August 19, 2018

August is Women-Owned Business Month and we are super excited to share this interview with Carly Stein from Beekeeper’s Naturals with you. Many entrepreneurs start their businesses because they cannot find what they need in the marketplace. For Carly, she had a need and found what she needed. But it was the realization that she could serve so many others that lead her down a path of learning and creating she could never have foreseen.

What inspired you to start this business?

Beekeeper’s Naturals came about almost as a necessity. I have an autoimmune disease that prohibits me from taking traditional antibiotics and have led a lifelong search for natural healing methods that actually work. During a study abroad in college, I came down with Tonsilitis. It was so extreme that I was about to fly home to have my tonsils removed, but at the 11th hour I stumbled into a pharmacy and through my broken Italian I was able to communicate my symptoms. He suggested propolis and within two days my tonsilitis was on the retreat. After I returned from Europe to finish my last year of University, my tonsils flared up again and being unable to find propolis anywhere, surgery was looking like the only option. 

Not to be deterred, I delved into beekeeping and sought out a local beekeeper to learn everything about bees, what it meant to be a beekeeper and to help save the bees who are the only ones who produce this amazing propolis among other superfoods. I started making propolis for myself and it was working so I naturally started sharing it with friends and family. Eventually, I was having random people message me on Facebook asking to buy the propolis so I figured, this stuff works, it has helped my health, why not make this a thing and have a go at trying to share it with the world.

What advice would you give to your teenage self?

Don’t worry so much, I have always been extremely type-A and I have always felt the need to know my path and have an organized checklist of how to get from point A to B but that takes a lot of the fun out of the journey. If you work hard and commit to something you will get where you need to go. Also, chill out and trust the process.

As a female entrepreneur, what are the pros of being a woman in charge of your own business?

I believe the best pro is that I am able to build a team that I want to work with. As Beekeeper’s grows we have been fortunate to begin building an incredibly talented and diverse team. At small companies everyone has to wear a lot of hats, it’s challenging, but when everyone shares values, a passion for our products and aligned goals of healing, it’s amazing what people create. I’m inspired by the way everyone puts in the extra effort to turn problems into possibilities and the incredible things people can build when given the space to do so.

How does your product appeal to all different types of women?

Beekeeper’s products are meant for everyone, as often as they want to enjoy them! With that said, each of our products, apart from the honey have different intended uses. For those women who have a hard time getting a clear mind in the morning and are trying to avoid coffee, our BLXR is a great substitute that contains royal jelly, ginkgo biloba, and bacopa monnieri. These three ingredients work together to allow your brain’s neurotransmitters to work more efficiently while at the same time changing the way your body interprets stress, making you feel calmer naturally. Or if you need more of an immune boost, our bee powered and propolis are there to help give your body a boost in its fight against everyday allergens and potential sickness in the air or at the office! And if you are unfortunate enough to be in pain or have problems sleeping, our B.Chill CBD infused honey, is a perfectly natural way to ease those aches and have it taste great at the same time. The CBD honey is also great just before bed, honey already helps to naturally produce melatonin in your brain and the CBD helps loosen and calm the muscles of the body allowing you to drift off into a beautiful sleep. Whatever a woman may need Beekeeper’s has something to help!

Name three things that guided you to success.

  1. I have been lucky to have an extremely supportive family that has always had my back and has pushed me into the unknown. I learned so much from them and still do. I cannot put a value on how much they have helped me so far and I know they will be there in the future when I need them.
  2. Throughout my life, I have met and worked with some fantastic people, some who have become mentors and lifelong friends. The advice is invaluable from those who have been in your position before and were able to succeed through all the stress and failure that come with starting a business.
  3. I also have an innate sense of drive that has been essential in getting my company off the ground. I was and still am not one to sit around idly. This helps when running a startup as you cannot have the mentality to wait for someone else to do what needs to be done. Always moving forward, even failing, pushes my company and I into the future toward success.

Describe your brand in 3 words

Natural Hive Superfoods

What does balance mean to you?

Balance is definitely a work in progress for me (and anyone with a startup), but I try to carve out time, for one thing, a day that has nothing to do with Beekeeper’s. Something that’s all about me. Some days that’s a 20-minute walk on the beach between meetings; other days its yoga. I still take the occasional rain check, but I’m learning that stepping back to recharge usually helps me problem solve later.

What three things can you not live without?

Exercise is a non-negotiable for both my mental and physical health. Whether it’s a run, a brisk walk, or a yoga class, it’s the one thing I incorporate into every single day (apart from the bees!). I recalibrate and get out of my head through movement.

Propolis – I struggled with a weak immune system for years. Chronic sore throats, tonsillitis and a constant cold during the winter months was my norm. Learning about propolis and making it a part of my daily routine has changed my body, built up my natural defenses and given me the freedom to and ability to work my butt off without the sick days.

Addictive Wellness chocolate. I can’t get enough of these superfood filled treats! I’m a big fan of functional foods and obsessive about quality and these raw chocolates deliver on all fronts.

What is one piece of advice for aspiring female entrepreneurs?

Turn your challenges into opportunities. Nothing feels better than doing the “impossible.” In my opinion, there’s nothing you can buy and nowhere you can go that will give you the lasting confidence of doing the thing you thought you would never be able to do. There are only two outcomes: you fail and learn something important or you succeed and create something amazing.

What’s your superpower?

My superpower is going all into the very things that scare me most. We all have fears, excuses, and responsibilities and many of us struggle with negative self-talk. dealing with those things and not letting them hold you back when it’s go time is my superpower and a power that I feel anyone can cultivate.

One wellness hack that everyone should know

Raw honey contains about 27 minerals and 5,000 enzymes. A little-known fact is that you can also use honey as a sleep hack because it’s high in amino acids, including one called tryptophan. The slow, steady spike in insulin from the honey allows the tryptophan to cross the blood-brain barrier where it’s converted from serotonin to melatonin, making it the best natural sleep aid. How could you not have sweet dreams if you eat a teaspoon of honey right before bed!?

Where did your passion for health and beauty come from?

I like natural things. I like hiking and getting lost in nature and I like my foods and health remedies without chemicals. But I had a dilemma: where do I find natural health products that actually work? Growing up with an autoimmune disease forced me to be more aware of health and along with that came beauty. If one is not healthy it is hard for that person to feel beautiful, inside or out. Today, I like to share my her harmonious & intimate relationship with the bees, the incredible healing and beauty benefits of bee medicine and products, and my leap from the corporate world to beekeeping which had a profound impact on my health.

What makes you feel beautiful?

Eating clean, working out and doing self-care activities make me feel good but digging a little deeper, I learn to accept myself more when I focus on the internal attributes that make me feel worthwhile. Doing things to give back, supporting people or causes I care about and overcoming challenges makes me feel like I’m having an impact and acting in line with the type of woman I want to be. The outside stuff is fleeting and something I work hard to loosen my attachment to. Those inside things make me feel valuable and confident and that’s when I feel beautiful.

Who are 3 inspirational women we should follow and why?

  1. I’ve never left the wizarding world of Harry Potter and I’m forever grateful to JK for expanding my imagination and bringing forward what has developed into my great love of books, but more than anything I draw inspiration from her stance on failure. As she has said, “ It is impossible to live without failing at something unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default.” As an entrepreneur, these words remind me to move through fear and choose to believe in myself.
  2. This is the science nerd in me but I have always admired Marie Curie. She was the first woman and only person to receive two Nobel Prizes and the first female professor at the University of Paris. She ignored the status quo and made meaningful contributions reminding us all that “Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood.” I love that quote!
  3. I recently watched the HBO series on Serena Williams and I highly recommend it. She has a determination, dedication, work ethic and willpower that we could all learn from. Wanting something is one thing, but I think that being willing to grind day in and day out until you realize your dreams is critical if you want to make waves and Serena is a woman who demonstrates what refusing to back down and putting in the work can lead to.

What is the title of your autobiography?

Inside the Hive

What do you love about Erewhon 🙂

Erewhon does an amazing job at keeping to its mission statement. It painlessly ensures everything it buys is healthy and inspires people to eat better, eat less and live longer. You can feel it when you walk up to the store, it all comes together to create a beautiful environment that promotes healthy living that tastes amazing and makes you want to come back.