We had the good fortune of connecting with Danielle Matthew and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Danielle, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
As a mother of two, I still struggle to balance work and life. I feel when I succeed in one half then the other half is neglected. But what I’m learning is that no matter how long you’ve been a parent, you will still struggle. I’m not sure if there is a perfect work life balance, especially when you have children. During the past couple years, I’ve held onto my family tighter than ever before. My children are still young and I do want to soak up every minute I have with them. This year I have started to make our lives more structured. I’ve cut out certain times to go to the park, stock up inventory for the store, plan our marketing, and clean the house. Finding what works for you is key, not everyone is the same. I do hold my family higher priority than my work because my kids are growing up so quickly and I can’t get this time back with them.
What should our readers know about your business?
Almost 5 years ago, we learned about the toxins in our day to day life. I was the girl in target buying air fresheners, scented detergent, and lotions without even reading the ingredients. A friend of ours got cancer and was told by her doctor to rid of her lotions and body products due to toxins. I was pregnant at the time and thought, if she shouldn’t be using it then why should we? Then I started looking at the ingredients of my shampoos, house cleaners, and lotions and saw the long list of words I couldn’t pronounce. I bought books and looked online on how to make my own products. We didn’t have much money but I know you can’t put a price tag on your health. So we started slowly by making our own lotions and bath products. Jeff and I worked at a cannabis distribution at the time and figured we could add CBD and THC to them. We came up with Made From Dirt and decided to make 4 salves, Sunflower Salve, Peppermint Pain Salve, Sleep Balm, and the Stretchmark Salve (now called Restore Salve.) We wanted to share them with the world. Since we worked at the distribution we were able to add our products onto their menu. Made From Dirt truly grew over night in the cannabis market. We rode the very difficult waves of being in the licensed cannabis market and selling CBD. The packaging regulations, the extra costs, not being able to have a bank account or credit card processing system. We finally we’re able to get a credit card processor in 2020.
I thought that not everyone wants to use CBD all the time or at all so we launched Sun + Moon, same salves but without cannabis. We did a collab with Wild Violet Oracle and made Reiki Infused Salves and bath salts. I designed kid bath salts with toys and loofah soaps. Sun + Moon has been the fun side of my businesses while Made From Dirt is our healing side.
After 4 years of being in the cannabis market, in early 2021 we unfortunately were dropped and couldn’t continue selling our THC products. Which was very difficult for us. Many people were relying on our products and have stopped using pharmaceuticals. We had email after email asking to buy our THC products. I hope one day we can continue that again. Luckily we still had our store online and could sell our CBD and non CBD products. It was a hard year, not only being in the middle of the pandemic but now losing part of our business. After a few months of figuring out what we wanted to do, we decided to pick ourselves back up and opened our very first retail location in San Clemente, CA.
We’ve been open for 3 months and couldn’t feel more at home in the Old Town Plaza. Looking forward to being here in the summer and continue growing in San Clemente then nationwide!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Orange County is so amazing. We would definitely need to make a trip to Disneyland. Then we would relax at the beach, visit the ocean institute and walk the Dana Point harbor to sip on some Mai Tais. Drive down the coast to San Clemente, visit our new store in Old Town Plaza. Walk over to El Camino Real to do some sustainable thrift shopping. Walk the Wood Canyon trails in Aliso Viejo. And really spend time with nature and the beautiful scenery, its the reason why I live here. Its so beautiful!
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?
I would like to give my shout out to my husband, Jeff. We started this business together but it was my dream that he had helped make come true. I planned out product ideas and he formulated the calculations. I designed the packaging and he packaged the jars. It’s always been team work. We started in a one bedroom apartment with barely any money to our name. Our bedroom was filled with boxes of packaging, ingredients, and products. Now almost 5 years later; we have 2 children, a beautiful home in Orange County, and a retail store in San Clemente.
Other: Store: 111 W Avenida Palizada #105, San Clemente, CA 92672
Family Photo Vinnie Maurillo Product Shots Heather Marie Collins