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Eastbourne’s new self care eco-friendly shop: ‘There is power in the individual’

Barbara Rowe set up ‘Take Good Care’ in October 2021 and now a year on has arrived at The Beacon within The Foundry.

Barbara was working in diversity training but lockdown left her unemployed and looking at what to do next. She said: “I was at home and lockdown made me realise how burnt out I was. I realised in the year up to that that I’d been weaving self care into my life on a daily basis without even realising it.”

Barbara said she had health issues before lockdown which triggered her to make physical changes, and mental self care followed. She said: “I was bring self care into my life and then researching too and I thought it would be great to have it all in one place. People often overcomplicate self care but it doesn’t need to be difficult. The other aspect is about caring for the planet more, and I combined the two to create a site that caters for self care of yourself and the planet.”

Barbara Rowe at Take Good Care (Pic by Jon Rigby)

Take Good Care sells a range of planet and body-friendly products including a skin care range launched by Barbara herself, accessories and clothing made 100% from recycled products, and gift sets. She said: “I want everyone to realise that doing something is better than doing nothing at all – every small change you make makes a big difference, there is power in the individual.”

Barbara said she does lots of research into everything she sells in order to make sure she’s working with the right suppliers. This knowledge can be shared with customers. She said people have been picking her brains with when they come into the shop to find out more about the products so they can make informed decisions. She said: “Google became my best friend with the amount of research I’ve done to set up this business. It’s been marvellous so far. Lots of people out there are interested in what they can do to help. They want me to explain everything to them – it’s been a really really good response. People say we need this in Eastbourne.”

As Barbara buys the products in small quantities, the items sold constantly change so Barabara thinks it’s ‘fresh and exciting’ for customers. She said: “I have the time to go to trade fairs and source unusual things. I like to champion independent retailers.”

In the last six years Barbara says she’s completely changed. She said: “I’m much happier and confident now – this is about changing people’s way of life. I feel like there’s been a purpose to it all and it’s making other people happy.”

Barbara Rowe at Take Good Care (Pic by Jon Rigby)

Eventually Barbara would like to set up her own permanent shop and become known for self care and planet/body-friendly products. Take Good Care is open in The Foundry 11am-5pm seven days a week, for the next year.

Barbara Rowe at Take Good Care (Pic by Jon Rigby)

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