Jessica Iclisoy, the founder of California Baby, is not only a beautiful and intelligent woman (yes, she even reads the Wall Street Journal!), but a true visionary. In 1995, her mission to raise her family in an all-natural, non-toxic environment was way ahead of her time. Before most people were “thinking green,” Jessica created the hit product, Calming Shampoo & Bodywash, in her very own kitchen after learning that many of the cleansing agents and synthetic fragrances in most baby products were not only harsh on the skin, but suspected carcinogens. Since then, she has grown California Baby® to include over 50 pediatrician and dermatologist recommended products that span hair care, diaper care, non-chemical suncare, bath fun, wellness, and more.
Jessica is an inspiration and genuine ‘Mom Gone Zen’ who has always tried to purify her body, home, and way of life. A wife, mother of two grown boys, gardener, vineyard owner, and entrepreneur extraordinaire, she was recently honored with the 2013 Leadership Award by the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO-LA). And what’s so amazing about her is that she makes it look so easy! I’m proud to call her my friend. Enjoy…
I am the founder and developer of California Baby, a natural and organic line of skin care products for babies, kids and sensitive adults. I work on formulating products, creating essential oil blends, designing the packaging and marketing for all California Baby products; and now, I have officially become an organic farmer as we are growing our own herbs and flowers!
They would probably say that I’m passionate, a little unorthodox, and curious. They would also mention that I love fashion, great food and wine. They would definitely use the word hippie, though I prefer the word bohemian, but, you know, you pick your battles ;).
3. Name 3 words or virtues that best describe what matters most to you as a mom.
Loyal, supportive, nurturing the individual.
4.What does a typical Monday look like to you?
I’m up by 5:30. First thing is espresso, the New York Times, then the Wall Street Journal, in that order. Then, it’s off to the bathtub (filled with essential oils and bath salts) to test new products or blends. I always take my iPad and a cordless phone to the tub so I can do some work, emails, calls, etc. I’ve never droped my iPad in the bath, btw. Then, I’m off to the gym for an hour with a trainer. The rest of the day can be a mixed bag of emails, conference calls, R&D, marketing, production updates, talking to buyers… I don’t have a set work schedule – it’s whatever comes up.
5. How do you balance work, family and “me” time?
I’ve learned to build ‘me-time’ into my schedule and I don’t change it unless absolutely necessary. I’ve realized that in order to take care of my family and business, I have to be taken care of. I don’t feel guilty about getting a regular massage or any other pampering because it keeps me operating at my best and everything else falls into place.
6. What’s your favorite way to de-stress after a long day with kids?
Meditating is like taking a power nap, and when I’m really stressed, this works for me every time. Otherwise, simply switching gears from a busy hectic day to a chill evening helps me de-stress. I love preparing a healthy dinner, full of flavor, and matching it up with a fabulous bottle of wine…
My ideal getaway includes a quiet location, spa treatments, good food and wine and long nature walks.
8. What’s your favorite spa treatment? Do you have a favorite spa?
My favorite spa treatment lasts for a minimum of two hours. I want everything at once! Facial, body mask and wrap, massage–bring it on! I’ve been working on adult skin care and spa products for a couple of years now, and part of my research is to experience the different approaches to caring for the skin. I like to take the best of each and incorporate it into my products. In terms of favorite spa, I am a big fan of the spa at Carneros Inn in Napa; the staff are real pros and I’ve never walked away disappointed.
9. What’s your favorite comfort food?
It’s a close race between French fries and pasta. But the pasta is very specific, it must be fresh, handmade with Bolognese sauce…preferably made by an Italian mama or grandmama.
10. Wine (red or white?), champagne, vodka, or something else?
Champagne always! But it has to be good, no sugar water for me. Don’t serve me hard liquor unless you want to see me dancing on the tables. I love white and red wine, but again, quality counts. I’m partial to French and Italian varietals.
11. What’s your go-to drink on Tuesday night? On a Friday night?
A glass of Champagne never hurts.
12. How do you find your Zen?
I find my Zen by first slowing down and stopping the incoming stimulus buzzing around me. Through practicing meditation, I have gained the ability to sink into myself and explore my thoughts, feelings and wandering a bit. I like that I don’t have to go anywhere special to find my Zen, it’s with me and I can call upon it when I need it.