Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal care but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Bailey DePew, Founder of Bai-li Essentials, located in Bethlehem, PA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Bai-li Essentials is a plastic-free, natural deodorant and skincare brand. Our customer base is people who are already living a sustainable lifestyle and those who are curious to begin that journey.
Tell us about yourself
My first love Tim, who passed away in 2016, gave me the nickname Bai-li. He was studying Mandarin in China when he told me my Chinese name would be Bai-li and that it means pure-beautiful, "and don't ever forget it," he added. In the summer of 2019, Bai-li (pronounced like Bailey - my name) was born in Los Angeles. It was 110 °, and I was on a quest to create a sustainably packaged natural deodorant that actually worked. After many changing recipes, I landed on a formula that actively blocked odor, didn't irritate the skin, and smelled amazing! When naming my brand, it was as if Tim whispered Bai-li into my ear. It was all-natural, sustainably packaged, and made with love. It was pure and beautiful. I knew it would be the name.
What motivates me every day are these core values... Reducing single-use plastic is essential, now more than ever. Every small step towards eco-consciousness is a step in the right direction. It matters what we put into and onto our bodies. Uplifting and loving the community around us means everything! And I always like to remind people, you are pure and beautiful...don't ever forget it.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I feel like my biggest accomplishment as a business owner is sticking with the business! You truly have to wear all the hats most often, and that can be overwhelming. Thankfully my love for this company and the support of my family and friends keep me moving forward!
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
For me, it's knowing when to ask for help and when to hire help. I have an "I can do it all" mentality, but I do believe teams make you so much stronger.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
Firstly, I'd say you really have to believe in your business and stand behind whatever that is. Secondly, start small. Bootstrap it and find out if you have a product-market fit. Thirdly, stick with it! Times will get hard, and the business will push you, but it's always worth it!
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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