When Krystn Keller’s three-month-old son Elliott developed a rash on his face, she was told that it was just standard baby eczema and should go away if she switched laundry detergent. However, over the next nine months, Elliott’s condition worsened. The Kellers saw 14 doctors, tried prescription creams, bought soap for sensitive skin, and had Elliott tested for food allergies. When nothing seemed to show results, Krystn knew she would need to take matters into her own hands.
“The prescription creams caused many unwanted side effects like facial hair growth, skin thinning, and one even had a cancer warning,” Krystn says. “I wasn’t comfortable putting these things on my baby, so I wanted to try making an all-natural option myself at home.”
She began doing research and eventually ended up on YouTube, where she found a vast amount of soap-making tutorials. After several months of trial and error, she finally had a recipe for an all-natural soap specifically designed for those with eczema. When Elliott’s skin began to clear up, friends began asking Krystn if they could purchase her soap. She realized there was a need in the market for a product like this, and thus, Keller Works was born.
Based out of Mobile, Keller Works is now a thriving natural soap business, which includes products in 35 stores, international shipping, and a brick-and-mortar location on Government Boulevard in Mobile. “We went from making soap in my kitchen to producing it in a 2,500-square-foot warehouse,” Krystn says.
The most popular products are those in the Elliott’s Care line. The original product that launched Keller Works is Elliott’s Soap, made with organic and sustainable palm oil, organic coconut oil, organic refined sunflower oil, organic shea butter, rice bran oil, castor oil, and gluten-free organic oats. After the success of the soap, Krystn also added an herbal zinc-based salve to combat itch and a whipped shea butter and coconut oil moisturizer.
Keller Works has since expanded to include a line of roll-on essential oils, body care (items like dry shampoo, bath salts, and beard oil), and other organic soaps.
Now, Krystn says Elliott’s skin is completely clear, and although the initial plan wasn’t to create a business, she is thankful to be able to help other families going through the same thing.
“We have customers based all over the country and are able to provide jobs to our local community in Mobile, all while making a positive impact and helping other families in need,” Krystn says.
Learn more about Krystn’s story below:
Julia Sayers Gokhale is a writer and editor who has been working in the lifestyle journalism industry since 2012. She was Editor in Chief of Birmingham Magazine for five years and is now leading Yellowhammer News’ lifestyle content. Find her on Instagram at @juliasayers or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.