Shelly Egbert, Black Rock Mud Company
Shelly Egbert, Black Rock Mud Company

Your Name: Shelly Egbert

Business Name: Black Rock Mud Company, a maker of natural clay beauty products

Type of Business: Health & Beauty

Business Location: Gerlach, Nevada, United States


Twitter @blackrockmud
Pinterest black rock mud co.

Reason for starting
I fell into this business…literally! After many years of jumping into my family’s hot springs and feeling the cleansing and healing effects the rich, buttery mud had on my skin, I decided that this experience needed to be packaged for others to enjoy!

How do you define success?
I believe that success is the feeling you get when you wake up and realize that you have made your dreams come true…and you start to laugh when you think about the journey you took to get there! Afterall, how many people do you know that get to make their living playing in the mud?

Biggest Success
My biggest success was a result of overcoming some harsh criticism for trying to package our product in green, recyclable and USA made packaging instead of purchasing something less costly from China. Fortunately, I held to my standards and was presented an International Green Packaging Award, beating out multi-million dollar cosmetic companies.

What is your top challenge and how have you addressed it?
My top challenge was figuring out how to take what appeared to be a negative situation and turn it into a positive one. Because our mud is produced by geological features that erupt sporadically, we have a limited and unknown volume of mud each year. To overcome this problem and ensure long-term sustainability, I developed a “wine market” approach based on a Spring and Fall harvest each year. Much like the production of fine wine, some years yield a better harvest than others. In the same way a wine grower manages his vineyard, no mud is harvested before its time. Once each “crop” is gathered in, we wait with anticipation for the next harvest.

Who is your most important role model?

Since I believe that a role model is someone who you aspire to be more like, then I would have to say that my role models are my seven children. They have taught me to dream big, to make play out of work, to laugh at my mistakes, to be open minded, to forgive quickly, and to love without condition. When I grow up I want to be more like them.