October Newsletter + Year 5 Updates!
My how I've missed sharing with you here. Honestly, I've been struggling over what and how to share about my business over the past few weeks. There is just too much happening in the world. It's been such an intense year, and we're weeks away from the most important election of our lives. I mean, how am I supposed to think about things like skincare, or "marketing my products" at a time like this?! I started to write a newsletter the week Trump was diagnosed with COVID but I (embarrassingly,) got swept away in keeping up with the news, (not hoping that anything would happen to him, that is definitely not why I'm keeping a bottle of champagne chilling in the fridge...) but it was certainly a less than fulfilling way to loose a week and a half of one's life, am I right? What a mess.
On top of that mess, I've just generally been feeling kind of stuck. Not in my work. The doing of my work feels more sacred to me than ever. It's just, my mom-school-work schedule is absolutely STIFLING. I've been quiet, but not because I don't have anything to say. I'm full of ideas and things to share with you but there just never seems to be any time. ((PS the Trump administration WANTS US TO FEEL THIS WAY. They are holding us (women) back ON PURPOSE. Do you think we'd be homeschooling our kids right now with 865,000 women dropping out of the workforce if Hillary Clinton were president? NO, KAREN. Our kids would safely be in school right now and we'd be going about our business with our masks on per her federal mandate. THINK ABOUT IT.))
All summer long I've had this feeling that something needed to change, but I had no idea what. It was like there was this fuzzy idea floating around just out of my reach. I could feel it *so close!* but I couldn't catch it. So, I did nothing. I was pretty lazy, actually.
Side note, here's the thing: those "lazy" nothing times are actually important. People are always asking me how I do what I do. How do I make so much? The secret is that no one does it all at once. Eventually (even though it's definitely not easy) you come to understand that those weird, stuck, downtimes are what leads you to the answer because that's how you make room for new ideas to come in. So you just have to go with it. Even if it sucks because you're type-A and always need to feel like you're doing something in order to qualify as a worthwhile human being. You can't force ideas and solutions to come out of nowhere, so give yourself a damn break. Also, one more thing - I'm getting sidetracked but this is very important - if you're feeling like there are things you want to do but you can't because everything is so crazy right now - PUT DOWN YOUR PHONE. Stop allowing Trump's antics and the constant, sensationalist news media cycle to have so much power over your life. You can stay informed without checking every single news update. Start making a self-care game plan for yourself and how you're going to handle the results of the election (no matter the outcome) now. If Biden wins and we get to go back to a normal, more civilized way of life and disagreeing over political issues, great. If not, you're going to want to figure out a way to keep (or find) your peace of mind over the next four years. We'd better start practicing now, am I right?
BUT back to my updates - what that "lazy" downtime provided for me this summer was some much needed space. When I started Twinkle Apothecary 5 years ago yesterday, I was a completely different person. I didn't like myself, so I wrapped my sense of self worth up in the success of my business. I had to succeed to prove that I was worthy, so I worked my butt off and nothing else mattered.
That work set me up to be able to take care of myself a little better, and over time, little by little, I came to know my worth.
I had to not know it to learn it though... you see?
Once I managed to untangle my worth from this thing that I created, the question became, "What's next?"
"What do I (really, really) want?" (Like, aside from just not being a failure!)
The answer has always been to make perfume. But how? There is no time!
So, we make some time.
If you've been following my business for longer than a few months, you might know that I'm kind of famous for changing things up in the form of yearly October anniversary bombshells, and (unfortunately) this year is no exception. (I'm sorry!) I honestly had no idea this was coming, but we're going with it now so bear with...
DECEMBER 2020 WILL BE THE LAST MONTH OF MY MONTHLY BEAUTY BOXES
AND THE PERFUME JUNKIE CLUB
I'M STARTING A SECOND BUSINESS!
I know, it's the end of an era.
But also, the beginning of a new one for me!
I'll get back to the details of my subscription changes in a second - first, my new business, Notes by Stefanie Grant-Cassel.
(Please don't judge this totally generic logo I generated just to have something to show you here - Notes by SGC is actually going to be a totally "brandless" brand because it's about what's inside the bottles...)
I realize it might seem totally insane to start a second brand when I can barely keep up with the first, but like I said, I needed some space.
I needed more room for my perfumery.
I've been working on a new collection of single note perfumes since spring, and I had no idea where to put them. Perfume isn't the main category of Twinkle Apothecary (although it's getting up there!) so I kept putting them on the back burner to focus on all of the things I felt like I "should be doing" instead.
Also, the idea of introducing a new perfume collection in this space to customers who are really more interested in skincare just felt exhausting, to be honest. There's already so much perfume here, and I didn't want them to get lost in the shuffle or add to the chaos.
All of a sudden this week, it became clear to me what I needed to do. Instead of keeping my work, (my passion, my art!) on the back burner, I could just get myself a second stove! That way, the Twinkle customers who want to nerd out about scent with me can follow my new brand, and everyone else can stay here and have a more streamlined shopping experience. DUH, STEFANIE!
So beginning in December, (maybe earlier?) Notes by SGC will be the home to my new single note perfumes, the asterisk collection fragrances (they'll be called Nos.1-9 instead of Edits...) and all of my big perfume ideas and work going forward (No. 10 and beyond!)
Note: only the asterisk collection scents will be moving - all other perfumes will stay under the Twinkle Apothecary brand.
Now, don't freak out! Natural perfume will always be a big part of Twinkle Apothecary. I will still be making new perfumes for this brand (in fact, I have one in the works now!) but I need to do it at a slower, more intentional pace, which means that it's time to say goodbye to my monthly creations.
December 2020 will be the last month of the Perfume Junkie Club. Tears!
It's been a good run (two whole years of monthly perfumes!) but keeping up with making a new perfume every month for the rest of my life really isn't sustainable in the long run.
Instead, you'll have the opportunity to pre-order any new perfumes I make going forward at a discounted price, or, you can just buy (or sample) them for full price once they're released!
And, because I still need to free up a bit more room in my life, I've made the difficult decision to cancel my monthly beauty boxes after December 2020.
This was a tough one, because it's been a customer favorite since 2016, and I've loved making them, but it's just too much for me now. The month's are going by so quickly that I don't feel like I have the time to make them special anymore. I also don't have plans to make anything new, and most of my subscribers have been with me for so long that I don't think there's anything they haven't tried at this point!
What I'd like to do instead, is offer more bundles and seasonal gift sets - like I did with the Stay Home box this spring - so that new customers will have a way to sample different items at a great price without me having to run myself ragged every month. (Seriously, every month I'm like, "how is it the 15th already AGAIN?!?!")
So what does this mean for you?
If you are a monthly subscriber to either the perfume junkie club or the monthly beauty box, you don't need to do anything. Your charges will simply end after you're charged for the December scent (or box.)
You are still welcome to sign up for the subscription option now to get on the list for the November and December scents and boxes!
If you have a pre-paid subscription that goes past December, I will be contacting you to offer you a refund or store credit for the boxes/perfumes you won't be getting after December. Keep an eye out for a message from me over the weekend!
So yeah, those are my big updates for 2020.
Are you mad? Sad? Excited?
Obviously, I'm excited. I think you can probably tell that I'm someone who loves change at this point. I can't even imagine what it would be like to keep everything the same forever. Change is good! Walking away from situations that are no longer serving you is the best. Creating new spaces for you to do you is even more bester. LOL.
I'm always looking for ways to do what I do better, so in addition to getting my new brand ready to share with you this fall, my goal for Twinkle Apothecary is to focus on sharing more product knowledge in a more streamlined way that's even more accessible and easy to understand. Freeing up some room by cancelling the monthly subscriptions will allow me to figure out how to do that and share more with you here on the blog, so keep checking back for more more more! Haha!
In the meantime, I want to invite you all to take advantage of this month's special offer in honor of my 5th anniversary.:
Take 30% off orders $65+ with the code TWINKLE5
through the end of October.
FYI: this discount is in lieu of my usual big anniversary sale - I decided to spread it out over the month instead of killing myself over a weekend going into the holiday season this year. (See? Always trying to figure out how to do what I do better!)
Also, THANK YOU!!!!
I can't believe I've been doing this for 5 years. It's the best job in the world and I have the best customers. I wouldn't be here without your support and I feel so lucky to be able to share what I make with you every day. It really is a dream come true.
If you are so inclined, I would be honored if you followed my new brand - the website isn't live yet but you can sign up for email updates by following this link, and of course following on instagram is a great way to stay up to date!
Two more things...
VOTE FOR BIDEN!
WEAR A MASK!
Love you all!
- Stefanie -