Well Told with Rina Clarke, founder of Buck Naked
Buck Naked was born out of necessity. When baby Elias, son of Buck Naked founders Rina and John, developed skin irritations from traditional baby products, they soon realized they needed a truly natural alternative. As necessity is the mother of all invention, the Chamomile & Calendula Soap was invented to help soothe the little guy’s skin. With this creation, Rina discovered her passion of formulating skin care products using the purest of ingredients.
For a limited time, we are partnering with Buck Naked to offer you a free gift of their Eucalyptus + Himalayan Salt Bath Duo with any purchase of $40 or more!
Where did your entrepreneurial spirit come from?
Growing up, I quietly had a very strong feminist example in my mom. She put her all into everything, not willing to settle and even establishing her own successful business. She modelled a feminist ideal that, without question, I could do anything. I believe this is where my entrepreneurial spirit was nurtured. It wasn’t until necessity to create a truly natural soap came about, that I put this ideology into practice and founded Buck Naked.
What inspired you to create Buck Naked?
When my son was an infant, he developed eczema on his face and body. After testing different aspects of his environment, we discovered it was the soap we were using that cased these issues. As necessity is the mother of invention, I began formulate my first soap. After using the new soap, we saw a huge difference in the skin of our entire family, from there, we decided to sell the bars at our local farmers’ market. The response was overwhelming and the rest is history! Nine years later, we have moved into our third factory and work with retailers through North America, Asia and Europe.
Many people love self-care baths in the winter but tend to lose the habit in the warmer weather. How do you like to get that post-soak relaxation in the spring and summer?
Personally, I take nice long, hot baths year round. Summer skin hydration is just as important as winter skin care. It’s always important to moisturize and hydrate skin, especially in times when you’ve had a lot of sun exposure. Bath bombs, bath melts and bath salts all help give back to your skin and lock in moisture. A summer bath can also help cool the body on a hot day, but also help detox the skin in ways a winter bath usually won’t. Summer baths help you sweat out toxins while still just relaxing and clearing the mind.
Your soaps are so lovely and natural, they almost look edible! We know creating a top-quality natural product is not always easy, could you talk a bit about how you choose your ingredients and what your formulation process looks like?
Before we start any formulation we always look at the ingredients. All ingredients that we use come from sustainable sources. We do a lot of research on not just the ingredient but how it’s harvested and manufactured. We also look into the sustainability of the ingredient to ensure that it comes from reputable sources that are not depleting the environment or taking advantage of workers. From there, we think about what we want out of a product. If we’re looking for a moisturizing soap versus a cleansing soap, we look to the science of the oils we use and how the soap making process, called saponification, will help achieve the desired results. Some of our process is very dependent on knowledge and understanding of the delicate relationship between raw materials, but in the end the quality and sustainability of our raw materials is what stands out. As a social enterprise, sourcing is very important to us.
If you had a piece of advice for your younger self or for a woman setting off on her entrepreneurial journey, what would you share?
I have a couple of mottos that I say, not only to myself, but also to my staff. They are “do what you say you’re gonna do” and in the paraphrase words of Yoda “there’s no such thing as try, you either do it or you don’t“.
What’s been keeping you well these days?
Honestly, I take a lot of baths. It might seem cliché but it’s the truth. I find relaxing in the tub, even if it means I’m doing emails, does so much for your mental health. It helps quiet the mind and feed the soul, helping you ready yourself for the next day or next week or next big task.