Photo: Will van Overbeek

At her studio in Hutto, Jae Benjamin crafts small batches of cold-process soaps and hand-poured soy candles using all-natural ingredients. Her artisan bath, body, and home products often contain organic herbs, raw honey, and plant-based essential oils, and some feature inventive additions like coffee beans and stout beer. Benjamin started out small at an Austin farmers market in 2014, but now her wares can be found at select shops across the nation.

What motivated you to start Benjamin Soap Co.?
After having my children, I found myself becoming more aware of how little I knew about what we put on and in our bodies. So I began to create bath and body products for my own family using the best ingredients possible. Once I began custom formulating essential-oil scent blends, I was hooked.

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What makes your product unique?
Every product is handcrafted in small batches using ethically sourced, plant-based oils and sustainably harvested ingredients. We source locally with raw honey, roasted coffee beans, organic herbs, and even craft beers and spirits.

What are your creative inspirations?
Our process is focused on appreciating the simplicity and beauty in nature. As a mother of two very active children, I am constantly pushing the envelope with the products that we make and create. I love our lotion bar, for example, because you can use it on dry skin, as lip balm when you’re in a pinch, and on scraped knees when a first-aid kit isn’t around.

What’s your favorite Texas destination?
I love to drive down to McAllen, where I was born and raised. My grandmother’s house sits on a corner lot just shy of an acre, and I have the fondest memories of spending time exploring and playing in her yard. She spent many years cultivating a space that I find inspiring and serene.

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