Caroline Ranoia, founder of Sea Foam Soap Company by Blue Eden, answers questions for us about inspiration for her Soap Boutique and other creative companies, as well as the amazing process of crafting soaps and lotions.
We are so lucky to have partnered with her to create our very own Endeavor Athletic soap and lotion line (now available on our accessories page)!
(1) What inspires you to create?
I've always liked to work with my hands and am an artist by trade. After 18 years in corporate America, working for a pharm company I decided that it was time to take all of my creative and artistic talents and use them to follow my own dreams and passions.
(2) Your soap is so vibrant and colorful! Where do you find inspiration for your color palettes?
Color theory was a minor in school so it was a way for me to actually use my art knowledge in my soaps. The coloring used is made from organic vegetable dyes. Each color is coordinated with an essential oil - ie. lavender essential oil is coloured with an organic beet dye that if used properly turns soap into a beautiful shade of purple blue. It is a stunning process.
(3) How did you come up with the name for your business?
Well, there are actually 3 businesses. The original/umbrella is Blue Eden, LLC. Having just returned from Hawai'i in 2012 I fell in love with everything about the islands. Blue was everywhere I looked and it was so lush and beautiful, truly a paradise. I thought of Blue Paradise but it just didn't sound right to me, so I started to research the word paradise and found out that Eden in Hebrew means paradise - hence Blue Eden. Sea Foam Soap Company by Blue Eden and Just BE Candle Company, all incorporate the name Blue Eden and are just a play on letters and words. Sea Foam because my shops and business is located at the beach. Just BE (Blue Eden) Candles I think happened because I just wanted to BE still one day and the phone just wouldn't stop ringing.
(4) What are some of your other hobbies and interests?
I love to draw and paint. Typically in my off season I do a lot of painting, although it seems like I never really have down time anymore. Baking bread is something I love to do as well as cooking. Making dough is kind of like making soap, it's very calming to me. Gardening is also a passion and many of the essential oils used in the products are from my herb gardens. We distill the oils from rosemary, peppermint, rose, sage, basil, thyme, eucalyptus and lavender. Since I am crazy for New Jersey tomatoes, that is a huge part of the gardens. I grow about 8 different varieties and always have way too many to the point where my neighbors don't even want them so for the past 3 summers I've made a tomato soap that people love - it's a great antioxidant soap and just kind of fun and interesting. This year I'd love to learn beekeeping since local honey is used in the soaps it would be a fun addition - stay tuned.
(5) What do you love most about creating bath and body products?
Oh there are several reasons; being independent is a great feeling and creating this business has given me total independence. Following a dream isn't always easy because there are so many naysayers telling you your idea will never work, but if you research your dream and have a solid business plan it always works out. Don't get me wrong, it doesn't happen overnight but dreams don't happen if you don't work.
My dad was a USMC Drill Sgt so we grew up with the Marine motto of adapt, improvise and overcome. In business if you can't do any of these things you'll never make it. Owning a business is a constant reinvention of yourself. Some ideas are great, others bomb but you tried. After 2020 I believe all small businesses really learned how to reinvent themselves and became very creative. I love that part of it. Right now, we are working on new ideas for the stores to be more green and to have a cleaner footprint. I'm really excited about this new addition and hope that it will be embraced nicely.
The other reason is that having really sensitive skin prompted me to really start to look into the things I was using and why I would break out in a rash. Seeing results I decided that I wanted to share my experience with others that suffer from breakouts and rashes. Hearing customers tell me that their daughter's acne cleared up or their son's rash from sports equipment went away after using the tea tree soap, or that someone's dry skin problems virtually disappeared after using the goat milk soap made me realize that helping people is what I have always loved - if I can make them feel better or more confident or even smell great all of my mornings that I am up by 4am are worth it.