We had the good fortune of connecting with Bertholette Pardieu and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Bertholette, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
BelMarie Essentials, LLC was birthed in 2020, combining my passion for soap making and my desire to branch out into herbal medicine, on a larger scale. As a Public Health professional by trade, helping others to maintain good health and supporting wellness is always at the forefront of my mind. I wanted to share healing practices that have assisted me in maintaining my own wellness, as well as, tools that helped in dealing the loss of my beloved mother. BelMarie Essentials gives me an opportunity to honor and preserve Haitian culture and traditional medicine, commonly practiced among the African diaspora and indigenous populations. The name BelMarie merges of the first names of my father, Belony and mother, Marie (together BelMarie); it was a way to honor my parents, culture and tap into my creative side/ passion.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am a Certified Master Herbalist and a Healthcare Risk Management and Corporate Compliance Director. I am ecstatic about being a certified herbalist; having knowledge of herbal medicine and it’s impact throughout the years have always sparked a desire to learn more. Focusing on herbal medicine and coupling it up with soap making has definitely helped to renew my passion for life. The one thing that sets BelMarie Essentials apart from other companies is that our products are: (i) gentle on the skin, (ii) soaps are made with vegan-based shea butter, (iii) products are naturally derived, (iv) formulated to address common skin conditions and to keep the skin looking and feeling healthy; and lastly (v) our knowledge of herbs are used in our products for their medicinal and healing properties. We strive on using nature’s healing tools to provide high-quality products for bath, body, health and wellness needs. We are always looking to see how we can continue to meet the needs of our customers, whether it’s a beautifully scented soap bar, gift box for that special someone or a grief/ sympathy box to help support loved ones during difficult seasons. The journey has definitely not been easy, but I’ve learned so much along the way through my studies of herbal medicine, culture, life experiences and connecting with others. I love that I am now in a place to help others, while expressing my creative side and living out my life long dream of becoming a soap maker and herbalist. Life has taught me that I can make it through anything, to keep the vision, think positively and that there is nothing under the sun- that I cannot tackle. My story and purpose empowers me to always move forward, strive for progress and greatness.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I’m originally from Palm Beach County, but having lived in all three counties of the tri-county area I consider myself a true South Floridian. As a foodie, I would recommend checking out a few restaurants, whether it be ethnic or all-American. A few of my favorite spots include Alberte’s Haitian Restaurant, Best of Broward Bakery for Haitian Patties, Magic Soul Food and the numerous brunch spots in Downtown Las Olas. As a Delray Beach native, I’d be remise if I did not mention some of the many restaurants in Delray Beach, including Donnie’s Place and some of the downtown restaurants. I always recommend hitting the Beaches (any county will do) for a day in the sun! Taking advantage of our many malls, spas and checking out some yoga centers or connecting with yoga instructors, such as Nzingah Oniwosan- who is always offering yoga in the park/beach and virtual yoga sessions. Lastly, If you’re up to it and the weather is looking good, consider going skydiving! It is a wonderful experience and will definitely make your trip worthwhile!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
1. I would love to shoutout my beloved parents for their sacrifices, love, support, wisdom and helping me to embrace my culture. 2. My family and close friends, especially my uncle and godfather Hulin Pardieu for his support and guidance. 3. My home town of Delray Beach for the love and support felt on so many levels. 4. My mentors, life and business coaches who have helped and encouraged me to get this business going, thank you dearly Dr. Charline Desir, Mr. Gilbert and Mrs. Ebony Chrispin, Dr. Latasha Russell, and Ms. Debbie Manigat (DMFT(c)). 5. My dear friend and founder of Avanse Ansanm, Ms. Santra Denis, for giving me the courage to branch out, do more, while encouraging me to preserve our culture. 6. Sant La Haitian Neighborhood Center, thank you for granting me the opportunity to become a fellow of Class V and learn more about the Haitian Culture. 7. Urban League of Broward County’s Entrepreneurship Center for your excellent programming and getting me in shape for business success. 8. All others who have dropped seeds of encouragement, faith and support along the way.
Soaps photo credits: mcimageproductions https://www.instagram.com/mcimageproductions/ @mackendyimage https://www.instagram.com/mackendyimage/