This holiday season, you can transform lives in Kenya by buying bars of charcoal soap. For every $20 bar of soap you purchase, you empower one woman in Kenya with a charcoal efficient stove—a life-changing gift.
(Last chance: we have less than 100 soaps left!)
We've partnered up again with Apotheke, our charcoal soap ninjas. Read below for an interview with Chrissy Fichtl, founder of Apotheke.
How did you get interested in soap making, scent direction, and essential oils?
"A few years back I needed a hobby and randomly bought a soap kit at a local art shop. I started making soaps in my kitchen and was surprised at how incredible the process was! The science of it all was fascinating to me. Once I actually starting using my own soap I couldn’t believe how well my skin responded to the all natural oils and essential oils. It was love from that point on."
What sparked the idea for creating Apotheke?
"It was an incredibly organic process (with a lot of hard work!). I started making soaps and giving them to friends and the response was incredible. I kept getting asked, 'Are you selling them?'. I got tired of not having an answer and I applied to a local farmer’s market. I started experimenting at night making new kinds, work during the day, and farmer’s markets on the weekends. "
How did you come up with the name Apotheke?
"A friend of mine owned a farm in Germany that made these incredibly pure essential oils. He started to send me some and I used them in all of my soaps. Apotheke means 'pharmacy' in German, so it just made sense! It helps I am German as well -- a tribute to my roots."
How are you revolutionizing your industry?
"Honestly it all comes back to what my family and friends want in life. We all work hard and need those little luxuries to help us along the way. Instead of pumping product out we are building it steadily and still with quality ingredients. I maintain the thought that we are making products that are a livable luxury. Those products you use every day but still want to treat yourself with. Our products sustain your home and do it beautifully and with quality."
Why do you believe in job creation in developing countries?
"Simply put, instead of just 'gifting' it is long lasting and self-sustaining. To teach people a trade that not only helps them but the generations to come encourages healthy economies and all around healthy economies. When people know that they are gifted in something it changes their attitude which in turns is a ripple effect into their life, family, and future."
What are some benefits of charcoal soap?
"The base we use is all natural oils and essential oils. So from the foundation there are no un-natural preservatives which is incredible for your skin. It is moisturizing and cleansing from the start! The charcoal powder is a “super detox”. It pulls the impurities out of your skin super gently to leave room for the cleansers and moisturizers to do what they are meant to do."
What are you most excited about for this partnership?
"We love partnering will people who love what they are doing and look beyond the immediate need and into the future."