Learning Curves: Choosing a name

When this business first began in October 2016, the thought was honestly it’d be staying in China for a number of years.  So trying to figure out a name that worked well with the locals and would be moderately suitable for the expats, was a challenge. Sure, a few mistakes were made along the way when it came to the name, I didn’t realise that I’d not actually be selling to Chinese women. They much prefer bigger corporate names and chunky clunky beautiful bottles with celebrities who have been bought and paid for to model- airbrushing including it and it doesn’t matter if it works or not, they just want to really buy the brand name and brag about how much money they spent on a product. Issue number two: the name was just too cute for many expat women. And much too cute for me. I am so tired of cute things after living here in China.  Third: there is the fact that I didn’t realise, “Happy Skin” was a very popular brand from the Philippines until after I had the leaflets and product stickers printed. 

So the business was kind of locked into the “Happy Skin” at this point. After a couple months of thinking, the business plan was still to stay in China at this point, but it evolved into,  “Scrub Me Down- Happy Skin” as then it might be better suited for the social media footprint that I so desperately needed to create and hopefully work with the business for when it eventually moved out of China. Happy Skin, I learnt very quickly would not survive as a business name, and Scrub Me Down might have a better chance. So when the business left China, it would just be, “Scrub Me Down” and drop the “Happy Skin” leaving all that cuteness in China.

Yeah. Talk about failure.

“Scrub Me Down- Happy Skin” was born on various social media platforms, from WeChat to Facebook and this here blog too. Once I began working with it for a few weeks, I knew it wouldn’t work as well as I hoped as it was not quite… right. Yet. But by this time, the date to say Adiós Chino was tentatively set, and I knew that the business would be heading off to greener pastures. Hola Irlanda! So WeChat and China was dedicated to continuing on as, “Happy Skin” and “Scrub Me Down” was for everywhere else in the world for the time being as a placeholder name. And it lead to a lot of confusion initially!


It took about a year to figure out what to call this here little business outside of China. And it wasn’t easy! It took many months of throwing names back and forth for each and every random name that popped into our heads. And the graphic logo. That maple leaf and shamrock. We really wanted to keep it, but with that graphic, I knew the name had to be something elegant and that would stand the test of time. I knew it had to be something to bring the two countries (Canada and Ireland) together. It had to work for both the Irish and the tourists.

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In October of 2017, the name “Celtic Essence” with a bold Celtic font, (that could easily be bought which would be allowed us to use all over the website. Yup, you have to actually buy the fonts for use on most business website). I even had the design for the logo all planned out! Look!

Celtic Essence logo small.png

But honestly? It just didn’t sit right with me long term. Then I thought of, “Emerald Isle Beauty” or “Emerald Isle Essence” in January of 2018. I thought that since Ireland received lots of tourists, having something on the package to remember a tourists trip would be brilliant. Unfortunately, it wasn’t long loved. And thankfully so.

And the problem with naming your business something elegant and sophisticated, it means you’d be kind of confined to keeping things on the straight and narrow. And no word puns, no play on words, no sassy comments; my favourite way of naming products just wouldn’t work. It also meant that, if I wanted to tie the blog into the business in some way to continue my work as a teacher and pass knowledge on, the blog had to be on the more straight and narrow too. No eccentric Barb moments or phrases as it wouldn’t work with the brand. No more mocking of Sugar Plum Fairies or Jack Frost’s nads. No more being me. No more cheek. No more referring to a cleansing balm as, “washing your face with baby poo”. And certainly, no, “Ass Soap” (most amazing and bestest soap on the planet I tell you stay tuned for the recipe!)

And, if I was going to be opening a business, spending all this time focusing on making products, labelling, packaging, creating blog posts… I can resent doing the bookwork, inventorying, the crappy part of owning a business, but take away the part that helps makes me happy? It has to be true to me.

So back to the drawing board!

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So there was more hashing out possible names. A name would be mentioned, and then possible labeling puns for future products. I really liked, “The Stinky Irish” and “The Twisted Sisters”. I thought those would be fun to play with. Oh and “Bridge Beauty”. I liked that one too. I mean how awesome would that one have been? “Bridge Beauty”- bridging the DMZ between science and the babe/mama’s and the like.

But again? They weren’t long loved either. Most of the time they were not long loved as their domain name (.com) was taken. Or there was already a business registered to it.

So back to the drawing board looking for inspiration.

Figuring out a name for your business and future brand is not an easy task. I mean it sounds like naming something would just be a lot of fun and super simple. But this is my baby. This is something that will stay hopefully for a very long time. It had to be me. It had to be an extension of me. It had to be an original. It had to resonate not only with me, but with customers too. It had to be a name that was memorable, that oozed awesomeness too, and passed that awesomeness onto the customer and to you the kick arsed readers of this here blog. And that future customers and readers could relate and have a laugh with.

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And on February 09, 2018 at 6:16am Ireland time, Cheeky Bath Treats was born.

And the part that makes me giggle? Every time I say, “Cheeky Bath Treats”, no one thinks I am saying Cheeky Bath Treats. Tee he he! I love word play!

No one says that you can’t drink whiskey or wine from a tea cup. Coffee cups have handles. That’s important information to know. 

So! Welcome to the official blog of Cheeky Bath Treats. Where you can get what you want. When you want. No strings attached. Where everything soon, will be handmade in the heart of Ireland. But not quite yet! Stay tuned for that post!

B- Black


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