Charlene Simon is a leader in the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry. A respected multi-brand retailer, her dedication to the industry has paved a smooth road between manufacturing and the sales shelves. She began making soap and cosmetics in her kitchen and now, with her husband, leads Simon Holdings, Inc. which encompasses Bathhouse Soapery & Caldarium: retail bath & body boutiques spanning across five states, Evilo Oils & Vinegars: a specialty food shop featuring a pantry of gourmet accoutrements, and The Pioneer’s Cabin: a family style dining experience.
Her current role as the President of The Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild allows her to advocate for, educate, and promote the industry that represents over 350,000 makers. This paired with her extensive handcrafted soap and cosmetic retail knowledge and intimate contact with tens of thousands of customers a year, allows her to fore-see industry trends and have an ear towards the real conversations buyers are having on retail and e-commerce platforms.
As keynote she is bursting with passion to talk about where the handcrafted beauty and skincare industry is headed, how much you should eye big-box beauty retail, and how you can keep up with what buyers really want from their indie-beauty makers while staying true to your handcrafted roots.
Angela Carillo decided to take her career in chemistry in a new direction after the kids left home. Through a journey that led her from library research to classes, conferences and communities of other soap makers, Alegna Soap began as a business in 2010. Her products are now in local bed & breakfasts, specialty shops and available online.
Angela teaches classes in soap making to adults in NYC and on Long Island, and skin care classes to elementary students. She has written for The Soap Collaborative, and Making Soap Cosmetics & Candles (previously known as Saponifier). She reached an even wider audience when she was invited to show host Kevin Pereira how to make soap on TV’s Hack My Life.
Donating her time and products to help others in need is also important to Angela. She was one of a group of soap makers who traveled to Haiti to teach women in tent camps how to make soap and perfume as a way to support themselves. Through her initiative, “Soap for Soup,” Angela regularly makes a special batch of soap products from which the proceeds go directly to a Bethpage, NY, food pantry because of their generous help for a friend of hers years ago.
Kayla Fioravanti is the owner of Ology Essentials. She has a deep and abiding passion for aromatherapy and natural personal care products. At Ology Essentials, we take our name seriously, with a research driven brand of high quality products, fluffery-free aromatherapy certification program, experience based business consulting, and honest no-hype custom formulating services. Ology Essentials is an indispensable aromatherapy and natural products resource and supplier. We love research and studying so much—we put it in our name! At Ology Essentials we are committed to high quality single note essential oils and carefully crafted essential oils blends. Ology Essentials represents the synergy of art and science.
Kayla also is a co-owner of Work+Shop Create in Franklin, Tennessee. Work + Shop Create is a uniquely curated retail shop in Franklin, Tennessee. Whether it is home and living goods, bath and body products, or a little this and a little that, Work + Shop showcases many of Tennessee’s finest products. Along with selling goods made by local artists and artisans, Work + Shop Create also invites you to learn from these talented folks. Hosting several workshops a week, Work + Shop wants the Franklin community and beyond to feel empowered to make goods on their own!
In 1998, Kayla and her husband Dennis co-founded Essential Wholesale, which was listed as an INC. Magazine 5000 Fastest Growing Companies in America for three years in a row. Essential Wholesale began in their kitchen with a $50 investment in 1998 and sold for millions in 2011. Through custom formulating, private consultations, publications and public speaking Kayla have literally been involved in thousands of businesses and served countless customers.
Bethany decided to explore the fragrance world in 2007 by experimenting in candle making. This curious hobby began much earlier in Bethany’s life, as she explored crafting with her grandmother as a child. Her love for creating, and specifically candle making, quickly turned into experimenting with soap making and skin care products.
Bethany began studies in Aromatherapy, studying with the Atlantic Institute of Aromatherapy with Sylla Sheppard-Hanger in 2016. She is also a licensed Massage Therapist in the state of Georgia. She has been formulating candles, soap, and many other products for over 10 years. Her products can be found in local shops in Douglasville, GA as well as online. Bethany spends her free time enjoying her 4 children, hiking, cooking & spending time in the community.
Holly Port—owner of Lotion Bar Café in Colorado Springs, author of Make it Fizz : A Guide to Making Bathtub Treats and the queen of bath fizzies will be sharing her tips on how to put together a successful event/show. Holly puts on several shows per year, like her annual Handmade Hollyday (which she has put on for 11 years with amazing turnouts). She has over 500 customers that do their holiday shopping in one day at her HOME. When Holly is not making bath and body products she is drinking lots of coffee and hanging out with her husband of 23 years and her two boys. She is working on another book with her Make It Series coming Fall 2018, just in time of the holidays.
Join Brooke Stant, mastermind behind Smiles By Wedelstaedt, for a two-hour scent blending workshop: “Exploring Your Signature Style and Scent Memory.” You will learn the basics of traditional fragrance design, as well as how to build unique variations on that model. This workshop will run from 6-8 pm Friday night before the full-day conference. Space is limited.