To those of you who have been participating actively in our Referral Programme, thank you.
Unfortunately we haven’t been able to run it as effectively as we’d like, so we will be putting it on hold until we can figure out how to make it work better for you.
As a company that pours all its heart and resources into crafting great products by hand, we don’t have a large advertising budget to work with. We rely heavily on good people such as yourselves to tell your friends and family about our products, and hopefully they will become our customers too. We know that lots of you already do this, which is why we thought setting up a referral programme was a good idea.
Unfortunately, the numbers show that we are consistently losing money from running this campaign, rather than boosting our sales. 🙁 So even though some of you have been faithfully sharing your referral codes with your networks, getting the word out about Kinder Soaps (thank you so much!) and enjoying the rewards in the process, we will need to put this programme on hold – hopefully only temporarily.
We will pause the Referral Programme officially on Monday, 9th of October 2017.
We are sorry to have to do this, but like I said, we may get this up and running again in the future. In the meantime, you can still share your referral code with your networks, and if they make a qualified purchase before the 9th of October, you’ll still be able to claim your reward.
Thanks again for your continued support for us in general – we’re truly grateful that we have such a terrific bunch of customers, some of whom we have had the privilege to consider as friends. 🙂
If there is anything at all we can do to help you with regards to caring for your skin in an environmentally conscious way, call us at 03-77320955 during our shop opening hours, or drop as an email at email@example.com anytime. We’d be most happy to chat with you.
Hello everyone! I’ve decided to take a bit of a breather from the work grind to write instead.
Most of you are probably aware of our efforts to reduce our reliance on plastic, especially when it comes to packaging our soap. In 2014 we began selling our soap in beeswax cotton wraps, which are made in-house and entirely by hand. Then to push the envelope further with regards to minimizing packaging, we started offering the option of buying our soap without any form of wrapping.
And from what we have observed, it reallyÂ isÂ possible to do away with packaging entirely–I am so happy to see this! You all are truly helping to reduce our environmental impact.
So much of our modern-day city life is saturated with messages that imply that you needÂ more of something or other in order to be happier / more successful in life. I disagree. We can be happier with less stuff, to make more room for other more fulfilling pursuits. (ForÂ more practical ideas or discussions about what minimalism really is, I encourage you to visit this inspiring website.)
So in terms of the products that you buy, youÂ have shown us that you care more for the product itself, and that you are quite happy to do away with superfluous packaging.
We have also chatted with numerous customers who shared that they have simplified their skincare routines to basic cleansing with soap, and moisturization if necessary. You make your own simple yet nourishing and effective scrubs out of foodstuff that you already have in your kitchen (yay!) – which means purchasing less cosmetic products in their own packaging. Your skin doesn’t need much more than that, unless you have a medical condition that requires special treatment.
Using less alsoÂ means you are channeling fewer things to landfills.
So, to those of you who have been purchasing our soap bars, wrapped or otherwise, thank you for helping us do our bit to reduce our environmental impact in the course of meeting your skincare needs.
Operationally speaking, we’re taking little steps forward to encourage recycling, reusing and reducing waste material. Our ingredients arrive in plastic jerry cans, bags,Â and bottles made of plastic, glass and aluminium–we try our best to recycle all of these. I’ve made our cleaningÂ kakakÂ responsible for the collection of all our recyclable plastic bottles and containers, so that she can sell them for additional income (she seems quite happy with this arrangement). Glass bottles are a little trickier because of their weight and fragility, but I thinkÂ CRCÂ would be willing to come over to collect them to be sold to recycling centres too (although I’ve heard that glass doesn’t command as good a price as paper or plastic).
Paper scraps from our soap mold liners are used to wrap our free soap samples (so we can ditch the plastic zip lock bags). This was Christine’s idea.
We have also begun stamping our soap bars with their names, along with their “best used by” dates, so they are easy to identify even in the absence of any form packaging.
I’m sure there will be more we can do. Lots of inspiration came from the practices of other eco-conscious people around us – like yourselves!
Do share with us whatÂ you do to reduce your use of packaging for cosmetics, or for any other area in your daily life, for that matter. It’s always interesting to hear your stories. 🙂
And again, because we can’t say this enough–THANK YOU for doing your bit for our environment. You inspire us to follow suit.
Have a terrific week ahead!
p/s: Have a peek at our range of soap bars here – those of you with skin concerns may benefit the most from what we have to offer.
We have decided to offerÂ two 50g bars of soap for our Sampler Pack, instead of the three 33g slices. We noticed that most new customers were usually comparing 2 types of soap–and on top of that, having slightly larger soap slices givesÂ them the opportunity to have a slightly longer trial period for each piece.
The price has been changed to RM24 per 2-pc pack as well.
Hope this helps! Pop over to the Soap Sampler Pack page to give our soap bars a whirl.
Just a quick heads up that this is now available on our Wholesale Page for download. Bearing in mind that our new palm-free formulations will be gradually introduced to our stock, the retail prices will be changed only once existing stock has been sold out, and revised formulations are available for sale.
You will also notice that some retail prices still remain at RM22 per bar–this is becauseÂ we are trying our best to maintain prices for you, while also still operating at margins that can sustain our business. 🙂
Our minimum order quantity is just 60 units per SKU (Stock Keeping Unit, i.e. an individual item), so if you’d like to consider stocking our all-natural soap for sensitive skin in your shop, or to sell online, just drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’d be happy to help answer your queries.
I was just about to write “Happy New Year” to start this blogpost… and then realised that it’s already February 5th. I’m late, as usual…! :p
Last year, I very briefly met Tony Meloto, who is the founder of Gawad Kalinga Enchanted Farm in the Philippines. You really should take the time to read about what they do and why they do it–it’s pretty inspiring stuff. They were going to run their 4th Social Business SummitÂ from January 20th till 22nd. It sounded interesting (because I had no idea whatÂ social entrepreneurships were all about, or how they are run), so I decided to go.
Here’s the rub: I’ve never been to the Philippines. I don’t know anyone there. I’ve never travelled solo.
I also have a weird fear of getting into airplanes.
I could either a) be afraid of all the unknowns present in this situation, and stay ‘safe’ or b) do all the necessary planning, and trust that everything will eventually turn out fine.
No prizes for guessing which route I took. :p
I did my budgeting, browsed through Airbnb, wrote some emails and booked my flights. Thinking of making the most of the trip to a new country, I was going to spend 8 days learning how to surf on a tiny island off Mindanao called Siargao, then fly over to Luzon to attend the Social Business Summit at GK Enchanted Farm. All on my own.
It was the most life-changing 13 days I’ve had to date.
There were many situationsÂ where it was aÂ lot better that I did not know what to expect. For instance, the fact that I would be arriving in typhoon season for the Philippines (a deadly one had just passed through Manila over Christmas), or that the only way for our plane to land in Siargao was by sight–if it was too foggy (as it often was, over that island), the plane would have to turn back forÂ Cebu.
I was also presented with several occasions where I literally had to suspend what I thought to be my better judgement. One of them was when I gotÂ stuck in Cebu’s horrible lunch hour traffic snarl, with justÂ 45 minutes left to my gate closing for the one and only flight to Siargao–and all the taxisÂ passing by myÂ pickup point wereÂ occupied. Just as I was about to give up on public transport and entertain the scenario of waiting for the next flight the following day, a toothy old man walked up to me with an oustretched arm holding a spare helmet, gestured to his beat up motorcycle and said that he could get me to the airport in time for 120 pesos, “No problem!”.
I had a suitcase, a backpack and my handbag on me. I looked at the motorbike, and the ratty helmet.
IÂ needed to catch that plane.
So I popped on the funky smelling helmet and off we went, my luggage squeezed between us, one hand balancing my handbag on top of said luggage, the other clutchingÂ the seat tightly. We were getting damp from the rain. Zigzagging for 20 minutes in between lorries, cars and vans, which were just inches away from usÂ at times.
As I tumbled off the motorbikeÂ at the airport with the silliest grin on my face (I imagined), I thanked the manÂ profusely, and vowed never again to give only 2 hours’s traveling time toÂ any airport from then on.
This was also the first time IÂ became that crazy passenger you may have spotted at the airport, running full pelt past the check-in counters and desperately searching for her boarding gate.
ItÂ rained almost every day I was there. It wasn’t torrential, but enough to get you soaking wet if you stayed out for more than 5 minutes. But it did make the one or two days (and the hours in between showers) where the sun burst through the clouds – absolutelyÂ glorious.
For 8 days IÂ was surfing, exploring some parts of the island on foot, others by motorbike orÂ habal habal, catching up with some reading, and just relaxing, taking in the sights and observing people.
I got caught underwater, at timesÂ almost breathless, when the whitewash kept crashing into me and my surfboard, making me bump and scrape my legs on the reef; ate an entire breakfast from fresh coconuts that my instructor and his brothers tossed outÂ from the trees they had climbed, just afterÂ we paddled exhausted to the shore; sped down roads on the back of motorbikes while being stung by the rain; and saw vibrant rainbows against the backdrop of a heavy,Â blue-gray sky.
Every one of these experiences made simple things like having a warm plate of rice in front of me (and the realisationÂ that I was still breathing!) feel like something to be so grateful for.
When I finally had to say goodbye to the island and the lovely new friends I made there, I thought I would miss my new routine too much to fully appreciate the conference I was going to in Bulacan, two hours out from Manila.Â Thankfully however, I was wrong.
At Gawad Kalinga, I met yet more wonderful people, heard inspiring stories from young Filipinos who were determined to lead their families and communities out of poverty by learning how to be effective entrepreneurs, and had the chance to roam around a fully working farm.
By the time I got on my 5th and final flight that would take me home, I felt like some old parts of me had been slowly, lovingly taken away–to be replaced with new perspectives, ideas and beliefs. All thanks to the myriad of miniÂ adventures, as well as some very interesting people I had the good fortune of connecting withÂ in my brief jaunt in the Philippines.
I was charmed by how happy most of the locals were, despite clearly being financially poor. Both in Siargao and Gawad Kalinga, the community was tight, and practically everyone knew each other by name. They made genuine connections amongst each other. They were contented, and had everything they needed. The land and sea provided for them, as long as they continued to nurture and protect it.
It was clear, however, that modern consumerism was catching on, as evidenced by what the little sundry shops were stocking up on (junk food, mass made clothing and toiletries, english TV dramas etc). There were many new concrete buildings being erected along the single main road that ran along the eastern coastline, and I fear that if ever I came back to Siargao, the island would have lost some of its backwater charm to loud, touristy establishments. I hope I will be wrong about this too.
It also gave me some fresh ideas for Kinder Soaps, in terms of what we should be focusing on, new products and the like. As much as I relished the quiet downtime while abroad, I was quite glad to touch down in KL so I could get back into the swing of things at work again. And I was beginning toÂ really miss my family too!
All in all, January has been surprisingly enriching. It makes me feel like it’s just the beginning of a very eventful year to come, and I will need to somehow muster the discipline daily to keep my shoulder to the wheel… especially when times get tough (which they will).
May you be blessed with the mental and emotional fortitude to make 2017Â your year. Hugs from me. 🙂
Itâ€™s been a long time coming. We are officially going to rework ALL our soap formulations to completely exclude palm oil from now onwards.
For years, we at Kinder Soaps have been agonising over the use of palm oil in our soap. Weâ€™ve held on to it for so long because
it lends good lather, cleansing and moisturising properties to our soap;
it is the cheapest ingredient we hold in our inventory;
it is very accessible.
That is, it makes good business sense to keep using the stuff in our products.
However we can no longer turn a deaf ear, nor a blind eye to the many issues surrounding the use of palm oil globally. The ones that are of particular interest to us are
rampant deforestation of virgin rainforests to make way for new plantations;
the use of the slash and burn technique to clear old crops in Indonesia, which gives rise to the choking haze that has to be suffered by its citizens, as well as its neighbouring countries, every year.
Our choice to distance ourselves from using this key trade crop for our country may not leave any significant impact on the industry as a whole – but we will certainly be able to sleep better at night, knowing that we are actively taking steps to be a smaller part of the problem.
(I keep thinking of the future environment that my children will grow up being accustomed to – easy access to unspoilt forests, or just swathes of mono-cultured land?)
What does this mean for our customers?
You will still be getting great soap bars that are just as nourishing for the skin – which will also be even more gentle on our environment. 🙂
We will be using a lot more coconut oil in our soap base formulations. They make for hard, long-lasting bars of soap that also give wonderfully fluffy lather, and together with the olive oil and cocoa butter, the resulting soap will still have great moisturizing properties too.
This decision comes at a price – doing away with palm oil means that it will cost more for us to produce each bar of soap. So as we gradually roll out the new palm-free formulations to replace the soaps that eventually get sold out, we will also be adjusting their prices upward, between 10-15%. Some soaps may be their prices revised by an even larger percentage, because of their essential oil prices (we havenâ€™t decided on their price tiering just yet). For now, however, you will still be able to get your soap at the old price of RM22 per bar.
Please share our story with your Facebook network, your friends and family. We will need your support more than ever, as we try to do our best by Nature, on whom we depend entirely for all our needs. And if you have anything to add to this issue, please comment on this post or get in touch with us at email@example.com. We’d be more than happy to chat with you. 🙂
As always, it was all fun and laughterÂ when I had a chance to be interviewed at BFM89.9 – The Business Station. I went in for a pre-recording session with Natasha yesterday. SheÂ was a lovely host, and in conjunction with International Women’s Day which fell on on March 8th this year, we talked about what running Kinder Soaps has been like as a woman, what my past employers taught me about being a good boss, and how my awful memory could actually be a blessing instead of a curse. :”)
Here’s the podcast of the interview. Apologies for my rough voiceÂ and delivery, and I am far from being a role model in terms of how to run a successful business…Â Rather, I shared real musings and experiences that can hopefully help others reflect on their own choices of action with regards to running their own enterprise.
Feel free to ask me any questions that you may have after listening to the interview, and I’ll try my best to answer them coherently. :”)
We had some fun doing up a customized wedding favour project for a friend of mine, which was delivered today. 🙂
She had her half-sized soap bar favours wrapped in brown paper, with a simple scalloped card printed withÂ her wedding details fastened to the front of each piece. For her bridesmaids, we parcelled 2 full sized soap bars and a handy bottle of custom-blended pulse point oil (this one was scented with rose geranium, lavender and cypress essential oils).
What I wasÂ most pleased about this particular project was that we tried out using these nifty pressed palm frond disposable bowls as the container for her bridesmaids’ gifts – andÂ I think they do a wonderful job of keeping the gifts together, as well as lending a rustic, earth-friendly feel to the whole package. Here’s what you should look out for if you’re searching for a similar packaging solution:
Fallaleaf is, I’m pleased to say, a Malaysian-owned and run company. Please support them by considering their dinnerware the next time you intend to host a party or event–their products are truly biodegradable, and did not even require any chopping down of live trees to make their products. Visit their website to know more. I bought my bowls from Jaya Grocer in PJ, and I’m sure they are available at yourÂ nearby supermarket too.