Sometimes it's planned. Sometimes it just happens (product development, that is).
As a person, I develop feelings of opposition towards most things that are forced upon me. I want to live and work in a way that feels organic, where things unfold in a more natural way. The same applies to e: product development.
I'm not going to set out to develop a product in an area where I don't see a need for improvement. When it comes to e:botanicals, I'm also not going to spend hours and hours working on something that I'm not interested in, because it'd mean that I couldn't be a true representative for it. With that in mind, the process of going from idea to finished product
is rarely straightforward. Most of the time I have an idea of something that I want to make, but in the process of developing and testing, something else pops up and takes the lead and leaves the original project on ice. For example with the body oil - it's been in development for a while, but I happened to develop a recipe for a body butter that blew me away and so that's where energy and attention was directed. Then, as I was going to resume developing the body oil, someone asked me about face oils and I ended up in that trench. But working with facial products I also felt a need for an astringent toner, and so these two products are now a bigger priority and the body oil has to wait a bit longer.
As far as choosing what ingredients to experiment with, that'll be another story. Happy Tuesday!