Chemical & Toxin Free Brand: Kopari Beauty
My name is Bryce Goldman and I am the CEO & Co-Founder of the company.
2. Brand Name?
The name is Kopari Beauty.
3. Tell us a bit about Kopari? Where are you based? When was the brand established?
Kopari was founded in October 2015 in La Jolla, CA as the first premium coconut based clean beauty brand in the U.S. I co-founded the company alongside my partners, Gigi Goldman, Kiana Cabell and James Brennan.
4. Did you study in NYC?
While I studied at the University of San Diego, my partner and fellow co-founder Kiana Cabell attended a health-focused culinary school at New York’s Natural Gourmet Institute, which further exposed her to the versatility and health benefits of coconut oil and sparked this similar desire to create a line of coconut oil-based beauty products.
5. What inspired you to start your own business?
I’ve been ingrained in the beauty space for about 20 years, but prior to launching Kopari, I served as chief operating officer (COO) of San Diego beauty supply and salon chain Empire Beauty, as well as the co-founder of salon and spa wholesale distribution company, Spectrum Salon Services.
I’ve always been interested in the natural beauty space and knew that if the right moment presented itself, I would want to create my own line of products in this space. I began researching new and exotic natural ingredients in beauty products and had this aha moment when I saw my wife, Gigi, using coconut oil on everything in our household from cooking to our kids’ scapes. At the same time, mutual friends introduced us to fellow industry veteran James Brennan and wellness and coconut oil enthusiast Kiana Cabell, and it inspired us to take a chance and start Kopari.
6. When did you decide that coconut oil is the main ingredient for your products?
After seeing Gigi use coconut oil in an array of uses in our household, I began to research the ingredient from a beauty standpoint. We discovered that coconut oil has numerous incredible benefits for your skin, hair and body, as it is naturally antibacterial and antifungal, contains tons of Vitamin E and proteins that effectively moisturize your skin and hair, and boasts fatty acids that help to smooth skin and shrink the appearance of pores. It is also an incredible emollient, due to its high concentration of medium-chain fatty acids that establish a protective barrier on the skin's surface, which when applied topically, traps in moisture to keep skin ultra-hydrated. After discovering all of this, and realizing that no other premium brands were using coconut oil as their hero ingredient, we decided that Kopari was going to plant our flag in coconut all the way.
7. What kind of products do you have?
We offer premium, coconut-oil based beauty products across four product lines: Multitaskers, Skincare, Bodycare and Personal Care. All of our products are free of sulfates, parabens, silicones, phthalates and cruelty.
8. What are your favorite ones?
While we love all of the products we create, my all-time favorites have to be the Organic Coconut Melt and the Coconut Deodorant. The Melt was one of the first four products we launched with in the Multitaskers line and is our lead SKU in this range. It is 100% organic and unrefined coconut oil that is sustainably-sourced from the Philippines and can be used as a body moisturizer, hair mask, shave oil, makeup remover, and baby balm. It really is the product that put us on the map, and we’re really proud of its existing success today.
We launched the Coconut Deodorant back at the beginning of 2018, and have already seen so much success with the product. We were able to create an aluminum-free, non-toxic, coconut oil-based deodorant that really works. It quickly became our best-selling SKU, which is what inspired us to expand the Deodorant line in 2019. We will be launching Beach and Gardenia scents in Q1 of this year, as well as a Charcoal Deodorant in Q2. Our customers are asking for natural alternatives to their personal care necessities, so we want to ensure that we continue to innovate in this category.
9. Where can we find your products?
All Kopari products are available online at KopariBeauty.com. We also sell customized assortments online and in-stores at Sephora, Ulta, Nordstroms, Anthropologie and Free People nationwide.
10. We love the idea that you donate money during breast cancer awareness month. How did that start?
Practically every employee at Kopari has someone near and dear to them who has been affected by breast cancer, which is what sparked our interest in helping in any way we can. Because of this, we decided to donate $1 from every Deodorant sale on our website to breast cancer research in the month of October to coincide with Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
11. Please tell us about the Coconut Deodorant that you are promoting this month.
We launched our first personal care SKU, the Coconut Deodorant, in January 2018. The Deodorant is all-natural, baking-soda free, toxin-free and actually works. The product quickly skyrocketed to the number one SKU in our portfolio and was awarded Allure’s 2018 Best of Beauty Award.
Many consumers are hesitant to make the switch to natural deodorant because they fear that the products don’t work as well and they truly don’t realize the harm in using conventional deodorants. Conventional deodorants can clog your pores with aluminum and even negatively affect the normal function of your underarm glands. In October 2018, we executed a media campaign with the help of Humanaut called, “The Truth Stinks.” In this campaign, we sought to bring broad awareness to the clean alternative we provide to the aluminum found in traditional deodorants and the potential negative side effects it can have on your body.
We have seen so much success with the first SKU, which is why we will be expanding the portfolio in 2019 with three additional Deodorant SKUs.
12. We love that your products are all natural. Was this hard to achieve? And, why do you feel this is important?
We have always been invested in a natural approach to beauty, so our mission from the beginning was to create clean, effective coconut oil-based products at an approachable price. We definitely did our research to ensure all of the ingredients in our products were not just natural, but were also extremely effective.
For us, it’s important to focus on the quality of the ingredients in delivering that luxury experience to our customers. To that end, our small batch coconuts are from small family farms in the Philippine Islands. They are hand-picked at peak quality, never exposed to extreme temperatures or interactive metals. This, along with the incorporation of other innovative natural ingredients that enhance its benefits, creates a truly premium product.
Over the last 10 years or so, people have been shifting towards an overall healthier lifestyle and have been looking for better-for-you alternatives in all aspects of their lives, most notably in their diets. Just as we are trying to limit toxins in our diets, we likewise want to limit toxins in our beauty routine.
Our personal care line is centered around this idea of unsubscribing from toxins. We want to be able to offer natural products for all aspects of your life, which is why we recently launched a Coconut Deodorant, Coconut Toothpaste and Coconut Oil Pullers that are all toxin-free so we can help clean up consumers’ oral care regimen as well.
13. And, we love that your products have no Parabens, GMO’s, no toxins and Silicone. Please tell us about this. Why are these chemicals so bad for you?
Before we even launched Kopari, we knew we wanted to create products without these harmful ingredients. Just as we would not consume toxins in our diets, we wanted to ensure that our consumers could have effective skin, hair, body and personal care products, toxin-free. Many sources say that these ingredients are harmful due to their artificial nature which can affect your body’s hormone production and can even be connected to some cancers.
15. Please tell us about “Waves For Water?”
Waves for Water is an an organization that provides clean water to communities in need. Waves for Water has distributed more than 150,000 portable water filtration systems, have restored dead wells and pumps, and have impacted the lives of more than 7 million people in more than 27 countries, including the Philippines where Kopari sources its nutrient-rich coconut oil from small family farms. Each product on the Kopari website gives $1 back to Waves for Water.
16. What is the mission of your company?
Our mission at Kopari is to create better-for-you, coconut-oil based products across a range of category needs at approachable prices. Every product starts with 100% pure, organic coconut oil sustainably sourced from small family farms in the Philippines that is then combined with high performance ingredients to create natural born luxury for healthy skin, hair, bodies and mouths.
17. Any future plans?
Our product pipeline is very robust in 2019. We will continue to build on our prestige personal care category because we have seen so much success in that category. We just launched a line of Coconut Toothpastes, and will be expanding the Deodorant range with additional scents to give consumers more options, but will also be adding to our other lines with new skincare and bodycare launches throughout the year. We want to continue to innovate and provide better-for-you alternatives for our consumers in all aspects of their lives, as well as expand our availability in more retailers globally. There is so much untapped potential for coconut oil’s uses and we want to devote the coming years to exploring these various capabilities in the form of inventive new products.
Beauty With A Cause highlights designers that support a cause such as sustainability, charities, and fair trade, and organic products, to name a few.
Interview by Alison Hernon, Editor-In-Chief, PhotoBook Magazine.