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Pampering with purpose: How a small B.C. business is helping arctic animals

Karen Johnson started her all-natural skincare brand, K’pure, out of her garage a few years ago. Now she's expanding the line to include products that benefit arctic wildlife.
Arctic animals like the polar bear are the focus of a new ‘pampering with purpose’ campaign from a duo of B.C. small businesses. Photo: @kpuresnow/Instagram

Karen Johnson started her all-natural skincare brand, K’pure, out of her garage a few years ago. The Mission, B.C. mother of four was looking for an alternative to mass-market deodorants and lotion that were passing aluminum and plastics through her breastmilk to her then-infant son.

She got to work coming up with formulas of her own, and word began to spread in her community about her non-toxic and all-natural products that work so well. Soon, what was a hobby evolved into a full-scale operation, and a bustling business with an impressive product line that includes masques, room sprays, serums, bath soaks, body butters, and much more.

Savvily, Johnson made great use of social media – particularly Instagram – to grow her business, with influencers and celebrities spreading the gospel that K’pure shares on its own feed. With an appealing aesthetic and messaging centred on strong women, caring for animals, self-care, family, and nature, K’pure definitely reflects a way of life, and lets people vote with their shopping dollars by supporting a small business with big ethics.


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Not surprisingly, it was on Instagram where I first learned about Johnson and her K’pure line. I’d just begun the quest to find a natural deodorant, and K’pure was highly recommended. I had tried a few others and was wondering if going back to commercial and chemical-laden products was my only option, but I gave K’pure a shot, and I’ve been a customer for nearly two years now. In addition to the Get Closer natural deodorant, the Almond Cookie spray and the Perk Up coffee scrub are personal favourites.

Recently, Johnson took K’pure’s ability to use a product to amplify a cause to the next level. She teamed up with Vancouver-based marketing agency Partner & Hawes to release two products under the sub-label “Snow” for which proceeds go to support arctic environmental causes – Canada’s snowy north and its beautiful inhabitants that need help in the face of climate change.


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There is a Snow “Arctic Mist” spray for your skin, linens, or room, as well as a Snow bath soak. Both have a bright, bracing, wintery feel but pack a lot of soothing, and are of course all-natural and cruelty-free.

The concept for the “Snow” line is one of “pampering with purpose.” Essentially, it’s that you can still enjoy self-care while simultaneously giving back. Feel good, do good.

“This project is super exciting and dear to my heart. It’s for a great cause, one that I think is under-supported yet critical,” says Johnson. “I’m ecstatic to shine light, share awareness and raise funds for this worthy initiative. My hope is that Snow creates a flurry of positive impact.”

The Snow products are available online via their own web portal, or you can check out the full K’pure range online (or see who stocks the products at a store near you).