Soap shop chain Buff City bubbling up in three Richmond locations

Buff City Soap plans to open a location at Willow Lawn shopping center by September, along with two more stores in the area. (Jack Jacobs photo)

A new-to-market chain of skincare shops plans to open three Richmond-area outposts in the coming months.

Buff City Soap, which sells soaps, bath bombs, facial lotions, body washes and similar items, has signed leases in Willow Lawn shopping center, Stonehenge Village in Midlothian and Short Pump Station.

The Richmond-area stores are expected to open by September, each with 25 employees. Rounding out the company’s first wave of five stores in the state this year are locations in Lynchburg and Roanoke.

Its Richmond area leases include 2,400 square feet at 1601 Willow Lawn Drive, Suite 301C, and 11341 W. Broad St., Suite 180. The Stonehenge Village location at 12637 Stone Village Way is 2,900 square feet.

The company’s Virginia franchise owners are business partners JT Fauber and Jamie Mason.

Buff City makes its range of plant-based products in-house, and the customers can watch soap and other items being made in the store.

“Post-COVID, I think people are thinking more about germs and health and I think the concept of a plant-based product with all natural ingredients we make right there in front of you (will be appealing),” Fauber said of Buff City.

Fauber and Mason are both also Sun Tan City franchisees. In addition to running 11 Sun Tan City locations in Virginia, Fauber also is the Richmond-area franchisee of three Salon Plaza spots and a My Salon Suite.

To be a Buff City franchisee, one must put up an initial fee of $50,000, have $300,000 in individual net worth and have $100,000 in liquid assets.

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