Made in RVA: Buttercup Balm

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — For this week’s Made in RVA, a quest for party favors turned into a home-based business for one area woman. It’s called Buttercup Balm and the creator and CEO, Trish Riley, hopes its name will soon be on everyone’s lips.

“This all started by accident,” Riley told 8News anchor Morgan Dean. “My sister was getting married and I needed to come up with a party favor because I was the maid of honor.”

So, Riley googled home-made products and came across lip balm. She didn’t like all of the ingredients in the recipes, so she started testing out new versions of the formulas with her own natural ingredients

“We use cocoa shea, mango butter, coconut oil, cocoa butter, almond oil, pure beeswax,” Riley said. “We started trying them out [with] candy flavoring — like you’d use in lollipops.”

The lip balms were a hit at the wedding and the extra tubes she had went to friends at work who gave her rave reviews.

“I said, ‘you like it enough to buy it?’ She’s like, ‘yeah.’ I said, ‘Hmmm…I might be on to something.'”

And that’s how Buttercup Balm was born. The business has bloomed into all kinds of flavors of balm and into other products.

“We have 65 flavors of lip balm,” Riley said. “We have adult section, mocktail and liquor flavor — we have moved on to soap.”

Riley has a men’s line called Grizzly Goo Chin Tin — a beard balm that moisturizes the skin, too.

The business is a family affair and Riley has worked on products with both her son and daughter. She says it has brought them all together.

“She’s 17, she’s learning how to adult. It can be frustrating for her, but she’s learning real life skills with us doing this together,” Riley said.

You can find Buttercup Balm for sale at fall shows in RVA.  It’s also available online at here. 

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