We had the good fortune of connecting with Lilly Nguyen and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lilly, maybe we can start at the very start – the idea – how did you come up with the idea for your business?
I’ve always loved bath and skincare products. Taking baths has been therapeutic for me since I was younger and as an adult I grew to love them even more. It’s such a small thing but it makes me so happy. I have extremely sensitive skin and was starting to become frustrated at how many products were making me so inflamed. I started to mess around making my own products and it all clicked!
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I feel like making the products came easy because they were things that I used myself and already knew I enjoyed. Everything I make and do comes from the heart. My brand means a lot to me because I feel like it really is an extension of myself. I see some brands and the owners and go “oh yeah that makes sense.” I hope that’s how people feel when they see Carnelian Creations. A lesson I learned along the way was to not stress so much about how much the sales fluctuate. Some weeks I can have 20+ sales and some weeks I don’t have any. That’s just how it is sometimes. Don’t beat yourself up or get down on yourself. It doesn’t make you any less of a business owner or person.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I live in a small town so whenever I’d have people visit we’d always go across the bridge to Portland, Or. I love Portland. The shopping, food, scenery, all of it! I’d say that a trip to the art museum would be at the top of the list. If it was summer time and Covid weren’t a concern the Portland Saturday Market is one of my favorite places to make a day out of. It’s by the water and a blast. I’d always grab an elote and find some cool handmade jewelry.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
If anyone deserves a shoutout it’s definitely my boyfriend. He’s such a hardworking person and I feel like that has really rubbed off on me. He’s my biggest supporter in all facets of life. I started Carnelian Creations when I had lost my job due to Covid and he was there for me every step of the way. Whether it was testing out my products to celebrating the little milestones. There’s also a quote by Thich Nhat Hanh on my business cards that says “because you are alive, everything is possible.” That’s the only quote that’s ever stuck with me. I say it to myself every day to remind myself that the world is my oyster. Being alive is all the motivation I need to achieve my dreams. As cliché as that sounds.