Local, woman-owned, natural baby product business fills void in market

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By: Jan Engoren
Contributing Writer

As if working as a clinical psychologist, life coach, public speaker, hypnotherapist, advice columnist and author weren’t enough, Boca Raton resident Sharon Fried Buchalter (or “Dr. Sharon” as she’s more informally known), has added the title of entrepreneur to her long list of accomplishments.

Now CEO of Products On The Go LLC, (POTG) a consumer lifestyle company, Buchalter has worked with Fortune 500 companies, including Colgate Palmolive, Quaker Oats, Nissan and Toyota, as a product development and consumer psychology consultant.

“I saw that among consumer-packaged goods, there was not enough emphasis on combining quality natural products with consumer convenience,” Buchalter said.

With a broad array of expertise, including a PhD, three master’s degrees, including an MBA, Buchalter, the mother of two, identified a void in the market for solution-based approaches and decided to create her own company offering sustainable natural and green products for mothers and their babies.

Thus, was born PTOG – Little Toes (baby diapering needs, including diaper pads, wipes and swimmies) and Sunshine On The Go, natural and environmentally friendly sunscreen products for kids. Next year she plans to launch a full line of antioxidant, multi-use sun and after sun care products.

“My goal is to create a brand with the highest quality natural diapers, swim diapers and wipes and other diapering accessories, that add simplicity and happiness to a parent’s life,” she said. “There is a definite market for these baby products, especially among Millennials. These are the safest, cleanest, plant-based products on the market and something Millennials value.”

Former Ft. Lauderdale resident, Mary Catherine Reeder, 37, a behavior analyst and mother of four, now living in North Carolina, has been using Buchalter’s products for many years.

“When my fourth child was born, Dr. Sharon send me a care package for the baby, including her diapers, wipes and swimmies,” remembers Reeder. “I fell in love with the products and like that they have no chemicals.”

“The diapers are super soft and her wipes are so durable,” said Reeder, who says they not only smell good, but are good for multi-use. She uses them on her kids to wipe their hands and mouths when they dine out.

“Dr. Sharon is an incredible person,” Reeder said, “She’s generous, kind and genuinely cares about you and your baby. She knew these products were something people needed and set about researching how to bring them to market.”

Reeder’s sister, Danielle Valletta, 34, of Deerfield Beach, has two boys in diapers; Luca, two and a half yrs. old and Sonny, a one-yr. old. She said she loves that the products are natural and biodegradable.

A stay-at-home mom, Valletta is often on the go and appreciates the travel packs and changing pads.

“I love the changing pads,” she said. “You can change your baby in airport bathrooms without them getting dirty, then just throw the pads away. It’s genius and so convenient.”

She also likes the swimmers because they are stretchy and fit well.

Buchalter, a hard-worker and someone who dots every ‘I” and crosses every “T,” spent 7 years researching the market before she came up with her products and the formulations.

Her sunscreens are National Products Association (NPA) certified, meaning they are made with 95 percent natural ingredients and her diapers are made from 100 percent hypoallergenic bamboo fibers, that absorb urine more effectively than cotton or synthetics.

It took her two years to obtain this certification, but she said, “This is so important to me.”

Buchalter said that bamboo diapers decompose in landfills when exposed to light in 180 days, compared to conventional diapers which can remain in landfills for up to 500 years.

“The brand addresses the concerns over the overflow of diapers in U.S. landfills and the effect on our environment,” she said. “Every year in the U.S., an estimated 20 billion disposable diapers are added to the landfill.”

“I’m an out-of-the-box thinker,” she said. “I love taking an idea from inception and watching it grow.”

“I put so much into what I do,” Buchalter added, who is nothing if not determined. “I can’t just go to the gym and lunch with friends.”

Partial proceeds from the sale of her products go to a nonprofit she founded called Rescue Mission Unlimited, which helps children and families in crisis, a project close to her heart.

Buchalter said her best customer is a woman educated to the formulation of the products and someone who wants the best for their children.

“I put my heart and soul into these products,” she said. “There’s a piece of myself in every product; I’m very passionate about making life easier for parents.”

Visit products-onthego.com or visit her showroom at 4800 Linton Blvd., Suite 203A