Seaholm grad makes cosmetics naturally, locally

By: Tiffany Esshaki | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published January 10, 2012

 Buy This Balm is marketed as a no frills, all-natural lip balm. The cosmetics are made and distributed locally.

Buy This Balm is marketed as a no frills, all-natural lip balm. The cosmetics are made and distributed locally.

Photo by Miles Moon

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BLOOMFIELD HILLS — When it comes to sales, image is everything. Just ask Shayna Moon, a 20-year-old college student who’s found success making and selling lip balm that appeals to, well, everyone, she said.

Moon started Buy This Balm, LLC, with the idea to make all-natural cosmetics with no frills. The Seaholm graduate says her business plan is all about quality and design.

“I think gender-neutral is more popular nowadays. People aren’t content to just fit within one gender norm. A woman doesn’t want to have to buy things in all pink and flowers.”

Packed inside the simple, androgynous containers is homemade lip balm with no petroleum or additives. They come in an assortment of flavors, including peppermint, lemon and vanilla. Her top seller is Made in Michigan Black Cherry.

“She is incredibly brainy and creative. There’s never an end to her ideas,” said Andrea Moon, Moon’s mother and head of sales. “When she first got the idea to do this, it was like an explosion of research and experimentation. She came up with everything. The names, the packaging, all of it.”

Andrea Moon has helped her daughter get Buy This Balm into 11 stores locally, with more coming soon. They can be found around Birmingham, Ann Arbor and Grand Haven, and on the Australian-based website Addicted2lipbalm.com.

Suzanne Dehko is the owner of Parlor, inside Complex, in downtown Birmingham. She said the product sells well thanks to the natural ingredients and the local appeal.

“I think it’s great that it’s made in Michigan. It says it right on the tube, so I think people are drawn towards that,” said Dehko. “I know she uses natural ingredients, and I’m all for that. She’s more than welcome to keep selling here.”

Next for Moon is to expand her product line with colored lip balms and eye shadows, and she’s always looking to get her balms into more stores. Her focus, however, is on her studies at Ferris State University. She’s currently majoring in digital animation and game design. While the worlds of cosmetics and video games may not seem to mesh to most, the two complement each other nicely for Moon.

“Doing cosmetics is just another way to be creative. When people ask about the two, I tell them, ‘This is one thing I really enjoy, and this is another thing I really enjoy.’ They’re very connected in my mind.”

The cost of Buy This Balm is between $3 and $4 for tubes, or $12.50 for a gift tin. For a list of retailers where the balms are available or to order them directly, email Shayna@BuyThisBalm.com.

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