The moment I met Sabahat, 3 years ago at a beloved friend's house, during a womens gathering, I immediately felt that I wanted to know more about her. Relaxed by her authentic aura and her relationship to natural materials. Then I met her products, which every time I use them reminds me of a childhood I once knew, that of joy, carelessness and intense sense of nature.
We talk with Sabahat from Sabath Soaps, about creativity, about what inspired her to start her business, what difficulties she encountered and what she is dreaming about.
Sabahat, where do you live, who are your favorite people, and where are you from?
I was born and raised in the island of Rhodes, with half DNA from Turkey and a name from Persia. I studied international trade and occupational Therapy, although unrelated, I think soap, in a bizarre way, is the link between these two. Now i live in Athens with the most important people in my life, my husband and our two children!
Can you remember how the idea of Sabbath soaps started and what prompted you to deal professionally with it?
My love for natural soaps started since I was very young. I remember when they brought me a soap as a gift, my joy was indescribable, I had a whole collection of soaps! I loved the smell, the shape and color. After years, in 2013, knowing how "unhealthy" are the soaps of commerce, I decided to make my own soap. Testing my first soap after the month of maturation, I was thrilled! I knew exactly what contained, I had created it myself from scratch and the result was excellent (beginner's luck)! One soap brought the other and because I had enough for us, I started offering them as gifts to friends. It was they who urged me to see it professionally.
Tell us a little more about the materials you use and what inspires you every time to create a new soap or a new cream?
The materials I use are of excellent quality base oils (olive oil, coconut oil, castor oil, etc.), Butters (Cocoa, Shea), clays, herbs and essential oils. The soap is created by the cold method, at very low temperatures, thus maintaining all the beneficial properties of raw materials.
I don't use perfumes, synthetic paints, preservatives and other chemical additives. I am against animal testing and I support zero waste, using only recyclable materials for packaging. As for where inspiration comes, it is something that can come anytime and anywhere. I may be in the grocer's shop, or on a mountain that has just rained and I smell the earth's natural herbs or just before I fell asleep. Generally there are many herbs and raw materials that give you the ability to create continuously, with infinite combinations.
How has Sabbath soaps changed your life?
Sabbath Soaps for me is a creative way of expression, my own kind of therapy. Everytime i try to be better and to create products of exceptional quality and aesthetics. It gives me the satisfaction of offering first to my family, and then to all of you, pure skin care products. I do something I love and I think people can feel it!
How do you promote Sabbath shops? What tools do you use (social media, word of mouth)?
We live in the age of image, so Facebook and Instagram are useful and valuable tools. But because Sabbath Soaps have smell and texture, sensations that you can't feel through a beautuful photo, the best promoting method for me, is word of mouth. The client who shares his experience to a new buyer, is the best way to promote my products.
What difficulties you experienced and how did you deal with them?
Generally the world is very cautious with soaps. They think that with soap their hair will become hard and that will dry their skin. That is a result the big industries have created, producing soaps filled with chemicals. A natural soap offers all your skin needs, in half the price and with the purest ingredients it contains. This, of course, consumers discover it after they use the products for the first time.
What message would you like to transfer to the other creators? What would you advise them?
I think we're stuffed with standard mass-produced objects. We need more handmade and unique products. The creators urge to express themselves through their creations. I want to say to them, to keep doing what they want and always express freely themselves, to persist and evolve daily, to discover their best creative self and explore their limits. Surely, what we create not everyone will like it, but there will be those who appreciate and love them!
Where you see yourself personally and professionally after 5 years? What would you like to have succeeded in?
In the next 5 years I will definitely have a workshop up on the mountain or by the sea. I will start early in the morning, with a Greek coffee and a beautiful view. As soon as I am filled with all the beauty of nature, I will then go back to my workshop and fill all nature's beauty into the products I will create. I only want to create beautiful, handmade products.
How do you apply Greek Island Effortless Living to your life and business. How can women through the Sabbath Soaps experience this feeling?
I have been born on an island and that feeling never goes away even if I live in Athens now. In the busy world we live, we are losing the luxury of simplicity. So, by using natural Sabbath Soaps, a memory of a beautiful moment may come, as it happened to a client with a body cream. The smell of the cream remind her of her honeymoon (how wonderful, is that!). There may be a memory from your childhood or a beautiful moment from a trip to an island. For each person works differently! This is my purpose with Sabath Soaps, to spread joy in a simple and natural way!