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Q&A with the founder of LATHER


Posted: Jan 23 2018


As a lifelong migraine sufferer, Emilie learned at an early age how natural ingredients can positively affect the body and mind so she became the founder of LATHER.


What do you love most about being a mom?

My daughter has taught me so much.   She is very different than me and I always assumed my daughter would be a “mini-me”. couldn’t be farther from the truth.  However,  we are incredibly close and she has helped me see the world in a whole new way.  She has a unique connection to animals.  From when she was very small, she was drawn to horses and we would visit stables.   One time, when she was 4 she was at a stall of a large Arabian.  They were just looking at each other and she reached up to touch his nose.   There was a woman near by just staring in awe.  Later she told us that that particular horse has never let a stranger do that.   This has continued to happen with Ellie, and she is a competitive equestrian today.  My son is very sensitive and funny.  He makes me laugh every day and always points things i would have missed.  Yesterday our little dog was on the couch sleeping next to a Harry Potter wand.  Lewis and I were near her reading.  He glanced over and said dryly“ Abraca Dog bra”.  Its little things like that from this 10 year old that always has me laughing.


How has motherhood changed you?

My kids have taught me more than I ever expected.


Tell us about your kid(s). Name(s) (optional), age(s), personality etc.

Elleanor (Ellie) age 13.

Lewis age 10


Did you breastfeed? If so, how did it affect your wardrobe choices?

Yes, breastfed/pumped with Ellie for 7 months

With Lewis, he had severe reflux and colic.  He was put on a prescription formula when he was 3 weeks old, due to low weight gain.  The doctor told me that I must pump and store at least 1000 oz, because he would only be able to transition to breast milk after the formula.  So… I was a very busy mom with Lewis.  After feeding him the prescription formula,  and praying he would keeping it down, I would then have to pump.  Later because I eventually went back to work, I still needed to pump and I needed clothes that would suit this.




Has your personal style changed since becoming a mom?  How would you describe your #momstyle?

I have a lot less time, so I keep things simple and easy.


 What are your must-haves from BURU and why do they work in your mommy lifestyle?

I love the noir knit high-low dress, the Danny charcoal blazer, the Mary midi dress, the campus shirt from The Great and the cashmere travel wrap.



I look for styles that are neutral colors and timeless styles that can mix and match and travel well.  I find that this saves me time.  I love to go out every once in a while and find something truly special and unique,  but for my every day style I love things that are easy and give me more time to devote to the things that I really care about.


What key pieces should every mama have in her closet?

White button down shirt, jeans, black pants, french striped tee, blazer and a pencil skirt.





Tell us about your company. What’s its story or history?

Beginning in my early childhood, I suffered from migraine headaches so severe that I would temporarily lose my ability to speak and see. In fact, one high school teacher remarked that because of the attacks, I would never succeed in college or any kind of advanced job. 

Doctors were unable to effectively prevent or ease my migraines, but it was a lavender soap gift from my father that inspired me to explore natural healing products and to use my personal experience to help others. At that time, it wasn’t known that synthetic fragrance was what I was allergic to and causing these debilitating migraines.

In 1997, I defied the dire prediction of my high school teacher and graduated from Pepperdine University. I then spent two years in the fast-paced world of public relations, but retained my passion for aromatherapy and fostered a growing interest in skin care. Before long, interest turned into action, and I started LATHER as a small line of pure olive oil-based soaps. The soaps quickly gained a cult following, and the company soon grew from a two-person operation into a full-fledged business offering products for the body, face, hair, and home. I opened the first LATHER store in Pasadena in 1999; today, others stand in Atlanta and Scottsdale. Beauty boutiques, spas, and hotels also carry LATHER, helping to share my vision worldwide.

“LATHER really means everything to me,” says Emilie. I have found an outlet to follow a deep passion, and I find that this is what really drives me – to have a company and products that really do make a difference.”


What is your favorite aspect about running your own business?

My favorite thing to do is listen to customers and create new products.




What does a typical day look like for you?

Up at 7 am. Take the kids to school and classes.  At work by 8:30.


We would love to hear more about your home base?

Pasadena, California.  Pasadena is an incredible area to have kids.   Our favorite areas have been Kidspace, Lacy Park, Huntington Gardens,


What does Motherly mean to You?

To always listen completely before responding.  To always offer affection, but encourage them to find their own answers.  To lead by example.


 In one word how would you describe yourself in all the roles you play?

mother: understanding

wife: listener

business owner: leader

product designer:  creative

friend: funny


Can you share a few of your favorite mommy moments?

Bedtime Story:  The Big Red Barn  when they were little/ Tale of Despereaux now that they're older.

Lullaby: You are my Sunshine

Vacation spot:  Palm Springs California

Restaurant: Lincoln

Children’s Brands: for play we have loved Seedling and Lego. for clothing just a variety—I like pact apparel


What is the one thing you wish you would have known before becoming a mom?

That my kids would be different than I ever could have imagined.   And, that I would learn more from them than I could have imagined.


Words to live by:

“It's not what you do for your children but what you teach them to do for themselves that will make them successful human beings”.  I’m not sure who the author is but it is one reason I am passionate about working.  The other quote that I firmly believe is “your children will watch what you do not what you say”.  I know that I’m (along with their father) their most influential role model.  I know the kids watch what I do and appreciate my passion and commitment to my business.   I hope that they will both follow their passions and take risks as well.


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