By LeRae Haynes –
In the heart of the beautiful Cariboo region of BC is Green Sisters Natural Health and Beauty. The pure, clean, organic skin care products, created by founder Billy Feistmantl, are shipped to locations across Canada from her home in 108 Mile Ranch.
Green Sisters, a true family business, has been growing and expanding since its start in 2009. Feistmantl started the business with $700 to spend on organic essential oils, creating products in her basement. She started with chakra roll-on perfumes and moved on from there, creating things like facial creams with shea butter, and chickweed cream, which is good for rashes, burns, and eczema.
Now she needs a bigger basement.
She creates pure, natural products that help with things like skin problems, ear infections, toe conditions, colds, and congestion, offering items such as moisturizers, lip balm, cleansers, toners, massage oils, body scrubs, and body butters.
Feistmantl said that the name ‘Green Sisters’ is in honour of all native people around the globe who are still living in harmony with our Mother Earth. “They call all plants ‘our green sisters,’ and those sisters are the ingredients for our products,” she explained.
Green Sisters has just been awarded the 2017 best organic skin care company in BC business award from Corporate Vision magazine.
“More and more, people want natural products—clothes, food, and skin care,” said Feistmantl. “We are overloaded with chemicals. People now have a more open consciousness and will spend more to get a quality product.”
There is meticulous, thoughtful research behind Green Sisters products.
While living in Austria, Feistmantl worked with an herbalist, making herbal teas, creams, and tinctures. “I learned so much from him,” she continued. “He always said that a doctor’s job is to keep you sick.
“Using herbs for healing was normal for us: you grew your own food and created your medicines. He is now over 90 years old, and today is very proud of what I have done,” she said.
Feistmantl grew up in a household with grandparents and uncles and their families, and said her grandparents were into beekeeping, and used herbs for everything.
“It was a challenge to get used to a culture where people want everything fast—they just pop a pill,” she said. “With herbs, you collect them, dry them, and blend them.”
Green Sisters feedback has been very positive from day one. “I’m always happy when people feel good in their skin,” she explained. “I did a show recently where a lady’s husband had an open sore on his leg; she had tried everything. She used my shea butter on it, and it healed right up.
“I love when I can help people, and positive feedback never gets old.”
Feistmantl is now a certified aromatherapist. “I wanted to know more about the healing aspects of the oils. The next step is an online course about the spiritual benefits of the oils. I believe that they are here to heal and help,” she said.
“Today, essential oils are getting huge—people are much more aware of how healing it is.”
Green Sisters is a family business, with Feistmantl’s husband helping out, one daughter working full time, and the other working during the summer. She said she loves living at 108 Mile, in the Cariboo. “Of all the places in BC we visited, this was the one that lured us. We have put down deep roots—this is home,” she explained.
“I look forward to every day. First, I do my personal thing: yoga, walk with the dog, have a healthy breakfast, and answer correspondence. Then I see what I need to make, to create new things. To create, I must be in a special frame of mind: a place of peace,” she said.
“I try new products on myself first, and if I like the feel, the scent, and how it feels after a few hours, I give it to my daughters and husband. They’re the next testers. Then it goes to my friends on the road.
“When it’s a big ‘yes’ from all of them, I make more.”
She said times are changing. “We are at war, and with more consciousness comes more spirit, more love, more understanding with each other. We need that right now.
“It’s a circle: when we’re connected to the Earth, everything works out,” she added.
“The Earth provides us with everything we need. Mother Earth supports us when we open our consciousness. When we do, we are more loving. Our air, food and water is poisoning us. We need to find better solutions.”
Future goals for Green Sisters include creating shampoos and conditioners and shower products—everything you use on a daily basis. “We need that stuff,” she said, “and we can do it a better way.”
For more information, visit www.greensisters.ca or find Green Sisters on Facebook.
LeRae Haynes is a freelance writer, song writer, community co-ordinator for Success by 6, member of Perfect Match dance band, and instigator of lots of music with kids.