Interview With Cassy Burnside: Fatco Skincare
Ever since I was a young boy, I was well known for being a dirty kid. As a toddler, I rarely complained of dirty diapers. Growing up, I was not above stomping in puddles, rolling around in the mud, or returning home smelling like I just crawled out of a swamp.
Basically, there was no amount of scrubbing or soaping that could ever truly keep me clean. While keeping clean was a big deal (to other people around me, not so much myself) in my youth, keeping healthy skin was not. Turns out, all that scrubbing and soaping was causing damage to my skin.
Now, as an adult, I want to have healthy skin, because, frankly, any damage or aging to my skin is going to result in me yelling at the reflection in the mirror. This is where I introduce Cassy Burnside, founder of FATCO. Cassy, like many of us frustrated with the crazy BS found in our everyday care products, decided to take matters into her own hands.
Creating a product line of skincare and deodorants using a base of Grass Fed tallow, Cassy has shown me that I can be dirty as much as I want, without the worry of skin damage when the time comes to get cleaned up.
Thanks for meeting with us today, Cassy, and apologies for the mud I tracked in. Would you mind telling us a little about yourself and how your story started with making your own skincare products and founding FATCO?
Sure! 6 years ago, I was working a 9-5 job as a Manufacturing Engineer in the automotive industry. I was an avid runner, living a somewhat healthy lifestyle. In 2010, I read “It Starts With Food” by Melissa & Dallas Hartwig and from there, my life changed.
I started caring more about the food I was eating as well as the products I was using on my skin. I always loved finding new recipes for oil cleansers and lotions on Pinterest and trying them out, but at that point, it was just a hobby.
As I started learning more about the benefits of tallow, as well as realizing that there was definitely a place for products containing tallow in the marketplace, I decided I needed to make these products available to more people!
So, I started making small batches of products in my kitchen, built our first website by myself, had labels designed & printed, and started selling products under the name FATFACE Skincare! Since then, our name has changed, and we’ve grown into a bigger space with more employees, but the products have always remained the same. It has been quite the adventure
Talk to us about your ‘Nose to Tail’ philosophy.
The “Nose to Tail” philosophy is one that all of us at FATCO believe deeply in. Nose to Tail is the idea of using every single piece of the animal, and not letting any of it go to waste. This means using the bones for making broth (aka Liquid Gold), eating the nutrient-dense organ meats, and using the fat to create some pretty kick-a$$ skincare products!
How did you find the Paleo community? Tell us a Paleo story!
In 2010 I read “It Starts With Food” by Melissa & Dallas Hartwig. I did my first “Whole30” shortly after, and from there, my life was transformed! I started adopting a more “paleo” diet and lifestyle, and I started paying more attention to the ingredients in my food. Along with this transition, I also started to pay more attention to the products that I was using on my skin.
I eventually learned that your skin is your largest organ, and everything that you put on it gets absorbed and must be processed by your body! Unfortunately, most store-bought products contain ingredients you wouldn’t dare to eat. And if you wouldn’t EAT something, then why would you put it on your skin!? In my quest to find pure, raw, natural skincare products, I didn’t find anything that fit my criteria …so I decided to make my own! And this is how FATCO was born!
I have this mental image of the first human to say, ‘hey, let’s rub cow fat all over ourselves,’ and it’s not a pretty picture. How did you come to the conclusion that Grass Fed tallow was actually good for your skin?
The Weston A Price foundation is a huge proponent of the topical use of animal fats. But there was one particular article from February of 2013 which was the main impetus for the development of these products (http://www.westonaprice.org/know-your-fats/traditional-nourishing-and-healing-skin-care/).
In this article, they cite sources as far back as 1866, showing people using salves made from tallow to treat all kinds of things, even ingrown toenails! After reading this article, I knew that I wanted to start testing out this new and different ingredient in my own recipes, so I made a few batches of moisturizers using some grass-fed tallow that I bought off a rancher on Etsy.
I tried them on myself and shared them with friends, and from then on, I knew that these were products which needed to be made available to the general consumer.
Acne is still running rampant among teens and has been designated by the WHO as the number one killer of first dates. Can FATCO skincare help me with acne? What other ailments might It remedy?
Personally, our Cleansing Oil is my favorite FATCO product, because I have seen it make such dramatic improvements in people’s skin, teenagers included. Many products on the market nowadays include chemicals and preservatives that can actually cause irritation and inflamation, therefore making acne worse!
Since acne and oil production is greatly impacted by hormones, I always tell customers to first focus on those things which can impact their hormones (like sleep, food, exercise, etc). Cleaning up your diet and drinking more water can drastically help with skin conditions.
Unfortunately, teenagers also have to deal with the “Wild Card” of hormones (since the teenage years can be ones of crazy hormonal fluctuations). But using clean products (like FATCO) and adopting a healthier diet can definitely help to reduce hormonal acne for teens!
I couldn’t help but notice your awesome sleeve! Any plans to make skincare products for tattoos, or is there a FATCO product you recommend that’s excellent for healing tattoo work?
Definitely! It was funny because my tattoo artists always directed me to use A&D Ointment (which I think is primarily marketed to moms & babies to treat diaper rash). From researching the benefits of grass-fed tallow, we know that it’s very high in vitamins A, D, K and E. So, wouldn’t it only make sense that grass-fed tallow would also be an amazing for tattoo aftercare?
I tested the first few batches on myself (as my sleeve took about 3 months and 15 hours to complete) and it was perfect! So we’re actually working on an amazing Tattoo Balm right now! we’re still a few months away from having everything finalized, but stay tuned because it’s going to be killer!