Jennifer Rose Goldman Goes Beyond The Superficial With Her Growing Brand Essential Rose Life
On a superficial level, Essential Rose Life may be categorized as a beauty brand, but founder Jennifer Rose Goldman thinks well beyond the superficial when developing its products.
The 27-year-old, who was diagnosed with clinical depression at age 15, turns to toners and aromatherapy roller balls as emotional pick-me-ups, and calls them mood mists and mood oils to emphasize their beneath-the-surface purposes. In a day and age during which mental health is front and center in the public eye, Goldman’s notion of beauty for psychological care rather than simply surface care has been welcomed by Goop and Urban Outfitters, where Essential Rose Life recently launched online.
“My brand is a clean beauty brand, but I’m really trying to revolutionize the concept of beauty. I want to take beauty out of the realm of external, and I want people to understand that beauty is a feeling and a way that you treat yourself,” says Goldman. “I really want to change people’s lives. I’m so passionate about doing that, and I really see that as one of my competitive advantages.”
While Goldman’s path to Essential Rose Life can be traced back to a rocky teenagehood, it kicked off in earnest late in her undergraduate studies at Skidmore College, where she started buying herbs in bulk and crafting teas. In 2013, when she was a senior, she created Skidapothecary with hangover, detox and study teas appropriate for college existences. That same year, though, she incorporated Essential Rose Life with the intent to build her product repertoire outside of the collegiate environment.
“Every time someone came over, I made them a tea, and I would brew oils on the stove with dried flowers,” says Goldman, harkening back to her stint at Skidmore. “I was on my own journey to piece together ways of talking care of myself.”
“My brand is a clean beauty brand, but I’m really trying to revolutionize the concept of beauty. I want to take beauty out of the realm of external, and I want people to understand that beauty is a feeling and a way that you treat yourself.”
That journey exposed her to different practices and techniques. She’s been trained in Hatha, Vinyasa and Kundalini yoga, Reiki, Transcendental Meditation and mindfulness-based stress reduction. In addition, Goldman went through aromatherapy training at the New York Institute of Aromatherapy in 2015. The next year, she assembled oils in cobalt blue bottles with no labels and began selling the skincare products at farmers’ markets.
“Everything I make is informed by the trainings I’ve had as well as my personal journey overcoming mental illness,” says Goldman. “When you are using the facial oil, you are not just regenerating the skin, you are promoting peace of mind.”
In March 2017, Essential Rose Life’s first major distribution milestone came when it broke into New York botanical dispensary and plant tonic bar The Alchemist’s Kitchen. Later in the year, the brand participated in subscription service Goddess Provisions’ box and premiered on Goop. Urban Outfitters followed this year. Goldman aspires to bring Essential Rose Life to department store retailers such as Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom, and spread it to yoga studios and wellness centers, too.
“It really takes persistence and confidence,” she says of distribution expansion. “It’s very scary to reach out to a place and be rejected. If you are rejected, it doesn’t mean that you’re always going to be rejected. It’s important to reach out maybe three months later and continue the relationship. These things can take time. It’s important to be courteous and leave the retailer feeling good about your disposition. I initially thought, ‘I have a good product, and I love it, so everyone is going to love it,’ but that’s not what happened. There are a lot of good products, and you have to prove yourself.”
“It’s important to be courteous and leave the retailer feeling good about your disposition. I initially thought, ‘I have a good product, and I love it, so everyone is going to love it,’ but that’s not what happened. There are a lot of good products, and you have to prove yourself.”
The products proving to be strong performers for Essential Rose Life are Sacred Presence Mist featuring a combination of rose and pine Goldman devised to combat anger and tension; Indulge Mood Oil, a sensual floral mix of rose, geranium, black pepper, ginger and vetiver, to name a few of the ingredients; and Rose Gold Face Serum, a fusion of seven essential oils with jojoba, rosehip seed, argan and pomegranate seed oils. Essential Rose Life’s beauty products are priced from $25 to $48.
“When I formulate, I consider where the oils resonate in the body. So, ingredients like cardamom, ginger, vetiver and pepper are earthier, grounded and warmer. Ingredients like rose, geranium and chamomile are lighter and heart-opening,” says Goldman. “In my blends, I’m intentional about putting things together that are both grounded and warm, cooling and heart-opening. No matter what you are using it for, you can have a really balanced experience.”
Essential Rose Life has depended on in-house, small-batch production, but Goldman is moving the production to an organic third-party manufacturer. She realizes her strengths are formulating and educating, not manufacturing. “Some people like [the founders of] Herbivore, they love making the product and keeping that in-house. I love the formulation process, and I love healing people,” says Goldman. “I don’t necessarily feel compelled to keep my production in-house as long as it’s in the hands of really conscious people. I want different things for my brand.”
What she wants is to finish a book, amplify Essential Rose Life’s footprint at prestige distribution partners and share her story more widely. Goldman says, “I’m not just a selling a product. I’m also sharing my personal experience navigating daily struggles. I want to be a global teacher of self-help, self-care and self-love.”