Interview by Maria Cometti
I’m often on the look-out for unique local items to gift family and friends. It was at the last Kingdom Coffee Morning that I was introduced to Um Saboon Soaps. Beautiful soaps, thoughtfully displayed, really caught my eye! Wow! Though I didn’t have time to shop that morning, I was impressed with the soap and later placed an order via whatsapp.
One of the ultimate joys in life is to find work or a hobby that lights passion inside of you. When you meet someone who has found it, you can almost tell by their spark. Chacha, the founder of Um Saboon, certainly has that spark! In the interview below, Chacha tells us about her journey to create Um Saboon.
Can you tell us us about yourself?
I came to Saudi Arabia eleven years ago, from Spain, due to my work in Aviation. I consider myself a very active person. That can be both an advantage or a problem, especially when you have a lot of time off. So in order to stay busy I had been in a constant learning mode, from painting walls and canvases, gardening, learning Arabic and more. Then, I found what really makes me happy, and that is the art of soap making.
Why did you start Um Saboon Soaps?
I had always loved natural soaps and I could not pass in front of a shop that had them without taking a huge bag home, so I decided to study and make my own.
As mentioned before, this started as any other hobby would, but something was different. I found myself empty when I did not have a batch of soap to cut. So I started gifting them to friends and family as they started to take up a lot of storage space at home. Their feedback was astonishing so I felt like I could share them also with other people that have the same attraction for handmade natural soaps.
How long have you been in business?
I have been sharing them with other people for around four months, so we can say that my project is still in pampers, but I have plans to grow in the future.
What make your soaps unique?
Well, Um Saboon is a reflection of me, in constant change trying to be better everyday. Um Saboon is not pretentious; they are simple soaps made with love.
I have said many times that the best food I had ever tried did not come from a Michelin star restaurant, but from someone that cooks with love, without the commercial pressure and just wants to share with others, because cooking is their passion.
What is the hardest part of your work?
The hardest part is those days where I cannot find time to dedicate to soap making. It is definitely my favorite activity and I really crave it!
What do you enjoy the most about your work?
Each piece of soap is almost like a baby to me. I like seeing how they change from the moment I make them until they are finally ready to be used. Each recipe is different than the next, because I follow my mood to mix the ingredients every time. I love the whole process, from the design of the recipe, to choosing the colors, essence and decoration, to the packaging and delivery.
Where are Um Saboon soaps sold?
I am proud of my soaps and therefore It makes me very happy to attend events where I can show them and share what I had learned. So far it has been mostly in compound coffee mornings, but I had also take part in some private company events. I also take orders from the Um Saboon Instagram page which I am hoping to develop more and more over time.
What advice would you give to other women thinking about starting their own business?
I will tell them, once they find out what they really like, to be patient, persevere, embrace and learn everything about it. Surround yourself with good people that advise you and give constructive criticism. Be humble. It is a long path, but if you really are passionate and believe in your idea, you can overcome any difficulties and in the end, it will all be worth it.
Contact information and social media:
You can find me in Instagram as #Umsaboon , in Umsaboon@hotmail.com or call me on 00966563166254.