Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal care but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Jessica Ottman, Co-Owner of Siena Soap Company, located in Blaine, MN, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Siena Soap Company provides a full line of all-natural, plant-based & eco-friendly skincare made one batch at a time here in Minneapolis. We offer products for all ages, including aromatherapy soap, facial and shampoo bars, facial serums, shave bars, lotion bars, balms and salves addressing specific skin and health care needs, lip balms, magnesium oil, deodorants, laundry soap, bug spray, sunscreen, baby products and so much more. All are handcrafted with love by a mother/daughter team. A portion of every sale goes to support the LOTT Foundation to provide string instruments to children in need in honor of our late daughter/sister Leah. Leah was an acclaimed singer, singer-writer, and violinist whom we miss with all our hearts. Sharing our healthy alternative skin care with you is our great joy and passion! Experience the difference 100% natural skincare can make. Our customers are people looking for 100% natural and safe skincare for themselves or family with high-quality ingredients without the expensive price tag.

Tell us about yourself

I started getting into more healthy and natural living and realized what a big impact natural skincare makes on our bodies and environment! Our skin is our largest organ, after all, and 65% of anything you put on your skin ends up directly in your bloodstream. So it really matters what you put on your skin!

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Creating our LOTT bar/giveback foundation to honor my sister Leah and the beautiful legacy she left us with. I would also add seeing the joy in customers' faces when they come to us and tell us how much they love our products and how it has helped them with their skin issues.

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?

There is no rule book or real "how-to guide" on growing a business and what to do as a small business owner. Kind of like raising a kid. You just have to figure it out as you go and grow. Each new stage of growth of your small business will challenge you and require you to learn as you go. The key is to surround yourself with other amazing small business owners who have more experienced knowledge than you so you can turn to them for advice!

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Surround yourself with a network of other successful small businesses to who you can turn to for advice.
  2. There is never going to be the perfect time to start your small business, and you are never going to know just start somewhere and figure it out as you go/grow!
  3. Having a small business is going to demand a lot of you. You will have to make sacrifices financially and sacrifice some of your personal life, but it is worth it for the freedom and un-ended finical opportunities.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.