Everything you need to know about all natural skincare by way of Newport’s own Farmaesthetics.
A recent trip to Newport, Rhode Island enlightened me to one simple truth: what we put on our bodies holds just as much importance as what we put in our bodies. I am definitely guilty of letting this slip my mind as I have built my skincare routine around products that are chock-full of ingredients that I know nothing about, and picked solely on convenience rather than quality.
My mind-set completely changed when Jana and I made a visit to the flagship of Newport-based skin care company, Farmaesthetics. With 100% natural products and made from organic farm ingredients, it is the epitome of a natural approach to skin care.
Brenda, the founder of Farmaesthetics and expert in the field, met with us at the store to provide a glimpse into its humble beginnings, and share her vast wealth of knowledge on the benefits and importance of all-natural beauty products.
Read on for the full interview and a guide to the ultimate morning and night skin care regimen!
Please introduce yourself and your company, Farmaesthetics.
I am the founder/formulator/CEO of Farmaesthetics and the daughter of a 7th generation farming family from Texas. I grew up in the vibrant kitchen culture of those farm-women and learned from their traditions and nature-based lifestyles, which are core to my upbringing and at the heart of Farmaesthetics.
I have grown herbs and made herbal skin care preparations all my life but, in the summer of 1999 while on my friend’s organic farm in Rhode Island, I first offered my handmade products to customers. A group of us women decided to undertake a summer project where we would farm the land and open a farmstand. We sold flowers, herbs, produce and homemade pies, and I sold my farm-grown herbal skincare preparations. We wanted to show our little girls that products did not grow on shelves, but that there was process, effort, responsibility and great care in sustainably growing, making and taking products to market.
My skin care products were flying off the shelf. I could hardly keep up, and continued to get calls for orders even after the farmstand closed for the season. It became clear that people were longing for beauty products that worked, but also ethically made and marketed with understandable crop-based ingredients, free of artificial or synthetic ingredients. The opportunity quickly unfolded and soon I was working within the professional world of esthetics, spas and luxury skin care. I had a business before I even knew it.
What is the importance and main benefits of using all-natural products?
Whole natural ingredients in proper combinations create products that vibrate with energy to nourish, enhance and support ongoing skin health. A cosmetic approach to beauty embraces the idea that we use products to APPEAR healthy. The natural approach to beauty embraces the idea that we use products to BE healthy.
What we put on our skin goes into our bodies and, for better or worse, will impact our overall health – internally and externally.
What is the ultimate all-natural morning skin care routine?
An ultimate yet simple morning skin care regimen starts with a thorough cleansing of the skin with Fine Herbal Cleanser, followed by gentle exfoliation with one of our whole herb preparations, Sweet Milk Facial Exfoliates. Follow the exfoliation with a thorough rinse of warm water, then complete the cleansing process with pore-refining, skin-softening Pure Complexion Tonic. This will prep the skin for the all-important moisture application of either a light daily hydration oil like our Nutrient Dense Fine Facial Oil or a more protective lotion like Nourishing Lavender Milk. Either (or both if needed) will be perfect for day. Remember to also apply to the neck and décolleté. Then apply makeup if desired, or just dab a little Lip Softener on and off you go – dewy, supple and glowing. The best makeup really is a healthy vibrant complexion.
What is the ultimate all-natural nighttime skin care routine?
If you use eye makeup, remove with Eyebright Eye Makeup Remover and Treatment Oil. This will take off even waterproof mascara – but without any synthetics whatsoever! It is crucial to use a 100% natural formulation around tender eye tissue. Synthetic solvents, fragrances or preservatives are petroleum-based ingredients, and petroleum products are intensely drying and thinning to tissue especially around the eyes where skin is fragile. The herb Eyebright is known to be relaxing to the ocular nerve, helping with eye strain and squinting which can also be wrinkle-causing. So a good dose of the Eyebright herb along with the organic, antioxidant oils of grapeseed, chamomile, almond and orange wax create a treatment oil at the same time it removes makeup. Then cleanse with Fine Herbal Cleanser and again exfoliate with one of our Sweet Milk Facial Exfoliates. Exfoliating twice in one day?! Absolutely appropriate when using our Sweet Milk Exfoliates, and especially useful if your complexion is out of balance and either dull, oily, dry, or damaged. Our whole milk facial exfoliates utilize lactic acid in its whole natural form, which replenishes skin with good carbs and fats to nourish tissue while removing dead cells. (Dead skin cells are barriers to moisturize intake). In the evening you can boost your nighttime routine by simply leaving the Sweet Milk Exfoliate on the skin as a mask for a few minutes, allowing the lactic acid lifts dull cells and the milk solids and herbs to bathe the tissue in nutrients. This preps the skin so the moisture application can really penetrate during the rest cycle of a good night’s sleep. I love Nutrient Dense Fine Facial Oil as my moisturizer, and if skin is a little dehydrated or challenged from over exposure, follow that with Complexion Conserve Remedy Reserve Serum. Just apply a few drops and compress this viscous treatment serum into skin – face, neck, lips, but brows and lashes too!
Natural Ingredients To Look Out For:
Using lactic acid in its whole organic milk form is the ideal exfoliating agent. The lactic acid lifts the barrier of dead, dull surface cells, allowing moisture to penetrate and hydrate tissue. At the same time it is removing the dead cells, it is also infusing the skin with nutrient support to plump and restore elasticity. Synthetic lactic acid on the other hand, just strips skin leaving it raw and fragile. The principal of replenishment is inherent in the concept of balance in beauty. It is also the central concept in nature and sustainability- An action must be beneficial on all levels in order to keep systems in balance – the environment where health and healing take place.
Reach for chamomile when your skin is especially sensitive or reactive. Chamomile settles, calms and quiets the complexion.
Look for lavender when you want to restore and then keep a balanced complexion. Lavender is antimicrobial, antibacterial and keeps cells active.
Whole powdered organic orange peels are nature’s herbal poultice for invigorating a dull, congested or imbalanced complexion. It is loaded with Vitamin C, which is key to the production of collagen, aiding in cell and blood vessel renewal and giving skin its firmness and strength.