- Tell us about what you do.
Hi everyone! My name is Christine Myrick and I’m the owner of Tidal Living, a coastal-zen inspired home and self-care business in Freeport, Maine.
- How long have you been making your products and how did you get started?
I began making home and self-care products for myself and family about two years ago, however, formally started the business in the Fall of 2019. My background is in biology and chemistry and I’ve always enjoyed the process of mixing things, tweaking them, and seeing the results. The shift from being in a formal lab setting to being in my studio wasn’t too much of a change other than the reagents I’m using (these smell wayyy better)!
- What is your favorite part of the creative process? Least favorite?
It’s hard to choose when it’s something you build from the ground up. I absolutely love coming up with a new idea, ordering the supplies, putting them all together and seeing the outcomes, which is really rewarding and allows me to play with different ideas - even if they never see the light of day. I would say my favorite part of this creative process is mixing and blending fragrances to create something like a candle, a lip balm, or perfume. They all use similar fragrances and essential oils, but then you can create something so different depending on what base you use (i.e. candle wax or lip balm oil blends. I also love mixing different scents to create something completely new! My least favorite would need to be the finances aspect. I understand it (it’s essential as an owner), it’s necessary to ensure you’re making the right decisions, but I don’t enjoy it. This is where my husband has been a huge advocate, he has started to take on a lot of this responsibility to allow me to dedicate more time in the studio.
- From where do you draw your inspiration to create your products?
I draw inspiration from where I live on the coast, as well as nature, or from things I’ve heard people say they’ve wanted or needed. I’m originally from Vermont but have lived in Maine now for 20 years. I have always lived on water and now that I am near the coast, would never choose to live anywhere else. There is a certain presence, pull and calming I feel from being in or near the ocean. It can be so dramatic, and so calming at the same time. The name Tidal Living embodies how my husband and I feel about the ocean, it’s a lifestyle, and we know other salty souls can relate. We’re constantly aware of the tides; whether we can bring our dog, Harbour, out for a swim, walk on the beach, paddleboard, we’re always planning activities around the water. I try to incorporate our affinity for the ocean through thoughtful design, coastal color palettes, and eco-friendly packaging. Eco-consciousness is a foundation for us, it’s a responsibility we have to the environment and oceans through less waste, toxins and plastics. Lastly, another way I bring the ocean into my products is through the soaking salts in our self-care line, to mimic how my skin always feels so good after being in the ocean! I’m also planning on bringing on more products like this later this fall!
- What values does your business embody?
My philosophy for this business and brand is to be as close to nature as possible while being simple, effective, unique and affordable. I make every product I sell from scratch in small batches with an emphasis on using organic, high quality, and food grade ingredients. I appreciate natural and organic products, but it is still challenging to find toxin-free home and body products that are aesthetically pleasing, while being cost-effective. My longer-term goals will be to expand on how eco-friendly / recyclable / reusable my products are to maximize sustainability and use more locally sourced materials. The other side of this is being as approachable and my authentic self as possible. I’ve found it’s easy to put on ‘armor’ to do business, but sometimes you just need to be human and humble. I try to form relationships with every retailer I work with so that people can see the ‘face’ behind the brand and hopefully feel my passion for what I’m doing!
- Is your business a full time or part time venture? Do you have plans to grow/expand?
Tidal Living is currently my part-time venture, but ultimately, my long-term goal is to grow this business into my full-time venture. I never in my wildest dreams expected that entrepreneurship would be something that I’d be pursuing (and loving every second of), but here I am! My dream for the future would be to someday maybe have a storefront, or expand into a larger studio, so it’s fun for me to learn and grow the business while pursuing my goals for the future.
- There are many challenges that come along with running a small business. What is your biggest challenge and what is your biggest reward or success?
Oh boy, there are so many challenges! I would say my biggest challenge is that people generally make purchases using all their senses and being primarily an e-commerce business is that people aren’t able to see, feel, and smell products they’re purchasing. I hope to continue to work closely with storefronts and retailers in the near future to get my products ‘in front’ of people so that they can see, feel and test my products. I am also planning on how I can get samples or smaller versions of products to customers easily to trial before purchasing larger sizes. There is a lot of trial and error, but it’s also rewarding being able to problem solve.
My biggest reward is happy customers, this is why I’m doing what I’m doing! I will never forget my first ‘real’ (non-family member) purchase! I try to keep this at the forefront of my mind when making any business-related decisions. I add a thank-you card to every package that says, “You made my day, I hope I made yours”. It’s the truth, and I hope people realize whenever they make a purchase, that they’re truly making my day! I think what continues to motivate me and bring me joy, is seeing people opening my products and enjoying them. I hope to bring a smile to someone’s face when they receive a package from me and know that it came from my hands for them.
- How do you spend your time when you aren’t creating?
I love being outside, being active, cooking and fermenting things! I obviously love anything related to being near the coast, hiking, biking, paddle boarding and gardening. If we’re inside, my husband loves baking sourdough breads, they're super tasty and fun to experiment with. We also love to make wine, this has been something we’ve been doing for years and we just expanded our wine cellar in our basement, which is a lot of work but totally worth it! I don’t have a green thumb, but it doesn’t keep me from planting new flowers or gardens whenever (or wherever) I can! My husband and I also spend as much time as possible with our 3YO Labrador retriever, Harbour. She is our fur-baby and brings so many laughs to our home, and we pretty much base all of our activities around what she can do with us!
- Salt and Branch sells only a few of your products. Where can people go to find more of your products?
You can find our products at https://www.tidallivingme.com and find me on Instagram/Pinterest/Facebook @tidallivingme. I am trying to be more active on social media, so come hang out with me in my studio! You can also start finding Tidal Living products in some storefronts locally, as well as across the US with plans to continue to expand from there! Keep an eye out on our website under retailers to see if we’re in a local store near you!
- Is there anything I didn’t ask that you would like readers to know?
Only to say thank you for their time if they’ve read all the way to the bottom here and to thank them for their support!
Thanks Christine! We appreciate your time and loved learning more about you and your business.