The Magic and Might of Coconut Oil: A Q&A with Kopari CEO Bryce Goldman
Brands x Better is a coalition of like-minded companies fostering stability in a time of crisis. We asked 10 members of the Brands x Better family a few questions about what they do, why they were drawn to BxB, and what this pandemic has meant to their company. Meet Kopari, purveyors of coconut oil-based beauty products. We caught up with CEO Bryce Goldman to hear more about where the name Kopari comes from, how they got their start, and why coconut oil is their not so secret weapon. Here's what he had to say.
Tell us how Kopari came to be. What is your origin story?
I’m 3rd generation in the beauty industry and grew up in my family's retail beauty business. I enjoyed this side of the business but always had a passion for product development and branding. I knew I wanted to start a beauty brand someday so I was constantly on the lookout for the right ingredient or concept to build around. My wife discovered and fell in love with coconut oil during its surge in popularity in the food and beverage space six or seven years ago. We incorporated it into our diet and started to hear more and more about its benefits on skin and hair. We started to use it, were blown away by how well it performed and realized no one had built a brand around it. This was our aha moment. So we took a leap of faith, transitioned out of our day jobs, and launched Kopari Beauty.
What are Kopari’s core values? Do you have a mission statement? If so, what is it? Add
To create clean, effective coconut-based self-care products that enhance your natural beauty and transport you to your paradise every day.
To inspire you to consciously care for yourself, others, and the environment around you.
At Rhone we talk a lot about our customer’s pursuit of progress. How do you feel like you as a company help your customer progress?
Kopari is all about accepting your natural beauty, being your best self, and making healthy choices about what you put in and on your body every day.
What motivated you to join Brands x Better?
Giving back has always been a core value for Kopari. We have actively contributed to Waves 4 Water, an amazing organization that brings clean drinking water to 3rd world villages that don’t have access to it. We also donated and helped build 20 homes in the Philippines (where we source our coconuts) for farmers who lost their homes to a devastating typhoon season 2 years ago and have been working to build more.
When the COVID-19 crisis hit and we realized there was an urgent need, we quickly made the decision to shift our efforts towards assisting those working on the front lines.
When my friend Nate reached out and asked if we’d be interested in participating in the Brands for Better effort, I didn’t give it a second thought. What he and the other participating brand leaders have been able to accomplish in a very short amount of time has been astonishing. It’s awesome to see everyone working together to make a difference.
What charity are you donating to and how and why did you choose that charity?
We are donating a $1 from every online order to Direct Relief who provides medical equipment and necessities to medical staff and patients who are in need.
If you had one piece of advice to give to young entrepreneurs what would you say to them?
You have to have unwavering passion and belief in what you do or you won’t have what it takes to manage through the roller coaster ride of entrepreneurship. Lean into your strengths, accept your weaknesses, and find amazing people to offset those weaknesses Be adaptable, resilient, and keep moving forward.
What’s one of the hardest obstacles you’ve overcome as a company and how did it shape what your company is today?
We built and scaled our business online in the early days and thought we had it all figured out. As a result, we ignored the idea of diversifying and considering other distribution channels. It was all going great until seemingly overnight algorithms changed and the digital advertising channels we were utilizing to drive traffic and that were working so efficiently became very inefficient, costing us a lot of capital and revenue. We quickly pivoted and reached out to retailers we’d ignored prior, who fortunately answered our calls. The quick action we took to expansion and diversify saved our company and taught us there is no place for complacency in the business world.
What’s one takeaway you’ve had as a company during this recent pandemic?
There have been many. One unexpected takeaway is that working remotely has its benefits. Since the team shifted to working remotely, we’ve cut down on the unnecessary and the meetings we are having are more focused and efficient. I’m a big believer in healthy company culture and human contact but I have been putting thought into implementing a combination of in-office and remote work situations in the future.
So many of your products are based with coconut oil. Why coconut oil and what are the benefits to both skin and hair?
In addition to coconut oil, we also use coconut water, milk, and husk. Coconut oil is such an amazing and versatile ingredient. We call it mother nature's ultimate multi-tasker. You can utilize it in so many different ways and it truly does help make your skin everything you want it to be: glowy, healthy, hydrated, supple, and smooth. It contains a higher concentration of medium-chain fatty acids than any other oil which provides incredible hydration. It also has anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties that help keep skin and hair healthy. Lastly, it plays well with other natural ingredients so we’ve been able to improve upon its benefits by incorporating other amazing ingredients like shea butter, aloe vera, camomile extract and many more into our products.
What sets Kopari apart from other organic skincare companies?
We have formulated clean beauty products that are truly experiential. From the packaging to textures to the amazing scents, our products transport you to your paradise every time you use them. In addition, we have products for you from head to toe. From personal care to body care to facial skincare. We are a one-stop-shop for your clean beauty regimen.
If there’s one thing you could recommend we all do for our skin starting today, what would that be?
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate. Hydration keeps your skin looking glowy and youthful. It’s one consistent theme you’ll find in all of our products. Use our Coconut Melt to hydrate your body, our Face Cream to hydrate your skin, and our cult-favorite Lip Glossy to hydrate those lips.
Where does the name Kopari come from?
It’s derived from the Indian word koppara which we discovered was a word used to describe the removal of the oil and meat from the coconut. We took that word and put our own spin on it.
What’s your favorite product you’ve ever made and why?
Our aluminum and baking soda free deodorant. A few years back, we learned about how toxic and potentially harmful aluminum-based deodorants are and wanted to do something about it. We spent over a year formulating and finally launched what I believe is hands down the best natural deodorant on the market. People tend to be hesitant about switching to natural deodorant because most don’t really work to fight odor. Kopari’s deodorant actually works, is great for sensitive underarms, smells amazing, and doesn’t stain your clothes.