Today we’d like to introduce you to Jaydee Dizon.
Jaydee, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I graduated with a BFA in Art Photography from CSULB in 2004. From having a background in the arts, I wanted to do an installation since 2010 and finally installed it in 2018 at Avenue 50 Studios in Highland Park. The installation included making a transparent soap, so I purchased the materials in order to make large batches of clear soap. I included words and the articles/newspaper clippings such as the Columbine Shootings (CO), Manchester Arena Attack after Ariana Grande’s concert (UK), and Boston Marathon Bombings (MA). These words included Terrorism, Massacre and Carnage.
And thanks to my cousin Elaine, she donated a used sink to add to my installation. I also found a medicine cabinet with a mirror from a nearby thrift store. I really wanted to showcase a bathroom with a sink along with the numerous soaps with words and articles inside the soaps. It was one of those childhood memories when my father would tell me over and over again that I can never wash my hands to remove or clear me of my sins. At that moment, I knew that the installation was the start of my obsession in making soaps.
Currently selling my soaps online, at local farmers markets and pop up events. And what I love the most is adding the best ingredients in my soaps and using the right amount of fragrances and essential oils.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
When I first started making soaps, I was making way too many soaps and believe it or not included nine ingredients just to make one batch! Plus, I bought so many things that I didn’t even use. My apartment could not store all the additives, the oils, the butters, and fragrances. Then in 2018, my accountant told me that I was not making enough so I should just give up the soap business. Plus, I worked 40 hours a week at my daytime job and I was too exhausted to make anything after working an 8 hours shift. I was so close to giving up at the end of 2018.
Please tell us about Aerides General Store.
Aerides General Store offers handcrafted artisan soaps, soy candles/soy coconut blend candles, lip balms, beard oils, body butters, and lotion bars for the entire family.
I am known for making the Rice Milk Mango Soap. Some of the fragrances or essential oils that I use also come from either my childhood or just things that I have encountered in my life. Believe it or not, fragrances are also another way that sets any soapmaker from another soapmaker. Scent blending is a lot of fun and you can create something completely unique and interesting.
Being an entrepreneur, I am most proud of being true to myself and never lose sight of the why I started in the first place. Passion is definitely a key to it all!
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
Don’t buy in bulk in the beginning of whatever craft or business you had in mind. Start small with limited ingredients. Keep an inventory of all the things that you buy.
- Address: 23133 Hawthorne Blvd. Suite B13
Torrance, CA 90505
- Website: aeridesgeneralstore.com
- Phone: 562-265-9551
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org