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Two local moms found themselves in a stinky situation. It was truly the pits, literally.
They decided to solve the problem by starting a business that provides an all natural deodorant. It all started when Kristi Joynt, a Croatan resident, began making homemade deodorant in her kitchen.
The health-conscious mom was looking for a formula without synthetic materials or toxins.
“I researched all the ingredients and decided what was good and what wasn’t good. I tested each version on myself and was stinky for months,” said Joynt. “When I perfected the product, I told absolutely no one. I thought it was weird to make my own deodorant.”
In December 2015, Joynt attended a gym class and the subject of natural deodorant came up while a group of women were complaining that none of the natural products seemed to work. Joynt spoke up and told everyone she had created an effective homemade deodorant and would hand over the recipe.
That day she made a big batch and shared it with her friends. A day later, she also shared a stick of deodorant with her friend Sara Salter. The Linkhorn resident tried it herself and gave it to her 9-year-old son.
Salter was hooked.
“Sara called me in mid-January and said, ‘We’re going into business together,’ ” said Joynt. “I told her I couldn’t sell it, but she insisted she could market the product.”
In early spring 2016, Joynt and Salter chose a name for their business. The original name was Smiley Pits, but it changed to Shining Light this past summer due to trademark issues.
Next, the two moms made 50 scents in 1 oz. jars and had the kids help chose the five scents to manufacture. Also, their children creatively named the scents: Flower Power, Sunshine, Magical, Rock Tough and Sick Nasty Defense.
By the end of April, the first sticks were sold online; and then by September 2016, their product was on the shelves at Whole Foods.
“The deodorant was popular from day one starting as a product geared toward children, tweens and teens, but quickly gaining just as many adult fans including myself,” said Susanna Aikin-Wise, Whole Foods Body Team leader.
“My personal favorite is the Sick Nasty Defense, but they all smell fantastic. A little goes a long way and customers like that it’s a product that they feel comfortable using for everyone in the household.”
Salter said they have experienced growth beyond their original goal. Currently, the natural deodorant is sold in more than 50 stores in five states.
“We are two neurotic moms who think it’s OK to sweat, but it’s not OK to stink,” Sara said. “Our product really works and it’s healthy.”
The owners answered the following questions about their product:
What are the ingredients? Baking soda, arrowroot powder, organic coconut oil, beeswax, cocoa butter, tea tree oil and essential oil blends for scents.
Do you have an unscented variety? Yes, it’s called Rock Tough.
Price? It retails from $9.99-$11.99.
Where can I purchase locally? We sell it in 18 Virginia Beach stores, and you can find the full list of stores at shininglightdeodorant.com. Also, you can or order online.
How long does a stick last? On average, it lasts three months. A little goes a long way.
Which ingredient keeps the smell away? All play a part, but the tea tree oil is the most important.
Any other uses? It works on the feet too.
Lee Belote, firstname.lastname@example.org