Her bookshelf is lined with herbal healing and homeopathic books, and she routinely races out to the yard amidst the sound of her buzzing bee hive to rescue burdock from being mowed down each week.
It’s true what you hear about April of Anointment Skincare. She’s one motivated woman driven to provide pure, natural solutions for the whole family.
Past, present or future, I consistently see April fulfilling a family-oriented principal to keep those you love from chemical sensitivities and wasteful or harmful practices. Her most recently created product at Nurtured is Shoo! body spray, light in smell and effective at keeping bugs away from the whole family. As with all Anointment products, you’ll certainly benefit from using it.
It was fun to ask April a few questions recently about Anointment and her life in New Brunswick.
Q: Congratulations on recently receiving the New Brunswick’s Energy Efficiency award! How did you go about this?
When Jeff and I bought a 150 year old Victorian farmhouse (also home to Anointment Skincare) we knew the house was drafty, expensive to heat and also in need of renovations. We spent last spring freezing but also researching how to cut down a $6,000 heating bill to a fraction of the cost. Once we did the research we found the available federal and provincial grants and actively sought these out to help with the expense of renovating and making a comfortable place to live. As Jeff put it, “The greenest and most efficient home is one that’s already built”. Though the federal program has ended April is a proud advocate of her local province’s efficiency program and encourages those interested to check if their province offers a similar program.
Q: Your blog has shared glimpses of mixing up Anointment’s small batches of skincare products. Which is the most labour intensive?
Belly Butter takes 3 solid hours for just 12 jars! I’m happy to have a new piece of equipment to maybe double the amount of jars, but when we say “small batches” we really mean it! Belly Butter itself needs to be optimally whipped!
Q: What sets Shoo! apart from other natural bug deterrents? How long have you been working on it and how did it get it’s name?
Shoo! has been in the making for about two years.
Health Canada notes soybean oil provides 3 hours of protection against mosquitoes and up to 8 hours for black flies. We start off with a base of organic soybean oil so it’s not derived from GMOs as that’s really important to Anointment. The neem oil was a great find as it is tried and true in other parts of the world as a bug repellant and allowed me to stay away from the conflicting information I was finding on citronella. I had 2 dozen people across Atlantic Canada give it a whirl last year. When I asked what it should be called the power of social media offered excellent feedback! We had fun with about a dozen names. Shoo! was cute, but not too cute and family friendly. The mosquitoes are bad already this year so we’ve used this quite a bit already. I’m also hearing the bat population is down this year so I hope people find it highly effective as they’re going to need to use something! Which reminds me I must remember to spray the dog! Greyhounds react terribly to bites.
Q: From what I know about you, I’m sure you’re not avidly testing products on animals, are you?
No, no. I’m also not a veterinarian. There are a few things animals are much more sensitive to than humans, so I do keep this in mind and I have quite a good set of council I seek when saying it’s okay to use on the family dog.
Q: If the bugs still find a way in, what’s your favourite remedy for a bug bite?
Q: What bugs you about general skincare on the shelves today?
I see a lot of green washing happening and companies capitalizing on it. The lack of transparency in ingredients scares me. Something that can be harmful can be hidden behind a big word that’s perceived as safe. When you strip away the complicated latin labeling requirements of Anointment you get items you should be able to pick out of a garden.
I’m also amazed at how many products exist for something like shampoo for various hair types. I don’t know about you, but when you have 5 people in one bathroom, that’s a lot of products. So I like the concept of one-size fits all so everyone can use something simple, safe and effective.
Q: What can we expect to see from Anointment in the future?
There are a lot of projects happening in various stages, there will be a lot happening for Anointment in 2013, but I’m not ready to let the secrets out just yet. A family shampoo is a big one. I’ve been working on it for about two and a half years and I’m one more testing round away from releasing it.
A lot of our customers may not know we’ve transitioned to using only certified organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil in Baby Balm, Soothing Skin Ointment and Push – this change was made about a year ago. There is no product change as a result but it better reflects what Anointment stands for and my own personal agriculture beliefs to be using certified organic products.
We’re also going to be setting up an empty jar return program with some of our retailers – our customers have been asking for this and I’ve finally found a way to make it a reality which fits Anointment’s mandate so well. I’m really excited to start rolling this out. (Me too!)
Special thanks to April for answering these questions! By the way, if you missed Nurtured’s Mother’s Day Anointment giveaway, add Anointment to your likes when you’re on Facebook. You can enter to win a $75 gift basket until the end of the month by sharing what your favourite product is and what makes it special to you and your family! Good Luck!