I am honored to spotlight small local businesses that are focused on healthy, non-toxic solutions, and the first person I thought of was Erin Besteman, founder of Handmade by Erin. Erin makes safe options for personal care and cleaning. I want to spread the word about our local entrepreneurs in the healthy movement and hopefully, even inspire some future entrepreneurs! If I can ‘pull back the curtain’ a little bit, perhaps other women will be inspired, and realize that they, too, can do this!
Erin lives in the Wausau, Wisconsin area and is married. They have four children, ages 12 – 5, and she is very passionate about health. She started by just making products for her own family and shared them with some friends, and one of them suggested she should sell them. After offering her products for 2-3 months on Facebook, she soon had 3-4 orders per day, so the business took off pretty quickly. She likes to offer quality products at reasonable prices, as she knows how expensive it can be to purchase quality, chemical free products for an entire family. Erin is also very willing to share her recipes and also offers in-home classes so participants can learn that they too, can make these products themselves.
Erin became passionate about healthy , natural products after the birth of her first child. Although this isn’t always the easiest route, she knows it’s the better choice in the long run. (I agree, for example, feeding and watering chickens all winter long isn’t the most fun thing to do, but the fresh wholesome eggs are worth the effort!) She loves talking to people about the issues they are facing and sharing with them how important it is to treat the whole body, not just the symptom. For example, an elderberry syrup may help a cold, but cutting out the soda will help at least as much! She also enjoys researching new issues that her customers bring to her that her family hasn’t experienced, and helping them to find solutions.
Her previous work experience was in management at a local restaurant until this proved difficult after their children started to arrive and she and her husband were working opposite shifts to avoid daycare. Erin has found this work from home opportunity a good fit for their family. Erin is self-taught, does a lot of online research, and has taken some basic courses online — for example, how to mix oil and water so that they stay mixed for long periods of time (this isn’t as easy as it may sound!).
Erin shares that she has learned a lot from her business endeavor and that her skills and knowledge are valuable to others who are facing health issues. She also has found that diligence is an important practice, as many of her recipes may take days to complete, so stick-to-it-ness is essential!
I personally have tried some of Erin’s products — her luxurious facial cream and lip balm and both were fabulous! Other body care products include handmade soap, whipped body butter, pink grapefruit mint sugar scrub, peppermint detox soak, and more!
She also offers healthy solutions – essential oil vapor rub, hot/cold therapy rice packs, natural deodorant spray or stick, magnesium oil and cream, healing hand balm, and more!
You can find Erin on Facebook at ‘Handmade by Erin’, on Etsy at myfourlittlebirds.etsy.com, or her products are also for sale in Rothschild, at the Fashion Villa – Soul Healing Massage (in the basement). She also attends a few local events, including the ABC Kids Sales.
I hope you’ve enjoyed learning a little more about one of our local mamapreneurs! If you know of others that I should feature, please comment below or go to my website to drop me an email.
And, the next time you’re looking for some healthy products for yourself and your family, check out Handmade by Erin and support one of our local small businesses!