On the road for Education

Herb/o/logy is on the road again always in search of learning how to make a better product for you!

Our quest has brought us to the Thorough Bred Center in Lexington Kentucky, where we met up with like minded individuals for a two day soapy convergence.

Day one 

On a beautiful Kentucky morning we learn from a pharmacists about her perspective of incorporating the natural into the medical.

Dr.Virginia Lemay precepts Doctor of Pharmacy students participating in community pharmacy-based clinical rotations at The University of Rhode Island College of Pharmacy.
First up Lice!

Lice is transmitted from head to head and cannot stay off the source for more 24 hours. Some natural suggestions would be Tea Tree and Lavender Oil.

Next up Poison Ivy – some people are more susceptible then others if you are in that latter group it’s best to stay away by identification. Some natural Solution would be Apple Cider Vinegar, Oatmeal paste( to help with the itching) and of course the power house is Jewel weed!

Dry skin (eczema ) as we age we lose natural oils and also some medication including Diuretics can deplete the skins moisture and also with aging comes the thin skin. She then gave us some natural solutions that included Lemon balm tree and Comfrey for itchy skin even shingles.

Next up the always engaging Dr Kevin Dunn

Kevin Dunn is the Elliott Professor of Chemistry at Hampden-Sydney College. His book, Caveman Chemistry, brought him to the attention of handcrafted soap makers and because of this he has undertaken a series of research projects on the chemistry of handcrafted soap

The good doctor introduced us to the chemical compounds of soap. He explained the atomic processes of how soap is fused. He then talked various recipes to make glycerin melt and poor the natural way. As a side note did you know that cocaine is a as natural natural as Lavender?

Margaret Neff

Margaret is a retired special education teacher, from the farmlands of central Ohio.


Making and talking about Rice Milk Soap

We Learned all about making soap with different types of milk!

First up Rice Milk

Bring 1 cup of water and a 1/3 cup of rice to a boil cover and reduce to low and simmer for 40 minutes. Drain off excess water then transfer to a blender and add 2 cups warm water. Blend and add another cup of warm water, let sit for 30 minutes skin the top and strain

Voila Rice Milk!

Margaret talked about the different methods of using milk in the soaps.
Katie White “Duchess of Suds”of Royalty Soaps

Katie White began soap making when she took a class at her home school co-op in September 2010, her junior year in high school.


Katie demonstrating piping on cold process soap

Katie did a demo on soap pipping. She gave us a fabulous recipe to give us the extra time we need to pipe on soaps! First she started with a drop swirl. With some beautiful blues with a white batter. Then she did some creative pipping on top of the soap loaf!

Day 2

This day was dedicated to all demonstrations by the above mentioned speakers.


Me, Katie and my cupcake

We even decorated some cupcakes!

Glycerin Melt and pour anyone?


Teach and the Dr. demonstrating different ingredients for clear glycerin soap

And last but certainly not least our “teach” Cathy McGinnis talked about taking the very best product photos we can! She talked of using a white back round and using clear compelling images. Of course branding!

Cathy McGinnis Catherine’s you tube channel, Soaping101 is the most popular non-commercial channel for soap making tutorials. The style and know how she brings to her videos and the community is an extension of her genuineness. She considers soap making an industry where information should be freely shared and appreciated.


Teach and me

Special thanks to Cathy McGinnis for putting this wonderful educational event on for us to learn even more about our craft! You can find more about Cathy on www.Soaping101.com

Thank you for coming on our journey for education!

See you on the garden path


Queen and Duchess of suds

Click on any of the pictures for more information on each speaker


Herb/o/logy DIY Diaries 

How about some all natural bug spray for those evenings sitting outside?
Mr herb/o/logy found this recipe and he used it the night of the herb/o/logy garden party. It worked great and we were bug free for several hours. 

Use equal parts:

  • Stale Beer
  • Epsom Salts
  • Mouth Wash

Combine and put in a clean sprayer

Ingredients for Bug Spray

One nice thing about this spray is you can use it on anything and very heavy.

Here at herb/o/logy we opt to use natural pest and ground controls so we can keep our gardens organic as possible for use towards our soaps – and for you our faithful herb/o/logy customer! 

See you on the garden path

Herb/o/logy Anniversary 

Happy one year anniversary herb/o/logy! It’s been a very enlightening year! So many lessons learned and some the hard way. Number one lesson that I learned? This business is not about me! What? No one told me that one! 

One of the positive learning aspects of running any business (and number one concern) is getting to know the customer. That has been an amazing journey going from, little me’s, to a smart sophisticated person who cares for the environment, loves all things handmade and loves to give back to the community. The herb/o/logy customer is most savvy in natural products, they want to learn but want to be able to trust in the brand.

The evolution of the herb/o/logy lines has been a thrilling ride, based on customer feedback. Herb/o/logy started with three basic lines; Origins, Celebrations and Tranquility. Origins was about the original formulas of the soaps, our first ones. Celebrations was about using creative fragrance oils and colorants celebrating every day life to the holiday spirit. Tranquility (remember the business is about me?) I wanted a line full of spa experiences for bathing pleasure. 

Based on customer’s response these lines began to evolve into beautiful elegant refinements. Origins is now about essential oils and natural colorants concentrating on skin loving ingredients. Expeditions, formally Celebrations, is about frivolity and adventure from the garden. Tranquility’s line has changed products multiple times, and will continue to change as the spa industry changes.

We have added a men’s line and a Canine line, can you guess what’s in the works? 

I retired from a educational field and one thing I always believed is you can never stop learning. Albert Einstein once said “once you stop learning you start dying.” Learning makes us grow and want to extend ourselves. 

I vow to always keep learning to help the herb/o/logy customer make good choices for their skin in the most natural way possible. 

Thank you herb/o/logy customer for an exciting year, And here’s to many more!  

September Sunset in the Garden

See you on the garden path  

Labor Day and Soapmaking 

Labor Day and SoapThe topic I had chosen for this week’s herb/o/logy blog was Labor Day. I realized I didn’t know anything about the holiday other then we spend time with family, which is never a bad thing! So, in doing some research, I found Labor Day very interesting. The first Labor Day was celebrated September 5 1882 in New York City. It was to commemorate the plans of the Central Labor Union and to celebrate the social and economic achievements of the American worker. The holiday grew along with the growth of the labor union organizations. 

The holiday has changed focus as most holidays have to more of a “day off” celebration. Which in itself is not a bad thing, because we do tend to spend more time with our family. But let’s not lose focus of this holiday, it’s a celebration of the American worker and how far we have come. Do you realize that it wasn’t until 1863, organized by the New York Sun, that women began to collect wages owed to them? 

I have never thought of making products for herb/o/logy as a labor. I feel that is creative outlet and a way to interact with people on a much deeper level. I will be making some soap this weekend but to me it’s a labor of love! 

Spend time with your family this weekend but also reflect on the American worker and how far we have come!
See you on the garden path!

Herb/o/logy’s New Fall Team

Herb/o/logy Gives Back

When starting any new business, you need a detailed business plan. When I started herb/o/logy’s business plan, I was intrigued by the charitable community outreach page. After much thought, I decided that it would be a first-year priority that we find a beneficiary organization that would align with herb/o/logy’s beliefs.
Around that same time, I met some soon-to-be friends who believed in organic gardening and a natural lifestyle – a lifestyle that included three huskies, a cat, and a new Siberian Husky rescue.
Early in herb/o/logy’s planning, I wanted to include a canine line. A line that would use natural alternatives to bathing, and promote an overall spoiling of our canine kids.
Combining these desires, “Canine Companions” was born, and all of its proceeds benefit Raven’s Husky Haven and Rescue in Sycamore, IL:
     “Our goal is to do appropriate intake of beautiful rescued Huskies in need, undertake rehabilitation of health and well-           being, and to work with the dogs in terms of training and socialization so that their adoptions are happy and                  
We are honored to have the herb/o/logy Canine Companions line.  This line includes: Indulgence soap, Smokey’s Date Night Spray, Romeo’s Mousse, and Yahtzee’s Wheel Dog Wax!  All of the products are named after dogs from Raven’s Husky Haven and Rescue.  100% of the proceeds from the canine line will go to RHHR to help huskies in need!

Canine Companion Line


Logo For Raven’s Husky Haven And Rescue


Logo For Canine Companions

We, the herb/o/logy family


When you first start a business you look to your family and friends to help and support you. I have heard conflicting stories as to whether this works or not. In herb/o/logy’s case that’s a resounding yes! Not only are they the biggest supporters but the most loyal of customers. I am blessed with such an awesome supportive group. The herb/o/logy family has grown from its grass roots to become small army.

The herb/o/logy garden party was was held last weekend. We opened our organic gardens and welcomed our customers, with wine and appetizers.  Included in the evenings entertainment was the herb/o/logy’s soaps displayed throughout the garden. 

That night we launched the herb/o/logy’s skin care for Men in honor of my two sons, Josh – Grit, Will – Debonair. This was met with applause and was a resounding success. My sons were initially shy when they came out holding their respective gift boxes, but warmed up immediately, upon seeing friends and family. Instead of asking for the Grit or Debonair gift box they asked for Will’s box or Josh’s box! That’s what makes the herb/o/logy customer family! 

Thank you herb/o/logy family present and future!
See you on the garden path

“The difference between success and failure is a great team. ”

A sultry Summer evening

herb/o/logy Debonair

Two Sons, herb/o/logy men’s line

The next step in herb/o/logy’s evolution was to add a men’s line.

We decided to have two separate men’s lines in honor of my two boys. My children are polar opposites in everything! The older one has always been stoic, straight forward and a hard worker. I remember when he could barley walk, I came into the living room to find my alarm clock completely taken apart. Of course I didn’t find humor in it then but I do now! He always wanted to know how everything worked! 

My younger son is very different he is more of a thinker and always has been a little sponge. He likes all things name brand and likes to look good! Even going to work, he always takes a shower first ( he works in a dog rescue). When he was little I took him shopping for a new outfit to wear out to dinner with my parents. We went into the dressing room to try on his little pants and shirt. He then hands out the shirt and says ” it’s the wrong blue mom!” Well that got the entire dressing room laughing. 

So it only made sense to launch two different men’s line one for each boy. 

Grit is for the hard working man not afraid to get his hands dirty. He is sweet, loving and always willing to lend a hand to someone in need. With those traits in mind we came up with several products. Mariner is a tough grease buster for your hands made with organic coconut oil and brine solution reminiscent of the sea. Steel is made with cocoa butter and goats milk to help nourish your skin from a hard days work. Grit also includes a degreaser hand cleaner (Walnut Workman), herb/o/logy style. 

Debonair is for the sophisticated man, possessing natural iconic elegance – and who likes to look good no matter what the occasion. He is intelligent, forward thinking with a caring global vibe.We developed some high end soaps with his personality in mind. 

Tuxedo is for a night out on the town, it’s elegant high gloss exterior paired with a warm notes with a hint of leather, no after shave is required for this experience. Sultan with it’s exotic scent and granite look is sure to please the sharpest dressed man. We added some mustache wax to finish up the look for the night out on the town. 

For both lines we have included a shave experience that cannot be beat! We have made some moisturizing shaving pucks for that old fashion shave experience which will leaves your skin smooth and moisturized. 

Which man are you? I’ll bet your a little of both!


Skin care for men

See you on the garden path