When it comes to natural skin care and philanthropy, Soapstones is winging it.
But not in the improvisational way - the company spends lots of time on research and development.
They are literally winging it. There’s a life-size painting of a pair of teal angel wings on the wall, created specifically for customers to pose in front of for photos.
“When you make a purchase, you earn your wings because we put five per cent back into youth programs in the community,” said Collingwood Soapstones manager Andrea Crane.
The wings were painted by a local high school student who earned her volunteer hours as she worked on the project.
The wings got a work out this Elvis Festival as Crane pulled in some of the Elvis Tribute Artists for a Soapstone wings photoshoot.
The Collingwood Soapstones location opened in December 2017. It’s part of a group of three stores with the others in Muskoka and Port Carling. The Soapstone line uses all-natural ingredients and each item is handmade in Huntsville.
The Soapstones motto is “Feel Good. Do Good.”
When it comes to products, the company stays away from carcinogens, fragrances and harsh chemicals - such as the ones on David Suzuki’s Dirty Dozen list, and instead opts for essential oils, natural ingredients and biodegradable materials.
Things like jojoba beads or cranberry seeds replace plastic microbeads as exfoliators, the Scrub-a-Dub has zero packaging and is a vegetable based glycerin soap with a natural sea sponge loofa molded inside so you won’t need a plastic-based loofa.
All items are cruelty free and most are vegan, with the exception of some products that contain milk or beeswax. The scents are mostly created with essential oils and the more famous scents include cedar and saffron, pink sugar, lavender and coconut.
“We get to provide the customer with a safe product that is luxurious,” said Crane. “People are becoming more aware of what these chemicals are doing to the earth and we have to live here, and so do our children.”
The skin and body care line includes shampoo and conditioner, natural deodorant, soaps, skin creams and sprays as well as a baby and a pet care line.
“Whenever possible we use Canadian ingredients, and they are always ethically sourced and sustainable,” said Crane.
And for the “do good” portion of the motto, there’s the Enliven line as well as the priority of giving back to youth programs. Five per cent of all sales go to support a local youth program in the community where the sale was made. There are also a few apparel and accessory options such as hats and water bottles. One-hundred per cent of proceeds from the sale of those items go back to youth programs.
The Enliven line was created by Soapstones owners David and Joanne McLean after Joanne received a cancer diagnosis. She died very recently, and the charity continues in her honour.
Fifty per cent of the proceeds from the sale of any item in the Enliven line goes to The Enliven Centre for Self Care, which is an organization dedicated to supporting those living with cancer and those who are caring for someone living with cancer.
Collingwood Soapstones is located on Hurontario Street between First and Second Street.