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Native American Soap Companies in Washington State to Buy From

Independent businesses are on the rise, and in 2024, we’ve seen a 12% increase in the category of health and beauty, even as inflation straps our economy. Soap products, specifically, are projected to grow significantly through 2030, according to reporting by Fortune Business Insights, as more people learn the importance of the products they use every day.

Soap, is an overlooked product. We don’t pay enough attention to the importance of its quality, and we’re quick to order anywhere that’s easiest. Whether liquid or bar, these local, Native American-owned soap companies have a solution. They provide fun, soothing and creative scents that excite the senses, but are environmentally friendly, too.

Brave in Spokane, WA

Brave soap company in Spokane, WA. Photo: courtesy of Nicole Braswell

Located in Spokane, Washington, Brave soap company was created by Nicole Braswell (Assiniboine from the Fort Peck Tribe) with sustainability in mind. Tired of witnessing the waste from plastic bottles of body wash, shampoo and lotion, and after learning about the harmful effects that plastic has on the Earth, Braswell set out to create a solution. She started creating plastic-free bar soaps and other products, making them consumable but not wasteful. 

The comapny name has less to do with the products it sells and more to do with what Braswell wants for her daughters. She said she wants them to be brave in all areas of life and know that bravery can help them achieve anything they want to do. Braswell had to be brave when she started her business. She hopes that bravery will be an example to her daughters and other girls out there.

Brave products are made from a variety of sources and there is something for everyone. There are vegan options, as well as ones made from tallow, and goat’s milk, among other things. Brave’s best-selling soaps are body bar soaps that are made specifically with Spokane in mind. Fragrances include: Lilac City, PNW Forest, Huckleberry and Garbage Goat. 

Nicole Braswell, founder of Brave soap company located in Spokane, Washington.

“My customers love the idea of my Garbage Goat soap,” Braswell shared. “I cut up older soaps that have lost their scent, aren’t in season, or that didn’t turn out as well as I hoped… and I mix them all together creating a whole new soap, now my ‘Garbage Goat’ soap,” she said, “creating a new soap from my soap scraps, making sure there is no soap wasted.”

Another one of her soaps is made from coffee she gets from Redeemed Coffee Co. which helps reduce coffee waste. “Instead of throwing away the coffee grounds, I use them in my coffee soap to create a nice exfoliant soap,” Braswell shared. 

Reducing waste is important to Braswell and she hopes her company and customers can help reduce plastic waste to help create a cleaner earth for future generations. Currently, she is working on some new products. These include sugar body scrubs made with all natural ingredients, as well as perfecting her shampoo and conditioner bars. This summer, she will be teaming up with Revival Tea Company to launch tea soaps. 

Not only that, she plans to create a local non-profit line of soaps. Her first non-profit soap will give back to Heroes Homestead, an organization that supports veterans and service members. Being a military spouse herself, helping local veterans and their families is important to her. 

Sometime in the future, Braswell said she would love to collaborate with a local brewery to make a line of beer soap. Her soaps can be purchased across several Spokane stores such as From Here, The Candle Bar Co. and Mulberry Market. She also has soaps available on her website

Body By Bee, LLC

Vanilla Sugar Scrub by Breanna Foulkes with Body By Bee, LLC based in Tacoma, Washington.

On the other side of Washington state in Tacoma, Breanna Foulkes (Puyallup and Tsimshian), runs her company Body By Bee LLC, which was created through the love she has for working with her hands and her desire to turn the negative experiences with her skin into something positive. 

“My own skin sensitivities that I’ve always had has shaped the way I create, and has had a heavy influence on why I started my business to begin with,” Foulkes shared. “I often wanted to use bath products that would irritate my skin, and now, to have knowledge on what I am using is a powerful place to be, it has also led to more confidence in my own skin.” 

Watermelon Body Butter by Breanna Foulkes with Body By Bee, LLC based in Tacoma, Washington.

Using her own recipes, Foulkes puts a lot of love into each product she creates. This includes her vanilla body scrub and her vanilla and watermelon body butters. Her body butters sell the most and receive the most compliments, she said, on how they leave customers’ skin feeling soft and luxurious for an affordable price. 

When it comes to making her own products, what she loves most about it is how it allows her to be artistic and explore different kinds of combinations. “I can try various colors and scents. I also love how much care goes into a finished product,” she said. 

As for what is currently going on in her company, Foulkes said she is in the middle of developing bath products. You can browse what she has available by visiting her website.

Haipazaza Phezuta

T and Tipiziwin Tolman, founders of Haipazaza Phezuta based in Uniontown, Washington.

In the small community of Uniontown, Washington, reside T and Tipiziwin Tolman (Lakota and Dakota from Ocheti Sakowin Tha Makhoche) who have been operating their business, Haipazaza Phezuta, since 2017. 

The couple has six children and one takoza (grandchild). Both T and Tipiziwin witnessed how chemical-laden, store-bought products caused allergic reactions in their youngest children, so they used their Lakota and Dakota traditional plant knowledge and Lakota belief in spiritual medicine to start their journey of creating soaps and other herbal products. The name of their company is Lakota for “medicine soaps.” 

“Our first batch was a sweet grass soap that immediately was healing for our youngest son,” T shared. “Since then we have grown our business to meet the needs of the larger community.” 

Soap by T and Tipiziwin Tolman of Haipazaza Phezuta based in Uniontown, Washington.

On their website, people can find bar soaps, bath bombs, salves, chest rubs and a variety of other products for skin and hair. Their bar soaps include “Wild Mint & Eucalyptus,” “Prairie Rose,” “Sweetgrass,” Bear Root,” “Wahpe Wastemna,” “Copal Sunrise,” “I’m Your Huckleberry,” and many other scents. Their most popular product is their owashte bear root-infused mentholated chest rub. Currently, they are working on making oregano oil tinctures and more healing salves that they will add to their website in the near future. 

T and Tipiziwin both love what they do and deeply believe in it. As enrolled citizens of their tribes, they believe Indigenous people have so much to offer the world and they have many gifts embedded within their cultural ways that can benefit it. When it comes to owning and running a business, T said there was a lot to learn concerning federal policies that prohibit land ownership or building financial institutions on reservations. Also, he said typical markers of financial success in mainstream Western culture, such as land ownership, may not align with those in Indigenous cultures.

T said their children are their utmost priority, and they enjoy making their products together as a family. “Some of our best times as a family are making our products together,” T shared. “It also helps our children see how processes work, seeing the oils come together and the end product being a particular soap and the same for the bath bombs.” 

Bath bombs by T and Tipiziwin Tolman of Haipazaza Phezuta based in Uniontown, Washington

He added that it also teaches them valuable lessons about time management and skill building. “We love that we create products that help people who battle skin ailments and bring relief to families,” T said. “We also love being out on the land when it’s time to harvest different medicine plant relatives. We pack a lunch and enjoy our time together as a family.” 

Matthew Kincanon

Matthew is a freelance writer from Spokane, Washington who has written for local publications for the past several years. He has lived in Spokane his whole life, owns every Best Picture winner on DVD in his expansive movie collection, and loves a good cup of coffee. When he’s not watching Disney+, diving into creative writing, or posting about Indigenous-owned small businesses on Instagram, he can be found shopping at Barnes & Nobles, Page 42, or thrift stores. He often writes about movies, Indigenous communities, religion, and art.

READ MORE FROM MATTHEW HERE

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