2016 Update: Kether has just opened her own salon in Makawao, The Honey House, featuring waxing, facials and more! Located just about Droplets., across the street from Casanova.
In 2007, Tiare Rietow, an herbalist, and Kether Quinlan, an aesthetician, met while working together at the Dragon’s Den Herb Shop in Makawao. They discovered they had a similar vision of creating their own line of body products with raw, natural, organic ingredients, as well as herbs and healing honey. With this simple idea and a lot of hard work, Queen Bee Productions was born.
Their recipes are based on old Apothecaries, ancient Alchemy, and traditional women’s beauty products, using wild-crafted honey from around the Hawaiian Islands, including their own harvest of Maui honey and beeswax.
Maui Made: What makes your products unique?
Queen Bee Production: Our Products are made by hand in small batches. We use only raw local Honey & beeswax from Maui, and use only the finest natural and organic ingredients. Our products are so natural they are nearly edible, all biodegradable, packaged in recyclable & reusable materials and made with integrity.
MM: What are the challenges of manufacturing on Maui?
QBP: The biggest challenge on Maui is that we are isolated, so shipping costs are high. We pay a lot in shipping over here to the islands; such as our glass bottles, heavy liquids and other bulk supplies. Also distribution is limited without shipping costs. Marketing is also a challenge! There are no billboards, thankfully, but advertisements are expensive, so we have to be creative and collaborative!
MM: Any tips for anyone looking to start their own product line?
QBP: Research Research Research first! Don’t give up, and don’t rush. Also, its always going to take more time, money, and energy than you think.
MM: Was there a particular event that helped launch your company?
QBP: Nothing in particular, but when our Distributor from Japan approached us that was a nice boost. We have been mentioned in Maui No Ka oi Magazine which helped to spread the word here on Maui!
MM: What’s your best selling product?
MM: What are your newest products?
MM: What’s next for Queen Bee?
QBP: We are presently perfecting the formulation on baby products. We will have a nice pack of essentials for mom & baby. And there are some exciting new expansions on the horizon.
To purchase products directly from there website, click here – or Click here to see their list of Retail Locations – across Hawaii, on the West Coast in Washington state and on the East Coast in New Jersey!
Mahalo to Kether and Tiare for sharing your sweet story! (sorry, can’t help the honey bee puns!)