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Giving Thanks

With life being so busy and hectic at times, it’s a pleasure to be invited to someone’s home as a guest for dinner, a party or a weekend visit. Although it is not necessary to bring a host or hostess gift, it’s nice to show our appreciation for the generosity and hospitality of others. There can be a lot of fuss associated with buying host/hostess gifts. What do you get for someone you may not know very well? How much do you spend without overwhelming your host or breaking the bank? Do you have to bring a gift every time you visit the same household? A kind gesture can become a big headache and sometimes it seems easier to just stay home in your pajamas and watch Netflix. But, with a myriad of “etiquette” articles and advice about social niceties, it is rather easy to simplify host/hostess giving and stick to a formula. My mother’s mantra is to “never show up on a doorstep with your arms hanging” so I have been programmed to always be prepared. At the end of the day, it’s really about being sincere and not the cost of what you are cradling when they open the door. So, if you are lucky enough to get an invite for drinks or a hot homemade meal, keep it simple on how you show your appreciation. If you don’t know your hosts very well, a bottle of wine is always a safe bet. Flowers require arranging, which your host may not have the time to do, so a potted arrangement is a no hassle alternative. Stay away from expensive presents! Expensive gifts can make everyone feel uncomfortable for many reasons. Hosts feel overwhelmed; others guests feel annoyed or embarrassed and you feel like you were overzealous and took the appreciation thing too far. It’s supposed to be a small token, so keep it small. Put the effort into thinking about what would be a nice gesture as opposed to a grand gesture.  Some of the best gifts I have been thanked for were homemade jams and preserves. Using ribbon, twine and a neatly written label can elevate a homemade food item into a presentable gift item. Just ask Martha Stewart. If DIY is not your game, lean on the experts to do the work. Gift sets come in all shapes and sizes and range of products. Common sense is essential when choosing one due to the sheer volume of gift basket options. Number one is to pick products that you have tried and enjoyed. Another option is to choose products based on the company; perhaps you want to support your local community or a business that supports a charity or cause.  Again, like most things in life, it comes back to sincere, thoughtful intentions. It is also okay to purchase for one person if your hosts are a couple. My husband and I have never battled over who gets the scented candle or tube of hand cream. It…

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The Royal Treatment

  It’s widely understood that honey comes from bees but there is another nutritious type of food that comes from the same insect called royal jelly. Royal jelly is over half percent water mixed in with sugar and proteins. This light coloured substance is sometimes called “bee milk” and is secreted from the top of a bee’s head. It is collected in special honeycombs called queen cells. Worker bees diligently distribute the jelly to help the hive thrive.  When bee larvae are first born, they are fed royal jelly directly from the workers in order to get a nutritional boost to survive the first few days of life. They are then given the less decadent “beebread” which is fermented pollen and honey. Potential queen bees skip the bread and honey and continue to be fed the jelly. In fact, they sit in the cells filled to the brim with royal jelly. This process of feeding helps create the next in line for the throne. The main difference between a worker bee and a queen bee is in the genetic manipulation. Identical insects differ when a specific gene is activated. Although research suggests that the queen bee morphology is contingent on the bee being exclusively fed royal jelly, new studies suggest that the lack of honey in a bee’s diet contributes to the change. Either way, the miracle lies in their ability to adjust their genetic profile through nutrition. Royal jelly has a long illustrious history as a natural remedy in ritual and medicine around the world including Europe, Ancient Egypt and China.  Today it maintains its stronghold in the health care industry as a natural solution to various ailments. HERE IS A QUICK LIST OF THE BENEFITS OF ROYAL JELLY FOR SKIN AND HEALTH: 1.     Anti-aging properties 2.     Skin and wound healing including cuts, scars and acne 3.     Anti-inflammatory 4.     Antibiotic components 5.     Cholesterol-lowering 6.     Boosts fertility 7.     Antibacterial agents 8.     Cancer Preventative 9.     Contains complex B vitamins, amino acids, fatty acids, minerals, and enzymes     Royal Jelly is included in our body cream, face cream and deodorant!

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sea buckthorn skincare blog

DIY Sea Buckthorn Oil Skincare

The sea buckthorn plant has gained a serious reputation as a superfood and is touted for a rich profile of nutrients including all 4 omega fatty acids. Yes, it’s true! The Omega 3, 6, and 9’s have a long lost relative we seldom hear about. Omega 7 is the very rare unsaturated fatty acid that offers a laundry list of benefits and is difficult to find in the natural world. Sea buckthorn just happens to be the highest source of Omega 7, which has contributed to its super food status. Check out this amazing article by Cara Lucas that offers a deeper look at the Sea buckthorn plant and its benefits. I wanted to reap the benefits of the sea buckthorn plant and made big plans to incorporate the oil into my skincare regime. We all know that beauty comes from within. Quite literally. We are told that the best way to maintain a bright complexion is to eat healthy foods to ensure a diet of vitamins and nutrients. We are also told to get plenty of rest, drink lots of water and exercise. Don’t smoke, don’t drink too much and stay out of the sun. For those of us with sensitive skin, sometimes the stars also have to be aligned a certain way to NOT have a breakout that ruins the rest of your “healthy” glow. At times, trying to find that balance of lifestyle, diet, hormones and other factors can be complicated and exhausting. One thing to consider, if your skin is looking amazing, it can be due to what you were doing two weeks ago and not the day before. Apparently, good or bad results take a while to show up on your face. This is not necessarily a fact, but a guideline to consider.   With such a broad range of considerations, it is of no surprise that we can become obsessive and experimental with skincare regimes. From expensive treatments to “do it yourself” blends, we all seem to have certain products and habits for skincare. My mother in law swears by cold cream and has been smearing it on since 1968. I, myself have been on the serum kick for about a year and cleanse my skin with oil. This is why  the idea of incorporating  sea buckthorn oil exciting; it fits into my current routine and has an impressive list of benefits! There are two types of sea buckthorn on the market, the seed oil and the berry oil. The berry oil has the Omega 7, contains carotene and is a vibrant orange colour. The seed oil is a softer gold tone, rich in Vitamin E and contains Omega 3,6 and 9. Needless to say, I purchased the berry oil for the Omega 7. Sea buckthorn berry oil has a unique smell. It’s sweet with very tart undertones which don’t last when applied directly to the skin or added to another product. Oh, and as far as adding it directly to the skin, it’s not…

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Bee Inspired Party Favours

Party favours are a huge part of any celebration. Whether sharing an evening with friends, navigating through a child’s birthday party or planning an elaborate wedding, favours are a great way of thanking guests and adding a creative touch to your event. Creating your own favours can be an affordable option and allows for personalizing them to perfectly fit your theme. Honey products make fantastic favours. Honey itself is non-perishable, can be purchased locally and lends itself to a myriad of clever catch phrases and messaging options. Transferring the liquid gold into small containers is a no brainer and the honey can be infused with vanilla or spices. Another option is to use prepackaged honey sticks. They are inexpensive, can be bundled with twine or ribbon and tagged with a name or message. Beeswax votive candles are a sweet smelling addition to a table setting as place cards at an elaborate Thanksgiving dinner or favours at an evening wedding. Beeswax lip balm labelled with “thanks for beeing here” is bound to make your guests chuckle. We found some fantastic options that will inspire you to consider capping off your special event with something sweet! Consider all the tagging options available for messaging your bee themed favours! Some of our favourites include “thanks for beeing here”, “love as sweet as honey”, “may you bee blessed with a sweet year” and “we bee three” for a baby shower! Photo Credit Thanks: southern bride, beautydojo, lia griffith, leigh pearce weddings, botanicalpaperworks   Our new giftware section features both the honey stix and the beeswax votive candles.

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10 year blog post

Bee By The Sea is Turning 10!

Bee By The Sea turns 10 years old in June of this year!  We are looking forward to a year of celebrating this amazing milestone of being in business for a decade!  We couldn’t have done it without all of our wonderfully supportive and loyal customers and retailers, and we thank you for bee-ing there with us. We are so proud to have come this far, and hearing the amazing results people have had using our products makes us excited to keep going.  We have countless testimonials from people who are so grateful that our products have helped them or their loved ones with skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and rosacea. We hear how thankful people are that our products have helped with sun burns, radiation burns and scarring.  We also hear how much people enjoy the smell and feel of our products. We are thrilled to be in business for a decade and the best part is being able to help people.  We’ll be celebrating all year long with contests, social media fun, promotions, new products and more! Bee on the look out on the 10th day of every month!  For 10 months, from March to December we’ll be having a one day promotion to continue to celebrate our 10 years all year long! Join our newsletter and stay connected with us on Facebook and Instagram to be the first to find out what’s happening!   Click here to enter our 10 Year Anniversary Contest!

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Smell Great & Stay Healthy

If the idea of switching out your antiperspirant for a natural deodorant has you breaking a sweat, fear not! Natural deodorants can actually work for you and swapping to a healthier option is always a good idea. Let’s start off by stating the obvious. An antiperspirant is not a deodorant. It is by design, a product that aims to prevent sweating. This is achieved through the use of strange and effective aluminum compounds that block sweat glands and create a shield. It all sounds quite effective, but is it healthy?  There are stacks of research that support both sides of the antiperspirant debate. There is, however, no arguing that antiperspirant is a potent concoction of chemicals. The evidence lies in the residue left in the unsightly yellow “sweat” stains on our clothing. It may not be harmful, but  it’s probably not healthy either. There is also the nagging question that is avoided when discussing antiperspirants.  Aren’t we supposed to sweat? From saunas to sweat lodges, humans have sought this natural process for a variety of benefits. From a practical standpoint, sweating cools us down, helps maintain our body temperature and purges our system of toxins. Some commercial brands are in step with consumer pushback and  rebooting their deodorant products alongside offering antiperspirants. The only issue is the abundance of artificial colours and fragrances used to make the deodorants more attractive. At the end of the day, it doesn’t make sense to swap out chemical compounds for artifical colours and fragrances. So, how does natural deodorant work and is it effective? The market for natural personal care has exploded with options and there are natural ingredients that soothe the skin and wick away moisture without clogging pores. Arrowroot powder, beeswax, sodium bicarbonate and cornstarch are natural alternatives that absorb moisture. Natural fragrances are abundant in the world of essential oils and coconut oil doubles down as antibacterial and fragrance. So, wipe your brow off, take a deep breath and trade in your chemical stick for a healthy alternative! Bee by the Sea’s NEW deodorant uses coconut oil, beeswax, sweet almond and sea buckthorn oil alongside other natural ingredients to help you smell great and stay healthy!

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10 Year Anniversary Contest

Bee By The Sea is turning 10 and we are having a contest to celebrate all year long! To enter simply submit a review of your favourite product OR tell us which product you would like to try next and why! There are monthly prizes of Bee By The Sea Products and a grand prize in December of a $500 Canadian Prepaid MasterCard plus over $200 in products! “Bee” sure to enter every month for more chances to win the Grand Prize!   Click Here to Enter Contest!

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Save The Bees

Bee by the Sea launched the “Save the Bees Campaign” in 2017 to support the University of Guelph’s Honey Bee Research Centre. As advocates and supporters of this amazing program, our goal is to raise awareness and rally support for the declining bee populations. Our campaign offers unique products with a portion of the proceeds going directly to the Research Centre. We are thrilled to present “Give Bees a Chance”  and “I’m trying to love Spiders” by Bethany Barton as part of our charitable program. These fantastic children’s’ books are filled with fun facts and illustrations  that are educational and promote awareness and respect.  Stay tuned as we expand our one of a kind collection in support of the “Save the Bees” Campaign. Please visit the University of Guelph’s website to find out more about the Centre, the valuable research and their programming.

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Beehouse Instructions

Beehouse Instructions

Attract Nature’s Most Industrious Pollinators! Boost your garden’s productivity by providing a happy home for peaceful, non-aggressive Mason Bees. Slightly smaller than a honey bee, Mason bees are incredible pollinators, visiting as many as 1,000 blooms a day; 20 times more than a honeybee! Hang this bee house securely against a tree or a wall where it will get morning sun. Female bees fill the bamboo tubes with their eggs as well as nectar and pollen for the young to eat. This all natural gardening aid will certainly be a backyard conversation piece while increasing your floral and vegetable production A note on Mason Bees:  Simply hang it and they will come! A sizeable population can be established after several years as they are excellent pollinators especially in orchards. These bees are active in early spring to mid summer when the fruit flowers are in bloom. They are adapted to a cool climate and can fly in chilly, even drizzly weather. They are non-aggressive, and not likely to sting. CLEANING: Mix a solution of six parts water to one part bleach in a one-quart container to fill it about halfway. Pour the bleach solution into each tube and use an old toothbrush to scrub debris from inside it. Spray the inside of each tube with a fine stream of water from a garden hose or pressure washer. This will wash out any remaining debris and bleach. The mason bee house is now clean and ready for another season. CARE INSTRUCTIONS: Once you have an established colony of bees, make sure to provide a “mud hole” during long dry spells. The bees need water to plug the ends of the holes and between larvae on the inside. Placing water in a container near the bee house will work also. BE CAREFUL not to bump or move the Bee House for several months after activity ends – you don’t want to knock the larvae off their pollen pile and starve them! Sold at our retail location in Orillia!

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Bee Radiant Face & Eye Serum

Bee Radiant Face & Eye Serum

We are super excited and proud to introduce our newest skincare product – Bee Radiant Face & Eye Serum!   This product has been in the works for quite some time and it’s finally here! Our Bee Radiant Face & Eye Serum has a very high concentration of Sea Buckthorn to give your skin a smoother firmer texture.  It is ultra-light and specially formulated for the sensitive eye area.  The added moisturizing properties of unpasteurized honey will add to your skin’s glow and radiance! Sea Buckthorn has been used for centuries as a traditional skin care remedy and beauty treatment.  It’s loaded with Vitamin E, C, beta-carotene, omega 3-6-9 and 7 fatty acids, antioxidants, and over 190 phytonutrients to bring out your skin’s natural healthy, vibrant glow.  The anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties of Sea Buckthorn Oil aid in skin regeneration and reducing inflammation. Bee Radiant Face & Eye Serum is…. For All Skin Types Specially formulated for the sensitive eye area Non-Greasy Nourishing Silky Feel Smoothing Formula Weightless, Silky Feel Evens Skin Tone Directions for use:  On a freshly cleansed face, dispense a small amount of serum onto fingertips and smooth over entire face and eye area. Note:  A pea-size amount is all you need to cover your entire face and neck area. Press the pump several times initially to prime it.  Then, press slowly and lightly on the pump to dispense a small amount.  For daily use be sure to press the pump slowly and do not press it all the way down otherwise too much serum will be dispensed.  We’d love your feedback and thoughts on this new product! Face & Eye Serum and Face Cream What’s the Difference?   The face & eye serum has an aloe base making it much lighter than the face cream.  The face cream is shea butter and coconut oil based making it much richer and thicker.   Our face & eye serum is specifically formulated for the sensitive eye area and goes on light and smooth.  It gives your skin a smooth, silky, firm texture and has a higher level of sea buckthorn oil than the face cream. Both products are non-greasy, go on smooth, and only require a small amount to cover your entire face.  For added moisture, our serum is light enough to be layered under our face cream or body cream. 

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Summer Sunburns!

Relief from Summer Sunburns! The best sun care tip is, of course, not to get a sunburn!  But, as we all know, it is not always preventable. Whether it’s using sunscreen, staying out of direct sunlight during peak hours or wearing SPF clothing, sunburns can still happen. You forgot to pack the sunscreen, the baseball game went into extra innings, you didn’t reapply sunscreen after swimming, you missed the back of your neck – these things can happen to us all! Luckily there is something to help ease the pain of your unwanted sunburn.  Bee By The Sea’s best-selling signature Body Cream!  Our aloe-based body cream cools and soothes sunburned skin, while the sea buckthorn & honey help to heal the skin and reduce peeling.  It is non-greasy and soaks right into your skin relieving your sunburn and leaving your skin soft and smooth. Our very own Megan got a sunburn from spending too much time gardening!  Take a look at how she was able to benefit from using our body cream! You can purchase our body cream in over 850 stores across Canada and the United States.  Use our map to find a location near you.  If you cannot find a store in your area, you can purchase our body cream online at Bee By The Sea Natural Products. Whether you’re headed to the beach, going up north on vacation, or just hanging out in your neighbour’s pool “bee” sure to take our body cream with you! Our body cream comes in two sizes – a 75ml convenient travel size tube and a 220ml jar.  Either way, it’s a must-have for the sizzling summer ahead!

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Bee By The Sea Skincare Review by Kristen

August 2015 After writing about Sea Buckthorn in my last post, I admit to forgetting about it for a while.  In one of those serendipitous happenings, I chanced to visit the Punch Bowl Country Market. To my amazement, I discovered that they carry a skin care line called Bee By The Sea, a paraben-free, all natural skin care line based on Sea Buckthorn and unpasturized honey. I’ve never heard of this product before, but found that it is a locally made. Andrew Wingrove cultivates his own Sea Buckthorn plants in Sundridge, Ontario, and the product is made in Barrie. The honey idea came from his father who was designing a skin care line based on honey. Aside from the Sea Buckthorn, what impressed me about this product is the ingredient list. First, it’s short. Next, I checked out the cyclopentasiloxane at EWG and it receives a score of 3/10, so it’s moderate-low on the hazard scale. Otherwise, I also love the ginseng, royal jelly, and aloe. I started by trying out the 2.5 oz/75 ml tube of body cream. This retails for $11.99 so I thought this fairly reasonable for a product with such good ingredients. The consistency is something between a lotion and a cream. I like that as it’s not runny.  It has a faint honey scent, which is very pleasant. Lastly, on application I found that it is a bit tacky for about 20 seconds, and then just vanishes into your skin leaving it moisturized but with no film or residue. After using this for about 10 days, I have to say I love it!  Interestingly, I have also noticed that I feel good all around using the product. I can’t say I’ve had this reaction to a skin care product before. As my skin seems to be dry these days, I’m looking forward to trying both the face cream, and/or the body butter, both of which are rich in coconut oil and shea butter. Currently, Bee By The Sea is available across Canada at some pharmacies, and specialty shops. It also available across the US, and also on Amazon.  If you’re looking for a clean skin care product that’s good for your skin, consider trying Bee By The Sea!

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Bee By The Sea Sea Buckthorn All Natural Soap

All Natural Sea Buckthorn Soaps

If you have made the switch from chemically laden commercially made soaps to all natural soap you will likely never go back, and your skin will thank you.  We’ve had countless customers tell us how great our all natural soap is on their dry, sensitive skin.  All of our sea buckthorn soaps are handmade with 100% natural ingredients and essential oils to soothe and moisturize dry, sensitive or problem skin.  There are no parabens, alcohol, petroleum, preservatives or harsh detergents in any of our soaps.  They are gentle enough to use on your face too.         We recommend using our soaps within 6 months.  They should be stored in a cool dry area until they are ready to use.  The colour and scent will fade with time. With regular use our soaps should last as long as, or longer than a commercial bar of soap with proper care.  After each use do not allow the soap to sit in water.  Letting the bar dry completely will make it last longer.  For that reason it is best to use a soap dish that allows the water to drain.  If you are the DIY type you can even make your own.  Click here for instructions. Another way to extend the life of your soap is to cut it in half and alternate between the two bars to allow for longer drying times.  Using a pouf or a nylon sponge with our soaps will also make them last longer.  Simply wet your soap, rub it on the sponge and it will lather beautifully while minimizing how wet your soap gets. We have three great formulas available. Honey & Oatmeal – great for gentle exfoliation and unscented Lemongrass & Geranium – enjoy the invigorating fresh scent Lavender & Honey – relax and unwind with our soothing lavender scent   Please go to our Products Page for a full product description and ingredient list. We welcome you to share your experience with our all natural handmade soaps below.

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Bee By The Sea on CHCH TV

Watch us (Andrew & Anne Marie) on the CHCH TV Morning Live Show in Hamilton, Ontario! We were nervous about being on TV but the staff at CHCH made us feel so at ease and relaxed. A super bunch of people to work with! It was really fun and of course we love educating others on the benefits of sea buckthorn and our products. Keep in mind when this was filmed back in 2013 we didn’t yet have our shampoo, conditioner, body butter or vanilla lip balm. We’ve come a long way since then! We have several stores carrying our products in Hamilton including Stonechurch Pharmacy, Westmount Pharmacy, and 3 of the Hamilton Health Services Gift Shops.  Check out our Find A Store page for a location near you! We thoroughly enjoyed our experience at CHCH – take a look and let us know if you think we have a future career in TV!

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sea buckthorn

Sea Buckthorn: A Power Plant

Ancient medicine for your current ailments. Sea buckthorn is a plant with many legends attached to it and although it seems like a mystical berry, its healing properties are grounded in the scientific world. Sea Buckthorn’s genus name, Hippophae, means “shining horse,” adding credit to some far-fetched fables that accompany the plant’s history. Legend has it that the ancient Greeks used sea buckthorn leaf in a diet for their racehorses; it allowed the horses to recover quickly while giving them brilliantly shiny coats. It was also rumored to be the preferred diet of the great flying horse, Pegasus, that gave him the power to soar. No matter if it’s an accurate account or a tall tale, we can be sure that this plant has made an impact on history. It is currently held in prominent regard around Europe and Asia for its healing properties, with the United States recently discovering the endless possibilities that sea buckthorn can bring to the natural healthcare market. So, what exactly is this mysterious plant? First of all, it is a multi-use deciduous shrub that grows in colder climates (and shady areas) around Eurasia; the bright orange fruit thrives in high-altitude areas as well as along the seacoasts—just as its name suggests. Sea buckthorn offers many positive health benefits and has recently garnered “superfood” status, joining the ranks of goji, mangosteen, and açai. And, not one single part of the plant is lacking—the branches, leaves, berry skin, pulp, and seeds all have healing properties when used correctly. Today, the plant reduces to several different forms, but this doesn’t take away from its potency in the least. Berry oil, seed oil, pills, juice, food additives—whatever way you decide to use it, it can benefit your health and allow your beauty to shine through. Skincare Let’s talk a little about sea buckthorn in regards to skincare. Given that lipids are essential to skin health, it is obvious why sea buckthorn flourishes in nourishing your body’s largest organ. Its specialized fatty-acid composition (it is a powerful source of omega-3, -6, and -9 fatty acids, as well as a rich source of the elusive omega-7 essential fatty acid, which is vital to collagen production), along with the high presence of antioxidants, replenishes essential oils and nutrients that promote skin regeneration and speed up wound healing. The sea buckthorn berry has proven beneficial to the skin when applied topically with creams and, in the last couple of years, has garnered attention for its efficacy when orally consumed in supplement form. A recent study investigated the anti-aging effects of both oral supplementation and topical skin application of sea buckthorn seed oil, measuring skin hydration status, elasticity, luminosity, surface roughness, and cutaneous thickness as markers for visible improvement. During the aforementioned study, 60 female subjects ages 50 to 70 were divided into two groups—one group who took sea buckthorn capsules orally (four capsules per day for three months) and the other group applied sea buckthorn seed oil night cream topically twice per…

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Bee By The Sea on CHEX TV

Anne Marie Beaudoin on CHEX TV talking with Brenda Ibey from her store, The Avant-Garden Shop in Peterborough, Ontario about Bee By The Sea! Brenda’s shop began carrying our products in September 2013.  She has seen first-hand the benefits of using the body cream and soap and customers have commented on how lovely her skin is!  Also, customers coming back for more product, is a true testament to how well it works – nurses, doctors and people who love the outdoors included! The Avant-Garden Shop is filled with many beautiful things for gardeners and backyard birders including a very large selection of items made in Canada!  Her shop was the recipient of the 2012 BEST RETAILER (non-chain) BUSINESS EXCELLENCE AWARD from The Peterborough Chamber of Commerce.  Very cool!   If you are in Peterborough be sure to check out Brenda’s awesome shop at 165 Sherbrooke Street.

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Bee By The Sea Makes a Stop in Moose Jaw!

A Whistlestop into the Christmas Spirit Andrew Wingrove, president and CEO of Bee by the Sea, stands with Anne-Marie Beaudoin at the 2014 Whistlestop Craft Sale at the Moose Jaw Exhibition Grounds on Oct. 25, 2014. © Times-Herald photo and story by Lisa Goudy Andrew Wingrove grows sea buckthorn on his farm.  Six years ago, his company, Bee by the Sea, began and sold only one product. Now there are seven – face cream, body cream, shampoo, conditioner, body wash, soap and lip balm. “In Saskatchewan, it’s becoming quite popular over the last 10 or 15 years. It’s an herb and it has little orange berries on it. It may have as much Vitamin C in one little berry as you get out of an orange. That’s kind of the key component to it,” said Wingrove. “When we put honey with it, unpasteurized honey, it’s really good for healing as well. ”His company was one of 67 vendors at the annual Whistlestop Craft Sale at the Moose Jaw Exhibition Grounds on Saturday. Wingrove travelled from central Ontario to get to the craft show. The product is also sold locally, he said, at the Chocolate Moose Fudge Factory as an example. It is used to treat eczema, dry skin, rosacea, psoriasis, radiation or sun burns and it helps fade age spots and prevents and treats wrinkles. In 1986, for instance, many victims of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster were treated with sea buckthorn oil. As well, Russian cosmonauts have been using sea buckthorn to protect their skin in their trips to outer space. “Prairie Provinces love this plant,” he said. Shelley Bader, organizer of the show, said the show has been happening for at least 15 years and as usual, it was very busy. There were 70 booths featuring crafts, food and art. Because it’s not run as a trade show, all products sold at the show started as homemade. “I go and check out craft sales all throughout the fall and look for new vendors all the time. I try to keep things new and fresh,” said Bader.  “Some of the bigger craft sales now are run by bigger companies and they’ve lost their personal touch and that’s what we’re trying to keep here … and still allow some of the smaller crafters to come in.” Held annually the same weekend as Christmas in October, the show featured vendors from Alberta to Ontario. “My favourite part of the show is just getting to know the vendors a little bit better,” said Bader. “I guess we’ve formed good friendships. We’re almost like family.” Cassia Yee of Moose Jaw is 16 years old. At the sale, she was selling some of her wildlife and scenic photography. She’s been using a camera since she was 13 and started selling prints last year. This year was her second year at the Whistlestop show. “I like being able to see all the detail in the world around us,” she said. “Normally without a camera you can’t see…

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An Organic Approach to Business Growth

Article on Andrew Wingrove & Bee By The Sea from Arlene Dickinson’s YouInc. Website from April 2014 Money doesn’t grow on trees. But raw materials that can be converted into saleable goods do. The trick is being astute enough to connect the dots from branch, to production line, to storefront, and being entrepreneurial enough to make the whole thing fly. Andrew Wingrove is precisely that guy. The 52-year-old former energy consultant first learned about sea buckthorn (hippophae rhamnoides to keeners) through his business travels in Asia. The plant’s edible berries – which boast heaps of naturally occurring vitamin C, E, antioxidants and other goodies – are healing, moisturizing marvels when used on skin. Wingrove began growing the stuff at his Sundridge, Ontario farm, and adding it to honey-based creams. By 2008, Wingrove – burned out by his consulting gig and possessing an original new product – launched Bee by the Sea skin care line from his Barrie, Ontario home. Today, Wingrove’s soaps and creams are sold in 500 North American locations; revenue has doubled in the past two years (it’s expected to reach $700,000 by May’s fiscal year-end) and he’s scouting relocation properties. The beauty biz may be as cutthroat as the energy biz, but Wingrove allows that working in the latter armed him perfectly for his role as Canada’s pioneering sea buckthorn maven. Starting the Business “The beginning was kind of scary. I had a job that paid me six figures and I was travelling all over the place but I just didn’t like it anymore. I have three kids. Starting a business had always been a burning thing with me – and I was fascinated with sea buckthorn – so it kind of made sense for me to try and do something with it. ” The Toughest Thing “The toughest thing about launching was making a viable business from scratch without any credibility. The first store that carried my products was Nature’s Emporium in Newmarket. I remember walking in there with one jar of body cream – which is all I had – and I said, ‘Would you guys be interested in carrying my product?’ I knew nothing about wholesale or sales or anything. The Walmarts and Loblaws wouldn’t even look at me coming in the door with one product. You have to build your brand and build it slowly. That’s the hardest lesson, and that’s a lot of work to do.” Choosing your Market “Today, we are carried exclusively through small independent retailers. They would drop us like a rock if we popped up in big box stores. Those independents are looking for specialized products that consumers can’t find everywhere. So at some point you have to make your choice – small independent or big box. I don’t think you can have both. When the product is in an independently owned store you have people genuinely interested in selling it. At Shoppers Drug Mart, it’s going to just sit on a shelf. Of course, I didn’t know any…

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