February 12, 2009 at 6:58PM
by Tommi Lewis Tilden
It's not unusual to see a celebrity dabble in another trade. "Raiders of the Lost Ark" actress Karen Allen runs a knitting studio in Massachusetts. Soleil Moon Frye and Lisa Rinna both own and operate retail boutiques. And there are the requisite actors-turned-politicians (thanks for that, Ronnie)--recent reports have "Batman" Val Kilmer running for governor of New Mexico.
So while strolling a green trade show, it wasn't that surprising to see actress Melanie Mayron
, former "thirtysomething" star and now an accomplished director, hawking her line of all--natural diaper cream. But it was the story behind the venture that intrigued.
Mayron, mom to ten-year-old boy/girl twins, was frustrated by the lack of a good, safe diaper cream, so she partnered with her dad David
, a renowned pharmaceutical chemist, to come up with the perfect formula. The father-daughter team launched Mayron's Good Baby
, a natural skin care line free of synthetic fragrances, Paraben, sodium lauryl sulfate and DEA. Mayron's dad still toils each day in his Hatfield, PA lab, developing even more products for Good Baby. David Mayron is also behind Jao
, an all-natural multi-purpose line, spearheaded by Melanie's sis, Gayle
Here's more from our chat with Melanie, a.k.a. "The Tushy Lady."thedailygreen.com: Tell us why Rosie O'Donnell is instrumental in getting your "Tushy Lady" career jumpstarted.Melanie Mayron:
Rosie was on her way to my next-door-neighbor's baby shower and her child was screaming and crying. She showed me his diaper rash and talked about how she'd tried everything. My dad and I were still working on Good Baby diaper cream, but I grabbed a white blank tube and handed it to Rosie. A week or so later, I had 22 messages on my machine. Friends were calling to tell me that Rosie said on her TV show, "I don't know what happened to Melanie Mayron's acting career, but now she's making diaper cream!" And she enthused that it was the only thing that had worked for her son. The next day I was in a restaurant and a waiter said, "Hey look, it's the tushy lady!"tdg: This venture sounds ambitious, especially with all the competition.MM:
I've been pouring what I have into it, kinda like Diane Keaton
in "Baby Boom." It's been that sort of labor of love thing. Ten years ago, when I started, there was nothing. I remember spending $18 on a jar of Kiehls, I sent it to dad and he said, the minute you put your hand in this, it's contaminated. The trickiest things are preservatives. With baby oil you can use benzyl alcohol, but you can't with the cream so we work with a bacteriologist and only use products derived from natural sources. Before my kids were even born I was like, "there's no natural line of baby products." But I was ahead of my time. You use diaper cream x amount of times a day and I wanted something natural, that went on easy, dried quickly. I was always working with my dad on stuff and even have a patent on a time-release tablet.
tdg: Your pop sounds like the perfect partner.MM:
People hire my dad to fix things. Companies would come to him to fix smells, consistencies--things being too thick or thin, not drying quickly enough. I grew up that way, he'd always have us smell things or try products.
tdg: And you say the diaper cream is not just for babies?MM:
I've had adults use it as an anti-chaffing cream when horseback riding. Or for eczema.tdg: Your line also has a charity connection.MM:
A portion of profits goes to the Women's Health Network
. They wouldn't let me use their name on the packaging, but it goes to women's health research charities--American Heart Association, Breast Cancer Research.
tdg: Future plans for Mayron's GoodBaby?MM:
Right now the line is the barrier and diaper cream. But we're working on tangerine baby oil and really hydrating body milk. Also a gentle head to toe shampoo and amazing chapped lip protector. We also have a sleepless night cream--for anyone who's been up all night, either on the town or with a baby.
To find out more, visit www.mayronsgoodbaby.com