MONCTON – Koffee Beauty has opened an office on Saint George Boulevard that will also serve as a retail location for its coffee-based scrubs and other skin care products.
The company, formerly Koffee Organics, previously sold its products through its website and on a wholesale basis. But founder and CEO Estelle Doiron says the opening of a storefront location is the next step in the company’s growth.
“Before I could work from home,” she said. “We are now big enough that we needed to hire some staff. We just hired an office manager and we thought that a headquarters will be really good to ship all the orders from … People can [also] come here and talk to us, and we can have more of a presence in town.”
The 1,700-square-foot space will serve both as a storefront and as the office for staff. But the products won’t be made there. They’re being manufactured by Prelam Enterprises, better known for its odour eliminators.
“When I started, I would do everything myself,” said Doiron. “Then the demand got so high that I needed to find a manufacturer. So now all the products are manufactured on Baig Blvd., which is still in Moncton and we still have weekly meetings. But they have two chemists, they have a quality control specialist on site, and they have the staff on site to meet the supply that I need.”
Doiron started the company in 2016 when she couldn’t find made-in-Canada coffee scrubs to help heal her keratosis pilaris, a skin condition that causes harmless little red bumps behind her arms. She said the coffee scrub has worked on her skin after medications, prescription creams and other treatments didn’t.
“[Coffee is] anti-inflammatory, so it helps anything like acne that’s usually inflamed,” she said. “It boosts collagen so it really repairs the skin. It’s so healthy for your skin and it also improves blood flow. So the coffee is really the magic with the exfoliation and all the hydration and all the natural and organic oils.”
She made her first coffee scrub at home with organic coffee, sugar and coconut oil, and shared with friends. She then began selling at the Christmas market at the Moncton Coliseum.
“This is my first venture…I told myself if it didn’t work out [at the Coliseum], I wouldn’t continue. But we sold out very quickly. That was my hint that this was a product that was needed in Canada and that people were actually interested in,” she said.
“From there, we actually evolved. I worked with some chemists and we reworked the recipe a bit to have less of a greasy feeling. So now it has five organic and natural oils in it.”
She had called it Koffee Organics because 96 per cent of the ingredients in her products are organic, with naturally-sourced vitamin E. The coffee is sourced from Montreal. But she had to change the name to Koffee Beauty because people had thought the business sold only coffee.
“Our promise stays the same, our product is still 96 per cent organic and the rest is naturally sourced, but Koffee Beauty encompasses more of everything we do and provide because we do provide skin care,” she said.
Since its founding, the company has also expanded its product line. It now carries four types of coffee scrubs and three signature bath bombs. Doiron has sold them as far away as Calfornia. She’s also sold them through Sequoia Natural & Organic stores and other similar stores and boutiques in Atlantic Canada. Starting in July, Koffee Beauty products will be carried by Lawson’s Drugs.
“We just secured our first drug store and after that, we’re going to be targeting Jean Coutu and Shoppers Drugmart,” Doiron said.