About the Owner
I figured it might be a good idea to take the time to introduce myself. My name is Anna-Kate Bean, and I'm the owner and head soap maker at Ole Tradition Soap Co. Actually, I'm pretty much the head everything at Ole Tradition- I make the products, run the website, ship the orders, manage the social medias, take the inventories- if it needs to be done, I'm the one who does it.
I graduated from West Virginia University in 2017 with a degree in Multidisciplinary Studies, with emphasis in Music Performance, Music Industry, and Entrepreneurship. I'm half of the indie-folk duo Whiskey Victor, so when I graduated, it was hard for me to get a "straight job" because I needed to be able to book shows any night of the week at any time of day. So, I decided to sell my soap.
I've always been pretty crafty, I suppose. I'd rather spend $100 to make something myself when I could buy it at the store for $10 (much to my bank account's chagrin). Things just seem to hold more value to me if I've taken the time and effort to actually make it myself. I think that's why soaping came naturally to me. I've always been a fan of all things skincare. I love doing face masks and having "spa nights" with my sister. When I was little, I would mix up all my mom's shampoos into one concoction and then try to sell it back to her.
It wasn't until my late teens that I ever had an issue with my skin. I started noticing more and more breakouts, until eventually it felt like my entire face was perpetually inflamed. Then came the cycle of wearing makeup to cover the acne, only to make it worse, which then required more makeup to cover, which made it even worse- it was a nightmare. I began looking for natural alternatives to the harsh chemicals I was using to treat my skin. I bought my first bar of handmade soap at a craft fair, and my life was changed from there. My skin cleared up after using the soap for a few weeks, so I knew I was on to something. I began researching how to make my own soap, and eventually, I got pretty good at it.
Now, I've been able to branch out into making all sorts of skincare products- lotions, lip balms, etc. I like to make sure that every product I sell is something I actually love to use. I test everything extensively on myself and everyone I know. We all smell pretty good at this point!
Starting Ole Tradition Soap Co. has been a real treat in that it allows me to do what I love and help other people in the process. It's not always the easiest job in the world, but it sure is worth it.