Fresh as a daisy with natural ingredients.
Kerri Johanning had struggled with skin issues since she was a teenager, purchasing product after product in an effort to discover a formula that would work for her. But after losing some of her dearest friends to cancer, her mission changed.
"I started looking at all the products in my bathroom, and with the exception of one, each had a carcinogen in it, even my natural products," says Johanning. "That's why I decided, 'I can do this on my own.'"
After working with experts at the American Cancer Society and locating a chemist and a lab to assist in developing her products, Johanning opened Brightside Skincare on Valentine's Day 2014.
Brightside products come in a white bottle adorned with a cheerful yellow flower logo. The line features cleansing sets for acne-prone or aging skin, soaps, hand creams and lip balms.
Brightside adheres to strict guidelines for ingredients, which include rooibos tea extract, coconut oil and aloe. The ingredients used in Brightside products are based off safety standards from the European Union and Japanese Ministry of Health. Johnanning says that these guidelines are much stricter than those in the U.S.
Johanning has a background in advertising and previously ran a tea import business in Oconomowoc. She operates Brightside out of her west-side home and has found a loyal customer base through her website and two Wisconsin grocery stores: Fresh and Green Market of Oconomowoc and Hy-Vee Westgate. Later this year, the products will be carried at Whole Foods Madison.
Brightside customer Cindy Barnhardt regularly uses the products and swears by them.
"I'm 48 years old, and I've had difficulty with my skin all of my life," says Barnhardt. "I was trying to find a miracle treatment, something that would be anti-aging and anti-acne but didn't have all the chemicals in it." Now, she says, "I can go out in public for the first time in my life without makeup."
Even though the products have beneficial properties for skin, Barnhardt sees the importance of these products beyond basic skin care: "With all of the chemicals our bodies are exposed to, it's of the utmost importance to use an all-natural and well-researched product. It's all about the small steps to insuring our health."
Johanning believes that all-natural skin care is a move in the right direction: "We can avoid putting chemicals on our skin. I feel that in the long run, the more we do that sort of thing, the more it's going to help people get healthier and maybe avoid some cancer. That's my hope."