that I have to keep in stock. I find that it works the best in my cold process soaps. It's extremely easy to incorporate into all of your Quick Mix bases and it turns an ordinary bar of soap into a luxurious item.
  • Cocoa butter pastilles and shea butter - Lastly, your cocoa butter pastilles and your shea butter are my favorite butters to use in so many of my products. I use them in everything from bath bombs and lotions to soaps and lip balms. I honestly haven't tried anything from your company that I haven't been extremely pleased with. The trusted quality in your products is every maker's dream. Thank you! 

What's your favorite Bramble Berry project?
Hands down, my favorite project is your Rainbow Bath Truffles. They are tricky to make, but your directions make it much easier and the final product always looks fantastic. They are super luxurious and feel fabulous on the skin. Also, they are big enough for more than one use, which is always a huge bonus with my customers. 

The first project I tried was the Wild Rose Cold Process Soap. I purchased the kit and was terrified to use it. The thought of using lye was very intimidating to me. The kit contained everything I needed, and the directions were very easy to follow. After that kit, I was able to make cold process soap without hesitation and fear. 

I purchased many kits ranging from bath bombs, melt and pour, and my latest was for skincare. I love them all! They give me the building blocks to introduce new products into my line with confidence. 

goat to bee natural beeswax candles | bramble berry

Beeswax candles

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