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Must Have: Bath and Body Products from Yes to Carrots

Imagine a big bowl of your favorite produce: carrots, melon, sweet potato, pumpkin, oranges (all home grown in Israel.) Mmmm, delicious. Now that your mouth is watering, let’s add one more key ingredient: a nice vat of Dead Sea Mud. … Read More

By / August 1, 2008

Imagine a big bowl of your favorite produce: carrots, melon, sweet potato, pumpkin, oranges (all home grown in Israel.) Mmmm, delicious. Now that your mouth is watering, let’s add one more key ingredient: a nice vat of Dead Sea Mud. You might not want to eat the mix anymore, but as the folks at Israeli beauty product company Yes to Carrots will tell you, it will do wonders for your face!

Yes to Carrots offers a wide array of lip balms, hand and face creams, shampoos, and more, all of which “combine the fresh, unadulterated goodness of organic fruits and vegetables with the purifying and moisturizing properties of 26 minerals harvested from the ancient world’s most renowned spa — the Dead Sea.”

It’s hard to say "no" to Yes to Carrots. Even Yes to Carrots CEO, Ido Leffler, could not resist the pull of a carrot-inspired beauty line. When he spoke to me about his
start with the company, he recalled, “I became involved with Yes To Carrots during a business meeting with Israel’s leading product formulator, Mr. Uri Ben Hur, for a completely unrelated project. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw this eye-catching logo with a really unusual name and pretty much made an on-the-spot offer to buy the brand. There was something so unique and positive about it, and I knew that along with the fact that most of the world has been eating carrots since childhood would also give it universal appeal. Then the globe-trotting began!”

Ido was born in Israel and grew up in Australia. It was in Australia where he studied International Business and Marketing and “acquired the training required to catapult Yes To Carrots into one of the fastest growing personal care brands in the world.” Ido then moved East to Indonesia and India where he first got his feet wet in the healthy lifestyle-promoting business, serving as Asian Director for the health and nutrition company Universal Lifestyle.

Before Ido became one of the world’s leading carrot gurus, he returned to Australia and helped to found Trendtrade International, which he describes as a company “whose mission is to discover and develop unique and exciting brands in the health and beauty industry and share them with the world.” It was through Trendtrade International that Ido was able to make Yes to Carrots a world famous brand. Ido continues, “I was involved along with my business partner Lance Kalish and Uri Ben Hur, one of Israel’s foremost product formulators. We grew from a team of 3 to what is now a truly global team spanning the world. The company today employs people from every corner of the world — just in the marketing office there are over 15 languages.”

Yes to Carrots’ growth rate has been somewhat remarkable. Ido explains how the Yes To Carrots family of products went international, saying, “Yes To Carrots arrived in the US in December 2006 and was sold initially on Walgreens.com. We invested in creating online buzz and got some initial coverage in the major beauty publications with the goal of getting on Walgreens 6000+ store shelves. In July 2007, we hit the stores and have been growing strong ever since. In addition to Walgreens, we are now sold in the US at Duane Reade and Ulta. The brand went international about the same time we arrived in the US. It was lots of hard work, but we participated in some of the international trade shows where we were able to meet with the retailers and show them our commitment to working closely with them. We’ve even got Yes To Carrots packaging in Cantonese, Dutch, Russian and Italian! We are working now on 3 more languages! It’s incredible to think that 18 months ago we were only in 16 stores in Israel and now Yes To Carrots is in 17 countries in nearly 18,000 stores around the world.”

It’s also incredible to imagine that all that fuss was over some carrots! But lest you become a carrot skeptic, let Ido convince you of their awesome power. “Carrots and other orange-color fruits and vegetables,” he explains, “are bursting with Beta-Carotene, a natural form of Vitamin A, which is a great antioxidant and helps keep your hair and skin looking young! We use only organic produce certified by the Israel state agencies (carrots, melon, sweet potato, pumpkin, oranges), and we combine it with Dead Sea mud and minerals. The products contain Dead Sea water which helps all the yummy ingredients absorb into the skin and the minerals help hydrate and add suppleness. All this, in a paraben-free formulation.”

Not only do carrots have health benefits, they also make people happy! Ido mentions, “As I said before, carrots are pretty universal, and in my travels around the world, I’ve seen that it’s one of the first foods children eat, pretty much universally, so there’s an inherent connection to this vegetable.” Ido believes that it is this instinctive connection that draws people to Yes to Carrots. He goes on, “Our number one goal has always been to make people happy. In fact, we were at a trade show in Italy earlier this year that was open not only to professionals, but also to the general public. I was amazed at how the faces of people walking by just brightened with a huge smile when they saw the orange. Most of the time, they didn’t even know the name of the products. Essentially, Yes To Carrots appeals to the five senses: you see the zingy orange packaging, your eyes are flooded with "yes" and positivity; they smell delicious; they feel scrumptious; you can hear lots of "oohs" and "aahs" when you try it. You might even taste it, but we think a bowl of crunchy carrots or a juicy melon will do the trick to satisfy your hunger. We actually are amazed by the amount letters we receive from happy Yes To Carrots family members ranging in age from 12 to 90! People become part of the family instantly, I even receive family holiday pics and videos from our extended family.”

If the color orange doesn’t suit you, have no fear. Yes to Carrots have launched two additional lines of products inspired by other brightly-colored produce families. While the original Yes to Carrots line was designed to nourish dry skin, now there also is both a Yes to Cucumbers line featuring green organic fruits and veggies for folks with more sensitive skin, as well as a Yes to Tomatoes line for more oily skin.

Of all of his accomplishments, Ido is especially proud of the commitment to a healthy lifestyles that he has been able to foster within this “extended family.” He explains, “Along with my wife, we’ve made the decision to live a healthy and happy life and we’re intent on helping others to do the same! I strongly believe that when you say yes to Yes To Carrots you are making a conscious decision to smile more often, improve your lifestyle, and help others live healthy.” In addition, according to Ido, the first step to a healthy lifestyle is saying “Yes!” more often. He says, “Too many messages we receive today are negative, and it turns out this is a global phenomenon, so we decided to spread a very positive message globally, One YES at a time…I think it’s about staying positive. We’re in a time now when lots is going on politically, socially, and economically that stresses families out. For example, we just want your first morning moments in the shower to give you a boost, give you a reason to smile and exude that well-being throughout the day. If you look at our shampoo, the directions instruct you to ‘apply shampoo to wet hair while singing.’ How can you have a bad day when it starts out like that?”

I’ve got to admit, it sounds pretty tough.

Another way that Yes to Carrots inspires people and promotes well-being is through its Yes to Carrots Seed Fund. Ido says, “The Yes To Carrots Seed Fund is a 501c3 non-profit organization in the United States and is on a mission to provide under-served communities with access to organic food and healthy nutrition. We’ve donated funds to help community gardeners buy seeds and tools, increase their plots and better serve their communities. Most recently, we’ve been working with Three Sister Garden Project in Columbus, Ohio. One garden serves the Native American community in Columbus’ south side and the garden’s fresh produce is distributed via the center’s daily food pantry. As second home to an extensive Somali refugee population, the Horn of Africa garden provides community members with plots of land which allows them to farm as they once did in their native Somalia. Individuals are able to maintain their cultural identity through farming, transition away from government-supported assistance and maintain an independent food source. The third garden serves women managing physical and mental disabilities, and in some cases, recovering from addiction, abuse and chronic homelessness. In addition to access to fresh and nutritious produce, their 24-plot garden gives these women an opportunity to acquire social skills, express their creativity and share responsibilities.”

So whether you wish to say yes to carrots, tomatoes, or cucumbers, you can feel good about your purchase in addition to looking and feeling naturally gorgeous. See for yourself at yes-to-carrots.com.

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