Burt's Bees: Roxanne Quimby In the 1970s, Roxanne Quimby was trying to live a simpler life – one that rejected the pursuit of material comforts. She moved to Maine, built a cabin in the woods, and lived off the grid. By the mid-80s, she met a recluse beekeeper named Burt Shavitz and offered to help him tend to his bees. As partners, Roxanne and Burt soon began selling their "Pure Maine Honey" at local markets, which evolved into candles made out of beeswax, and eventually lip balm and skin care products. Today Burt's Bees can be found in nearly every grocery store and drugstore around the U.S. PLUS, in our postscript "How You Built That," Leigh Isaacson explains how her sister's break up inspired them to create a dating app – for dog owners.
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Burt's Bees: Roxanne Quimby

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Burt's Bees: Roxanne Quimby

Burt's Bees: Roxanne Quimby

Burt's Bees: Roxanne Quimby

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Phuong Nguyen for NPR
Roxanne Quimby and Burt Shavitz founded Burt's Bees together in the 1980s.
Phuong Nguyen for NPR

In the 1970s, Roxanne Quimby was trying to live a simpler life – one that rejected the pursuit of material comforts.

She moved to Maine, built a cabin in the woods, and lived off the grid.

By the mid-80s, she met a recluse beekeeper named Burt Shavitz and offered to help him tend to his bees.

As partners, Roxanne and Burt soon began selling their "Pure Maine Honey" at local markets, which evolved into candles made out of beeswax, and eventually lip balm and skin care products.

Today Burt's Bees can be found in nearly every grocery store and drugstore around the U.S.

How You Built That

Leigh Isaacson explains how her sister's break up inspired them to create a dating app – for dog owners.

How You Built That: Dig

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