In short, I started Redbudsuds because I was tired of feeling like I couldn't make a difference.
I was tired of the trash accumulating in our world, tired of using products that called themselves "natural" with ingredients I couldn't pronounce, and tired of feeling alone in my concern for the health of our planet.
I didn't set out to start a business. I set out to do environmental advocacy in a creative, delightful way. I never imagined it would lead me here, but here we are!
To use our love of adventure to spark simplicity and inspire action in everyday life.
We focus on what we can change, not on what we can't.
We are 100% woman-owned and mostly women-operated.
We hope by using our 4-in-1 shower bars you feel inspired to go beyond a thoughtfully clean shower into living a thoughtfully clean life.
What does a thoughtfully clean life look like?
Simplify your routines and lifestyle. Connect with the outdoors every day. Protect the land and water that sustain us.
And it can start with something as simple as the shower you take every day.
I’m Aubrey, a born adventurer and fired up about this beautiful world we call home. I’m an outdoor enthusiast. Music maker. Mover and shaker. Inspired by nature. Hunting for hope.
My adventure towards REDBUDSUDS began in 2012 when my husband Clinton and I traded our secure jobs for a van and an open road. Too often in modern life, we’re so busy that we forget to reflect. We lose sight of how interdependent we are on the earth and each other. The journey that followed shifted our perspective. We spent 2 years touring the country to rock climb and paddle, working as guides and whatever else we could find, immersing ourselves all the while in the vastness of our country's public lands. From the BWCA in Minnesota, to the deserts of Utah, to the bison country in Oklahoma to the timeless mountains of the Southeast, we soaked it in. While our friends were advancing their careers, we were learning lessons from the land and people closest to it.
Taking time to slow down – to notice, to truly pay attention to our relationships with our fellow travelers and the earth – had an enormous impact on us.
Out of this, REDBUDSUDS has come alive.
The name "REDBUDSUDS" is a nod to my roots in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, where the redbud trees are the first to bloom on the mountainsides in the spring. REDBUDSUDS is a reminder that there’s a better season ahead. It is more than something to get you clean; it’s a reminder that every day we make small but important choices that actually make a difference.
Our shower bars are designed to give you everything you need for trail and home in just one bar.
- Less is more. 4-in-1 means shampoo, conditioner, body and shave soap, all in one.
- Thoughtfully clean. Our shower bars eliminate: preservatives, parabens, phthalates, plastic packaging, trips to the recycling bin, and explosions in your suitcase or backpack.
- Ingredients you can trust. We use only real, recognizable ingredients. You'll never see palm oil on our ingredient deck. Made in Ohio, we opt for a local, sustainably-produced alternative: pure lard! Just like our grandma's recipe. We partner with local farmers near our workshop so nothing goes to waste.
- Benefits from plants. Rich conditioning from ingredients like fair trade shea butter and castor oil provide a thick, irresistible lather that's great for your skin and scalp without all the synthetic surfactants in conventional products.
- Mess-free delivery. With a shoofah (aka shower bar loofah bag), every bar becomes soap-on-a-rope. Shoofahs help generate amazing lather fast, make the bar last longer, help the bar dry quickly for easy storage, and keep your shower bar free from dirt, hair and debris.
- Members of 1% for the Planet. One percent of every sale goes to conservation. Do good with your green!
In 2017, we welcomed our first bona fide employee! Meet Liz Wagner, Soap Production and Fulfillment Manager Extraordinaire.
Liz’s eco-tip: My scientific background is what inspires me to be more ecologically caring. I know what will happen if we don’t.
Liz’s dream vacation: Visiting Scotland and traveling around on public lands.
When she’s not whipping up a batch of soap, trimming or labeling hundreds of bars, you may find her exploring trails, biking through the Cuyahoga Valley National Park or attending comic and sci-fi conventions.
In summer 2018, we welcomed Amanda Petzker to the team to care for our customers and help out in the office.
Amanda is top-notch friendly, down-to-earth, dedicated, and loves to organize (hallelujah!). Whether you have the privilege of interacting with her first-hand or experience her behind-the-scenes magic, she is a welcome addition to our team.
In her downtime, you can find Amanda kayaking Ohio waters, exploring with her tiny weiner-dog, or devouring mountains of books.
Amanda’s inspiration for living thoughtfully clean: I want to keep nature the way it is so that future generations can enjoy it like we do.
Amanda’s dream vacation: Oh, there are so many! I'll go with Alaska: checking out the coast, the mountains, and whale-watching.
Also in 2018, we brought on a long-time friend and fan of Redbudsuds Molly Slovnik as Collaborations Manager and Contributor. Originally hailing from the upper Midwest, Molly now resides in Idaho and represents RBS in the grand old West.
Molly’s background lies in wilderness therapy and she is a practicing Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) in her day job. What has drawn her to RBS?
Molly’s words of wisdom: Enthralled by water and our innate connection to it, I bring my social work practice to RBS to highlight how our own self-exploration affects our ability to move about in our wild-lands and watersheds with our mutual best interest in mind. At Redbudsuds, our core values push us to move in the world in a way that recognizes our inextricable connection to each other and the land. The passion I bring for being light to people in all situations are a perfect match for my work at RBS.
Molly, Aubrey and Clinton originally teamed together as kickass lemongrass canoe guides, bringing families and kids out in the wilderness of Minnesota’s Boundary Waters Canoe Area (https://www.savetheboundarywaters.org/). We’re thrilled to keep adventuring together through advocacy work at Redbudsuds.
Chances are, you’ve gotten bitten by the adventure bug just like we did. Maybe it was the first time you saw an Appalachian sunrise or climbed a desert tower. Maybe it was the call of a loon echoing over a lake in the northwoods or riding the surf on the coast. These experiences change us forever, and if we let them, they can change the course of our lives. Small drops make an ocean.