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Brittany founder of Butter'd Bodycare: Naturally Affirming the Skin We're In



After several failed dermatologist visits to seek relief for skin conditions such as dry skin, eczema, and acne, Brittany decided at the age of 14 to create her own natural, non-toxic products to enhance the wellness of her skin. She was unaware that she had a viable product until college. In 2021 she launched Butter'd Bodycare, which exists to affirm and elevate the whole self in the skin we were born in. They are on a mission to celebrate their community with products that let them be seen authentically.


Brittany said, "I wanted to create alternatives that felt good, felt like us, as opposed to what we naturally buy on the market."


What's the biggest fear you had during your business journey?

When Brittany started her entrepreneurial journey, she knew no full-time entrepreneurs. That concept for her was far-fetched. She said, "So the fear of the unknown, the fear of being the first to do something in your life and in your orbit, seems really scary. And you can do things wrong. You are going to do things wrong.

But I was just fearful of what things I would get wrong. I think that's natural for anyone. It's still natural today to have that feeling as I make decisions that may be a little bit scary. I just learned to lean in my gut a little bit more."

What's the biggest risk you've taken in your life thus far?

Starting her business and believing in herself was the biggest risk for Brittany. There were lingering fears about entering a market like the skincare industry that seems oversaturated.


Brittany said, "I've had these ideas and things I wanted to change about the industry and things I was doing in college. I had all of these high hopes and still do. But I think starting was the hardest thing. And once you get over that hump, then you can perfect all the things. Then you can get help and have a clearer vision of what you want the business to be. But trusting myself early on was the hardest thing to do, for sure."


Tell us about a major setback you had in your business and how you recovered.

Early along her journey, Brittany was bootstrapping her business like most Black and Brown women entrepreneurs. She would use a portion of her salary to fund her business. She decided to go full-time in her business while she was three months in.


Brittany said, "So once that stopped, I'm like, oh, I have to fundraise. Like I have to do things differently now. And so, in hindsight, it is a step back, financially and planning-wise, but it's just bringing me along another journey, you know?


So in hindsight, it's just pivoting like all founders have to do. But it is a drastic decision in the moment of change that happens. It did feel like a setback at the time, but in the long haul, I was like, I got this."


What are you most proud of when it comes to Butter'd Bodycare?

Brittany doesn't always give herself a chance to sit in those proud moments. Like most entrepreneurs, she focuses on the next thing and the next thing. A proud moment for her was during a community event where a customer shared their before and after photos of their skin.


She said, "So having those moments—people can't spend money on ads and pay all these influencers. Money can't buy that. I was really proud that I created something people love, cherish, and share.


Like again, years ago, this was just something I kept to myself, and it was just an idea. But starting it one and then having people receive it so well is the utmost, most rewarding part of doing what I do. I'm really proud of the community I've built and how supportive and receptive they are to the brand."


Describe what it was like preparing for the pitch competition.


This was Brittany's first public pitch competition. She was previously part of an accelerator program that simulated a pitch showcase meant to showcase her brand but not provide her with capital.


Brittany said, "I was preparing for it day and night. I remember having my script, going over it with Wendy, and just going above and beyond to get feedback from other people who haven't heard the pitch. So again, I'm community oriented. I was telling my neighbors about it. I was calling my friends, pitching it on FaceTime, like I was overly dedicated to those three minutes.


You don't understand that those three minutes were everything to me, so I wanted to make sure I represented the brand as best as I could. I practiced a lot. I did a lot of soul-searching because I wanted to have a clear vision or communicate a clear vision in the pitch. And again, it is three minutes, so that was tricky. So, just toying with that and editing the script was the greatest challenge, I would say. But it came out pretty well, and I was really proud of myself after.


To crowdfund, Brittany got her community involved by getting them excited about the pitch competition. Before she pitched in the competition, she recorded behind-the-scenes content and included her community in the journey. When it came time to ask for the votes, it wasn't anything new to them. Between social media, family, and friends, everyone was receptive. She also used the LinkedIn platform and reached out to her mentors, which helped her in the long run.


Her advice to those looking to pitch is, "The most important part for me, and everyone tells me this, is always to be confident. And being certain in whatever you're doing is in your messaging, well, I would say even more than what you're saying, like you have to be confident behind it, right? Like you have to not just say a statistic, you have to literally feel it, own it, and be confident in it just so the other person can receive it the way you want them to.


The main way to do that is through confidence and then also doing your research. I had a lot of data in my pitch, and I think many people don't use enough data for some reason. Well past the market slide, I really wanted to include actual percentages to add a little bit of color to the story I was telling."


Butter'd Bodycare plans to use the pitch funds for product development. They will release products they've wanted to release for quite some time but needed more capital. One of those products is for lip care, and because they are a sustainable business, they will also use sustainable packaging. Next, they plan to hire a team and strengthen their operations. Lastly, they plan on doing more in-person activations to connect with their community.

Support is not always given to women of color in business. When has this disappointed you the most?

Brittany shared that she has yet to face much disappointment, which she credits to being relatively new in the business. The barrier that she has come across is her age. Most investors believe she's too young.


She said, "Being younger was surprising to me, and it was a surprising barrier because we are literally the next generation of everything. I would think people would be excited to have these fresh new minds and visionaries in the room to work with, but I learned very quickly in those conversations people are stuck in their ways. And it's not my job to fix that. I wish I could, but they're just going to have to catch up."


What's the most critical lesson you've learned about business?

Brittany said, "I don't want to be a cliche, but like drown out the noise, which is really helpful to me because, in the beauty industry, it is oversaturated. People could say whatever, but it is, there are a lot of beauty brands out there, and it can cause noise. It can crowd you as a founder, and I am learning to tune that out and just be myself. Just be a brand that people have never seen before.


And it's hard because we do body butters like that's our main product, and it's a common product. It's a familiar product, but I think learning our differentiators as a brand is something that I like—I hone into it. I celebrate instead of trying to be compared. Oh, I want to be in this store because this other brand is in this store.


Or I should be doing this because of this brand or press or da, da da. I just mind my business, but quite literally mind my business, mind the business that pays me, and not be so influenced about, you know, what's going on in the industry. That's been something that I've learned through time, for sure.


What do you think is an important skill or asset you need to be successful in business?

Brittany believes that every founder needs to have trust within themselves and use their gut as intuitive guidance. She said, "Being an empathetic founder who cares about her team and trusts her gut is even more unheard of, right? So I would say trusting yourself as a founder, even when you don't have the quote-unquote skills or higher level learning, you're still as qualified as anyone else."


How do you measure success?

Brittany measures success through her happiness. She said, 'Like if I'm not happy, I'm not successful. If I win a trillion dollars and I'm miserable, I don't feel successful. So that's one for me on a personal note. From a business standpoint, it's impact. And I was reading an article. Some businesses pay their way to success with millions of dollars and all these things.


I'm not the founder that will jump to do that. I'm the founder to focus on, like having long lines out the door, as opposed to a bunch of ads being run, and nobody really cares, like, this is cute. They buy it once and never see it again, but they do not buy into the business. And that can take a little bit longer, but I'm much more invested into, you know, actually having someone buy into the business and being impacted by the business rather than a quick sale."


What's the most exciting part of your business?

Brittany is naturally creative and enjoys designing. She loves creating new products and thinking of innovative ways to develop them. She loves thinking of creative ways to bring those products together through content development.

If you and I were meeting three years from now, looking back, what would it take for you to feel over the moon about your progress?

Butter'd Bodycare hopes to shift the industry towards more authenticity. She would love people to be their most authentic selves in every way possible. This includes the products, messaging, and collaborations. She has no plans of compromising her integrity to grow her business and wants to continue building a business of impact. She said, "Once you get bigger and more money, more problems—I want to keep who I am to the core."


What do you think the future holds for Black and Brown women entrepreneurs and small business owners?

Brittany said, "Man, honestly, it's a lot of us. It's a lot. Like, I will go somewhere and find someone who made a deck of cards. I think it was in your previous interview too. Someone else, yeah, Khadija. And then I met the University of Dope. I'm like, we are making games. We are so innovative.


So our future is bright, of course. I think our opportunities need to—there needs to be more Black Girl Ventures, you know, and not just the big brands having a sector, oh, this initiative to do something cute, have a press release and actually dedicating time or resources showing up in person to elevate us because we're not going to stop.


We're going to keep going, and we're going to find a way regardless. So making our lives easier through these programs, quite frankly, is helpful and helpful to our economy and ecosystem in the first place. So I don't think we're letting up anytime soon."


Being a business owner is a tough job. How do you take care of yourself?

Brittany is an advocate for therapy. She sees a therapist to process her emotions and decisions and get clear on her intuition so she can learn to trust herself more. She said, 'Having that emotional support is really helpful along the way. And can ease anxieties and worries that we may have. What keeps us up at night, you know, talking through those things during the day would essentially help us sleep at night. So I think that has been the utmost helpful for me, and every founder should explore it, especially making decisions and going through challenges as much as we do."


What is your favorite quote or mantra?

Michelle Obama, "Don't let great be the enemy of good."

What book and podcast would you recommend?

Book: Love by Bell Hooks

Podcast: Trials to Triumphs host Ashley Blaine Featherson-Jenkins

What's your favorite business hack or app you can't live without?

Notion.

Name one food item you have a hard time saying no to.

Ethiopian food, ramen, and Jamaican food festival.


What's next for Butter'd Bodycare?

Butter'd Bodycare is focused on strengthening its fundraising skills. They will be applying for grants and creating fundraising strategies. Of course, they will be launching new products soon.


Any last words…

Brittany said, "I really enjoyed the process through Black Girl Ventures. It was really phenomenal working with the businesses I've worked with and the founders and learning about how they approach funding. And just having that community and camaraderie was really nice to have in person as a founder, as a solo founder, at least. So thank you for the opportunity."


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