Vegan business brings a blast of colour to bath times

Welsh mother-of-two Sandie Peters made her living as a commercial photographer until she was spurred on to find a remedy for her niece's eczema and acne. Now - a little over a year on - and Peters runs a successful online vegan skincare business in Bridgend with her sister Louise Cattle. ...And her niece's skin ailments have cleared up!
Bath Bomb Babes' display at Swansea Vegan Festival
in July 2016 © MisBeee Writes

"My niece had been suffering from eczema and acne and my sister and I were searching for creams we could use to alleviate her symptoms," said Peters. "We couldn't find anything suitable so decided we would make our own. We started doing our research in June/July last year and just before Christmas 2015, our first product came out."

The pair formed the company Bath Bomb Babes after realising there was demand for naturally-made, and cruelty-free products. The pair sell across Britain and in France and source their ingredients from a UK-based wholesaler. Their initial product was a vegetarian soap made using oats, almonds and honey to combat Cattle's daughter's skin problems. "Eczema makes the skin dry and itchy, so honey had a soothing effect," Peters said.

Bath bomb benefits
The bath bomb idea came about because of the health benefits that some of the ingredients possess. Bicarbonate of soda helps to soften the skin and Epsom salts act as a detoxifier.
"The contents of the bath bomb combined with the creamers [cocoa, mango, shea butters] we've got on top of the product helped to moisturise the skin and minimise the eczema symptoms," said Peters. As a result, her 
16-year-old niece hasn't had an episode for a little over a year now.

Peters has stuck with the bath bombs but the honey and almond soap has been discontinued because the use of honey in products is not considered to be vegan.
"Some honey manufacturing processes can result in bees becoming trapped in the honey and processed as part of it. With apiaries, the bees are smoked off to collect the honey. Although this does not necessarily kill them, [and therefore could be consumed by vegetarians] it is considered to be harmful to bees. This bars vegans from using it," said Peters.

She has since developed a coconut face wash for a friend with psoriasis and is monitoring the effects of a cream on another niece with stretch marks.

Wedding cakes top left, Welsh Cakes top right,
bottom left Rose Bath Creamers - wedding favours © Sandie Peters
Considering veganism
Although not vegan herself, Peters is a strong advocate for this way of life. "I am definitely considering becoming vegan," she said. I've got to be honest, I do like eating meat but I don't like wearing meat products or putting substances containing meat products on my face.

"Since looking up the things that we use, it's absolutely stomach churning. All the products that I buy - as much as I can - are vegan so I am trying to do the same with the food I eat."

Eye candy
There is a definite sweet food theme to Peters' products. Her bath bomb collection includes doughnuts, jelly beans and raspberry ripple bathing treats.
"I started looking at packages and cake boxes seemed to be quite cute. I also noticed that some vegan products such as soaps on the market were not very colourful and were actually quite plain and boring. I wanted to improve on that and brought in colours to make them look attractive."
These butter-topped bath bombs look good enough
to eat © Sandie Peters

Peters is a firm believer that it is possible to deliver a quality product without having to compromise on your ethical standards. So neither the ingredients she uses nor the finished products are tested on animals. Unlike some bath bombs that contain alcohol, Peters' bombs do not, which allows her to market them as halal. She is also trying to conserve her water use so none of her creamers, body butter creams or bath bombs contain water, she said.

Something for everyone
Her products appeal to both male and female customers. There are bath cubes for the men - the equivalent of the traditional bath bombs - and shaving creams. There is also a growing collection of products for children, which include one of her top-selling creations - her dinosaur boxes. These boxes contain a set of bath bombs cut in the shape of the prehistoric creatures and over-sized dinosaur eggs. She is currently working on a bath bomb called Gothic Dream.
Gothic Dream Bath Bomb © Sandie Peters
There are themed products for Easter, a new Hallowe'en range she is developing, and even mini cake wedding favours. One of her newer products is the bath teabag creamer, which contains dried flowers, creamers and oils.

The product works in much the same way as the bombs but allows users to place them in the bath, gain all the benefits from the creams and oils without making a mess in the tub. It can be reused up to three times, Peters said.

The future
Peters admits that the journey has been one long learning curve, particularly since neither she nor her sister have chemistry backgrounds. But that hasn't stopped the pair from working to share their creativity with others.
"It has been a hard graft. My sister does the soaps and I do the bath bombs and the creamers and we have put a lot of effort in research," she said. "We've passed the breaking even stage, and we are making a profit and growing our online customer base.
"Next, I am hoping to make it into a shop - either one I run myself or by supplying our products to a retail outlet, she said.
A different kind of teabag from
Bath Bomb Babes © Sandie Peters

To learn more about Bath Bomb Babes, visit the company here.

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