INTERVIEW: AUSTIN STREET APOTHECARY

Photos by Chris Newby  and Molly Tester

IMG_4870.jpg

Caitlin Crawford is incredibly talented at keeping our lips from being chapped, our hands from being cracked, and our faces from looking anything but glowing. The creator of the local, all-natural personal care line, Austin Street Apothecary, has a few new things coming out this spring. We wanted to know what she's been up to and what's in the works. 

Austin St. Apothecary's Sugar Scrub Photo by Chris Newby

Austin St. Apothecary's Sugar Scrub
Photo by Chris Newby

What inspired you to start Austin St. Apothecary?

Over the past few years my husband, Clint, and I have been on this investigative journey that started with household cleaning products, then transitioned to food, and now has us delving into personal care products. We found ourselves at a place where we sat back and just began asking simple questions about the things we were bringing into our home and bodies- Where do these things come from? What are they made of? How are they made? We came to the realization that so many of the products we depended on were filled with chemicals whose names we weren’t able to recognize, let alone pronounce. So Austin Street Apothecary was born out of a desire to provide pure, simple personal care products for my family made from natural, high-quality organic ingredients.

Since Denton is full of health-conscious people who share similar values, friends and neighbors began requesting products which gave me the idea to start a little business to see what would happen.

Austin St. seems like such a cool and tight knit community. Tell us about it.

We are crazy about our little neighborhood. We’ve lived there for almost five years- we’ve even moved once, almost directly across the street from our previous home- and can’t imagine living anywhere else.

To me, Austin Street encompasses what makes Denton so great. It’s a creative, civic-minded neighborhood that’s a little rough around the edges but full of heart. There’s a unique culture to our part of town and I love the community that we have here- neighbors organize trash pick-ups every few months and during the summer we sometimes play neighborhood kickball games at Quakertown Park.  

Austin St. Apothecary products and ingredients. Photo by Chris Newby

Austin St. Apothecary products and ingredients.
Photo by Chris Newby

Tell is about your face oils. 

The first time I washed my face with oil I was convinced I had made a life-ruining mistake. Thankfully I was just being dramatic, but now I will never go back to using a store-bought face wash! Your body produces a natural oil called sebum which protects and moisturizes your skin. Typical store-bought cleansers, even the “natural” ones, usually contain harsh chemicals that strip your skin of sebum and leave skin overly dry and tight. In an effort to restore balance, your skin overproduces sebum which can lead to oily skin and blemishes, which usually leads to more washing or more severe products. And so the cycle continues.

Our oil cleansing face wash is full of organic, cold-pressed oils that dissolve the existing oil on your face that’s been made dirty by makeup, impurities, or pollutants by the end of the day. Pure essential oils nourish and heal the skin, and the oil leaves skin perfectly clean and moisturized. Oil cleansing face wash is one of our more unique items and I’ve gotten such great feedback from people who have tried it.  There’s a little bit of a learning curve when you start washing your skin with oil, but the process is so spa-like and serene I really looking forward to it in the evening. Setting aside time at the end of the day for self-care and reflection should be a habit for everyone.

What new products are coming our way this year?

I’m currently in the research and development phase for a few different products including a nourishing night-time serum and a conditioning beard oil for the fellas. I’ve seen some amazing beards around town so I know there’s definitely a market for it! I also just introduced a chamomile flavored lip balm and have a few more new flavors in mind for the spring and summer.

How was your experience with the Denton Community Market?

I have absolutely LOVED our time at the Denton Community Market! Selling handmade goods to customers in person is a wonderfully intimate exchange- these are products we’ve spent hours and hours dreaming up, researching, planning, developing, testing, and perfecting. It’s so rewarding to have a customer approach me with a need and then to be able to immediately meet that need with something I have made with my own hands.

If you could have a perfect Denton day – what would it entail?

First, we’d ride our Buddy scooter to Cups and Crepes for french toast, then spend a few hours browsing at Recycled and take our finds to lounge in the grass in front of the Courthouse and people watch while having a picnic lunch. Hopefully there’s live music playing somewhere. Pop into the Mini-Mall to hunt for some treasures to show off on our display hutch at Community Market then stop by Jupiter House to say hi to friends and have a chai latte. I’m always craving sushi, so we’d drop by Mr. Chopsticks for a rainbow roll and miso then finish up the night with drinks at Oak Street with friends.

Get clean.  Photo by Molly Tester

Get clean. 
Photo by Molly Tester

Caitlin Crawford, owner of Austin St. Apothecary Photo by Chris Newby

Caitlin Crawford, owner of Austin St. Apothecary
Photo by Chris Newby