Interview with the Founder of Shoosha Truly Organic
It’s not every day that we fall in love with a new product. A lot of products come across our beauty closet and very few make it to the website or on our Mama Glow Approved List. We are thrilled to introduce another stellar product for moms and babies- Shoosha Truly Organic. In 2009, Shoosha founder, Patricia De Gasbarro set out on a mission to lead a cleaner, healthier lifestyle for herself and her family. While raising her children as a single parent, Patricia entered in to the staffing industry and quickly went from a junior recruitment role to managing global sales, becoming the only female VP in Canada. Year after year she won awards of excellence. She built her reputation on trust and transparency-two values that are very important to her.
Patricia is passionate person caring deeply about health, truth and creating a better life for people. Her goal is to twofold: to help families live a better life through education about personal care products so they are equipped to make informed, healthful decisions; to create a spa-inspired, luxurious, safe, truly organic brand worthy of your family’s trust. These products are ideal for parents who are looking for skin care products to use on their babies’ sensitive skin that are both safe and made of simple and pure formulations.
Shoosha’s Protective Diaper Butter, Rescue Nipple Butter and Replenish Baby Lotion are three products that are absolute diaper bag essentials for moms and dads with little ones.
We caught up with Patricia to learn more about her incredible line.
Many women have to confront their current beauty regimens when they become pregnant. Some start using better products. What inspired you to start your Shoosha line?
In 2009 I started to study Aromatherapy and make products for family and friends while keeping a full-time job as a sales executive. In my research I came across an independent study published by the Environmental Protection Agency that pretty much shocked me. The EPA Study concluded that babies can accumulate up to 50% of their lifetime cancer risk by their second birthday as a result of exposure to environmental toxins. I further read that the most common cancer in small children was Leukemia, and that Leukemia cancer is linked to particular toxicants such as chemical Pesticides. Having lost my own mother to Leukemia when I was 16, this article was a game changer. When I went to see what was available at natural and organic stores for babies, I was discouraged to find there was not one line that made a commitment to be entirely organic and pure. In fact the vast majority of skin products for babies had numerous ingredients that made the ’natural’ marketing claims very dubious. I eventually quit my job and started working full time on Shoosha.
What is the meaning behind the brand name?
Shoosha was my nickname as a child. I grew up in Toronto, and would often spend my summers in a rural village in Abruzzo Italy where my Grandparents lived. My Italian girlfriends (Fiorella and Delfina) couldn’t speak English, and nicknamed me Shoosha as they could not pronounce the ‘r’ in Patricia. These were lovely idyllic summers, and a special time in my life. In effect, Shoosha is symbolic of all things pure and true.
Can you speak to the importance of minimizing toxic exposure to babies and why your products are a great alternative to what’s out there?
A baby’s small size and immature cells cannot cope with the daily bombardment they are exposed to from toxic chemicals and carcinogens. Babies also have far more skin surface per pound than adults, and therefore far more skin surface area to absorb these toxins into their bodies. Their delicate skin is also up to 40% thinner than an adults and we know that the first 2 years of life are the most important to protect our children against toxic exposure.
Pesticides in particular are among the more harmful toxins that can affect you and your baby’s health. According to numerous studies, pesticides are linked to Leukemia and brain tumors in children, and exposure starts a year before conception with the parents.
You can very likely find residual pesticides in both food and natural skin products. Natural ingredients such as oils, butters and juices are extracted from plants that have very likely been sprayed with chemical pesticides. In addition, many if not most ‘natural’ products are a combination of a few natural ingredients, mixed in with a cocktail of synthetic chemical ingredients. It can be confusing, and troublesome to figure out. This is why Shoosha was created. We made the decision to make every product USDA certified organic. We also decided to keep the ingredient list simple and easier to understand. For instance, our Unscented Baby Wash has only 7 ingredients in it, and Unscented Massage Oil has only 5 ingredients in it.
Why was it important for you to go the extra mile and get certified organic, food grade- not just label your products natural?
It just didn’t feel right to make products that have some nice ingredients, along with some other ingredients that are not so nice and just call the whole thing ‘natural’. Natural to me means ‘naturally occurring’, but in the cosmetic industry it doesn’t mean this at all. This is particularly troublesome when it comes to baby products because we know they have far more delicate skin than adults that requires special care and attention.
We wanted to achieve the highest standard possible for food grade organics, which is the USDA Organic Standard. The USDA Seal means that the products contain over 95% certified organic ingredients, and the remaining 5% are allowable ingredients that you could find in your own kitchen like Vitamin E, Xanthan Gum, Sea Salt, etc. In addition, each of the organic ingredients are derived from plants that have not been sprayed with chemical pesticides or herbicides. No chemically treated or processed ingredients are allowed with the USDA seal. Also, ingredients processed via hydrogenaton or sulfation and synthetic preservatives are stricly prohibited.
Our goal was to be the first company to have an entirely food grade organic certified line for babies. Of course, when I started researching ingredients, I also wanted every ingredient to not only be organic, but also as gentle and soothing as possible, especially for babies with sensitive skin issues like Eczema.
You’re a mother. How does it feel to have created a product line that is safe for mothers and babies?
Pretty awesome! I’m so happy that we created a line that will make keep families healthier. After all, nobody shoots for second best for their baby and we are always going to go the extra mile in everything we create.
We are all about self (glow time) care as a pathway to optimal wellbeing. What do you do for glow time to relax and recharge the batteries?
If I’m feeling run down I’ll make some simple changes like getting to bed earlier and adding in a few more breaks during the day. I’ll very often call my best friend and Shoosha partner Nancy Toran and we’ll just hang out and watch a light-hearted movie together. Whenever we’re together, it’s as good as it gets. I’m so blessed to have Nancy in my life as a friend and business partner.
Shoosha products are available across Canada www.ShooshaTrue.com and some of the stores that carry our line in the US are Whole Foods, Lassens, Mothers Markets, Erewhon, Down To Earth, specialty stores and online at iHerb and the Shoosha Website.
baby, baby glow, beauty, body care, children, diaper butter, motherhood, newborn, nipple butter, non-toxic, organic, parenting, Patricia DiGesberro, pregnancy, prenatal, relaxation, self care, shoosha, skin care, sustainable, vegan, wellbeing, wellness |