Spirit of Pink keynote speaker delivers some KIND of story
Ever take the time to see the ingredients that are contained in everyday items like soap, shampoo or makeup? Probably not, unless you have a specific reason to, like the keynote speaker at the 8th annual Spirit of Pink sponsored by Ste. Genevieve County Memorial Hospital did.
Jean Scholtes, Founder and CEO of KIND Soap Company, found herself searching for answers when her young son Cooper inherited her sensitive skin and suffered from severe eczema.
“He would scratch himself until he bled,” she recounted. “I tried everything I could find to help him, but most things just made it worse. I went to multiple doctors, and the only thing they could suggest was steroid cream, which I knew could have long-term effects. I started to do some research and found that all of the soaps and lotions that I had been using on him were full of irritating ingredients, many of which had been banned in other countries. So, I took matters into my own hands.”
Necessity is the mother of invention and she combined her years of working on grants and marketing, along with this new passion to find a solution and created her own brand of soap. A product void of synthetic ingredients, detergents, formaldehyde, hormone disruptors, carcinogens and a host of other unpronounceable things.
“I taught myself how to make soap in my basement, with only safe, nourishing ingredients,” she explained. After a lot of trial and error--and frustration, I found a soap formula that worked wonders. After one month of using this bar of soap that I created, Cooper’s eczema was gone. The itching stopped, and his skin began to heal. So, I thought if it worked for my son, it could help a lot of other people, too. Not just people with eczema, but anybody who wanted to use everyday products without the harmful ingredients.”
She described the extent to which we all use these products.
“Your skin is your largest organ, she explained. “It absorbs as well as excretes. Anything you put on your skin could possibly end up on the inside of your body. The average woman uses 14 products every day. Just think about the accumulative effects of all those potentially harmful ingredients on your body that you use every day--every year of your life.”
The name of her newly-developed company came to her easily.
“The word Kind embodied everything I wanted my company to be, she explained. We operate on the three “pillars of KINDness” and guarantee to our customers: to be KIND to their skin, KIND to the earth, and KIND to others. We only use the safest, most nourishing ingredients; we are kind to the earth by using eco-friendly materials and package our products in environmentally conscious materials; and we are kind to others, by donating 10 cents from every product we sell to charity.”
Scholtes, a Ste. Genevieve hometown girl and daughter of Jim and Rosemary Francis, has expanded her product line over the years to include not only baby products, but products to address acne, aging, body odor, dry/damaged skin, headaches, itchy scalps, sinus congestion and even stress. She has products for women, men, even canines. The Kind Soap Company products can be found at her Webster Groves store, at the Show Me Shop in Ste. Genevieve, Somewhere Inn Time Bed and Breakfast, and online at www.kindsoap.com.
Dr. Theresa Cavins, breast surgeon and general surgeon at SGCMH, was in sync with Scholtes’ philosophy.
“She embodies the ability for women to reinvent themselves, said Dr. Cavins. As we close a chapter, we open another. There are many things we can do to protect ourselves from breast cancer and we are all empowered to make our own choices. Eating whole foods, relaxing, exercising, spending time with friends, are all things that make our lives enjoyable and increase our immune system to help us fight all kinds of health problems. Mammography is very important, but what we do on a day-to-day basis is very important, too.”
Dr. Cavins talked about a growing project that she hopes will catch on.
“Mary Crecelius, women’s health nurse practitioner and genetics counselor, has been instrumental in getting the community garden at the Bloomsdale Medical Centre.
“I encourage you all to grow a garden, Dr. Cavins said. “If you can’t grow a garden then go to the Farmer’s market or look for the fresh produce in your own grocery store. The more fruits and vegetables, especially dark colored fruits and vegetables, you eat the more anti-oxidants you’ll get and the healthier you’ll be.”
Mary Crecelius invited anyone from the community to participate in the garden project.
“We are going to have lots available next spring for community members to grow their own produce,” she said. “Just explore growing. Even this first year we had success with our garden. We have huge pumpkins that grew in the beautiful soil.”
Huge pumpkins they were and four lucky Spirit of Pink participants drawn at random took them home.
The evening refreshments took on a healthy flair as ingredients for vegan buddha bowls were offered for participants to try.
At the 2016 Spirit of Pink, it was announced that 3D mammography was available at the Metis Breast Center at the Bloomsdale Medical Center. At this year’s event, Dr. Cavins announced that 3D mammography was now available at the hospital, as well. Her message remains the same, “Mammograms save lives.”
With October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Tina Poston, Director of Marketing and Community Relations, said it’s a good time to be proactive.
“Nobody wants to hear a diagnosis of breast cancer, but early detection can make a huge difference, she said. “This is part of the reason why we hold this event. It's an evening to have fun and socialize, but also to take care of women and their health.”