Last week, I participated in a Connecticut Blogger event. We all met at VOVO Organics Bath & Body at 28 Orange St., in downtown New Haven, CT. This was the first time I ever met up with other Connecticut bloggers (besides Lori Pelikan Strobel who lives nearby.) It was chilly outside, but the wonderful reception at VoVo Organics was warm and welcoming. While I was there, I found out that the owner was Christina Ayres, a former Verizon employee. She found a new career with VOVO Organics and it was so inspiring to see it.
Just at a time when I needed to see someone following their passion and trying something new, I found it. That she was a former employee of the same company that was closing my call center, was perfect! And that she makes wonderful, organic skincare products was icing on the cake! (Or is that soothing oil for the skin?)
What you’ve rarely seen me write about before is that I used to make my own skincare products. I have sensitive skin and prefer knowing exactly what’s in what I use. I don’t like picking up a product and seeing a list that is 20 items long and want to see just a few ingredients and have them be organic and real. I know it can now be confusing to read any product label. Unfortunately, a few years ago, the cosmetics industry lobbied the FDA to require scientific labeling of all products. What this means is that instead of just saying the product was made with lavender essential oil and sweet almond oil, it now has to say Lavandula angustifoliav and Prunus amydalus or Prunus dulcis. Doesn’t exactly roll off your tongue. The effect of this new labeling caused many hand-made bath and body shops to go out of business because it was far too expensive for them to re-label all of their products. So, when I find a shop owner who is making her own soap, oils, and lotions, then I’m right there, ready to sample and buy.
Needless to say, I was really excited to walk into VOVO Organics and meet the owner. Imagine my surprise to find out she used to work with me. Several years ago, Christina found herself having health problems. When regular Western medicine wasn’t bringing her the relief that she needed, Christina turned to holistic healing. She turned to acupuncture and started investing in natural and organic products for her internal and external health. And she started to make her own skincare products. When she found the healing that she needed, she decided to share these products with others.
Her signature product is Almond Blossom Nourishing Skin Oil (full disclosure, I received a free 1 oz. bottle of this oil.) What I like about the oil is that it only contains 3 ingredients: sweet almond oil, jojoba oil, and fragrance. Simple, no fuss and I love the feel of my skin after I use it. I also bought one of the homemade soaps that had honey in it–which is perfectly delicious in the shower! I love homemade soap and try to buy it wherever I can find it.
Christina has a beautiful shop and plans to expand to include a tea bar where you can enjoy detoxing teas as well as a spa area where you can enjoy salt foot scrubs. She plans on using salts from Cape Verde, where she was born. Her intention is to pamper the stressed and help them relax to allow their bodies to heal. Christina named her shop VOVO in honor of her grandmother, Vovo being a Cape Verde Creole version of the Portuguese Avo for grandmother. She feels grandmothers nourish you with love and that’s what she wants her shop to do for you.
I was so happy to get reacquainted with Christina and see that it is possible to follow your passion. Christina did and she not only tried something new she found a new career with VOVO Organics.