Yes, we know: Brooklyn is in the midst of an artisanal, small batch renaissance. But while we write ad nauseam about pickled beets and beef jerky all made within the borough, homegrown beauty brands don’t get the attention they deserve. And really, what’s more important than a good bar of soap? Here are a few of our local favorites.
The original locally made, stylishly packaged soap
. Although hailing from Red Hook, you can now find their inventively scented, olive oil-based bars (Coffee Mint! Seaweed!) and soy candles in some of our favorite boutiques across the borough and beyond. They make perfect host gifts—that is, if you can bring yourself to give it up.
The recipes may have their roots in the South, but company founder Dr. Kristina Ivy based her bath and body brand in Brooklyn
. In addition to the body butters, bath salts, and foot balms, this summer sees the launch of Rica’s first men’s fragrance—the Bourbon Cavendish Body Tonic—as well as the introduction of its anti-aging Fennel and Rose Hip Face Serum.
We’ve been obsessed with Scout Soap
ever since we spied them at Brooklyn’s Renegade Craft Fair, and for good reason: For every bar of their small-batch, vegetable-based soaps sold, they donate one to a community in need. And lest the bright, fruity scents scare off the manly men out there, Scout also has a Bentonite Clay Shave Bar for controlling whiskers.
There once was a time when all of life’s little woes—cracked elbows, chapped lips, dry hands—could be soothed with a good balm. While today we have no problem with owning separate creams for hands, knees, feet, and all other parts of our bodies, we still appreciate the concept of a singular product that can do it all. Apotheke
, whose offerings are mostly centered around soaps and candles, has just one simple balm (organic and handmade in Brooklyn) that nicely fits the bill.
The concept behind Sprout
is pretty straightforward: Each product uses only five ingredients, all sourced from organic, Fair Trade, or small-source farms. But the end result from this Greenpoint-based brand is hardly some hippy concoction that you hide away in your cabinet; instead, the cleansers, toners, lip balms, and more look so good in the graphic packaging that you’ll want to have them scattered across your bathroom counter for all to see.