We got an inside look into the brand new, locally-made skincare brand – Northern Botanics. Created by Melissa Bendtsen. Keep reading to learn all about the story behind the brand, what makes their products unique, and how you can try them!
“Besides being married to my best friend for almost 19 years and having 4 amazing kids, skincare and personal health have been passions of mine for most of my adult life. About 4 years ago I made the decision to jump all into a career that centered around my interest in skincare and became a licensed Esthetician.”
“Starting with puberty and into my late 30’s, I had suffered from periods of anxiety and depression as a result of acne. That was my catalyst into the world of natural skincare and why it matters what products you put on your body. Once I learned how to naturally heal my skin with my formulations, it became clear to me that there are things we can do that make a difference. It has been my dream to develop skincare products to help facilitate healing, naturally create balance, and nourish the skin with ingredients meticulously chosen for their benefits; all without any synthetic or toxic ingredients.”
Before we get into the good stuff, we thought you should know, you can use code SPOKANEEATS25 for 25% off all products through July 31st!
What brought you to Spokane?
My husband and I were both raised in Washington State. I grew up in Bellingham and my husband in the Wenatchee Valley. We moved to Phoenix for a job my husband had taken but I felt like I was living on the sun, so we decided to move back. We agreed that we wanted to raise our kids in Eastern Washington and Spokane seemed to be a logical choice as it provided more opportunities, great weather, and lots of trees. It’s been 14 great years since we moved here and Spokane has been so good to us.
Why is Spokane a great place to start/own a business?
One of the first things we fell in love with here was how friendly and supportive the people are; they want to get to know you! So, with that being said, having a local business is great because people will want you to succeed and they will help support you. At least that’s what my experience has been 🙂 Also, Spokane has developed a thriving small business community with creative people of all different backgrounds, so there’s a lot of great energy.
What was your defining moment/inspiration?
After years of testing and trying $1,000’s of dollars worth of products with the hope of not irritating my skin or creating more issues, I decided about 8 years ago to create my own products after obsessively researching ingredients. After making products for myself, family, and friends over the years, I knew I wanted to reach more people. My defining moment was this past fall 2020 (inspired by Covid) when I decided to take the first step to go after my dream without looking back.
I knew I would always regret not trying, so with my husband’s support we started Northern Botanics. I’m a quiet, introverted person by nature, so this was a HUGE step for me. What has motivated me the most is that I’m very passionate about what I created, I believe in it, and have confidence that everyone’s skin will benefit.
Tell us about your products?
Currently, we have 5 products that truly compliment each other in our product line: Nourishing Facial Oil, Soothing Facial Balm, Calming Nighttime Oil, Floral Hydrating Mist, and Healing Blemish Gel. All of our products are beneficial for ALL skin types without the worry of irritation or acne breakouts.
Where can we buy them locally?
Currently, we only offer our products on our website at www.northernbotanics.com. However, we are in the process of looking for a few local stores and spas in Spokane and Coeur d’ Alene that will soon carry our products and plan to grow our retail presence locally and regionally first.
Advice you would give to someone wanting to start a business in Spokane?
Go for it! Spokane is very small business friendly and there are so many resources and people to reach out to for support if needed. It’s a risk and so you might feel it’s never the right time because of that, but it’s okay to feel that. I once read a book titled Feel The Fear and Do It Anyway by Susan Jeffers, and that kind of sums it up.
What sets you apart from competition?
The skincare industry is a very, very competitive market. My husband has been in business for 30 years and has always said that every business must have their differentiator, their reason for being, their own value proposition. That being said, I’ve created something that I never could find, skincare products without cheap fillers, without counterproductive ingredients, without anything that does not have a benefit or a purpose.
I have developed products where every ingredient is thoughtfully and intentionally chosen for its unique purpose and skin regenerating abilities and that takes an immense amount of passion and care. I source out very unique ingredients that are hidden gems in different regions around the world for their natural skin healing capabilities and I expertly craft them into ideal formulations in order to achieve maximum results. Simple, honest, intentional ingredients will translate into calmer, more radiant skin.
What’s next for you?
I’m currently in the developmental phase of creating more products along with working on our wholesale program.
Where do you like to eat around Spokane?
Sushiwa Teriyaki and Wild Sage Bistro.
If you were on an island and could only bring three things, what would you bring?
Sunscreen, extra dark chocolate, and my Kindle.
What’s your favorite 90’s jam?
“Everybody” by Backstreet Boys.
What is the last thing you watched on tv?
“Fear the Walking Dead”
Shop their products and learn more: HERE!