Rebekah Rakowski has always cared about the health of her skin. When she got older, she started looking at the labels of her beauty products and realized the ingredients weren’t always ideal, especially those with unpronounceable names she had to look up. It was then that she began looking into natural and organic products, but the price point for such products was higher than the rest.
Because of the costs associated with larger brands, Rakowski set out to make her own products, items that were more affordable and better for the women who use them.
“A lot of women… can’t afford to be spending $30 on a lipstick or $150 on face wash. So I started to look around and find things that maybe women use often but not all the time that I could make and offer at a lower price than maybe what some of the stores were offering,” said Rakowski. “It’s something that I wanted to be making for myself and I was noticing that my girlfriends were also looking for a more affordable thing. Just because it’s convenient to buy it at the store, (it) doesn’t mean that it’s the best for you.”
From that philosophy, her business, Bella’s Retreat, was started a little over a month ago. In the short time since the launch, she has seen things “pick right up” in terms of interest from the community. She makes bath bombs, shower steamers and soaps with all organic and natural ingredients, foregoing chemicals, and things you would find in similar items made by bigger brands.
Rakowski says she learned to make these items through videos on YouTube and other places on the Internet, spending a lot of time going through trial and error to get everything just right. Eventually she plans on expanding her product line and making things like body washes, liquid soaps and even a kid friendly line of products.
So far, the feedback she has received has been great and she sees an interest from her friends and the people in the community who want to start using more natural products.
People have told her that once the COVID-19 crisis is over they’re going to be interested in more natural and organic products, but they may want more financially friendly products, Rakowski added.
Down the road, Rakowski could potentially expand her product line to include makeup and beauty items. Right now she doesn’t see a need for it because there may not be interest from the community, and given that she started the business to make items for herself, the risk of expanding to items that may not generate interest isn’t worth it.
“I only started this making stuff that I could use, and then people were interested in it. So, if I have enough people who are saying ‘hey we want this, we want this’ then potentially I could grow into that,” she said.