“… the kind of shop I’m thinking of opening is one that sells natural cosmetics in different sizes and in cheap, refillable containers,” Anita Roddick told her husband Gordon in the mid-1970s. When The Body Shop’s first branch opened in March 1976 with 25 products, that is what she did.
Everything Roddick did in her start-up year was dictated by her lack of funding. The Body Shop’s logo was designed for £25, approximately US $46 dollars; friends helped fill bottles and hand-write labels; the inside of the shop was painted dark green to cover damp patches on the walls—only later did the color green represent the environmental movement; and when she could not afford to buy enough containers, she offered to refill empty containers or fill the customers’ own bottles. “In this way, we started recycling and reusing materials long before it became ecologically fashionable,” wrote Roddick in her book Business As Unusual (Burlington Press Ltd, England, UK, 2000).