We had the good fortune of connecting with Kalika Geban and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kalika, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
My thought process was to create skin products that can be used by everyone without harmful ingredients and chemicals
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My name is Kalika Geban. I am an Belizean American from Los Angeles Ca. I was born and raised here. Both of my parents are Belizean natives. I love my family, culture and city of los Angeles. I love being who I am and proud of where I come from.
What sets me apart from others is my passion and dedication to do anything I put my mind to. Especially when it comes to creatin skin care products. I’m not an esthetician or a chemist. I just enjoy creating, researching and simply being able to share something I made with everyone. I started my journey 2019. One day I became interested in the ingredients of everyday skincare products. I started by reading various articles on products that I use everyday and researching their ingredients. After hours and days of researching, I made the decision to try and make my own body butter. There are so many harsh chemicals in skin care products it’s actually alarming. I wanted to create something clean and safe. I bought my ingredients and jars and started making body butters. I shared my first batch with my family and coworkers. I received positive feedback. Family and friends motivated me to share with others outside my immediate circle. I would consider my self a social butterfly to some degree, but I’m still very shy. Being a consumer and a seller are two different things. I had my doubts on how I would be comfortable enough to engage and convince total strangers to by my product. I saw this as my biggest challenge. I started with an Instagram page. Soon after a friend asked me would I be interested in doing a pop-up along with other entrepreneurs. I said yes but was extremely nervous, especially being I was the only one new to doing pop-ups that day. The day came and it went well. I felt relaxed, everyone was welcoming, encouraging and supportive. I made more connections with other small business owners this day. I sold my products, by engaging naturally and being myself. After this pop-up, I signed up left and right for others. I also have added more than just shea butter to my brand. I created foaming black soap, body oils, hair oils and face oils. I’m very excited about my journey. It has not always been a smooth journey. being a full time mother working a 9 to 5 are two full time jobs. Being an entrepreneur is another. Having to create products, post on social media, engage with everyone, monitor my website, make sure I have packaging, labels, jars .and trying to stay consistent can be challenging. I’m learning to balance all and always looking for ways to improve every area of my business. All in all, I love what I do, my sacrifices are worth it.
My brand Through the Grace of Shea is name is influenced from my grandmothers name Grace. My grandmother has been a very influential part of life from the day I was born. My grandmother was a nurse and always took care of patients working 16 hour shifts daily. She did it with love, compassion and dedication. Her work ethic and moral values influenced me with creating skincare products. I create with love. I appreciate and love her dearly.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I’m a home body most of the time. However, I do enjoy eating out. I would take them back to my roots and let them enjoy authentic Belizean Food from Little Belize. Other fave places to eat are Wi Jammin, Sol Mexican Cocina, Eddy V’s, Fiesta Martin, and Flemings just to name a few. I enjoy hiking up the Culver City Stairs, or riding my bike in Redondo Beach. It’s feels like a breath of fresh air when I do outdoor activities. I enjoy hanging out with family and friends for game night, backyard bbq, or just to watch sports.
I’m not really into clubs, I enjoy going to lounges with good food, music and drinks. I listen to all genre’s of music but my favorite is reggae and dancehall.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to dedicate my success to my mom and grandmother. They are the two women in my life that has helped me to develop into the woman I am today. They are phenomenal women whom worked hard, sacrificed but yet found balance to be nurturing to their family. I am grateful for the foundation they have built for me.
I would like to also dedicate this to my son Karsen and spouse James. The love and support from them is never ending and I am truly blessed with the best son and spouse!
To my aunt Elaine thank you for always being a listening ear and encouraging. I appreciate our long talks and your support.
Last but not least my father Kirk Geban ( my shining Star) and Uncle Kenrick Smith. I love and miss you both everyday. Keep watching over us. You both are forever in my heart
Other: Tik tok Throughthegraceofshea