Jonathan Plotzker-Kelly

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Jonathan Plotzker-Kelly is an American entrepreneur. Jonathan started Heliotrope San Francisco in 2009.[1]

Jonathan Plotzker-Kelly,  of Heliotrope San FranciscoJonathan Plotzker-Kelly, of Heliotrope San Francisco


Heliotrope San Francisco


San Francisco, California, USA


Early Career

No early career info added yet...

Heliotrope San Francisco

Jonathan started Heliotrope San Francisco in 2009. They detail the beginnings of their company in their Starter Story interview: [1]

Q: How did you get started on Heliotrope San Francisco?

I started working in retail operations right out of school, moving from NYC to SF (more years ago than I care to admit). I got a job right away as an assistant buyer at Pottery Barn, which at that point had just been purchased by Williams-Sonoma, and stayed there, holding various positions, for almost a decade. After learning all about skincare at Bare Escentuals (now known as Bare Minerals), I ran operations for Restoration Hardware - back when the web was a new frontier - and then was the head of merchandising at Good Vibrations, a very reputable, well-known sex toy company in SF.

I had a small table selling stuff at every event that would have me. The more people I could meet in person, the greater the name recognition.

After my last job, I took some time off to think & travel, and then one fateful day I was searching for a shower gel that had no artificial perfume. I had developed very sensitive skin, and knew that perfumes (AKA “fragrance” when listed in your ingredients) was a trigger. I couldn’t find anyplace in SF that could help me until I stumbled on a little shop in Berkeley. And then I thought “wait for a second, why was this so hard?”

I called a few chemists with whom I’d worked back in my Bare Escentuals days, and they were all happy to start a conversation on working together. This reinforced what my Dad has always told me about being kind to people - these friends I’d made over the years were so supportive to me in those early days (and continue to be).

All my friends & neighbors became product testers, and I put together a band of creatives who’d all worked with me over the years - my copywriter and my graphic designer (who helped create our new logo) both worked with me at Good Vibes. I still work with some of these folks to this day.

I was lucky enough to have savings, and to be eligible for 2009’s federal stimulus package which extended unemployment benefits for 99 weeks - I mean, the timing was amazing for me, and I made the most of the opportunity.

Sign on the original store with 1st logo vs Current logo treatment

Source [1]



Contributors to this article:

  • Pat Walls, Founder @ Starter Story
  • Wiki Updater