Last month was the Soil Association’s Organic Beauty Week including the launch of the ‘Campaign for Clarity’ calling on beauty companies to be clear and honest about the organic content in their products. At present there are no laws governing the labelling of organic beauty products, unlike with food, so any company can slap “organic” on their products without any proof. The Soil Association’s certification process is one of the most stringent ensuring the declared organic ingredients, ethical sourcing and other ingredients that are not harmful to health or the environment with annual inspections.
I’ve been taking a closer look at some of the beauty companies that have achieved the Soil Association stamp of approval. First up is Pinks Boutique. Co-founder, Kirstie Sherriff, was voted #1 in the 2015 Natural Beauty Yearbook Who’s Who so who better to chat to about natural beauty and the company.
What inspired you to start Pinks Boutique and what’s the reason for the name?
A great question! My first businesses were beauty schools – Pinks Academy. Meanwhile Luke my husband and co-founder of Pinks Boutique played professional rugby. In the early 2000s before organic had hit the mainstream he had a fitness coach who took the team through an organic overhaul. Organic steak and broccoli for breakfast, it was delightful to live through! The difference it made to them in all the testing they underwent was phenomenal and it led to my ‘eureka’ moment. I began my career as a nail technician, this was my specialism and I was teaching it a lot, bathing in acrylic liquid. Not so natural. I suddenly realised that all the spa brands would come and teach the therapists including me all the key actives but that I had no idea what the other 50 ingredients on the INCI list were. Once you start researching and finding out the truth about what the industry puts in cosmetics there is no turning back.
And the name……
Pink – why? For us organic is too obviously white or beige with green leaves. We wanted to create a brand look which appealed to all whether they care about organic or not. This for us is the future, to make even those that are not aware of what is in normal cosmetics use a luxury skincare product that is effective and not toxic. The brown bottles stand out from a crowd of white spa cosmetics, the brown gift boxes and bags with pink or white highlights appeal to men and women and look incredible placed in Pinks Boutique ‘concept’ spas where attention to detail and anything but average typical merchandising is applied.
Boutique – why? As we specialize in attention to detail and arrive at the door of each client with a unique offering.
Where are your ingredients sourced from?
Our sourcing concept works in concentric circles working out from our blending base in Leicestershire. We aim to get as many ingredients as possible in the county, then try the next closest counties and so on and so forth. One of our trade secrets for instance is that any of our products that contain water have hand collected spring mineral water with such a wonderful additional mineral content compared to distilled water usually used in cosmetics. We can do this as we live within the Derby and Leicestershire springs.
We have to be realistic that many ingredients have to come from abroad so we are dedicated to sourcing the finest organic version of each ingredient we require. We are proud that our products are made in England and the concept of ‘homegrown goodness’ is a cornerstone of our ethos.
Why is it important for you to be 100% certified organic and natural?
There are very few skincare brands that volunteer to have a third-party check and validate this as it is an expensive process and very time consuming. The Soil Association have certified ALL Pinks Boutique skin and body care products.
They have validated that the bottles have over 70%-100% organic ingredients and that any remaining percentage is from the allowed natural category. This is the highest global organic certification standard.
Their logo means that our ingredients are grown in clean soil, extracted without solvents and handled conscientiously during the manufacturing process.Our third-party certification means that you can trust us when we say we’re committed to nontoxic and eco friendly practices, we really mean it.
What is your personal favourite item in the range?
If you were looking for the perfect entry product into Pinks Boutique, something to make someone who has never used the range fall in love, it would be our Hydrate or Anti Ageing Deep Cleanse Melts. They are such an amazing way to cleanse your face and when the soufflé melts off as you wash it away you vow never to return to the other side of wipes, milks and foaming face washes. So ultimately if I really had to choose it would be our Hydrate Deep Cleanse Melt, I can wash my face with it, shave my legs with it and, if I was stuck with no access to other products, as it leaves your skin feeling so soft, being without moisturizer for one night wouldn’t be a nightmare!
What does “natural beauty” mean to you?
In all honesty and quite sadly the words ‘natural beauty’ to me immediately bring up images of all the brands we are exposed to in the spa and retail sector who continually claim in their marketing to be natural and have been branded to look this way but their ingredients list proves otherwise. The exposure I endure in my role to ‘greenwashing’ beauty brands has made this quite a negative phrase for me. I like to think more about beauty being truthful and transparent.
What is your top (non-product) related beauty tip?
Fish oils and water. People forget how much impact you can have on your skin internally. Find a fish oil with the highest EPA level you can and take lots! Oooh and the soap box one – respect your face enough to wash it at night and not just use a wipe to smear around make up and sebum build up all over and around it. Off soap box.
Any new products or developments in the pipeline?
Yes, we have a seriously busy and exciting 2016 ahead. 2015 was dedicated to having and growing my second baby – Charlie and our first eye cream! Our Ultimate Anti-Oxidant Renewal Eye Cream launches on the 22nd October 2015.
Post Charlie, 2016 is time for some super hard work! We are going to be launching our brother brand for men so a full range launch plus I predict there will be some interesting changes for Pinks Boutique when the first-born becomes the big sister!
Totes with her on the face wipe front! I’ve been imagining all those glorious sounding scents and products. I will be reporting back on the Deep Cleanse Melt.
Have you used Pinks Boutique?
Find out more about Pinks Boutique at www.pinksboutique.com