Katie Ryan and Thomas Duane, co-founders of Heart and Soil Herbal Skincare, are grateful to be at this point in their journey as partners in life and business.
Katie and Tom first crossed paths in 2015, at the local, organic grocery store in Ottsville Pennsylvania, where she worked in the apothecary and he often shopped. Over time they developed a close bond and two years into the relationship Heart and Soil Herbal Skincare came into being
In the years before skincare, Katie was studying The Science and Art of Herbalism with Rosemary Gladstar as well as exploring the practice of various alternative, wellness modalities. She was interested in pursuing clinical herbalism and wanted to take on the role of healer. But the unexpected death of her mother, who abruptly died in 2016 from a stroke, was nothing short of devastating and she found herself needing to be healed instead.
It was during this emotionally difficult period that, along with the support of therapy, Tom, two new kittens (Ommy & Ziggy), as well as family and friends, Katie began using her herbal knowledge to immerse herself in self-care. Initially she started making balms, creams, salts and teas while she also took time to further her research on the relationship between plants and skin beyond her herbal teachings. Eventually this guided her towards formulating a line of herbal skincare, which was a source of joy, combining her interests in self-care, the science of plants, and her urge for creativity and discovery.
Tom, who had spent eight years working in advertising as a designer, got involved after Katie convinced him she wanted to start a business and today he's happy to be a part of something he believes in. Along the way he's learned more about skincare then he ever would have guessed and now uses their products almost daily. He appreciates his different roles in their business which he sees as sources of support for Katie's formulations, both in branding and on the business side of things.