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4 inspiring small businesses you'll want to support — all run by kids

Teens are making some of the coolest, most environmentally and socially-minded products out there.

We already knew that children are the future. But some kids are proving that the future of business is now.

TODAY Lifestyle and Commerce Contributor Jill Martin shared her top picks for the best small businesses run by kids. Each of these kids not only makes a killer product, but has an inspiring story. They’re all socially minded and know that good business goes far beyond just making money.

From environmentally conscious bamboo products to zany socks that give back to charity, scroll through to discover four of the most inspiring small businesses run by kids today.


17-year-old Raquel James started “SerenaScents” in 2018 to help others dealing with skin eczema like her. Then it became something more. She focused on the business to help her get through both the stress of the pandemic as a high schooler and the grief of losing her father in a car crash. James has called her business a “coping mechanism” but its healing effects go far beyond her personal life. The all-natural soaps can help cure skin issues like discoloration and stimulate new collagen production.

Tumeric Soap

SerenaScents uses a base of all-natural ingredients like coconut oil and shea butter to soothe skin. On top of that, the turmeric contains Vitamin E which helps exfoliate and moisturize skin.

Rosemary Honey Soap

This all-natural soap not only smells good, it’s multifunctional. It’s delicate enough to use on both skin and hair — and it will only set you back $8.

Are You Kidding Socks

Brothers Brandon and Sebastian Martinez, now aged 15 and 13, run a company of zany and bright socks (all designed by Sebastian). And although the designs are extremely cool, perhaps the coolest part of the company is that about 30% of their profits go to charities. Since the start of the pandemic, the business has struggled. The brothers used to rely on school events to hold “sock hops” and raise money for charity. They have since pivoted to online sales, and recently donated socks to people in need in Texas.

Cowboys Who Care Socks

This pair of socks raises money for the charity “Cowboys Who Care,” which donates cowboy hats to children suffering from cancer or other life-threatening illnesses. The charity’s cowboys visit kids battling illnesses and help provide them with a smile and a source of strength.

Amigos For Kids Socks

This fun pair of socks has one very serious charitable cause: raising money to end child abuse and neglect. The charity works to provide after-school care and support a Nurturing Parents Program to help strengthen families and communities around the country.

BeYoutiful Bath Bombs

13-year-old Hannah Grace Walsh was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and Celiac disease as a child. About five years ago, her father challenged her to try to make a bath bomb at home, after seeing them in stores. Now, it’s her business. Hannah has sold more than 1,000 products to date and donates a portion of her proceeds to the JDRF Greater New England, which works to cure, prevent and treat Type 1 Diabetes.

Kissed By a Rose Bath Bomb

This bath bomb is Walsh’s top seller. It’s made with real Moroccan rose petals and will turn your bath into a luxurious bouquet of freshly picked roses.

You da Bomb! Bath Bomb

For when you need to be both relaxed and inspired, this bath bomb comes with a secret message inside. The inspirational message will appear as the product dissolves and turns your bath into a watermelon lemonade-scented treat.

The World of Bamboo

Kids are leading the world in the fight against climate change. 18-year-old Nabil Hamdan is helping the cause with his genius bamboo products. He was shocked by the amount of plastic washing up and ruining a local beach in Madison, Wisconsin, So, in 2017, he founded his own company of bamboo products to fight plastic waste. “I was stuck with a decision, either sit back and let someone else come up with a solution, or I can take a stand and fix it myself. I chose to take a stand,” Hamdan said on his website. All products are made by hand and 100% dishwasher safe.

Bulk Bamboo Straw Bundle

When Covid regulations lift and you can host parties at home again, keep these bamboo straws around your home instead of plastic. They are made from 100% bamboo and are 100% reusable and biodegradable. Your guests will appreciate the bamboo instead of traditional paper straws that just get soggy.

Bamboo Toothbrush Package

We don’t often consider the environmental impact of brushing our teeth. But Hamdan did. Each pack comes with eight reusable, biodegradable, eco-friendly bamboo toothbrushes that last from two to three weeks each.

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