People Thriving No. 1: Kara Noel Countryman

We talk a lot around here about us. Truth be told, though, we love learning about you even more! So, we are starting a new series of blogs featuring you, our Zambeezi family.

Partner with us, by using our lip balm, carrying it in your store, or connecting us with local retailers in your area. Together we’re creating a future.

We say it all the time, but it's true. It's only together, with you, that we do what we do. Now, let's meet our first passionate Zambeezi advocate: 

Kara Noel Countryman

#peoplethriving - Kara Countryman shares her love for Zambeezi Organic, Fair Trade Ethically sourced lip balm

Where is home? Austin, Texas

Which Zambeezi flavor is your favorite? Without a doubt, the Honeybalm!

Which shoe do you tie first, right or left? I typically wear slip on shoes. Even my sneakers are already tied and I just slip them on for easy use. I go back and forth with which shoe I put on first. I think, if I am trying to put shoes on while standing, I typically go with the Left one first.  Possibly because I am hanging on to a wall or something for stabilization. I am right handed. 

Who has inpsired you most in life (living, dead, personal or historical)? This is going to sound very cliché, but honestly, Mother Teresa. When I was a little girl, I found an article describing her life and hardships, her beginnings, her struggles with hearing the voice of God and then never hearing it again. I remember loving that she continued her work and dedication to those with no voice despite her feeling abandoned by her God.  Still today, I find it very inspiring. 

If you could pick a utensil in your kitchen to describe you, which would you pick? Why? Ha! Chop sticks! I always need another pair of hands and chop sticks are like having an extension of my fingers. I tend to prefer them over a fork.  I am not sure that describes me, necessarily, but chop sticks are a utensil that assists me the most. 

If animals could all of the sudden talk, which one would you want to interview first? Elephants are my spirit animal, so yeah, I would definitely want to speak to an elephant. They are a true matriarch and when they see humans, they have the same reaction as humans do when we see puppies. I love that.  They recognize the remains of other elephants that they knew, even if there are only bones left.  I think that is amazing.  They will morn the death and spend hours dancing around the remains for hours before moving on their journey. 

What are three books that you want all of your friends to read? The Book of Joy. It is an interview with the Dali Lama and Desmond Tutu. They are talking about how to find joy during times of hardship. It is wonderful.  The Dali Lama tells a story about when he was sneaking away from Lasa (the only place he had known as home since he was a small child). He had an organ fail and had to be carried.  He tells of how he was in excruciating pain and as he was being carried to a hospital, he passed through a town where children were outside with no shoes, no education, no food.  His pain didn’t go away, but his mind instantly became focused on resolving this issue so that children would not have to endure situations like that.  He explains how the brain can be refocused during times of intense hardship to solutions and compassion and how that mindset change moves mountains. The second book is: Welcome Homeless.  It is a book written by Alan Graham, who created Community First Village.  A neighborhood built of tiny houses and trailers for the homeless in Austin. It is chalked full of amazing human interest stories of survival, peace and love. Those are the two main books I would recommend to anyone. 

When you think of #peoplethriving, who is the first person that comes to mind? I have a friend who is a graphic designer. She designs bikes and helmets for Schwinn. I think of her because she spent very little time in school and lives her dream life.  She is married to a man who owned a skate board shop in California.  They sold his shop and bought a bed n breakfast in Vermont. It is a gorgeous landscape wonderland. She is living her dream life and thriving.  She doesn’t need a lot of money to live happily and joyously.  She has surrounded herself with the nature she loves and a happy family.  She makes other people happy with her bnb.  I love to see her posts on social media about her simple life, I know she has never been happier. 

What does “thriving” look like in your life? Thriving for me is my volunteer work. It fills my soul with joy and purpose. I love volunteering and making a difference in the life of one person.  I make it my daily mantra to do one good deed for someone else, every day.  I love humans.  I love our planet.  I love nature.  I am forever the girl saying, “We are worth it!  We can do it!” 

Why do you love Zambeezi? Where to begin….sheesh. I love Zambeezi because it is fair trade, first and foremost. I love the mission of Zambeezi: helping people to help themselves. What an empowering purpose.  I love Zambeezi because it feels amazing on my skin.  I have tried many products that are organic or fair trade and they have been harsh or not easy to use.  Since the first day I tried Zambeezi, I have almost completely stopped wearing lipstick. I constantly have people taking my Zambeezi from me and I have to buy more.  I have 3 of them in my purse at all times because I don’t like not having it on my lips.  I love that Zambeezi is all organic materials with nothing weird or harmful.  A coworker (who is a rock climber) said he was an avid user of another brand and it would burn his lips in the sun.  I gave him a Zambeezi sunscreen.  He puts it on his face when he is climbing and has given it to his fellow climbers, all converts.  We will hear more from him soon.   It is a magnificent product and I have never known anyone to use it and not absolutely love it.

Isn't she fun? Thank you, Kara, for sharing with us!

Do you want to be featured? We would love to hear from you. Just send us an email over to Josh, our Director of Marketing, at

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