Category - Spotlight On

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POP PHX- A Collaborative Retail Space on Roosevelt Row
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A Fresh Start with Day One. Skincare
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Safe and Sustainable Cleaning with The Hoot

POP PHX- A Collaborative Retail Space on Roosevelt Row

I first met Ashley Bourget when she was doing pop-ups at Renaissance Square in downtown Phoenix. I thought it was a great way of showcasing and introducing a broader audience to shopping local. Fast forward to the First Friday of the year- January 5, 2018, when she announced the opening of her brick n’ mortar in The Blocks of Roosevelt Row space. Each month, she showcases several local small businesses, with hopes of giving the brands an opportunity to further grow their business. This is her story…

LAFS: Tell me a little about yourself…

AB: I have always wanted to be an entrepreneur, but wasn’t sure how to get my start or what I wanted to do. My career background is tied to business, commercial real estate, and retail development. I’ve always admired dreamers who were willing to take a risk and create their own brand. I was an avid shopper of locally sourced retail products and wanted to continue to support them on a grander scale. Finally, I had the courage to launch my own business. I started out buying and selling mid century furniture. After lugging one too many dressers into my house and sitting in an office all day, I started brainstorming other ways to become self-employed. One day it all came together and I had the idea for POP PHX.

LAFS: Before the brick n’ mortar, what was your initial concept of POP PHX?

AB: Last summer I had an idea to bring retail to downtown Phoenix. There are too many vacant storefronts and too little retail (specifically locally sourced retailers and products). A friend of mine is the property manager at Renaissance Square and I presented my pop up concept to him. He provided a large glass window display in the building for me to create and develop the POP PHX concept. Kat and Kui with Rubymint General were my first pop up hosts. They came in and created a stunning window display to showcase their merchandise. On Fridays, they would open up a mini shop in the building to sell their merchandise during the lunch hour. It was a great community experience. During this experience, I realized there was a need for micro retailers to have a space to sell their merchandise without the risk of leasing their own space. And that’s when I decided to find a permanent home for POP PHX.

LAFS: What brands have you featured so far?

AB: I have been fortunate to have nearly three-dozen local vendors participate in POP PHX in the four months I have been open. Such great brands have been featured: Rubymint General, Day One., The Modern Cactus, Visionary Nomad, Designer Treasure Hunt, Luz Del Desierto, Junkie Threads, Ilsa Fragrances, and many more.

LAFS: What makes POP PHX unique and stand-out?

AB: POP PHX is the only permanent venue in Phoenix that hosts pop up shops on an ongoing basis. The mission of the shop is to have a place where micro retailers can sell their products, promote their brand, grow, and ultimately fulfill the dreams they have for their brand. I hope POP PHX is a launching point for them.

LAFS: What can we expect from POP PHX in the coming months?

AB: I am working on some fun future events and plans, but they are still under wraps. I will be partnering with retail and restaurant neighbors along Roosevelt Row to create events that benefit our entire community. This summer I will be launching additional pop up opportunities around the city like we did last summer. With the slow down of summer months, it’s vital to find new ways to sell merchandise and to do it indoors.

Also find POP PHX on Facebook, Online, and on Instagram!

It’s located at:

513 E. Roosevelt St., Phoenix, AZ

POP PHX, Phoenix, pop up shop, shopping

POP PHX, Phoenix, pop up shop, shopping

POP PHX, Phoenix, pop up shop, shopping

POP PHX, Phoenix, pop up shop, shopping

POP PHX, Phoenix, pop up shop, shopping

POP PHX, Phoenix, pop up shop, shopping

POP PHX, Phoenix, pop up shop, shopping

 

 

 

A Fresh Start with Day One. Skincare

The wise Ilona Royce Smithkin recently posted on her Instagram, “Take care of your body, it’s your best friend!”

The Advanced Style star’s words couldn’t be more true. I’m so glad I switched over to natural skincare products a couple years back, as I hope that the non-toxic products will help take care of my “best friend” for the rest of my life. I’ve noticed a big difference in the overall appearance of my skin, and I’ve been told a lot lately that I look like I’m still in my 20s (which is great). I’ve been so lucky to have connected with numerous local, natural and organic skincare brands throughout these couple years, mainly in Arizona, but also a couple amazing companies in Houston as well. I’m so pleased to share with you, the story of a company that just recently launched not too long ago…

Day One. is a small Phoenix-based skincare company that was created by Alexandra Stein in December 2017.  I had the pleasure of meeting her when I stopped by Pop PHX on my last visit to Phoenix. I had originally e-met her on Instagram through mutual friends, and I was thrilled when I found out that she was vending at the shop when I’d be in town.

While at the shop, I was introduced to naturally-made small batch bars of soap, deodorant, lip balm, and bath soaks, whose primary ingredients include: Isolated Cannabidiol and Full Spectrum Hemp Extract. Alex is a firm believer of only using organic, non-toxic products on your body, as well as being an advocate for cannabis and hemp. You can read more about the use of the plant with her products HERE. We also chatted about the importance of a natural deodorant that works. I can vouch for the fact that Day One.’s aluminum-free version does work for me. I still sweat, however, I don’t stink, thanks to the AHHHmazing fresh tea tree scent that emits from my armpits. Alex also loves it, and feels that it’s been a godsend to her own armpits as well. It was also interesting finding out more about her growing brand…

LAFS: Tell me a little about yourself, and what inspired you to start a skincare company?

AS: I grew up in Phoenix, AZ but spent my formative years at a boarding school in central Arizona. As soon as I graduated I packed and moved to Chicago where I lived for 5 years, eventually moving back to Phoenix after graduating from Loyola University Chicago with two bachelors degrees. The last 9 years in Phoenix have been a rollercoaster! With deciding to leave my corporate job and start my journey into entrepreneurship 3 years ago, I never would’ve envisioned being where I am now. I worked for years in marketing and public relations and made the jump to sales after leaving my job at an ad tech startup. I was making great money but I wasn’t happy. That’s ultimately when I decided to combine my passion for helping people and advocacy for cannabis and hemp, and turn it into my own organic skin care company…My passion for skincare and creating products started during my teenage years and progressed as I moved back to Phoenix. While living in the Midwest, I experienced a complete 180 in terms of skincare problems from growing up in Phoenix and spent lots of time making DIY face masks and shopping at Lush with my college girlfriends. I feel self-care routines are important to help us destress from our everyday troubles and have been taking baths to relax since childhood. Making the bath soak came about after creating bath bombs and really not liking how my skin felt after using them during my own bathing routine. While fun to watch and swirl about in, when I moved back to Phoenix after graduating, I took what I learned from living in the harsh and windy climate of Chicago and experimented with my own products at home. It wasn’t until I made my first batch of cold process soap in 2015 that I knew I was here to bring back bar soap in a big way.

LAFS: What inspired the name, “Day One.?”

AS: When I thought about the name, a fresh start. Also, the beginning of a new routine. Beyond our purpose of “empowering the public to make conscious health and beauty choices”, I want to inspire others to be their most authentic self while treating their bodies and skin with the utmost love and care. Education and transparency have been a huge selling point for my products. I want people to start their journey into non-toxic skincare and hygiene products with Day One. and I’m hoping I’m creating a loyal following for my niche.

LAFS: What makes Day One. stand out, in your opinion?

AS: Our products are free of palm oil and toxic ingredients. Two things that remain in many over-the-counter soaps and hygiene products. They are also made with a proprietary hemp seed oil that’s infused with an additional raw extract from hemp and isolated cannabidiol, both extracted with minimal solvents and imported from Europe. The combination of organic ingredients with the added benefit of hemp makes Day One. stand out.

Find Day One. online, Facebook, and Instagram!

Day One., natural skincare, bath salts

Day One., natural skincare

Day One., natural skincare

Day One., natural skincare, soap bar

Safe and Sustainable Cleaning with The Hoot

One of my fondest childhood memories was when I would go to my dad’s house for the weekend. Seeing that he hardly had time to really clean up around the house, I took it upon myself to help out. I really enjoyed showing him a cleaner house after I was done. In those days, the thought of a natural, chemical-free cleaning solution was pretty much unheard of. But fast-forward to the 21st Century, we now live in a society where it’s almost a given to have healthier and more sustainable household cleaning products around.

I had heard about The Hoot All-Natural Cleaning Solution through my Facebook feed, and I wanted to check it out. The Virginia-based small company was launched by Tonya Newsome. Throughout her lifetime, she had always spent most of her time cleaning homes, including her own. Over time, however, she would notice that her hands were aging faster than her face, and that she was having many respiratory issues. That led her to start investigating the ingredients behind common household cleaners, most of which turned out to be harmful. Empowered with the newfound information, she set out to make her own safer cleaning solution, which (since 2014) is now known as The Hoot.

The Hoot wasn’t the original name for her product, but unfortunately, the name she wanted to use was already taken. Tonya goes on to explain, “Because our logo design was completed before we named ourselves, I was 100% set on keeping the logo and finding a name that was befitting of the design and our mission- to introduce an all-natural cleaning product that is safe, effective, and AFFORDABLE. “The Hoot” was actually suggested by my daughter one day while sitting on our porch, and it immediately reminded me of my youth. In the first grade, I was in a play titled, “Give a Hoot.” I could recall a popular song from the seventies called, “Give a Hoot, Don’t Pollute.” I thought to myself, ‘Perfect! This is a sign!’ The name “The Hoot” stuck.”

While you can pretty much clean just about anything with the solution, it does not polish wood…Yet… Did I also mention that they use bottles that are crafted from recycled plastic?!

Tonya sent me a bottle to try, and I must say… I’m impressed! It does everything a “normal” cleaner would do. It also smells fantastic! It comes in lavender, lemon, orange, peppermint, and pine. I received the lavender, and boy do I love the way it gives off a calming scent when I’m cleaning the kitchen, floors, bathroom, etc. I also use it to clean the tiles in the shower, where the soap scum builds up. I spray it, let it set in for a minute, and use a good scrubbing sponge, and it’s pretty good at getting most of it off. What’s also great about this product, is that I don’t have to use gloves. I have the reassurance that it’s safe to use around myself, my spouse, and my three cats. “The Hoot ingredients are easy to read. We are affordable, and our product contains no SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) or SLES (sodium laureth sulfate) like a lot of natural products on the market today. These are both common additives used mainly to produce foam in cleaning products, but are also known skin irritants and cancer-causing agents. The Hoot All-Natural produces the same (or even better) results without the harmful effects,” Tonya said.

The Hoot All-Natural cleaning solution, natural ingredients

I also love how Newsome is all about helping out and giving back in her community. “At this time, our main focus is introducing and getting the word out about The Hoot All-Natural. In the future, we also hope to expand our mission to include providing information and access to other healthy alternatives, including community gardens to low-income areas.”

You can find/shop The Hoot All-Natural online, in six local health food stores in Virginia (and plan on getting into more), on Facebook, and Instagram.

Tonya leaves us with, “Give The Hoot a try on things outside normal house areas that you need to clean. We have had customers use it on their shoes, car rims, car seats, and even as a glass cleaner!”

The Hoot All-Natural cleaning solution, natural ingredients

It really does work on car rims!

 

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