Saturday, March 22, 2008

A Conversation with Chris from Bathanicals

Chris Dzyngel, owner of Bathtanicals, has a fabulous spa-quality product line. For those of you just starting out in the soaping/toiletry biz, she's an inspiration. Chris started small (like many of us) and has successfully grown her business to include a full line of products that has more than achieved her goals. Here is my conversation with Chris....

Chris, we've been acquainted for a number of years and I know that your business and web site have been an evolution. What processes have you gone through to reach your goals?

Bathtanicals has been in business for about ten years and has evolved from a part-time avocation to a full-time vocation. As a part-time avocation, it was a great stress reliever during my career as an automotive engineering designer. As a full-time vocation, it is an activity I choose to do after retirement.

After several years of researching and observing we put together a business plan to take on Bathtanicals, full time. But, just before transitioning from a part-time to a full-time business, my husband and I were faced with a major health issue. In fact, the diagnosis came in, one week before full-time lift off! We adapted by putting our plans on hold to concentrate on medical treatments. Being able to adapt is an important quality in running a small business. Two years later, we are back to manufacturing and selling bath products. With a revised business plan, a refined product line, and an updated web site we are back at it with a (hopefully) bit more experience but still enthusiastic.

You seem to have a healthy attitude about the things life can throw your way. We all know life deals us a 'monkey wrench' once in awhile. How do you stay focused?

For me, the glass is always full! And the empty half is just waiting to be filled up!! I believe it's critical to have a business plan in place. Over the years, ours have evolved and changed many times. But that business plan keeps us on a path to our goal.

What advice do you have for others just starting out in business, or those wanting to start their own product lines?

Good customer service is very important. It is critical to be knowledgeable, honest, courteous, and available when a customer has an inquiry. That will make your company stand out from a competitor.

We use prototypes help us determine when a product is ready to be added to the line. By actually formulating and packaging a product we can ensure the validity and stability of that product. Prototyping protects against unexpected changes after the product leaves our facility. Some scents can change or discolor a product; the wrong combination of packaging and product can cause shipping or shelf life problems.

Bathtanicals products are based on exclusive formulations, created as natural as practicality allows from the best quality ingredients. We pride ourselves on presenting products without filler or unnecessary ingredients.

Where do you sell your products?

We retail and wholesale to shops, and direct sell on our web site, It is important to understand that web sites must morph to adapt business changes, product changes, style changes, new technologies, etc., etc. Once you launch a web site you have a full time job changing content, researching competitors, learning, learning and more learning. You will not get the full potential of your site if you launch it and never maintain it.

The Bathtanical product line is pretty extensive. There are a number of items that piqued my interest.... the Glacier Ice Cold Process Soap with essential oils, the Bathtanicals Hydrating Cream, and the Sole Salvation gift set.

Each handcrafted soap cold process soap has a different formulation and a different purpose or texture…Sweet Milk Lather shaving soap, Berry Orange exfoliating soap, Glacier Ice Bath and Body (invigorating) and Almond Honey Bath and Body (luxurious texture).
We also handcraft bath salts, scrubs, soaks, a spritz, body butter, gift collections and carry bath accessory items. Because we all are so busy we currently are marketing under the "I need a time-out" theme.


Chris, thank you so much for taking time to share with me. Customers like to read about someone who has successfully marketed their own product line. It inspires them and keeps their dream alive.

If you're looking for quality ready-made bath products with an obvious respect for nature you will want to visit

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