In this setting, Soapy Jones is found conversing with potential customers and friendly acquaintances, although the two usually coincide. The weekly occurrence of the River Market allows Jones the opportunity to form a relationship with the people who purchase her natural soap and skincare products.
“I was broke one Christmas out of college, so I made soap for everyone for Christmas,” Jones admits.
While many students come up with creative ways to make a little extra cash on the side while in school, making soap is one of the less-conventional methods. After all, not many people can say they know how to make soap from scratch.
“My grandmother raised pigs when I was little,” Jones says. “And in the ‘use-all-of-the-animal’ sense of the word, she used pig fat to make soap. As long as I kept quiet, I could watch. I learned how to do it at a young age.”
Starting a company is not a small endeavor. However, it was the next natural step for Jones. Erik Hanson, Jones’s husband and business partner, says working with Jones taught him that, “She is filled with drive and determination. If she decides to do something, it will get done.” Hanson joined the company in 2004.
Knowing these characteristics about Jones makes it easy to see why she succeeded in launching her own soap company. Being an entrepreneur is not a task taken on lightly. Jones’s self-confidence and honesty “couple very nicely with her crass sense of humor and thoughtful insight,” Hanson says.
"Once we figured out how to make the soap and got that process down, we expanded,” Jones says. The company also make salves, creams, butters, and balms.
“I am easily distracted. I get bored easily. Once we figured out how to make the soap and got that process down, we expanded,” Jones says. The company also make salves, creams, butters, and balms. Jones states that supply and demand drove her decision to start a company.
“After a couple of batches, you have to call it something,” Jones says in reference to how frequently she started making the soap. Her friends and family wanted more of the product, and so Left Hand Soap Company was created in 1999.
It would not be a stretch to say that most entrepreneurs love to produce whatever they sell. Still, when asked if she is passionate about making soap, Jones's answer was not quite expected.
"I would say I am passionate about offering the public better options for self care,” Jones says. “I am good at making soap, but I’m a pragmatic person. I am interested in what good it can do.”