Women Of Impact: Jaleh Bisharat, Co-Founder + CEO at NakedPoppy
Meet Jaleh Bisharat, Co-Founder and CEO of NakedPoppy — a clean beauty company that curates clean, safe, and effective beauty brands. NakedPoppy uses patented technology to identify the best clean beauty products for your unique self.
Previously, Jaleh served as CMO/VPM at Amazon, Opentable, Upwork, and Eventbrite.
Let’s start from the beginning! What was your childhood like? What/who shaped you to be who you are today?
I grew up in Iran in the early 1970’s at a time when many girls were primarily destined for marriage. Fortunately for me, my parents were different. It was a single piece of advice from them that best captures what shaped me: “They can take anything away from you,” they said. “They can take your money, your property, and more. What nobody can take away from you is what’s in your mind.”
Imbued with that thought, I came to the United States to go to college. And, as if on cue, the Iranian Revolution came to pass. My family fled the country, losing everything. I woke up one morning with no money for tuition, and only an ironclad determination to finish my degree and make my way.
After that loss, there has been no problem that has seemed insurmountable to me.
What’s your “Why” behind building NakedPoppy?
I sometimes joke that when Whole Foods started carrying clean beauty products, I was their first customer. It’s not far from the truth. I’ve loved organic, nourishing food for as long as I can remember. It made sense to me that over time, what I put in my pores, near my eyes, and on my lips could also have a cumulative impact on my health.
So, about 15 years ago, I started buying some pretty crunchy beauty brands. Then, something magical happened. Products started getting better. I found a clean mascara that worked just as well as traditional mascara!
So, I became obsessed with the idea of starting a company that makes clean makeup easy to buy online, so that many more people could enjoy better-for-you beauty. And, in 2019, we launched NakedPoppy.
For me, one of the most important things about NakedPoppy is we’re not a beauty company that manufactures insecurity and then sells you products to fill an emotional need. You’re wonderful the way you are. And, if you enjoy looking pulled together and pampering your skin, we want to be sure the products you use are made with safe ingredients that honor your body and your values.
What’s a clean beauty product you always have on hand?
NakedPoppy Clean Liquid Eyeliner. It’s my desert island product!
What’s something people would be surprised to know about you?
This shouldn’t be surprising, but to some it is — in a world of prepared foods and meal delivery services, my husband and I grow herbs, fruits, and vegetables in our garden, shop the farmers market, and cook almost all our meals from scratch. It’s not only about the healthy food itself. Cooking is a creative, calming pleasure for me.
What’s your personal motto?
Comparison is the thief of joy.
When I first saw this quote, it struck a huge chord. I found it so freeing! I was at this meditation class (my doctor had literally prescribed meditation 😂) and the instructor asked us what we all thought is the inverse of “joy.”
What do you think is the inverse of joy? Is it sorrow? Sadness? Grief?
It turns out it's none of those. It’s envy.
This really spoke to me. Comparison produces envy. And what does envy do? It robs us of joy — for ourselves and for others.
What values are most important to you when shopping for products that are sustainably made?
That the founders be genuinely committed to people, justice, and the planet as core values. A lot of companies are jumping on a trend and may or may not make the hard decisions over the long haul.
What’s your number one clean living tip?
Remember to nourish your soul.
It took me a long time to fully understand that meditation and other soul-affirming practices are as important as the food we eat, the air we breathe, and the exercise and sleep we get.
Who is a woman of impact we should talk to next and why?
I think you’d love hearing from Lisa Abramson — Even Oprah herself called her an inspiration! Lisa works with busy professionals to help them become more grounded and present, and her guided meditations are extraordinary. She’s also a huge advocate for maternal mental health and has a must-watch TEDx talk where she bravely discusses postpartum psychosis. She’s an inspiration.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this interview with Jaleh! If you haven’t yet, you NEED to check out NakedPoppy for all things clean beauty. Our personal favorite product is their Organic Facial Oil - definite must have, it works wonders for those even with the most sensitive skin!