An interview by Devoted Human:
The plight of uncomfortable itchy skin affects both humans and pets alike, especially during the winter months. As Bryant Fouts, founder of skincare line Beauvivo, says of the company: “It was started out of a need.”
About four years ago, Bryant’s skin went haywire and began to itch “uncontrollably.” He narrowed down the cause to the commercially-made soaps, lotions, and detergents he was using. Bryant recalls: “I remembered that I did not have this problem growing up when we used the lye soap my grandmother made.” At first he thought it was just his problem, but then his husband, Trent, started complaining of itchy skin too.
Together, Bryant, Trent, and Bryant’s dad headed into the kitchen and started making the soap that would soon relieve their collective itchiness. And so Beauvivo was born – a line of skincare products, including soaps, body butters, bath salts, and more, that are vegan, all natural, and made with USDA certified organic ingredients.
Bryant is not new to the craft of soap making. This passion extends far back into childhood when Bryant would watch his paternal grandmother make lye soap in the kitchen using one of the traditional methods of soapmaking, otherwise known as cold process. Bryant recalls these soap making occasions: “When my grandmother made the soap she would place it on the kitchen table and give us a stern warning to NOT touch it, since lye (sodium hydroxide) will burn you if it comes in contact with your skin before the soap has had time to cure. My dad began making this soap a little later and I finally made my first batch with him.” The making of this much-anticipated first batch sparked Bryant’s interest in all things soap. In addition to studying cold processed soap, he began investigating hot processed, oven processed, liquid soap, as well as a few other methods.
In June of 2016, Meredith, founder of Devoted Human, discussed her plans for launching the website with Bryant, a friend who had been on her sales team when working for a previous employer. At the same time, Bryant was formulating a bar for his sweet Jack Russell terrier, Libby. Working worlds intersected and Devoted Human became the exclusive carrier of the Libby Bar.
Bryant discusses his canine inspiration: “Libby tends to get dry skin in the winter months, as well as the warmer months. Once I researched and combined the right oils, it took awhile to come up with the right formulation. There were quite a few botched batches until the version we have on the website was launched.” This version is full of skin-nurturing goodies. The Libby Bar is made with organic coconut oil, which functions as a cleansing agent, a disinfectant, and also works to heal cuts. It also contains organic olive oil, which provides a dose of moisture for the skin, as well as castor oil, which provides moisture and conditioning for a pup’s coat and helps restore shine and sheen without leaving an oily residue. Neem oil is also included to help rid the skin and coat of any lingering odors. The neem oil is also considered a natural insect repellent, which makes the bar useful in the warmer months as well when dry skin seems to be less of an issue.
In addition to this luscious pet soap (which can also be used by people, by the way), Bryant has been working on many other products for humans. When asked about his creative process, Bryant explains: “Essentially, I establish a potential idea by writing down as much that comes to me as possible and allow the rest to take shape as I make the soap. About fifty percent of the time the scents or oil blends turn out exactly how I envision them. Sometimes it’s a complete failure but the majority of the time it’s much better than anticipated.”
Although soap was Bryant’s gateway into skincare, his favorite product to date is the body butter. His body butter formulation was placed on the back burner for some time, however, while Bryant launched his soap company, which makes the body butters’ debut all the more exciting. It is only recently that Bryant has had the opportunity to launch the body butter, which he is excited about, exclaiming “YAY!”
At his wedding this past June, he and Trent gifted their guests with soap as wedding favors. Meredith remembers this gift fondly and has been eagerly anticipating Bryant's launch in order to purchase soaps for the humans on her own Christmas list.
When we asked Bryant for a peek at the products in the pipeline for the coming months, he mentioned that he is currently working on a few more pet bars. These new concoctions will include skin-loving ingredients such as aloe vera gel and coconut milk powder, which both have lovely moisturizing, antiseptic, and antibacterial properties. He is also working on some milk baths for tired and achy humans.
The Libby Bar can be found at Devoted Human. You can find it and other pet products at www.devotedhuman.com.