When accountant Dawn-Dew Thompson’s two children started experiencing dry skin problems she naturally wanted to find solutions. Off-the-shelf lotions, creams, and soaps weren’t cutting it and she started adding natural butters and oils to them for a more moisturising effect.
Her efforts started to help, but she wasn’t satisfied with just trying to amp up existing commercial products, she wanted to learn more about how she could create custom formulations for her young son and daughter. So she signed up for a local soap making course.
Little did she know that less than two years later that endeavour would unfold into an emerging health and beauty brand that she now calls “Dawn by Nature” and which her steady roster of clients love for both tailor-made treats and standard goodies.
Dawn by Nature started mainly with bar soaps, infusing natural plant extracts and essential oils but has now evolved to include body butters, lotions, creams, facial cleansers, toners, moisturizers, and masks. All these are made in an income property turned production facility, a choice Dawn-Dew made for the convenience and level of control she could have.
The expansion in the product range was not as much out of necessity as it was because Dawn-Dew clearly enjoys researching, experimenting, and testing to make products for very specific needs. That’s probably not surprising seeing that it all started that way. But there’s a second reason for that growing product diversity - a niche of customers and potential customers who love the customisation factor.
Who are those customers? Actually Dawn-Dew has narrowed it down to two types of buyers. The first I’ll call the “natural skincare label readers”. They’re very conscious about what they use on their skin and prefer simple, natural ingredients. Much like Dawn-Dew’s children, they may be battling specific skin issues that store-bought or prescribed products have fallen short of addressing. The second type of customer is looking for a “spa-minute getaway” experience in skincare, either for themselves or as a gift to loved ones. I fall into the former category.
It was a first-time, eczema-like break out that led me to Dawn by Nature after connecting with Dawn-Dew on Instagram. After using two of her products, an aloe bar soap and a moisturising body butter, I was sold. The breakout and the itching that accompanied it went away after about two weeks of use - I’d gotten no relief from the prescription medication that I’d been using before that. Dawn by Nature instantly became one of my favourite Barbadian brands.
I invited Dawn-Dew to have a candid chat about the business, the brand and her plans for the future on the podcast ‘Backstage with Bajan Brands’. Listen to the conversation here.