International Women's Day | Jenna Switzer


Jenna Switzer has joined us here at Hemp Botanics to celebrate International Women's Day 2022. Jenna is the owner and founder of Vital You. One of our favourite self-care products. Look below or listen here to see why Jenna Switzer is one of our inspirations. 

Lisa: Our final guest this week is Jenna from Colorado. Thank you so very much for joining us this International Women's Day this year. Jenna, please, introduce yourself to our listeners.

Jenna: Hey, my name is Jenna Switzer and I am the owner and founder of Vital You. We’re based out of Boulder Colorado, in the United States. Firstly, I just want to thank Lisa-Marie and Hemp Botanics for having me on. This is such an honour to be involved with this International Women’s Day. I just feel so grateful to be included in this community that extends so far beyond where were are located. To be able to connect with other local women-owned businesses feels like such a joy and I’m so grateful to be included. 

Lisa: Thank you very much for that introduction. It is our pleasure to connect with you today. And we can't wait for our listeners to get to know you better, so tell us how did you decide to establish your company, Vital You?

Jenna: So, my business Vital You. I founded it four years ago out of my kitchen. What we make and create are handcrafted botanically infused bath bombs and body products mainly all infused with CBD. They all include a wide array of healing holistic remedies such as essential oils, flower essences, gemstones, botanics you name it. I founded this business out of my own chronic pelvic pain. I was going through a lot of undiagnosed pain at the time and I was taking these baths as a way to heal myself and my own pain and so I was making these bombs out of my kitchen. It would take me an hour to make 8 bombs at a time and I got to the point where I was like I think that, because these products are bringing me so much healing the chances are other people would benefit from these healing properties of these bath bombs. So, I started selling them through Instagram DMs four years ago to this month. From there over the last four years, we have grown to a warehouse space in east Boulder. I have an incredible team of women that I would not have been able to run the business without. We are in nearly 200 independently owned businesses across the US. We are international as well, in Japan and hopefully in other places soon. We are in Hemp Botanics. So, yeah I would love to just share a little bit more about my business and the challenges of opening it and what I’ve learned about my journey. I love doing this because to be a part of this community like Lisa-Marie is putting together for us because it allows me to feel not so alone in the challenges that owning a small business can have. If you’re listening to this and you own a business or you’re starting a business. Know that you’re never alone in this journey. Especially as women, it's about supporting one another and lifting each other up. If you’re listening to this and you have any questions please DM us at vital.you. I would love to connect with you further. 

Lisa: Wow, super humble grassroots setup. I’m loving this! You make it sound like it was so easy. I am sure there would have been challenges though
right? Did you have any challenges that you had to overcome on your journey?

Jenna: The number one challenge of my business is that we are CBD infused business. Which is has been such a grey area even four years later from when I started this business. So the grey area I speak to is in terms of first of all legality. Although hemp-derived products and hemp-derived cannabis products have been federally legal since 2011 (US) there’s still a lot of stigmas and there’s still a lot of misunderstanding with it. Although across all 50 states we’re pretty much in similar alignment over the last few years it's been a rollercoaster of just keeping up with the regulations and compliance. That has been the number one issue. Ensuring that we’re following all guidelines and within legalities in general. In terms of shipping and producing and all of those bits. The second challenge with being a CBD infused business is finding a credit card processor that we could use. It was extremely difficult. Any other business can just create a Shopify and they have a wide array of credit card processors that they can utilise. We did not have that advantage so it was kind of just like extra hoops that I have had to jump through because we are a CBD infused product. As if it wasn’t hard enough to start a business there were also all these legalities forever changing so I feel very grateful to have a fantastic legal team as part of my community. And just to be able to look at other larger CBD infused businesses and how they are going about business to always ensure that we are following compliance. That has been a big challenge. Also in the beginning days of starting this business one of the biggest challenges was just believing in myself enough to actually take the steps forward to start this. I will never forget when I started this business I had 4 jobs at a time just to make ends meet. And slowly one by one was cutting out these jobs because I just felt this deep calling that I needed to move forward with this product. Not just for myself but for other people and take it to a business outside of my kitchen. I'll never forget the doubts I heard from other people. I’ll never forget this moment when I used to be a beer tender at a taproom here. I told my locals one of the regulars I said “I'm going to start a CBD infused bath bomb business” and they were like “you’re going to do what?” I said "I'm quitting my job this is my last shift and I'm starting my own CBD infused bath bomb business" and they were like "ok see you back in 2 weeks". The amount of doubt and the number of times I heard things like this was... I’ll never be able to count. That was a big challenge despite everyone's doubts about me. Having the self-confidence and having that deep knowing and intuition. That what I was about to start would be a success and that I would be supported and that I would find the right team and people who would be with me on my journey.

Lisa: You are so right. As a business owner, I totally resonate with all points you raised. It’s almost laughable the hoops we have to jump through! So, salute to you and me, and anyone who is managing their own CBD company to date. We are so pleased you chose to pursue your passion, your products are beautifully crafted and very effective. They are produced with a pure intention which is actually very important when offering wellness products to others. Do you think you found this passion to pursue has been influenced by someone you look up to like an inspirational leader or ....?

Jenna: I have a lot of people in my life that were huge examples of just going about your dreams with passion and full force and full speed ahead. Firstly those people would be my parents, both extremely independent self-sufficient, hard-working, passionate people. Since I was a kid they told me, Jenna, you can do whatever you want to do whatever you put your mind and heart towards. You are creative, you are imaginative and you’re such a hard worker. So when I told them what I was up to and what I was creating they were so supportive and I don’t think if I didn’t have their support in those early days, I’m not sure that I would still be where I am today. And have the growth that I’ve had over the last four years. In my day to day life now the people who inspire me are my team. On the days that I feel down, I go to work and I see how hard they're working and how passionate they are about their roles. There’s no bigger inspiration than knowing that this business is no longer just me it's this team. And I'm so held and supported and nurtured by them. They inspire me every single day to show up as my best version of myself, no longer just for me but for them and the larger community that we are serving. And I feel so grateful for that. 

Lisa: Gosh, that is just beautiful. I mean for a start having loving and supporting parents is a treat. But to live in gratitude with a team who align with this approach is a formula for success! Well done, I love it! So, what advice would you give someone who is trying to become an entrepreneur?

Jenna: The advice I'd give to someone who is on this path who is wanted to become an entrepreneur or start their own business, anything along those lines. If you have a product, my biggest piece of advice is: if you have something deep inside of you this yerning, this passion, this creativity, this fire. Something that lights you up and you are either doing it for yourself. Whether you're making yourself a product or it's something more digital or its artwork if it's something that you are lit up about and you are inspired about and it's bringing you healing it's bringing you happiness. Chances are there's someone in this world who is going to benefit from this product, or from your brain or from your passion. So my number one piece of advice is if you feel lit up about this. Go for it full speed ahead because chances are your people are just waiting for you to light this up so that is my biggest piece of advice is plea just go for it.

Lisa: For sure, finding alignment with an elevated emotion, you are speaking my language !We’re nearly done now. My second last question is, how do you define success?

Jenna: This question I love. Because at many points throughout my business journey I felt that success directly equates to money or to fame or to recognition or to be land large placements or to have our products in chain stores. That kind of thing and over the years especially in the heat of the pandemic in the US in the early part of it. In lockdown fully we were stuck at home I was able to really redefine what I believe success to mean. And in those moments I was able to still be providing this healing through these bath bombs to people who were stuck at home people who were dealing with their own mental, physical health and just not feeling fully themselves. I was able to bring a product into their lives at that time when they really needed that healing and that support. So that's how I define success. Is by bringing healing into people's lives. That is our mission statement here at vital you that we are using herbal medicine and self-care to provide you with a unique healing experience. And for me that is success. It is no longer about the amount of money it is no longer about being recognised by whoever. It is just about getting this product into people's hands and people's baths so that they can rediscover what self-care and taking care of themselves means. There’s no better feeling for me either when someone DMs or emails us and says "your products, I'm obsessed they bring so much healing into my life" and especially for me when I'm able to help other women who deal with chronic pelvic pain. They say "Jenna taking this bath with your bath bombs gave me so much relief it's just the best feeling" I really can’t compare it to something else. That's truly what success means to me. 

Lisa: I love the take-home message here–you want to help others learn how to take better care of themselves and or take back some control of their wellbeing. So what’s next? Any insights you'd like to share?

Jenna: Ultimately, I want to bring as much healing into people's lives as possible. So where I believe our direction and what we are so GungHo about achieving in the next few years as a team is getting into some of those larger more, just more widely recognised in places that have 250-500 stores across or international. It brings a new outlook on beauty and self-care, right? so many of the things that we use day to day in our beauty routine take however long, like putting your makeup or spritzing perfume or something along those lines it takes one moment. And what our bath bombs ask people to do is set up a space for themselves, get their tub ready, light their candles. Just, get in that tub and soak for at least 15 minutes. So what we’re really trying to do is redefine and recreate the structure of taking your self-care routine into a self-care ritual. And so that's what I want to achieve next is just expanding our getting more exposure expanding our brand expanding our reach. So that more people can benefit from this and I just feel so lit up and inspired about that. so thank you so much again, for listening and for being a part of this community. As I said, I would absolutely love to connect on a business or a personal level. Any questions or you just want to become friends, we are so about the community here at Vital You. Thank you so much again for listening and yeah I'm excited to hear from you.

Lisa: Great to hear some really exciting things on the horizon, we're sure things will work out fabulously and hope to catch you for an update in due course! Jenna, I absolutely loved connecting with you. Each and every lady that we have managed to connect with this last week has literally inspired me and your story certainly does not disappoint. We trust our series will ignite the fire in you no matter what you are currently doing, if you have a dream find a way to listen to your inner being and believe in yourself. We believe in you. As Jenna said, let's connect, send us a DM if you’re out there listening to us and want to take the next step to independence. We are here to support and nurture within our community. We hope you enjoyed this series. Until next time.Thank you, Jenna.


Vital You

March 11, 2022 — Roshie Rahrow