Meet and Love Dani Pitts
First things first, tell us a bit about yourself and your business.
I have always traveled frequently for work and have lived in different cities home and abroad. I love to workout and being outdoors. I have cultivated several athletic hobbies along the way too. I would describe myself as a curious person, I love problem solving and processing information. I was a trend forecaster for a many years. Trending taught me to look at things in depth to see connections on a broader level. Now with my family I look to share these views and the sports I love. My family is literally always on-the-go, outside the normal realm. All of this inspired me to develop Ducalm Skincare.
My business is a labor of love. It’s a vision created by my own need and desire to find ways to improve the quality of my experiences in the gym, traveling and throughout my busy life. Ducalm truly was a necessity for me. I had basic skincare needs that were not being filled in a complete way by any brand I can think of. I craved simplicity. I designed the pieces to go together- hence the kit. At the same time the products are great individuals that stand on their own and mix well with others. It took me a long time to decide the ingredients, the mode of employ, the name, and all the various design elements because I am a perfectionist at heart. My stepfather Dr. Stone (the doctor advisor on the brand) is a process-oriented scientist and physician, so you can imagine the two of us working on formulation as we hand made our original samples. Testing, more testing and going over the balance and the synergy of ingredients in the stick formulations.
What was your biggest inspiration for starting your business?
I would go back to the problem solving as a key driver. My career has included trend forecasting and product innovation and for Michael science and family medicine so we both have a strong desire to push personal boundaries and solve problems. We were truly inspired and enjoyed diving into the possibilities of skincare. We wanted to provide a comprehensive layering system that left out guess work and laborious tutorials/explanations so that our no-nonsense customer could easily achieve a balanced complexion. Both of us share an interest in educating people and giving honest information about products, be it safety, efficacy, or just explaining the science behind skin functions. Misinformation floods this industry and it is really concerning for us. We use the EWG scale to co-rate our ingredient choices. We choose well-tested natural and nontoxic working ingredients that are safe for all.
What is your favorite part about being your own boss?
Being limitless. My ideas can be big and in my own space they run free. I will say that training is extremely important, and I wasn’t ready to be my own boss before working for a few greats first. I have been lucky to have strong mentors.
What is the most challenging aspect about being your own boss?
For me it was figuring out what to let go of. You want to have time to do everything, but there are only so many hours in a day. When building a team and sharing responsibilities there is a lot of process development and constant reevaluation of the processes. As I said before, a business is an alive thing, like a child, you can plan to a certain extent but there are opportunities, challenges and unforeseeable things that will come up that you need to be able to roll with and grow and thrive in the process.
Please take us through an average day in the life of Dani Pitts.
My day is spent visiting three places every day: the past, the present, and the future. The past meaning what is finished and where that work stands, the present meaning where we are currently with channels of development, marketing and distribution, and the future (based on the past) meaning development of newness based on who we are, where we are going, and what opportunities we are participating in at the moment. There is the general daily to do list as well. You have to check into these three places daily to be able to make decisions and my days are filled with constant decision making. Trust your gut.
What is your favorite product in your store?
Hard to say, that’s like choosing which one of your children you like best. I love the ease and balance I get from the barrier and cleanser together. I use the barrier with the cleanser every day to lock in hydration by creating a literal barrier that sits on the epidermis and protects and preserves the skin’s cell structure. We start with a light oil cleanser to impart moisture and lock it all in with the barrier. The lip balm is the finishing touch So in truth, I’d say the Actives Recovery™ sink free facial™ kit is really my favorite, since I use all three facial pieces together.
What are your gym bag essentials?
My Actives Recovery™ kit, which I designed to cover all skin needs from real skincare to wipes. Lots of hair ties & bobby pins. I always have a comfy pair of sweats to change into once I’m wiped clean to let my skin breathe. Small perfume testers, right now I have Brooklyn Ellis Fawn, and some natural deodorant. I like men’s woody fragrances. Right now I am using Every Man Jack (cedar wood) but our deodorant will be coming out soon!
What have been your most significant obstacles and how have you overcome them?
Every entrepreneur learns some aspect of running a company on the job and those learning experiences, while obstacles, teach you really quick how to avoid additional hurdles. You have to make some tough decisions and be honest and transparent in order to get the help you need. Mistakes are inevitable and as long as you don’t lose too much the upshot is that you’ve gained valuable perspective.
What is your greatest piece of advice for new boss women?
Be a beast for information. Ask questions and be curious. I never feel like I am in the space where I am done learning. Things inevitably change and nothing in business or science is static. I read and keep current in my own field as well as emerging trends and current events - the full picture will help you find your place.
What are your professional and personal goals for 2019?
To grow my business, my tribe and myself … always to grow and learn.
Lastly, what does ‘love’ mean to you?
Love is a power, a driving force, and a connector it comes in many forms and it is the layering of these forms that makes you whole.