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Inspiring Conversations with Arushi Prakash of Beauty Traditions

Today we’d like to introduce you to Arushi Prakash. 

Hi Arushi, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
I graduated from the University of Toledo with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Cosmetic Science Formulation and Design. I was very excited when I first heard about this degree because I have always been fascinated with color theory, skincare, and trying different products! After graduating, I worked for a company that produced perfumes, hand sanitizers, and various types of soaps. While I learned a lot of skills at school and gained valuable experience in the workforce, I always felt like I was missing a part of myself. The products I was making started to feel mundane and uninteresting. Additionally, I wanted to represent my South Asian heritage through my products. I wanted to make a line of products that represented me and my culture… and that is how I began Beauty Traditions. 

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
It was definitely rocky. Because my major was so specialized and new 5 years ago, many companies preferred hiring chemists for the available cosmetic formulation positions. While I was looking for an entry-level position, I decided to become a waitress. I wanted to try to create a business of my own on the side using the money I earned while waitressing but gave up when I realized how expensive buying ingredients was. I was disheartened about the degree I chose for a year until I finally was able to get my foot in the door. After 4 years of working, I decided to give the small business a chance again. I was amazed at how much support I got for the products that I created! It feels as if I reignited the passion I had for cosmetic formulation when I entered college, and I’m so proud of the products that I’ve created! 

As you know, we’re big fans of Beauty Traditions. For our readers who might not be as familiar, what can you tell them about the brand?
Beauty Traditions is based in Columbus, OH. I believe that all packaging should be reusable, so I offer a 50% off discount for refills if you live near me and return the original packaging to me intact. If you don’t live near me, I don’t accept refills because that would mean more packaging/trucks delivering products which would defeat the purpose of being environmentally friendly. My products are heavily based on my South Asian traditions and cultures. I use fragrance blends that are common in South Asia and containers that are so pretty you would have a hard time throwing them away! I like to collaborate with other local small Asian-owned businesses where we blend our cultures and skills together to create unique products! 

Do you have any advice for those looking to network or find a mentor?
Get involved in your community! Visit art fairs, or reach out to people online. You’ll be surprised how many like-minded individuals are out there! I was always involved in the Cleveland Asian Festival and met a ton of vendors and connections through there! 

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