Using the Ritual of Cleansing to Create Skincare Products | Anna from Apotheco

apotheco bath salts in conversation with

For the second entry in the 'In Conversation With' FËRNN Journal series, we caught up with Anna, founder and director of Apotheco.
anna apotheco soap skincare lifestyle bath salts vegan soap bar sustainable zero waste
Apotheco is a plant-based, sustainable bar soap and skincare brand and one of our product partners here at FËRNN. We contacted Apotheco back in March through their Instagram after seeing a beautiful photo of their newly launched Salt & Oil Bath Soak - a product we were researching at the time. After a few messages it was very clear Apotheco would be a company that FËRNN would be partnering with!
anna apotheco soap skincare lifestyle bath salts vegan soap bar sustainable zero waste
I loved getting to know more about Anna and Apotheco and I hope you all do too.
Tell us a little bit about your business?
We are a UK soap brand specialising in natural bar soap and skincare products. Inspired by the ritual of cleansing, all our skincare products are made by hand in small batches.
We are committed to using 100% natural ingredients which in turn provides great benefits for our bodies and helps to protect our environment. We are big on working with local suppliers and artists and have had the pleasure of working with a local ceramicist for our stoneware soap dishes.
anna apotheco skin soap brand uk vegan bar ceramics
For me it is about creating harmonising products made with pure and natural ingredients. Designed to promote those quiet moments of solace which are so important for restoring balance in our often-hectic lifestyles. The simple act of washing creates a space for reflection and helps to reinstate a sense of calm.
With this in mind, each ingredient we use is carefully considered for its benefits not only to the body but the mind too.
anna apotheco soap skincare lifestyle bath salts vegan soap bar sustainable zero waste
What motivated you to start your business and become an entrepreneur?
It all started as a creative outlet and naturally progressed into a business. I began making soaps for myself as I found that many of the products I was using contained chemicals and ingredients I’d never heard of. I wasn’t sure of the effects these were having on my body and the environment so decided to make my own!
What’s the first ever product you created? Do you still sell it now?
Yes! The first product I made was the Pink Clay bar soap – the scent was different, but it looks the same.
Where do you find inspiration for your products?
The inspiration comes from many places. I studied art and design at University and have always had an interest in sculpture, architecture, and fine art. I follow the work of artists such as sculptor David Unemoto and painter Carla Cascales Alimbau. I also enjoy researching plants and herbal apothecary which informs many of the ingredients we use.
Sustainability is deeply important here at FËRNN. Talk to us about sustainability in your business - how do you approach this?
It’s one of our fundamental principles to work sustainably. This is reflected in all aspects of our business, from the responsibly sourced natural ingredients in our products right down to the environmentally friendly inks on our packaging.
anna apotheco soap skincare lifestyle bath salts vegan soap bar sustainable zero waste
What challenge did you specifically want to solve by starting your business?
I think as a country and globally, we’ve fallen into the expectation that everything needs to be cheap and fast. Fast-fashion, fast-food, fast-delivery. All have devastating consequences to our environment. I’m a strong advocate of moving away from cheap, mass produced products whether it be fashion, food or skincare. Wherever possible I will invest in high quality, local products and since starting my own business, it’s taught me more than ever to appreciate the craft, time and care that goes into creating handmade products.
What’s your most favourite aspect of running your own business?
The freedom and sense of fulfilment and joy I get from it. I’ve always loved to create and knowing people are enjoying the products I make is hugely rewarding.
anna apotheco soap skincare lifestyle bath salts vegan soap bar sustainable zero waste
Now. Slightly off topic... if you were a biscuit, what would you be and why?

Oooh probably a Hobnob, it’s just a good all rounder isn’t it?! – Good bit of chocolate but not too sweet and as Peter Kay pointed out, a great dipper!
On your day off, what can you be found doing?
I love pottering around in the garden. My daughter’s learning about plants at pre-school so she’s just started to get interested in what I’m doing and follows me round asking what all the plants and herbs are.
If you could share one piece of advice to any of our journal readers who are thinking about starting a business, that you also wish you could go back and tell yourself when you were thinking the same, what would it be?
To be confident and just go for it!
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned since starting your own business?
Less is more. I often try to overcomplicate things so learning to keep things refined and simple has been a challenge. Also, not to rush things.
anna apotheco soap skincare lifestyle bath salts vegan soap bar sustainable zero waste
What are your visions for your business in the future?
I have a lot planned in terms of new products to add to our range. The dream would be to eventually open my own shop.
Where can our customers buy more of your products?
Through our website or else we are stocked in some wonderful shops across the UK. See our stockist list for more details.
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Thanks Anna! I'd love to know what you thought of my latest journal entry in a comment below. If you're looking for more reading, take a look at my conversation with Jodie from Serien Creative in the FËRNN journal here.
You can find Apotheco's Salt & Oil Bath Soak in our Earth Mama pregnancy + postpartum self-care gift box and many of our self-care and wellness gift boxes. 

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  • Sarah on

    These soaps look incredible. A wonderful interview to read.

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