Every once in a while a beauty influencer or brand comes along that’s so extraordinary in their efforts to give back, attention must be paid. Each Feel Good Friday, we’ll highlight these do-gooders along with simple ways to support their efforts.
There’s a wonderful, secondary benefit that comes with writing for Random Acts of Lipstick: The new network of do-gooders that have been added to my Rolodex. Sure I could always rattle off the top brands with socially conscious missions, but now I’m learning about some of the impressive organizations flying under the radar. Take for example, Eryn Ricker’s Real Beauty for a Cause that I was introduced to through fellow philanthropist, Erin Zaikis, founder of Sundara.
Ricker’s natural skin care line was born after she found herself as a young mom, struggling to get by. She was grateful for a supportive family who helped her through a difficult time but she never forgot how other women in similar situations would feel without that safety net. Thus Real Beauty for a Cause was launched to provide work opportunities for women who needed the extra income. “We truly believe in the power of business to help positively impact lives,” Ricker explains.
And RandomActsofLipstick.com’s personal experience with Real Beauty for a Cause made us see the light (so to speak!) after receiving a soy candle and bath salts from the brand, along with a thank you note from P.J., the woman who had so lovingly crafted each item. The candle sits in a tinted, vintage looking jar and casts a glow that can’t help but remind you of the women behind the brand.
Ahead of the launch of their crowdfunding campaign (launching October 18th), we sat down with Ricker to learn just how many women find employment at Real Beauty for a Cause, the biggest challenge she’s faced getting the org off the ground, and how you can shop for the cause.
Alexis Farah: Ok, we dig everything about Real Beauty for a Cause! What inspired you to start a natural skin care line with a mission?
Eryn Ricker: Ah, inspiration – my favorite topic! I became a mom during my second year of college. I never doubted that I wanted to be a mom; it just happened a little sooner than I had anticipated. As it turns out, babies and college don’t easily fit together. The struggle was real but I knew that if I didn’t finish, I would potentially need the assistance of many others for the rest of my life. I was truly fortunate to have a family support system, which I didn’t take for granted. I am where I am today because of that support. But so many moms are on their own without that help. I wanted to create an opportunity for them and Real Beauty for a Cause was that socially responsible business that uses beauty to create those opportunities. We truly believe in the power of business to help positively impact lives.
AF: How many women are you able to employ at the company?
ER: It really varies based on demand. Right now we have three part time employees but have employed 15 women over the past year. We have a really awesome dynamic at Real Beauty! It’s a community, a sisterhood.
AF: How will the impending crowdfunding campaign help the brand expand?
ER: We just began a partnership with Jeremiah Program in Austin and we’re seriously so excited about this! The Jeremiah Program offers one of the nation’s most successful strategies for transforming families from poverty to prosperity two generations at a time. They accomplish this by preparing single mothers to excel in the workforce, readies their children to succeed in school, and reduces generational dependence on public assistance.
For this to be successful, we need additional funds. The backers of our campaign will not only help us move a portion of our production to Austin but will also expand our impact on families in need. It is creating more jobs for women in Texas and eventually around the country. I hope that everyone using our products are constantly reminded that they have given a women the opportunity to improve their family through wages earned at Real Beauty.
AF: What was the biggest challenge you faced launching a non-profit?
EK: We are a social enterprise (which gives us room to do more as we do not have the restrictions that a non-profit does). I was so nervous about being vulnerable and letting go. The biggest challenge was really moving beyond that fear of failure. We are trained to doubt ourselves and when you are bearing your creative soul, it is scary!
AF: Now to the good stuff: How can we help?
Follow us on social media, shop our beauty collection, and stay tuned for more on our crowdfunding campaign!
Our Website: http://www.realbeautyforacause.com/
Prefundia: http://prefundia.com/projects/view/real-beauty-for-a-cause/9159/ (Follow our crowdfunding campaign and sign up to receive updates. It begins OCT 18).