A few years ago I was introduced, via Instagram, to a beautiful and local-to-me skin care small business, Skinmade. I’ve been loving using their organic and natural products each day. These are products made with thought, intention, care and a commitment to bettering the environment as well our skin. The simple packaging appeals to me – I don’t need (or want) excess packaging or gimiky products, I prefer to use products that have pure simple ingredients and are easy to add to my daily routine.
When I was younger a friend of my mum’s started a skincare range, and my sister and I helped her sell it. We learnt a little about the products and the ingredients, and got to enjoy using beautifully made natural skincare. Finding Skinmade has been a wonderful way for me to use something that fits within my lifestyle and environmental ethics, while supporting a local business as well. It’s important to do each little thing we can in our regular purchases to make differences in our environment, our economy and our personal welfare. Choosing a skincare company who doesn’t test on animals, uses organic and local ingredients and makes a conscious decision to support the environment in their manufacture and packaging is an easy way to make such a change. Next time you go to the department store to purchase your new moisturiser and a million cleansers and such, have a think about the what you are actually putting on your skin, where and how it’s made, and what happens with the excess packaging afterwards (Skinmade has a fabulous program where you can return your glass bottles for reuse – just another way they are actively committed to environmental consciousness).
I asked Claire and Genevieve to share a little about their beautiful products and their business. They’ve also shared a 10% discount code (find it at the end of the questions) so that you can try out their range yourself – you’ll find their products very reasonable before the discount, so this is an added incentive! And make sure you add one of their super soft bamboo facecloths to your order.
Why did you start Skinmade?
After having children it really opened our eyes to what we were using on our skin – especially our babies skin. (Did you know that a leading brand of baby oil has only two ingredients: mineral oil and fragrance. Mineral oil coats your skin like glad wrap so it can’t release toxins. It also interferes with the skin’s natural immunity barrier. And unspecified fragrance is usually synthetic which can cause major skin irritation and even cause dizziness. It horrifies me to think we lather this on our new born babies).
So we started Skinmade – making up our own plant-based oil blends using recipes passed down from our mother in-law. We felt like there was a gap in the market for affordable, good quality, plant-based skincare. There is no shortage on the market, but most if it is very expensive.
What makes it special?
We use really good quality, mostly organic, plant-based ingredients, subtle earthy scents – nothing overpowering and we keep our products as simple as possible. They feel really clean and light on the skin so they can be used by the whole family.
What’s your favourite product and why?
Claire: I have fair, dry skin so my favourite product is the Vitamin E + Balsam cream. Sometimes when I run out(yes that sounds crazy as I am the maker) I will use pure rose hip oil until I make a new batch. When I get finally get my hands on a new jar my skin feels so supple and nourished.
Genevieve: My favorite product is the castile and lemongrass CLEANSER. I have normal kind of skin that can get a bit oily at times. This cleanser feels so nice and gentle and the smell of it is very fresh and light. I use it with an organic bamboo face cloth and the scrub. It was very hard to formulate this product as there is nothing natural that foams, except organic liquid castile soap, which is what makes this cleanser so special.
We spent a lot of time with a local naturopath learning about oils and herbs, and perfecting emulsification etc. I think for both of us two of the most exciting parts of making skincare is seeing the cream emulsify. It really is amazing. And secondly when we come up with new essential oil blends.
Our first priority is to make a product that is 100% natural, second is to make a product that is nourishing, healing, and rejuvenating. Affordability to our customers is really important to us, so you won’t see us using exotic ingredients such as gemstone crystals from brazil, caviar or snake venom. Instead we use the highest quality ingredients that are more sustainable and readily availablesuch as jojoba, rose hip, essential oils, shea/coco butter, vitamin e and aloe vera. We source organic and local where possible.
We mostly do everything together. At the moment Genevieve is pregnant so Claire has taken over making the product and Genevieve looks after ordering, shipping, online enquiries etc. I think we really compliment each other in our business partnership. We both bring unique skills and ideas to skinmade, and when one is having a busy week with family or work commitments the other steps in and picks up the slack. We have a good laugh when we are together.
Skinmade has been around for just over a year now, how are things going? What are your plans for the future of your business?
We hope to grow the skincare range to cater for more skin types and also develop a range of natural remedies for children such as a breath easyessential oil mix, chest rub, natural insect repellant and, head lice repellant. We are very committed to minimizing waste and are working behind the scenes on developing 100% compostable packaging. Our beautiful skin tea range comes in 100% compostable containers, so we aim to extend this across the range.
Buying local is reducing environmental impact, creating more local jobs, investing in the community, buying something unique and encouraging local prosperity. But most of all you are buying something from a real person who has made the item with love.
We are saving up for some recycled furniture from Simply Recycled Furniture.
We would love for you readers to have the chance to try our skincare. Use the code: petalplum to receive 20% off Skinmade.
Connect with Skinmade on Facebook.
*all images by me, except b&w one of Claire and Genevieve from their website.