Susan's Tattoo

Healthy tattoo care nourishes while healing your skin.

Getting a tattoo is a big deal for you and your skin. Any good tattoo artist is going to spend some time telling you how to take care of your tattoo after you leave their shop. I peppered my artist with all sorts of questions and left with her standard full sheet of specific instructions. I have a large snake tattoo and I was nervous about taking care of it properly.

Many of the tattoo care products out there are petroleum or PABA based and I definitely hesitated to put that gunk on my skin just to help my tattoo heal. But I did because I didn't want to do the "wrong" thing for my tattoo. It did heal, but the tattoo was really itchy, peeled a lot and after a few weeks, needed another hour of touch up work, so frustrating. I felt like I had failed my skin.
After the touch up work , I reconsidered my approach. I followed all the cleanliness instructions and for the first week I substituted cocoa butter for the petroleum gunk. I warmed a few pieces of cocoa butter in my fingers until it was soft enough to apply easily.
For the second through third weeks I used my own Calendula Cream. The result? It never got itchy and there was no more peeling or fading of lines. In fact, it looked and felt great the entire time and still does 9 years later!
It's important to follow those instructions on cleanliness, wrapping and more, but some cocoa butter and Calendula Cream works even better than petroleum. 

I am still careful with my tattoo. I apply my mineral sunscreen when I am out in the warm weather and apply Calendula Cream everyday to keep the skin it's on, moisturized and healthy.  
Susan Shashok
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About Sun Sticks

I am a pale person who has used sun care with questionable ingredients. These products irritated my already sensitive skin by leaving sticky residues or stripping it before a burn could even happen. Yeah, I've had a lot of sunburns.  

.Sunburn  photo | Caroline's Dream

A few years ago I carefully formulated a sunscreen with coconut oil, shea butter, essential oils, beeswax and zinc oxide powder. I sent it off to be tested for an official SPF rating/ water resistance and was very pleased with it's performance. Then, I learned that SPF labelled products can only be sold if manufactured in a certified drug manufacturing facility. It was a crushing blow to my plans to make a healthy and effective sunscreen. I shelved the whole project and walked away for a while.

This year I am making and selling it without any SPF rating on the label. You'll find it in my limited edition collection with a functional but basic container and label. This gives me time to decide on the perfect packaging and appropriate label. Feedback from customers will directly shape these choices. You won't find an SPF listed but you can enjoy all the benefits anyway. 

beach photo | Caroline's Dream

Shop Sun Sticks

So let me tell you a bit about my sun sticks and you take it from there. The sun is your friend but cover clothing, a nice hat and reapplying protection throughout the day are wise things to include in any outdoor adventures.

All the ingredients included in my formula have their own natural sun screening properties but it's the non-nano zinc oxide that takes it to the next level. Non-nano means the particles are large enough that they do not penetrate the skin surface. This maximizes the sun blocking factor and you won't have any zinc oxide inside your body at the end of the day. 

Susan bike riding photo | Caroline's Dream

For my 2 hour or less bike rides, I only apply before I go. For longer rides, I apply before and then reapply while I snack at approximately 2 hour intervals. It will add a whitish layer to your skin which doesn't bother me but remember, I am a very pale person! My skin loves all the added moisturizing the stick provides and my tattoo is staying sharp and colorful. 

If you are already burned because of another company's product, you'll want some Super Skin Salve

Please feel free to ask me questions anytime.

Susan Shashok
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Gina Bullard from WCAX was here!

Gina Bullard from WCAX was here!

Gina Bullard WCAX Made in Vermont
It was a big day here - Gina Bullard from WCAX came to tape a segment of her Made in Vermont Show! Lots of action shots of me making product, a nice interview and some bonus footage of me riding Caroline's Cruiser. So much fun!
Susan Shashok
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Middlebury 5-0  Interview

Middlebury 5-0 Interview

The owner of Caroline’s Dream, a local handcrafted skincare product
business, and the Director of the Addison County Economic Development
Corporation collaborate in this wonderful show about community-oriented
entrepreneurship and a revolutionary approach to business funding. Susan
talks about her paleo-friendly, locally-rooted business model. She
introduces her Yuba delivery bicycle (a truly magnificent specimen),
partially funded through a Clean-Energy Grant awarded by the ACEDC. These
engrossing and articulate women go on to explain how Caroline’s Dream is
planning to expand through a Kiva Zip loan – an innovative funding
mechanism poised to transform small business lending and the fabric of
economic development.
Recorded 3/24/16.
Susan Shashok
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Cruelty Free List - Caroline's Dream is on there!

Cruelty Free List

We made the Cruelty Free List over at Logical Harmony, a great resource for cruelty-free and vegan skincare companies.

As Tashina Coombs, creator of Logical Harmony notes " It’s not an aggregation of information from other sites. Logical Harmony does all it’s own brand research and includes only brands that we can be sure are cruelty free with vegan options. These brands are also contacted on regular basis so that this list can stay fresh and up to date."

Caroline's Dream is NOT vegan (we use beeswax) but we are proud to say that we never test on animals and never buy our ingredients from those who do!

Susan Shashok
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Our creams are really concentrated. What does that really mean?

A review from Personally Paleo

Personally Paleo Blog - Katie

Natural Skincare - Caroline's Dream

Google, Wikipedia and the internet in general has made it absurdly easy to enter a storm of information overload. But, with that being said, some of my wisest decisions have stemmed from knowledge I found during long, intensive internet searches.

One of my profound Paleo "a-ha!" moments was when I took a deeper look into not only what I was putting in my body, but what I was putting on it. Today's market is flooded with thousands of make-up brands, toothpastes, deodorants, lotions, etc with ingredients that I can't pronounce.  Aluminum in my deodorant? "No thanks." Parabens in my mascara? "But, why?" These questions and more led me on a quest to find the best "better for you" products around.

Although the Windy City is actually named for politicians (fact of the day for you!) Chicago is, in fact, a very windy city. My face and hands quickly become dry, wrinkly and sandpaper-like. Honestly, I could be walking outside for 5 minutes or 5 hours and I'm going to need lotion stat when I go back inside. With the amount of moisturizer I need to use, it was high on my priority list to find a natural product without a bunch of additives. Enter from stage left, Caroline's Dream.

Caroline's Dream

I discovered Caroline's Dream several weeks ago through the Paleo Foundation. Each of the products in their line of skincare is handmade by Susan, the owner. Susan's inspiration for her products stemmed from her grandmother, Caroline, who was an advocate for homeopathic remedies. Find out more about her story here. I was fortunate enough to try a portion of her skincare products that are paleo-certified.

Carolines Dream Compressed 2.jpg

I've become a frequent flyer and daily user of the skin creams, with Lavender+Geranium being my favorite. The creams are light and airy. A little goes a long way without leaving your skin greasy. For me, one of the best parts is the subtlety of the scents. In most skin creams, strong smells (lavender usually being a primary offender) tend to give me a headache. I did not have that problem with Caroline's Dream, even when using it (primarily) on my face.  

The Peppermint foot cream, sadly, hasn't seen much use in my home yet (I'm still working on convincing my guy to increase the number of foot rubs around here.) I did apply it myself a few times when I would catch glimpses of my dry, callus ridden feet (I like to wear my callus' as badges of athletic honor). My feet felt better after a small amount. They almost seemed to be...dare I say it? "Normal." 

Between my use of two lip balms, I was able to match the ever-changing mood of Mother Nature. The Peppermint was great on chilly, frozen tundra-like days in the city. I saved the Sweet Orange for a day where it actually hit above 50 degrees and I loved the Orange Cream-sicle smell. Both provided instant relief that nourished for hours and didn't leave my lips feeling sticky.

The product I used the most was the Skin Salve. This jar has been living in my purse and is carried with me throughout the day. At the end of the day, when I find my hands particularly dry and ashy after washing them, walking outside, etc, this is what I reach for. Same with the other creams, a little goes a long way. This salve is the perfect relief and reversal for the harsh effects of winter my hands have seen. 

The best part about these products is not only how well they work, but that I can feel confident knowing exactly what I am putting on my body. For instance, some of the most common ingredients used are coconut oil and beeswax. The fact that each of these are handmade and labelled by Susan herself, is icing on the cake and shows how invested and passionate she is. 

Susan Shashok
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