By Clyde Hughes | AC JosepH Media
GALLOWAY — Making soap is a passion for Ayisha Williams, starting with a revelation that the part of the skincare issues growing up had to do with the soap she was using.
That passion has become Beyond Bubbles, which she started six months ago. Selling her new product at a recent market in Atlantic City, Williams said she always had projects on the side of part-time jobs, but children made her reconsider her work-life balance — and what she really wanted to do.
“I’ve always taken great pride in keeping my skin soft and moisturized,” Williams said on her website. “Have you ever gotten out of the shower and found that your skin was already dried out before you could slather on your lotion or body butter? That was me. I’d step out of the shower ‘squeaky clean’ and feeling refreshed, but by the time I toweled off signs of dryness were already setting in.”
Now, Williams said she hopes her personally-made home products will go along way to change that scenario for her customers.
The Ayisha Williams File
Name: Ayisha Williams
Name of Business: Beyond Bubbles
Years in business: 6 months
Specialize in: Natural Handmade Soaps
Contact info: email@example.com
FRNJ: What made you become a business owner?
Ayisha Williams: I am a big advocate for having multiple streams of income. There’s this great quote, “Use your job to fund your business, until your business can fund your freedom.” I’ve always had “side hustles” or second jobs to put a little more cash in my pocket. But until I found my passion for soap making, none of my past hustles were anything I’d want to do full time or turn into a business.
After I started experimenting with soap making, I fell in love with everything about it. It’s a mix of a science and art; I love trying new scent blends and recipes. Suddenly it clicked, I would offer these skin loving blends to the world and turn my craft into a business.
Having my son made me put my work life balance into perspective. I do a good job of not bringing my 9-5 home with me, but when it was time for me to go back to work after maternity leave, I knew I wanted to be able to do something that would allow me to be home and more present with him. Starting this business will hopefully lead to Beyond Bubbles becoming my full-time job and allow me the freedom and flexibility which comes with working for yourself.
2. FRNJ: Why did you select your current field?
Ayisha Williams: I had hard water growing up, so skincare has always been important to me. As soon as I finished showering, I would make sure I lotioned from head to toe. It didn’t dawn on me until I was older, that part of why my skin wasn’t retaining its moisture was because of the soap I was using. Nourishing skin should begin with your soap, not your body lotion. I was tired of using the commercial brands and feeling “squeaky clean” in the shower but have my skin begging for moisture immediately after. “Squeaky clean” actually means your skin is dry and dehydrated and it’s been stripped of the water and oils it needs to stay healthy and youthful. I started making handmade soaps to combat the drying and skin damaging effects of using commercially made soap.
Using natural soap has so many benefits; its chemical free, hydrates, moisturizes, antioxidant rich, uses natural ingredients, made in small batches.
3. FRNJ: What do you enjoy the most about being a business owner?
Ayisha Williams: It is so rewarding as a business owner to see people enjoying your products and becoming repeat customers. When you start a business, you don’t always know how well it will be received, if it will be loved, hated, so I always enjoy hearing from my customers. I also love having free reign to be creative and try new recipes.
4. FRNJ: How important is it for you to have positive Black role models in business?
Ayisha Williams: It is so important to have positive Black role models in business. I follow a lot of Black owned businesses and business owners on social media and it’s very refreshing to see that kind of Black influence every day and have someone who inspires you. It’s really encouraging and motivating. I read somewhere the number of Black-owned businesses in the U.S. has increased about 30% over pre-pandemic levels with Black women being the primary drivers of that number. We are the fastest growing demographic of entrepreneurs in the U.S., and I’m really proud to be a part of that number.
5. FRNJ: Anything else would you like to add?
Ayisha Williams: Your skin is the largest organ on your body. Sixty percent of what you put on your skin is absorbed into your body. So even though soap is a wash off product, the ingredients it’s made up of can still get absorbed while you shower. Do your skin and your health a favor and buy natural handmade soaps from Beyond Bubbles. Beyond Bubbles uses natural, sustainably sourced, and skin loving ingredients to create high quality soap you can be confident about using.
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