Nuluv, a company that makes handcrafted goat milk skin care products on their farm in the Texas Hill Country, actually began as a love story.
Jonna Davis, a self-proclaimed city girl who grew up in the Houston suburbs, fell in love with Trey Davis, a country boy who grew up on a goat ranch in South Texas.
“He moved me out to the country within six weeks of getting married,” said Davis, who did not know just how much her life was about to change. Now, however, she said she loves to joke about where life took her.
“I got a college education, and now I’m a milkmaid,” she said.
When they first met, Trey’s family ran a massive goat farm with ten to twenty thousand goats. Trey’s grandfather brought over the Angora goat from the Middle East, and they became the first Angora goat ranchers in Texas. Their goats have since been dubbed the Davis Angora goats. “It’s a family legacy,” Davis said.
Now, the Davis family owns the largest goat dairy farm in Texas that is a 100 percent hands-on goat dairy. By this, they mean they do not use machines on their animals. Instead, they milk their “girls” by hand twice daily and are dedicated to being a cruelty-free farm.
Nuluv, which officially launched in 2010, resulted from Jonna’s efforts to resolve her and Trey’s eldest child’s sensitivities to food and other products.
“He had severe allergies, including super sensitive skin, and all of the baby products I tried irritated his skin,” she said. “So, I started reading about natural homeopathic options and it all led back to goat milk. I’d actually been using goat milk myself since I was in high school because I, too, have sensitive skin.”
Trey got her a dairy goat; she learned how to milk and started feeding the baby raw goat milk. “I also made a bath out of it for him and, suddenly, the rash was gone,” Davis said.
That was when the proverbial lightbulb flickered on. “I tried to figure out a way to market for healing skin conditions,” she said.
As Jonna experimented, she discovered that humans and goats have a similar pH balance, allowing human skin to absorb goat milk easily. According to Jonna, when mixed with shea butter, which normally is not very absorptive, it actually results in a fantastic moisturizer.
“And that’s how we got started,” she said. “It was kind of a happy accident—totally a God thing.”
Nuluv sells bar soap, body wash, body lotion, and body butter in various fragrances, such as Lavender, Herbal Mist, Sweet Almond, and Starry Night. According to Jonna, the most popular fragrance is Angel Baby, a blend of patchouli and jasmine. Additionally, Nuluv has a fragrance-free line of products for the most sensitive skin.
The farm currently houses hundreds of goats, anywhere from 500 to 800 at any one time. The dairy goat herd includes a mix of Nubian, Alpine, and Saanen goats but leans largely toward the Nubian breed. Their milk contains the most fat and is, therefore, the creamiest and most delicious to drink.
Jonna shared that their dairy goats are essentially family pets. “We spend so much time in the barn with them,” she said. “Trey knows their personalities so well— who gets along with who, who struggles in labor. Last night Peanut had her babies, and he’s just so committed to helping them not suffer.”
When asked which goat was her personal favorite, Jonna said, “Oh, golly . . . Delilah . . . she’s so sassy and bossy and funny. She’s my favorite because she makes me laugh. The kids love the goats, too. I expect my oldest to go into some kind of animal business. He checks on them when he comes home from school.”
Nuluv is blessed to be selling their products in all 50 states via pop-ups and farmer’s markets, their website, and wholesale to locally-owned businesses as well. A few of their more popular pop-ups include Fredericksburg Trade Days and First Monday Trade Days in Canton in the original pavilion. At the Texas State Fair, you can also find Nuluv in the Go Texan Market.
“Our mission is one for God as we are a Christian company,” Davis said. “We never planned Nuluv; it was a god thing. God provided something for our family, and we wanted to share with other families what he shared with us, and want to make sure everyone knows that.”