We had the good fortune of connecting with Lexi Bullis and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lexi, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I am a full-time college student at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs trying to compete as an Alpine Snowboard Racer for the US Team. This little niche of snowboarding is not very well known, and I only found out about it 6 years ago. Because of the lack of publicity and funding, it is very difficult to make it far in the sport unless you have the money to travel and train. My parents were helping me out so much and I was trying to find sponsors to help me achieve my goals. My mom had been making homemade soap since I was 2 as a hobby, and she was still making a substantial amount of it every year for gifts and personal use. I introduced the idea of making a little more product and trying to market and sell it in order to raise money to fund my snowboarding season. This is how Alpine Soap Company came to be (“Alpine” coming from Alpine snowboarding).
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Alpine Soap Company produces a few different products. We started out in 2019 just making our homemade soaps. These soaps are made from recipes that have been recreated and perfected since 2002. The most feedback that we get from our customers is our soaps are different than most because of the lather they produce. These cold processed, lye based soaps contain no harsh dyes or preservatives, as well as a significant amount of coconut oil to produce this desired creamy lather. Our elemental bar contains olive oil, coconut oil and vegetable oil, while our Castile bar contains 75% Olive oil and the rest coconut oil. Since then, we have branched into Shower Fizzies, homemade Lip Balm, and 100% Soy Candles and Wax Melts. The Shower Fizzies are tablets for the shower that disintegrate in the water to provide a sort of aromatherapy. The Lip Balms are made from all natural ingredients including essential oils, and these are also available in SPF 15. Lastly, our candles are made in upcycled glassware, making each candle unique. Recently, we have been collecting different forms for glass bottles, cutting them and creating candles in those as well. I like to think that we are a different type of company than most others. While there is emphasis on making money like many other businesses, this company was created with more of a fundraising mentality to support my snowboarding career. All of the proceeds that are made from this company go directly into my snowboarding fund to help me pay for different expenses such as training, coaching, travel and lodging. Managing time over the last few years has been very difficult, and for me, finding the time to market my products has been the most difficult thing. I always feel as if I have 15 different things to do between school, snowboarding, and running this company. Recently, one of my really great friends has helped me organize my life a bit and helped me get a jump on things that I have been meaning to do. This has allowed me to create and manage to-do lists much easier and more efficiently. One of the biggest things that I have learned recently is if your to-do list is too long, tackling one at a time really decreases the stress and helps you fell less overwhelmed. One thing I really emphasize to people when ordering from Alpine Soap Company is not only are they helping themselves with natural and safe products, they are supporting a dream. I never thought that my dream of competing while going to college was a possibility, but this company has allowed it to become my reality. I am forever thankful for all of the support that I have received over the past couple of years.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I am a big outdoors person, so when people come to visit me in Colorado Springs, we tend to do lots of site seeing. Some of my favorite places in the springs include Garden of the Gods, Pikes Peak, and Red Rock Canyon Open Space. These places are great for hiking and site seeing. I also enjoy shopping in Manitou Springs, Downtown Colorado Springs, or in Denver at the 16th Street Mall.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My parents are a huge part of my success over the past few years. My mom helps me run my company and make products for me to sell, and my dad is the one that started a snowboard team in high school that introduced me to this side of snowboarding. They have been so loving and supportive of me achieving my goals and dreams while maintaining a full workload in school. I also want to thank all of my amazing snowboarding sponsors that have really helped and supported me as well: Donek Snowboards, Sol Alpine, Altitude Snacks, Glacier Hills Credit Union, Lifestar Ambulance Service, and Attitude Sports.
Carrie Kizuka Photography