By Katherine Ellis
Photography by Aleyah Solomon
‘face.’ ‘hair.’ ‘mom & baby.’ These are just a few of the product categories that group more than 20 North American brands ― including Lulu Organics, Nuworld Botanicals and May Lindstrom Skin ― on the recently launched online boutique Clementine Fields.
With its selection of candles, aromatherapy, and hair and skin care products, this company emerged onto the fashion and beauty scene in Toronto in May 2013. In an age when companies branch out online on a regular basis, Clementine Fields endeavours to offer something different to the informed consumer: a varied selection of chemical-free and all-natural products that come in a pretty package.
In this issue, FAJO Magazine chats with Ingrid Rae Doucet about her company and the future of Clementine Fields.
1. How was Clementine Fields created?
I had a health issue a few years ago, and then my husband and I adopted a baby girl. I knew I never wanted to get sick again, and wanted my child to grow up in a healthy environment.
I did a lot of research that prompted me to clean up our household as much as I could. I started ordering and trying chemical-free products. It was so nice to use lines that I knew were completely healthy and felt gorgeous on my skin! People asked me what I used on my skin quite often, and I seemed to be talking about skin a lot, so I thought it would be great to start bringing in some lines and making them available to all Canadians.
2. With over 20 brands available through your online boutique, how did you go about selecting them?
I followed certain blogs and websites. After reading reviews and seeing what people liked or disliked about many clean and natural lines, I would order the lines that looked promising to me and see what I thought of them. They had to be effective, be completely free of chemicals and have nice packaging. It was important they looked and felt beautiful.
3. Who is the Clementine Fields customer?
Our customers care about the health of their families and themselves. They can trust that when they come to our website, we have done the research [for them].
4. What is the story behind the name?
I had a list of names that I was looking at and sending around to friends to get their opinions. Everyone liked Clementine Fields. I loved it too because it wasn’t on the nose, and it conjured a beautiful image. It was what we were hoping to do with the website: create a calm, serene and pleasant place to view our products.
5. What did you do before co-founding Clementine Fields with your husband?
Both my husband and I are actors. Tom has been working a lot this past year in film, TV and theatre. We continue to work together on the boutique, while working, auditioning and producing in the arts.
6. What is your entrepreneurial career highlight thus far?
The media event that Rock-It Promotions hosted and organized was amazing and very inspiring for us. We had so many phenomenal writers, bloggers and beauty industry people come by to check out our lines.
Everyone was very supportive and very excited about the company and the lines we carry. Honestly, every good review and positive feedback we get is a highlight — we are thrilled that people are so happy with our service and the products they are trying.
7. How competitive is the beauty market in Canada?
It’s competitive. People want to look and feel good, and there are a lot of options out there. All we can do is provide the best service possible, while carrying as many natural, effective and harder-to-find brands as we can.
8. Do you feel that Clementine Fields brings something different to the table?
Yes, I do. We carry safe, natural lines for the whole family. We would love people to think of us when they need to send a gift to a loved one, a friend or a client. We can send out gorgeous gifts and corporate gift baskets, and we have a whole gift section on the site. Moreover, if you are in the Greater Toronto Area and in a hurry for a gift, we can get packages out very quickly.
9. You currently have an online boutique, and you have had a few pop-up shops. Are there any plans to make Clementine Fields a bricks-and-mortar store?
Interesting question. We’ll see! Perhaps in the future.
10. And what are your future plans for Clementine Fields?
We really hope to continue to establish and maintain relationships with our customers. We find it so satisfying when people are pleased with their purchases. I also love recommending products or gift ideas to people. We hope to keep an eye out for any upcoming and exciting new lines, especially Canadian ones.