Before starting her skincare line, native Californian Jessica Morelli made her own stationery, worked as a server at Danny Meyer restaurants in NYC, and did a whole bunch of other seemingly inapplicable stuff. But, as she explains, “All of my odd jobs helped make me successful because I learned so much—like the importance of customer service.” When she started dabbling in cold-process soap-making around 2008, it was as a side-hustle hobby—she loved that the steps were similar to cooking, but what really hooked her was tapping into the potential of natural ingredients that her Italian grandmother, Nonna Vincenza, had been telling her to use for years. “It just seemed so bizarre to me that people weren’t using things like rosehip oil to prevent aging and instead were relying on these synthetic substitutes,” she says. Which is exactly why her line, Palermo, is chock-full of creamy squares of coconut milk and oatmeal soap and exfoliating scrubs made with tea tree oil, grapefruit, and sea salt—all designed to take care of business. —courtney conway
BEHIND THE SCENES
Thing of Beauty How To Tell When Your All-Natural Beauty Products Have Expired (and Make ‘Em Last Even Longer)
On gauging when that great-for-you stuff’s gone bad.
Thing of Beauty A Nitty-Gritty Guide to Natural Exfoliants
Scrubs you definitely want.