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Founder Spotlight: An Interview with Evelyne Nyairo from Ellie Bianca

#Founderspotlight - Ellie Bianca - Evelyne Nyairo

This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we’ll get a small commission which helps keep us moving the dial towards clean beauty!

#Founderspotlight - Ellie Bianca - Evelyne Nyairo

One of the best face oils in the clean beauty industry: Ellie Bianca’s Citrus Verbena!

If you are in the market for a new face oil, look no further! As a Finalist, Ellie Bianca’s Citrus Verbena is a judge favourite in CertClean’s Clean Beauty Awards this year – it has been recognized as one of the top performing face care products in the clean beauty industry.
Ellie Bianca has a vision of “cultivating a global connection that empowers women, creates resilient communities that exemplifies natural beauty”. After hearing the story behind why Evelyne, the founder, decided to start Ellie Bianca, you’ll love her as much as we do.

What inspired you to start your business or to formulate your Citrus Verbena oil?

Prior to venturing into the beauty industry, I operated an environmental consulting firm, supporting projects globally. On one of the occasions my consultancy work took me to Chad, Central Africa and I found myself doing fieldwork among the most beautiful wild mango trees. Never being one to pass up the opportunity to indulge in succulent mangoes, I had my fill courtesy of a family whose mother and children climbed the trees in the hot sun to harvest mangoes for me to eat. After eating to my satisfaction, I went to give the money to the mother who then told me, “You must hand the money over to the father as a sign of respect.” Sitting off to the side, never having lifted a finger or looked up to acknowledge my existence was the father. I felt both anger and frustration as I handed the money over to him. This happens everywhere around the world in different ways and it must stop. The experience took me back to the boardrooms in Canada where I had experienced instances of misogyny and gender discrimination. I felt compelled to make a difference. This was the genesis of Ellie Bianca. I was moved to create a brand that would be more than a beauty brand but a brand that would empower women globally.

The product line has been inspired by various experiences. I can vividly recall 6 years ago, along the halls of a hotel in the south of France, I caught the scent of a comforting aroma that my nose just couldn’t get enough of. The fresh, invigorating fragrance filled the halls in the hotel, and I was obsessed. I had to find a way to recreate it naturally and organically. Following this was a two-year journey of trials, ups and downs that helped birth the Citrus Verbena oil.

Please tell us more about your Citrus Verbena! Why do you think it was so well-loved by Clean Beauty Awards’ judging panel?

Citrus Verbena consists of base oil of 12 luxurious oils that are result driven.  It took as about 2 years to formulate this base keeping in mind the needs of customers.  We took our time because we wanted to formulate an effective product. We went through trials and testing, formulating and reformulating, trying different ratios and finally we were able to create a light, fast absorbing, non-greasy face oil. Furthermore, the scent had to be made from organic essential oils to ensure it measured up to our standard of 100 % natural.

This invigorating face oil helps reduce inflammation, improve skin texture and maintain a balanced complexion. Thanks to the unique blend of oils, it locks in moisture, improves overall skin texture and glides smoothly onto the skin resulting in a youthful and supple complexion.
Since launching the oil, it has received a lot of attention. It was nominated in New York at the Indie Beauty Expo and was a finalist in 2018. Additionally, the oil was a finalist for the clean living awards. When we submitted it for CertClean’s Clean Beauty Awards we also submitted it along with the other scents in this collection and to our surprise it was shortlisted as a finalist for in the Facial Oil category for 2020.

As a formulator, you must have some special love for some ingredients. What is your favourite ingredient?

All the 12 oils that are part of the formula are special to me. Each ingredient is selected for its function, for example; Borage Oil is high in omega 6 fatty acid, gamma linolenic acid, beneficial for soothing dry, damaged or irritated skin. While  Evening Primrose Oil is high in essential fatty acids, anti-inflammatory and known to help with the overall appearance of the skin. It is beneficial to those affected by eczema, psoriasis and atopic dermatitis.  Rose Hip Oil has natural Vitamin A which reduces signs of aging and lightens age spots while balancing the skin tone. However, if I had to choose one, I would say Shea oil, which is our foundational ingredient;

It has been known to have natural SPF which protects against harmful sun rays

  • It boosts cell generation
  • It has high concentrations of fatty acids and vitamins that make it great for the skin.
  • It also has anti-inflammatory and nourishing properties and it tones and soothes skin.

In your journey of creating natural products, what were some roadblocks or issues that you were faced with?

Misleading Information. Navigating this business, I have had to be almost like a myth buster; especially when it comes to oils and the face.
Many people are scared (especially those with oily or combination skin) to put oil on their face. It seems counterintuitive, but the truth is that stripping your face of oil is when most breakouts occur. Your sebaceous glands go into overdrive to produce more natural oil, blocking your pores. The right oil will help repair and protect your skin and can even regulate sebum production!
No matter what your skin type is, your face still needs oil. I consistently advice consumers to invest in the right products. The right facial oil will repair your skin, make it look more youthful and protect it from free radicals.

Educating consumers has been an equal challenge with misconceptions on creams and oils as causes of acne I have had to work hard in order to educate and build awareness. My background in Chemistry and Biology has given me an edge to be able to understand ingredients and how to use them effectively. My deep understating of skin anatomy and plant ecology plays a huge role in ingredient selection. For example lipids hold the cell structure together, and certain oils will nourish and promote cell renewal. We want to ensure that we are effectively nurturing the skin micro-biome which is connected to the gut microbiome; a healthy skin microbiome might protects against infection the same way a good gut microbiome does.

We absolutely love the ethos of your company. Can you tell us more? 

The beauty industry is awash with many products most of which are full of toxins that could be potentially harmful to the skin. That’s why it is important for us to have products that are non-GMO, environmentally friendly, vegan and cruelty free. At Ellie Bianca, we believe that beauty is more than aesthetic, and that’s why each of our products are scientifically formulated using all-natural ingredients that have been specifically chosen for their quality and efficacy.

One of the pillars that guides us is that we are kind to the earth, meaning, we are deliberate in choosing ingredients that are organically grown or organically certified. Conservation of ingredients in the beauty industry is important to us. Sustainability is at the core of our sourcing.

When it comes to the essential oils, our general practice is to use steam distilled as opposed to solvent extracted oils. We believe in being kind to the earth by taking what we need and ensuring that there is posterity for the next time.

Tell us more about the different pillars that guide your brand!

Ellie Bianca has 3 pillars that we use to guide our operations. Kind to your skin| Kind to the Earth | Kind to Women

Kind to your Skin | Beauty is so much more than an aesthetic. We want our customers to feel beautiful, inside and out, every day. Each ingredient has been analyzed at a molecular level with every unique skin type need in mind. At Ellie Bianca, we value clean beauty: effective, natural and using clean ingredients.

Kind to the Earth | When consumers use Ellie Bianca, they support a real, safe and non-toxic beauty industry. We actively implement conservation techniques from managing to manufacturing our product line. With the proper measures in place, we have control over ingredient quality and actively reduce our carbon footprint. Our products are centered around raw, unrefined African shea butter and oil sustainably harvested and prepared from women-run co-ops. Working with shea means nothing goes to waste. At Ellie Bianca, we believe a green earth equals green beauty products.

Kind to Women | Empowered woman, empower women. We actively seek to connect with and learn from other females. It is through this interaction and sharing of knowledge we grow as people and as a company. We are inspired to create a global community of empowered women. At Ellie Bianca, we wholeheartedly believe in the ability of women to work together towards a common success.

What sets you apart from other beauty brands?

At Ellie Bianca we are more than a beauty brand; we believe beauty is not just skin deep. We are guided by three pillars; Kind to your Skin | Kind to the Earth | Kind to Women.  Last year we launched the Ellie Bianca Women Foundation which administers post-secondary education scholarships. We sponsor both boys and girls in Africa because I know that lightens the burden off the mothers who are often stressed as they try to make ends meet. Furthermore, in Canada the foundation supports single mothers pursuing post-secondary education at a Canadian university. Statistics show that only 28% of single mothers enrolled in university complete their degree having walked through this myself as a single mother, I am fiercely dedicated to changing these statistics. Many times, women have been there for me, to uplift me, encourage me and support me and now that I have the ability, I feel like I must pay it forward.

Thank you Evelyne for sharing your powerful story and working towards women empowerment while producing highly effective, results-driven natural skincare!

See Ellie Bianca’s website, and follow them on Instagram or Facebook

Learn more about the finalist below!

Citrus Verbena Skin Oil

2020 FaceOil Finalist

Price: $64.99


PurPicks is the world’s largest directory of organic / natural / clean skincare products with thousands of reviews, like TripAdvisor for nontoxic skincare!

Follow us on Instagram!

Founder Spotlight: An Interview with Amanda-Jane Healy from Everkind

#Founderspotlight - Everkind - Amanda-Jane Healy

This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we’ll get a small commission which helps keep us moving the dial towards clean beauty!

#Founderspotlight - Everkind - Amanda-Jane Healy

This year, New Zealand’s Everkind has 2 products as Finalists in Certclean’s Clean Beauty Awards!

If you are in the market for a deodorant and or a beard balm, look no further! Everkind has you covered – its Ultra Organic Deodorant and Original Face and Beard Balm may just be what you need.
At Everkind, they’re on a mission to give you a kinder alternative to mainstream body care. Their certified organic, award-winning body care “brings a moment of luxury and total peace-of-mind to your morning routine”. You can not go wrong with a motto “we’re a body care that’s better for your body and better for everybody”!.
We are excited to share our interview with Everkind’s founder, Amanda-Jane Healy as she shares how she chooses to radiate kindness in all that she does!

What inspired you to create a natural skincare brand?

Everybody has a turning point. Maybe yours is a moment of realisation, a wellness awakening, or at worst a health crisis. This turning point pushes you to understand that what you consume and the products you use – it all matters! It impacts not only your body and your health but the people behind the products and our planet.
Once you’ve had this realisation, you can’t simply keep using conventional products.
For me, that turning point was becoming a mum. No matter where I looked I couldn’t find truly natural products that actually worked. My body care kept coming with compromises.

This problem set me on an incredible journey that led me to create Everkind – a better kind of body care that nourishes both you and your world. All of our products are body kind, people kind and planet kind – always!

Why does organic ingredients matter to you?

When my children were young we moved from the city to a small rural block. We wanted our children to grow up with the freedom and joy of living close to nature. Unfortunately we picked a block opposite a market garden. On the first morning there we were greeted by the whirring of a huge horticultural spray machine. That machine went up and down the crops so often that my daughter’s first word was ‘bayer’. Our health suffered. As a mum it also opened my eyes to what was really going on in conventional horticulture. I wanted a different future for my children and that’s what started me on this journey for practical solutions without compromise.

Why did you choose to get your products certified organic?

Greenwashing is a huge problem in body care products. How many times have you thought you were buying organic, only to get it home and read the fine print and it’s not organic at all. I wanted to create products that people could trust. Which is why Everkind is certified organic and certified cruelty free. Our whole supply chain is audited and monitored to ensure you get exactly what you paid for.

Please tell us more about Everkind’s Ultra Organic Deodorant! Why do you think it is considered as one of the best deodorant in the clean beauty sector?

Everkind Ultra Organic Deodorant is a world first. Made with a base of organic camellia oil and organic beeswax, it doesn’t go rock hard in winter or soft in summer. It’s gentle on the skin and won’t mark your clothes. The sodium bicarbonate is naturally occurring, not created in a laboratory and the unique essential oil blends have been created to not only smell amazing but also to maximise odour control.

Ultra won organic product of the year 2018 and 2019 and has been blessed with personal endorsements from top New Zealand athletes.

Curious, what are your favourite ingredients and why?

The highlight for me has been working with all the beautiful organic essential oils from around the world. Each one is like a little miracle, with its own scent and unique properties. We use Pelargonium roseum in Ultra. It has a beautiful rose scent not like other geraniums and blends magnificently with manuka and lavender true.

There is now so much scientific research on the antibacterial power of essential oils and their ability to calm and relax the mind. They really are a gift to humanity.

Why the name “Everkind”? Why does it mean to you to be “kind”?

Kindness can change everything. We believe bringing a touch of kindness to everything we do will help build a better tomorrow.
That’s why our products go beyond simply nourishing your skin. Everkind is about doing good for people and the planet too.
Everkind is sustainable by design – certified organic, certified cruelty free, using compostable and recyclable packaging. Everything we do is designed to be planet kind.
Our customers believe it’s not just what you sell but what you stand for that counts. And we’re on a mission to do good for people. Paying a living wage and giving at least 20% of profits to help make a difference for people in need.

We feel very fortunate to have such an awesome bunch of customers that want to conquer with kindness!


Thank you Amanda-Jane for sharing your entrepreneurship journey with us and being the change you want to see in the world! Thank you for your kindness!

See Everkind’s website, and follow them on Instagram or Facebook!

Learn more about the finalists below!

EverKind Organic Deodorant – Ultra Stick

2020 OdourCare Finalist

Price: $17.84 USD

EverKind Organic Face and Beard Balm – Original

2020 BeardCare Finalist

Price: $20.23 USD


PurPicks is the world’s largest directory of organic / natural / clean skincare products with thousands of reviews, like TripAdvisor for nontoxic skincare!

Follow us on Instagram!

Founder Spotlight: An Interview with Marlene Sali from Idunna Natural Skincare

#Founderspotlight - Idunna Natural Skincare - Marlene Sali

This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we’ll get a small commission which helps keep us moving the dial towards clean beauty!

#Founderspotlight - Idunna Natural Skincare - Marlene Sali

This year, Idunna Natural Skincare’s Mushroom Night Cream is a Finalist in the 5th Clean Beauty Awards!

Idunna’s Age Prevent Triple Mushroom Revitalizing Night Cream with MultiPeptides and Fruit Stem Cells secured a spot as a Finalist in CertClean’s Clean Beauty Awards most competitive category – FaceCare!

Idunna Natural Skincare is an indie beauty brand family owned and operated from Saskatchewan, specializing in combining multiple very small natural peptides for deeper absorption and fruit stem cells combined with herbal, botanical and fruit seed oils and extracts to help with skin issues and prevent early aging. We have a special interview with Marlene Sali; leaving her abusive husband, the single mother of four, Marlene sets out to sell the natural skincare products she formulated for herself – Marlene shares her “accidental” entrepreneurship story, her favourite ingredients and more!

What inspired you to create this unique mushroom night cream?

I formulated this product for personal reasons. I absolutely hate retinol based products. They made my face itchy, dry and red. So knowing betaCarotenes are turned into usable vitamin a aka retinol by the cells I combined Chaga and birch extract for their replenishing, antioxidant and healing benefits with shiitake for its Hyaluronic acid like effect and healing Reishi. Putting in the peptides to stimulate collagen and elastin as well as antioxidant stem cells to help stimulate this process adds to the benefit of this night cream. As it’s so full of replenishing ingredients I made it a night cream to work while you sleep as it’s absorbs well and makes good use of both oil and water soluble ingredients.

How did you start your business? Did you always want to be a business owner?

The thing most people don’t know about my business is how it started. I didn’t just decide one day to start a business. I don’t buy my formulas, I don’t have someone creating products for me.
I started because well I left my husband about ten years ago with four kids to look after. He was an abuser and, I suppose, it’s been a matter of revenge for him to work the system like a pro and avoid his child support payments. He presently owes me around fifty seven thousand dollars worth of unpaid child support.
As a RN I was picking up overtime almost every week to pay our bills. Then three years ago I broke my ankle and ended of work for a while and used up my sick time. Something people don’t know about me is I have a cardiac arrhythmia and it’s idiopathic so it can’t be fixed except with a pacemaker some day. Anyway, I threw a clot and had a mild MI two years ago and so due to the missed time at work and my part time position I was not able to pick up shifts. So I was encouraged by my friends to sell my products to make ends meet, and I did. And here I am today.

And I’m feeling so honoured to be sharing this as I was just being me and thinking of what I wanted to see a cream do for my skin! I’m still feeling surreal… I originally wanted a peptide cream that wasn’t out of my price range; the brands out there were out of my budget and contain ingredients I wanted to avoid so I made my own. And, now I have a couple different lines of creams that all work in their own ways and this just reinforced to me that I’m doing the right thing!

You are definitely doing the right thing! Your mushroom night cream is amongst the best performing face cream in the industry! Tell us more about this product.

I entered this product because it’s full of healthy skin regenerating and healing ingredients, and it’s largely ignored for how beneficial it is! It’s like a vitamin A treatment product without the dryness, irritation and redness you can get from a treatment that focuses only on high levels of vitamin A. The Chaga mushroom, shiitake and Reishi mushroom effects are boosted with the betaCarotenes that the cells turn into useable vitamin A and the further help the multiple peptide and fruit stem cells combinations to help increase collagen and elastin formation.
This is great for most skin types over 25 as it can help prevent early aging and helps with many skin issues (I’m a RN and it’s a cosmetic license so I can’t say it helps with acne) I made it when I was fighting with cystic acne from the hormonal changes and stress I was going through when I was right around the late 30s to early 40s and it hasn’t come back now that I’m almost 47!
The original balm that became this product is the one that started my business a couple years ago. Then as I realized other people wanted the same cream I was making for myself I started selling the creams with the peptides and fruit stem cells

We have a feeling that your favourite ingredients include the Chaga mushroom. Are we right?

My favourite ingredients are Chaga mushroom. It’s in many of my products as is birch extract. For one I’ve been creating salves and lotions with it for years and years. It’s an antioxidant ingredient rich in vitamins and minerals and also extremely powerful antioxidants so it can reduce the look of aging in the skin. Blueberry extracts are also so rich in vitamin A and C that it’s also in most of my products for its absorbability and nourishing benefits to keep cells healthy. I love betaCarotenes to help speed cellular turnover and replenish the look of the skin, and I love pumpkin extract for its nutrient content and mild exfoliation as well to allow the multiple peptides and stem cells to be absorbed deep into the skin to have an effect at the dermal layer to help stimulate collagen and elastin. I choose to use typically three to four different types of peptides for their absorbabilty and different effects the studies of the suppliers have shown and that way you get a better effect than with only one in the long term..

As you know, our community is quite health/eco-conscious. What do you think makes you or your product different than others in the market?

This formula has been in the making since before I became a business to help myself and the friends who were asking. So it’s been remade so many times I can’t even count them. I took some online classes on how formulate with natural ingredients as I wanted to be sure I was doing it right, and had a good understanding of how the herbals work together and with peptides to make a quality product that absorbs into the skin instead of sitting on the skin wasting those valuable ingredients.
I use as many certified organic and gmo free ingredients as I can find and highlight them in the label. I also don’t do animal testing or use any animal or insect related ingredients as I believe with the lack of bees that honey, beeswax and the pollens and royal jellies should be medicinal until they are abundant again. I use glass packaging as much as I can to reduce the plastic I put into the environment even the body lotions. I know many of the plastics are recyclable but the problem is there’s too much plastic to deal with it properly at this point in time. Maybe that will change in the future but for now it’s a major world wide problem so I prefer not to add to it even though I am a very small business.

Thank you Marlene for sharing your inspirational story. And congratulations again on getting recognition on your Age Prevent Triple Mushroom Revitalizing Night Cream with MultiPeptides and Fruit Stem Cells!

See Idunna Natural Skincare’s website, and follow them on Instagram or Facebook!

Learn more about the finalist below!



PurPicks is the world’s largest directory of organic / natural / clean skincare products with thousands of reviews, like TripAdvisor for nontoxic skincare!


Follow us on Instagram!





Founder Spotlight: An Interview with Sandra Charbonneau from SanRe Organic Skinfood

#Founderspotlight - SanRe Organic Skinfood - Sandra Charbonneau

This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we’ll get a small commission which helps keep us moving the dial towards clean beauty!

#Founderspotlight - SanRe Organic Skinfood - Sandra Charbonneau

Looking for food for your skin that nourishes? Let’s turn to SanRe Organic Skinfood as it secured 3 spots as Finalists in CertClean’s Clean Beauty Awards this year!

SanRe Organic’s Eye Candy, Supple Sunshine Solar (Spf30) and Rose Cleanse are amongst the top performing clean beauty products in the industry!

For those who don’t know, SanRe Organic was born in 2007 and is located in the north Georgia Mountains. Their products are certified USDA organic, non-GMO, gluten-free and cruelty-free (and are included in the Leaping Bunny and PETA Cruelty Free Company programs).  For their products that do not contain organic beeswax and honey, they have also received Vegan. Random fact: Sandra Charbonneau is vegan!

We loved our chat with Sandra – the founder of Sanre Organic Skinfood! Sandra shares her entrepreneurial journey, her thoughts on why her products are so well loved by the judging panel and her approach to creating safer skincare for all of us!

What inspired you start a business in organic skincare?

I grew up in Lithuania where our food was always fresh and our skincare products were homemade.  When we moved to the states I was at first so excited that our groceries lasted so long, but when I started digging and researching all the additives and preservatives that are often used we quickly changed our food habits. My focus then moved to my big-brand skincare products, where I was shocked to see dozens of ingredients that were linked with cancers, hormone disruption, etc – which you would never consider putting in your body. Your skin absorbs about 60% of what you put on it, so why not FEED it well?! Hence began our mission in 2007, to produce only the very best skinfood for a wonderful health and natural beauty!

Having started in 2007, you could be seen as a pioneer in the clean beauty sector. What were some roadblocks that you faced at that time?

The biggest roadblock that we had early on was educating our beloved consumer! People were conditioned about big brands and trusted them (with their star-studded, million-dollar ads), even though they couldn’t read the ingredient label – let alone understand the toxic chemicals in the product. Conveying that the skin is our largest organ, that what we absorb through our skin and it goes right into our bloodstream, was our greatest challenge back in 2007. Everyone seemed to grasp the concept as applied to nicotine and pain patches but didn’t think further about their creams and lotions. Thankfully, we’re there today! Most people are looking for safe and holistic skincare for themselves and their loved ones – and once they get past all the “greenwashing” by the big-brands, many are gladly finding SanRe.

Congratulations again on having 3 finalists in the Clean Beauty Awards! Can you tell us more about the product? We’re sure our community wants to know some of the super powers behind the products and what skin type your products are good for.

Eye Candy is a gentle enough to use around the most sensitive skin on our body-the eye area. Since we don’t produce sebum around the eyes, it is extremely important to moisturize with a good quality eye cream. It is formulated with a super concentration of only USDA Certified Organic ingredients. Organic almond oil soothes and nourishes with anti-inflammatory properties, omega 3, and vitamin A and E.  Organic horsetail powder uniquely reduces swelling of the eyelids, calms irritation, and increases circulation. Arnica oil helps reduce dark circles. Great for all skin types.

Supple Sunshine:
Supple Sunshine was named one of the safest moisturizer with SPF30 by and It was created to target dry, parched sun-exposed skin. Safflower and grapeseed oil provide the skin vital nourishment. Coconut oil improves skin complexion and reduces oxidation. Sunkissed skin can be relieved with naturally soothing and healing aloe vera. Great for dry/normal skin. Can be used alone or under the makeup.

Rose Cleanse:
As delicate as rose petals themselves, Rose Cleanse is gentle for even the most sensitive skin types. True to its name, it utilizes rose hydrosol and oil to soothe, calm, and replenish the skin. White willow bark refreshes the skin with its content of salicylic acid. Arnica and Calendula further soothe with anti-inflammatory properties. For all/sensitive skin.

What ingredients excites you and why?

I have many that I love and try to incorporate into many of our products. The few worth mentioning and I’m the most excited about is Baltic Amber Powder, Hemp Oil, Sea-Buckthorn oil, Turmeric, Green Matcha Tea.
Baltic Amber is special because of my heritage and newer science finds Amber contains 3-8% of Succinic Acid, a scientifically examined medical substance used in contemporary medicine. Of particular value are pharmaceuticals preventing the aging of human cells, which use succinic acid as an inhibitor (an agent slowing down or stopping the loss of) of potassium ions as an antioxidant – now scientifically described as a modern elixir of youth!

As you know, our community is quite health/eco-conscious. What do you think makes you or your product different than others in the market?

Most of our line is USDA certified organic, non-GMO. We have a good Certified Vegan selection (us being vegans ourselves), we test only on ourselves and our friends. J By having a vigorous third-party certification, we avoid a lot of guessing games when it comes to our suppliers. We only purchase certified organic, cold-pressed and unrefined oils, only therapeutic grade certified organic essential oils and herbs.
By choosing a certain ingredient, I always think of a skin problem I’m trying to solve or avoid. I want to have products that I want to use as well as our family, which we do! Some products took only a few times to perfect it and some took several years until I was happy with the formulation. We always try to better and improve formulations except for the ones that we have such raving results and reviews-we don’t dare change them!

We’ve all heard, “you are what you eat.” Well, our motto is expanded to include, “you are what you absorb, apply and beautify yourself with.” One doesn’t refrain from eating toxins, only to place them upon their skin, which is the largest organ of the body. Hence began our mission, to produce and supply truly organic skinfood for our health and beauty.
SanRe obtains all possible ingredients from USDA certified organic farmers and companies. Each product is “personally” crafted, tested, improved, finalized and produced by us. We make each product only in small batches to ensure utmost quality and freshness
Our products are cruelty-free and Non-GMO. We also package our products in Green Glass Bottles that help protect the products from light-induced break-down and our fully recyclable and non-leeching.

Thank you Sandra for pioneering clean beauty back in 2007! And congratulations again on securing 3 spots as finalists in CertClean’s Clean Beauty Awards!

See SanRe Organic Skinfood’s website, and follow them on Instagram or Facebook!

Learn more about the finalists below!

Eye Candy

Certification: USDA Organics

2020 EyeCare Finalist

Price: $35.99

Supple Sunshine

Certification: USDA Organics

2020 SunCare Finalist

Price: $31.50 CAD

Rose Cleanse

Certification: USDA Organics

2020 FaceWash Finalist

Price: $31.99






PurPicks is the world’s largest directory of organic / natural / clean skincare products with thousands of reviews, like TripAdvisor for nontoxic skincare!


Follow us on Instagram!






Founder Spotlight: An Interview with Mila Ducheva from Neven Body Care

#Founderspotlight - Neven Body Care - Mila Ducheva

This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we’ll get a small commission which helps keep us moving the dial towards clean beauty!

#Founderspotlight - Neven Body Care - Mila Ducheva

This year, Neven’s Rejuvenate Face Oil is a Finalist in the 5th Clean Beauty Awards!

FaceCare is one of the most competitive categories in CertClean’s Clean Beauty Awards, and Neven’s Rejuvenate Face Oil has made it as a finalist in the Face Oil category!

Neven Body Care, an Oslo based company, formulates “junk-free” and soon to be certified organic skin care products. The brand aims to promote the balance between nature and humanity as key to social progress and environmental sustainability. Besides partners in life and in business, the couple, behind Neven, shares a deep appreciation of plants and their power to heal and provide sustenance for humanity and all living beings.

We had the opportunity to interview the co-founder, Mila Ducheva to learn about the spirit behind her brand, what makes their Rejuvenate Face Oil so extraordinary, why she has a special love of two ingredients – Bulgarian rose oil and cold-pressed oil from wild Rosehips, and oh-so-much-more!

What inspired you to create Neven Body Care?

I’ve always dreamt of running my own business, but never planned for it to be in the beauty industry. In a way, it happened naturally as a consequence of my transition to more connected and mindful living. In the context of what inspired me to start the company, I would say that I drew inspiration from a lot of things, especially from my cumulative life experiences as a student and young adult.

Being a part of the “Young Environmentalists” club in high school, I became more aware and passionate about respecting and protecting our beautiful planet as well as all living beings. Ever since I was a child, I felt that all animals were sentient beings that deserved fair and more humane treatment. I was fascinated by the concept of ecology and how all elements of an ecosystem work simultaneously towards maintaining balance. Around that time was when I first felt the responsibility that each person has as co-habitant on Earth. It became clear that a lot has to change in people’s mentality both in individual mindsets and in the way communities and society think or behave as a whole.

Later in my life as a design student, I felt compelled to “improve people’s lives” sort of like a mission, of which I wanted to be part. At that time, I approached that mission in the context of spatial environments, specifically interior architecture. The philosophy of my projects then revolved around bringing nature inside, using plants in the interiors to blur the outdoors indoor distinction and to emphasize the “green” in spaces that otherwise incorporated various sustainability principles and non-toxic materials to reduce the human impact on our planet.

Parallel to that, I was introduced to aromatherapy and started to include essential oils in my daily life actively. Meanwhile, I enjoyed outdoor activities and hobbies such as gardening and formulating blends of aromatic oils. It turns out I came to this world with a discerning and sensitive nose that helps a lot if you want to compare and contrast your aromatic blends. My love and appreciation for nature grew to a whole new level. As I was learning and experiencing the healing powers of plants, I recognized how profoundly unethical the industry is. Here I am talking not only about the cosmetic sector, but also the food and pharmaceutical. And that was a turning point in my career path. I knew I wanted to educate people about the benefits of using plants as a source of wellness, health, and beauty.

What were some roadblocks/issues that you have faced? During the start of your journey, were consumers receptive to your natural products?

There will always be challenges that small companies need to overcome along the way. Some of the initial problems we faced were determining the price of our products and positioning them well within the respective segments.
Another challenge was finding quality organic ingredients that were from a single source, reasonably priced, and closer to us. We wanted to have a low environmental impact by sourcing our raw ingredients or at least most of them from within Europe, and we also wanted to support small, family-owned producers like ourselves.

Also, in the beginning, the market and consumers in Norway seemed hesitant toward our holistic and unconventional approach. Many of them were reluctant to try facial oils, and not to even mention substituting their moisturizer for oil. Times have changed, and now, more than ever, people commit to living healthier and seek information to make responsible choices for themselves and their families. Subsequently, more and more individuals dare try new things while the facial oils have become some of the best selling products, both online and purchased in person.

Please tell us more about your Rejuvenate Face Oil! Why do you think it is considered as one of the best face oils in the clean beauty sector?

We are incredibly proud that our Rejuvenate Face Oil appealed to the panel of judges as much as our customers love it. What makes this accomplishment feel even more significant is the fact that the formula in its current form differs slightly from the one we used in the first trial batches. The prototype version of Rejuvenate was composed of some organic and some conventional oils. We have gone from that to using 99.95% certified organic ingredients, the crops from most of which are grown in Europe. Oils such as sea buckthorn, rosehip, or borage seed feature in formulations, as star ingredients, because their individual properties are potent enough to allow these “super” oils to shine above all others. In our formula, the star is the blend – the combination boasts higher power than the total sum of their attributes.
With that in mind, I must say that Rejuvenate’s development process felt effortless and pleasant as opposed to some other products where we faced numerous challenges. Initially, I made it for myself, my sister, and my mom, whereas now it connects our company to a significant number of women who now love and enjoy the oil as a primary product for facial care.

You use a lot of organic/natural ingredients! What are your favourite ingredients and why?

It seems like a tough question, but if I only had to name a few, I would choose two unique oils that are close to my heart – the Bulgarian rose oil and cold-pressed oil from wild Rosehips. I grew up around these plants, and they play a culturally significant role in Bulgarian folklore, medicinal practices, and the economy.

The ancient Greek poet Sappho described the Damascus rose as the “Queen on flowers” and many aromatherapists consider its oil as one of the fines. The fact that the chemical composition of its scent includes more than 300 different molecules that comprise it is astonishing. We see it as a gift of nature as the harvesting process is labor-intensive because roses need to be picked by hand during a particular time of the day. Also, it takes 65 rose blossoms to produce only one drop of the essential oil. In other words, you need tens of millions of individual petals to acquire a liter.

Rosa Damascena’s beautiful fragrance has honey-sweet and subtle fresh floral notes. One of the essential properties of rose oil is keeping our skin young. It moisturizes, soothes, and calms it, which benefits dry, maturing, and sensitive skin types. The oil also supports and strengthens the skin’s protective barrier on multiple levels like locking moisture inside the tissues, defending us from bacteria or other irritants, and preventing free radicals from entering our body. This barrier plays a crucial role in our immune system and helps the skin maintain its proper level of nutrients, softness, and health. However, when this protective shield is compromised and damaged, small, invisible cracks appear. That makes it vulnerable because moisture can escape quickly, and irritants can enter. Peer-reviewed studies have shown that the Bulgarian rose oil also has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that are useful in relieving acne or other skin conditions like eczema, dermatitis, and psoriasis.

Even more importantly, it heals and brings balance in our body, mind, and spirit. Rose oil also comforts the heart and a troubled mind, especially in times of loss and grief. One of the fascinating facts about this plant is that it simultaneously relaxes and uplifts, making it an important allay to address any hyperactivity, emotional heaviness or trauma, anxiety, sadness, and heartbreak. That is why many people associate rose oil with love, romance, and positive vibrations.

The second raw material we love working with is rosehip oil. The plant is a close relative to Damask rose and carries numerous health and wellness benefits. It bears small red fruits that find application in gastronomy as a superfood and the cosmetic industry as a valuable ingredient in anti-aging products. Both the fruits and their seeds are rich in prized nutrients like vitamins A, C, E with crucial roles in collagen production. As the structural protein in our skin, joints, and soft tissues, collagen keeps them firm and flexible. Our body synthesizes that protein, but as we age, this process slows down, causing loss of suppleness, sagging skin, and wrinkles. Vitamin C stimulates the synthesis of collagen, resulting in more youthful and revitalized skin. Also, rosehip oil nourishes and regenerates the skin due to its high content of Vitamin A, which increases elastin content and acts as an excellent alternative to retinol treatments. Rosehip oil proves effective and gentle on the skin, absorbing very quickly without a trace of oily residue. C and E vitamins also help slow down the aging process by nourishing the cells. As prominent antioxidants, they support the cells by binding to the free oxygen radicals that speed up aging and by creating a lipid barrier to strengthen the skin further.
Rosehip oil not only stimulates new tissue formation, but it heals and maintains the skin’s texture and softness. Deep wrinkles, UV injuries, dark spots, pigmentation, acne, and many skin disorders can improve by treating the area with this natural treasure.

How did you and Veli determine the ethos or philosophy of your beauty brand?

The first time Veli and I had a business meeting; we decided to take notes to differentiate that occasion from the conversation we have daily. It was then, and there we sat for hours brainstorming brand names and discussing the concepts and values that would eventually define Neven’s identity. To summarize, we generated a list of prerequisites we used as a measuring tool. It was something all products had to adhere to, and that list even determined whether or not we would go forward with a product we wanted to formulate.

Potential additions to our line had to be the product of 100% high-quality active ingredients; authentic and efficacious formulating; testing only by consenting individuals, never animals; environmentally friendly and socially responsible business practices; packaging with low environmental impact.

Also, what people can say about all Neven products is that they contain no toxins, no synthetic chemicals or fillers, no harmful substances, no artificial colorants or fragrances. For us, holding to these standards as guiding principles is like following a compass that will always show us the right direction.

Thank you Mila for sharing your story. We are glad that you were inspired by nature’s power to heal, nourish and rejuvenate our skin!

See Neven Body Care’s website, and follow them on Instagram or Facebook!

Learn more about the finalist below!

Rejuvenate Face Oil

2020 FaceOil Finalist

Price: $149-430 kr


PurPicks is the world’s largest directory of organic / natural / clean skincare products with thousands of reviews, like TripAdvisor for nontoxic skincare!

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Founder Spotlight: An Interview with Sonya Driver from Eco By Sonya Driver

#Founderspotlight - Eco By Sonya Driver - Sonya Driver

This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we’ll get a small commission which helps keep us moving the dial towards clean beauty!

#Founderspotlight - Eco By Sonya Driver - Sonya Driver

This year, Eco by Sonya Driver is a Finalist for the 5th Clean Beauty Awards!

Over 300 products entered the 5th Clean Beauty Awards, hosted by CertClean, and Eco by Sonya Driver has 4 products as Finalists! What an amazing feat!
We took the first opportunity to speak to the brains behind Eco by Sonya Driver – a certified organic tanning, skincare and body care range created in Australia! Sonya shares the spirit behind her brand, the diligence she took in formulating her products, highlights her absolutely favourite ingredients, and so much more! Keep reading!

What inspired you to create organic tanning products? Why did you expand your offering to include other safer skincare products?

I started Eco Tan for personal reasons. Almost a decade ago, my gentle-spirited sister was diagnosed with a melanoma. She had a cancerous growth cut from her arm, leaving a horrible scar. Growing up in the Australian sun, we still wanted to get a tan without the risk of harmful UV rays, so I thought the next best thing was fake tanning. We started getting spray tans together, but I became concerned about the ingredients in the different brands we were using, regardless of their claims. It only took me a few minutes to decide not to use their products anymore.

Our skin is our largest organ and much of what we put on it is absorbed into our blood stream. So I took matters into my own hands. I started buying samples of cacao, flower essence, grape seed extract, chamomile and all things natural and organic and started mixing batches out of my tiny kitchen in Currumbin. The first batch, or fifty batches, weren’t perfect. Working with organic ingredients is a lot more challenging than working with synthetic ingredients! But I was determined to create a natural tanning option that was good for our skin and good for the planet. And I finally did it… In 2011, Eco Tan made Australian history by becoming the first and only tanning manufacturer to be certified organic by the Organic Food Chain under the Australian government. After the initial tanning product, we created a tanning range. Which then expanded to body care, sun care and our latest range, organic skin care.

After I had a large basal cell carcinoma removed from my face in 2017, I needed a product that would give me the best shot at healing the scar that was left on my face. So I created certified organic Glory Oil, one of the heroes in our skincare range, packed with phenomenal botanical actives to reduce the appearance of scars and fine lines. Inca Inchi is a secret anti-oxidant rich weapon in the formula, known for it’s ability to heal skin and reduce the signs of ageing. The superpowers of Mother Nature are incredible and I never tire of hearing from our amazing customers of the results that Glory Oil has brought to them.

Coconut Mint Body Wash and Super Citrus Cleanser had similar motivations behind why they were created. Firstly, I wanted a thorough face and/or body wash that left my skin feeling deeply clean. It had to be free of toxic chemicals, synthetic fragrances and pretty much anything nasty! I wasn’t satisfied with the “deep clean” feeling I was getting from other organic face and body washes that I had used. As a mother of two girls, with a husband that tends to use my products in the shower, I also wanted to create products that could be used on all skin types and for everyone in the family. So again, I created my own! Super Citrus cleanser is made with organic aloe vera, lemongrass and caviar lime. These ingredients have incredible healing and anti-inflammatory properties that fight acne and reduce skin irritations. It also smells incredible! Much the same, Coconut Mint Body Wash is designed for the whole family, it’s gentle for everyone from mums to bubs and it smells phenomenal, like a Pina colada.

I created Eye Compost because I wanted an organic eye cream with the usual properties of reducing the appearance of dark circles and fine lines, but I wanted something more. I started researching potential ingredients and (in my opinion) found the winning combination of Kakadu Plum, Hyaluronic Acid and Spirulina to tighten, firm and hydrate the delicate skin around the eye. Active botanicals and Vitamin C in these ingredients simultaneously improve skin luminosity, while hyaluronic works to attract and retain moisture. The natural Spirulina however, is the real winner here. The bright/blue green colour counteracts the colour of dark circles around the eyes to brighten skin.

What were some roadblocks/issues that you have faced? How did you conquer these issues?

Everything you can imagine. Working with organic and natural ingredients is a lot harder than working with synthetic ingredients! The first organic spray tan I created took me multiple attempts – close to a hundred – before I was happy with it. The first batch was sticky, then the next I wasn’t happy with the colour and so on. Luckily, we haven’t faced much greenwashing in our supply chain, as we are extremely thorough in who with partner with in business. It would be hypocritical if I told my consumers to research the products and ingredients they were using if I didn’t do the same in selecting our supply chain partners. For us, educating our consumers goes hand in hand with providing our products to the market. Our message to consumers is to “check labels, read ingredients, do your research, practice sun safety and #BewareOfBS” (bullshit). So many products claim to be “organic” or “natural”, but we tirelessly try to inform the market that they should look out for certifications which guarantee products are truely made from organic and natural ingredients, like ours. Obviously the cost of producing organic products is higher, especially sourcing some of the beautiful natural ingredients that we use. However, we’ve always wanted to make clean beauty products accessible to the mainstream market.

Please tell us more about the products that have been deemed as the Finalists of the 5th Clean Beauty Awards! Why do you think they’re so well loved by the panel of judges?

Our product reviews speak for themselves! I will link each product to our website page where you can check out the hundreds of amazing reviews.

Eye Compost is an eye cream that brightens, plumps and helps to reduce the appearance of dark circles and fine lines. Active botanicals in Kakadu Plum, Spirulina and Vitamin C work simultaneously to improve skin luminosity, while pure hyaluronic attracts and retains moisture. Eye Compost is applied with an exquisite Jade Stone applicator which helps to increase blood circulation and naturally boost collagen.

Glory Oil is a certified organic miraculous night and day treatment oil pioneered to reduce the appearance of scars, fine lines and wrinkles to restore skin to its true glory. It harnesses the phenomenal healing and moisturising powers of organic super seeds including Inca Inchi, Acai and Pumpkin Seed to heal, sooth, reduce sign of ageing and assists in restoring moisture balance to your skin. This specially formulated omega abundant oil drenches your skin and will help protect, improve and restore all skin types.

Super Citrus Cleanser is made from an extraordinary blend of organic Aloe, Lemongrass and Caviar Lime. It deeply cleanses and helps regenerate skin for a smoother, more even complexion. Organic Aloe Vera is known for its super healing and anti-inflammatory properties to fight acne and sooth skin irritations. With anti-bacterial properties from organic Lemongrass, this product helps to give your skin that beautiful, clear, even glow. Australian Caviar Lime is also packed full of natural gentle AHA’s and antioxidants to not only exfoliate skin gently, it also helps clear acne and increase production of collagen that promotes healthy, smooth skin.

Coconut Mint Body Wash is an award winning, revitalising organic body wash. Our unique organic body wash recipe is a gentle formulation, so it is suitable for all skin types and can be used by your whole family. Mums and bubs love it! It is free from synthetic ingredients, soaps and SLS. Instead, it is made with only certified organic and natural ingredients sourced from Mother Nature. With a delicious blend of natural coconut, peppermint and aloe vera, Coconut Mint Body Wash will gently nourish your skin and leave you feeling revitalised.

What are your favourite ingredients and why?

I have so many organic ingredients I would love to speak about but I’ll limit it to three:
Aloe Vera: I use it in almost all the products I create. It’s fantastic! With healing, anti-bacterial and anti inflammatory properties, it also provides moisture and hydrating to skin. It fights acne and helps to unclog pores, it has antiseptic properties that can treat infections and fights the signs of ageing, as it stimulates fibroblast activity in the skin which creates an uptick in collagen production.
Lemongrass: it’s a powerful anti bacterial and anti-fungal ingredient. Lemongrass is renown for it’s skin healing properties from being cleansing and antiseptic to astringent properties that gives skin a beautiful glow. Read more about it in my blog –!
Incha inchi: is an ancient Peruvian omega abundant supersede oil packed full of proteins, vitamins, anti-oxidants and fatty acids, which help restore your skins natural barrier by preserving the lipid balance. It’s a unique and phenomenal anti-ageing product and is able bring youthfulness back to the skin. Inca Inchi has an exceptional poly-unsaturated fatty acid content, notably Omegas-3, which is the richest of all oleaginous seeds! It provides unparalleled regeneration and moisture to the skin.

We absolutely love the ethos of your company. Can you tell us more?

– Our professional, tanning, skincare and body care range is Certified Organic by the Organic Food Chain Australia.
– We are Accredited Toxic free by Safe Cosmetics Australia
– We are Accredited by Choose Cruelty Free – we have never and will never test on animals. – – We don’t even sell to China because of their animal testing processes. Our commitment to being against animal testing is more important than the potential sales we would make in that market.
– Our tanning, skincare and body care range is vegan
– Our products are free from ethanol amine compounds and salts (MEA, TEA, DEA and derivatives), Ethoxylated ingredients (eg PEGs, ammonium laureate sulphate, SLS and more), palm oil (or derivates of) from certified sources), paragons (butyl-, ethyl- or methylparaben), petroleum-derived non-preservative ingredients and synthetic fragrances

Product formulations: As I mentioned before, it took me way more than 20 attempts to create the first organic spray tan formula. But I was persistent and I wanted to teach myself to be a chemist. Product creation isn’t necessarily a quick process, some products take months and even years of research, developing and testing before I’m happy to launch it to the market. However, as the company has grown, so has my knowledge, so it probably takes me around 8 batches until it’s perfect and I’m obsessed with the end result!

We are committed to Sustainability: Our products are biodegradable with ingredients responsibly sourced from Australia and communities around the globe. We strive to positively protect the natural environment and have only a positive impact with products that are not only reef friendly, but drain friendly also, with no micro beads or toxic chemicals flooding into our oceans.

We are in conversion to zero waste and committed to a greener, cleaner future by using environmentally responsible packaging that can be recycled, reused or repurposed, with renewable energy sources. Our packaging is already 100% recyclable, plus we are increasing and maximising the use of PCR (Post Consumer Recycled) materials in all product packaging now and in the future. We choose glass packaging where necessary as an endlessly recyclable option protected in biodegradable outer packaging selections. We’re even implementing biomaterials composed of sugar cane pulp, all made using innovative manufacturing solutions like solar farms to minimise our global impact as a business. Carbon Neutrality is our goal and to become a fully sustainable company that has a hand in improving global conditions. With efforts in all areas, we aim to achieve this ASAP.

We know you are passionate about supporting women in business and other community projects – can you share more?

We are super passionate in supporting women in business and community projects that are close to our heart.

From supporting a woman, Lonela, and her 6 daughters, literally sleeping on piles of rags with mice and rats, with no food, water, door, window or bedding. While at the same time Lonela’s husband was in jail for domestic violence and other crimes. I went with our Operations Manager, Michelle, to Romania to provide not only financial support, general household amenities but just love and care! I can honestly say I have never felt so loved in all my life. When Lonela hugged me, her whole body was shaking, her heart was pounding and she just cried. She couldn’t understand why another mother from another country cared so much about her. Read the full blog.

We recently launched our first Not For Profit product – Hand and Nail Cream for Rafiki Mwema. It’s a beautiful certified organic hand and nail cream, designed to replenish and retain moisture to your skin and strengthen nails. 100% of profits from the sale of this product are going directly to the charity for Rafiki Mwema, who help vulnerable children who are victims of horrific sexual abuse in Kenya (

Our latest mission is supporting Yoshe Taylor. A woman and mother, falsely imprisoned in a Cambodian jail for 6 years. Watch her story on the ABC:
We have been raising money and providing support to Yosh, even today, we organised getting her dog shaved and organising a bond cleaner for her home!

Thank you Sonya Driver for sharing your story and creating vegan, plastic-free, natural and clean beauty products!

See Eco by Sonya’s website, and follow them on Instagram or Facebook to support a brand with mission on making plastic-free vegan clean skincare for our use!

Learn more about the finalists below!

Eye Compost Supernaturally Bright Eye Cream

Certification: Organic Food Chain

2020 EyeCare Finalist

Price: $14.00 – $65.00

Glory Oil

Certification: Organic Food Chain

2020 FaceOil Finalist

Price: $49.95 AUD

Super Citrus Cleanser

Certification: Organic Food Chain

2020 FaceWash Finalist

Price: $29.95 AUD

Coconut Mint Body Wash

CertificationOrganic Food Chain

2020 BodyWash Finalist

Price: $24.95 AUD


PurPicks is the world’s largest directory of organic / natural / clean skincare products with thousands of reviews, like TripAdvisor for nontoxic skincare!

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Founder Spotlight: An Interview with Debbie Alger from Birch Babe Naturals

#Founderspotlight - Birch Babe Naturals - Debbie Alger
#Founderspotlight - Birch Babe Naturals - Debbie Alger

Birch Babe does it again! This year, Birch Babe Naturals’ Shampoo Bar is a Finalist for the 5th Clean Beauty Awards, hosted by CertClean!

We took the opportunity to speak to Debbie Alger – the brains behind Birch Babe Naturals – a small natural body products company with vegan products and plastic-free products that are certified by CertClean! Keep reading to learn more about Debbie and her brand.


What inspired you to create safer skincare products?

I have always been a huge advocate of being natural, it just became more important over time.I currently have a toxic free lifestyle, I know everything that goes on or in my body, I make it all. It has become a bit of an obsession with me and now our loyal customers.

What were some roadblocks/issues that you have faced? How did you conquer these issues?

We realized early that certain markets were not appropriate, such as fairs and general festivals. Our audience is better reached at Vegan and Green Living functions. The customer understands our mission and appreciates our products.

Your shampoo bar is amongst the best HairWash products in the industry! Tell us more about this product!

Our shampoo bar is one of our first products and we are very proud of them. They have no sulfates, yet there is a great lather naturally. They last a very long time, and great for travel too. There is a nice tin that fits perfectly for it. Again, no plastic!

What are your favourite ingredients and why?

My personal favourite is Rosehip butter, it is so luxurious. We put it in all our facial products, lips and body butters.

We absolutely love the ethos of your company. Can you tell us more?

We are adamant to use the highest quality essential oils and carrier oils, all certified natural, many are organic. Our products are also proudly certified by CertClean.
We will be starting a separate line this spring that is totally Organic and 100% plastic-free.

Thank you Debbie for sharing your story and creating vegan, plastic-free, natural and clean beauty products!

See Birch Babe’s website, and follow them on Instagram or Facebook to support a brand with mission on making plastic-free vegan clean skincare for our use!

Learn more about the finalist below!

Shampoo Bar – Rosemary and Spearmint

2020 FaceCream Finalist

Price: $69.50 CAD


PurPicks is the world’s largest directory of organic / natural / clean skincare products with thousands of reviews, like TripAdvisor for nontoxic skincare!

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Founder Spotlight: An Interview with Gertie Wilson from Elevé Cosmetics

#Founderspotlight - Elevé Cometics - Gertie Wilson

This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we’ll get a small commission which helps keep us moving the dial towards clean beauty!

#Founderspotlight - Elevé Cometics - Gertie Wilson

Once again Elevé Cosmetics makes it as a Finalist in CertClean’s Clean Beauty Awards!

However, this year, THREE of their products make it as Finalists in the FaceOil, SunCare and LipCare categories! We are excited to interview Gertie Wilson, the brains behind the beautiful Elevé Cosmetics brand! Keep reading to see how Elevé was born and Gertie’s secret loves when it comes to her favourite products and ingredients!

A little intro on Elevé Cosmetics

Elevé Cosmetics is a nontoxic, award-winning, vegan-based beauty line that “highlights your gorgeous features without dirty additives”.
Not only is their clean line modern, stylish and long wearing; it also “heals, repairs and protects your face”. Their products are known to be packed full of antioxidants, peptides and active anti-aging ingredients, and designed to “enhance your natural beauty while improving the way your skin looks and feels”. Their philosophy is simple: “use natural, organic ingredients simply makes sense. It’s less about promising you a miracle and more about pampering your skin!”

What inspired you to create safer skincare products? How did you come up with the brand name?

After a childhood of curiosity and years of working as a makeup artist, I realized name-brand cosmetics weren’t catering to everyone. So many of my clients would have an allergy, or a lifestyle preference that big name brands wouldn’t fulfill. At one point, I remember having to to carry five to six makeup lines at any given time and used various products from each line to accommodate my clients’ needs. This inspired me work to create naturally derived products that worked well for everybody, and in 2015 Elevé was born!

What were some roadblocks you faced as an entrepreneur?

As a young woman, when I started my company I encountered issues with people taking me seriously as a business owner. It was hard to secure funding; it was difficult to get people to agree to meet with me or even to listen. But where there is a will, there is a way!

Congratulations again on having THREE products as a Finalist for CertClean’s Clean Beauty Awards! Can you tell us about the three products and why you think the Clean Beauty Awards’ judging panel loved your products?

Our Organic Golden Beauty Oil is my obsession – it benefits EVERYONE! It heals, prevents, protects, and leaves your skin healthy and with a natural glow. My whole family uses it; it heals my 2 year old’s dry, chapped cheeks, and my husband swears it does wonders for his sensitive skin!

The Vitamin Sea Sunscreen is also a daily use for me. It’s buttery (but not pore-clogging) texture moisturizes and protects with an SPF 28. It also contains turmeric, a powerful antioxidant.

Lip LUV Lip Treatment is the only formula that heals my dry, chapped lips. We have so many loyal customers that can’t live without this, including me!! It’s the one thing I would choose to take to a deserted island.

What are some of your favourite ingredients and why?

I love all products formulated with Argrerline is my best friend (also know as the botox alternative!) which stimulates collagen production helping to keep my skin smooth and wrinkle free.

Maxi-lip is found in our Lip LUV and Lip AMP and is proven to plump lips naturally. My lips are noticeably more smooth and defined!

Hibiscus Esculentus Extract has the ability to deliver a cumulative effect of minimizing wrinkles, while also reducing the contraction of muscle cells. Think less fine lines! It’s known as a surgery alternative. You can find it in our luxurious EyeLuminate Eye Cream.

Lactic Acid does wonders for my skin! We purposefully included it as one of the 10 active ingredients in our TEN Night Cream formula because of the benefits it offers. It gently exfoliates to reveal smoother and more glowing skin, improves texture and fights hyperpigmentation. With regular use it leads to fewer breakouts, and less visible lines and wrinkles. Yes, please!

What does “clean beauty” mean to you?

To us, clean beauty is all about the ingredients – it includes products that are created using ethically sourced elements that are not suspected or proven to be toxic. These products are good for our bodies and safe for the environment. Our mission is to spread wellness through beauty.

Many of the ingredients we use are organic and wildcrafted and are chosen for their synergistic and holistic attributes. In other words, our makeup nourishes your skin while enhancing your beauty. Our products are plant and mineral-based and are made in small batches to ensure the integrity of each one. They are gluten free, GMO free, soy free, phthalate and paraben free and ALWAYS cruelty free. The majority of our products are also vegan.

What does the name Elevé mean and why did you choose it for your line?

The importance of naturally-formulated cosmetics is summed up in my brand’s name: Elevé, which is a French term used in ballet that means “to rise.” I create products that allow women to feel beautiful, giving them the power to rise up!

Thank you Gertie Wilson for creating a bold and beauty brand – and for demonstrating “where there is a will, there’s a way”!

See Elevé Cosmetics website, and follow them on Instagram or Facebook!

Learn more about the finalists below!

Organic Golden Beauty Oil

2020 FaceOil Finalist

Price: $95 USD

Vitamin Sea Sunscreen

2020 SunCare Finalist

Price: $49 USD

Lip LUV Lip Treatment

2020 LipCare Finalist

Price: $26 USD



PurPicks is the world’s largest directory of organic / natural / clean skincare products with thousands of reviews, like TripAdvisor for nontoxic skincare!


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Founder Spotlight: An Interview with Sylvie Hennessy from Pevonia Natural Skincare

#Founderspotlight - Pevonia Natural Skincare - Sylvie Hennessy
#Founderspotlight - Pevonia Natural Skincare - Sylvie Hennessy

Pevonia’s natural lip balm is a Finalist in CertClean’s 5th Clean Beauty Awards! What an accomplishment!

We are excited to share our interview with Sylvie Hennessy, the brains behind the brand – Pevonia Natural Skincare! Keep reading to see what sets Pevonia apart from other natural brands and why their special natural Lipbalm which is well loved by the Clean Beauty Awards’ judging panel!

A bit more info about Pevonia Natural Skincare

Pevonia believes the most powerful ingredients in skincare come from the safest source – nature. For nearly three decades, Pevonia has used highly sustainable processes in line with the company’s stance on environmental conservation, and in 2019, the company became a proud supporter of charity: water. Pevonia delivers outstanding multicultural solutions to nearly 130 countries by restoring, de-aging and revitalizing our largest and most visible organ…our skin! The company is cruelty-free since its inception and is a renowned leader in delivering natural skincare solutions to customers seeking clean beauty, as well as elite spas and leading aestheticians globally. As a multi-award winning brand, Pevonia is coveted by celebrities and beauty/wellness influencers and often featured in leading worldwide press, praising their natural solutions for delivering outstanding, instant and long-term results for optimum skin health and radiance.

What inspired you to create safer skincare products?

Pevonia is committed to product innovation tied to consumer demands and trends. We are constantly seeking ways to enhance our comprehensive product and treatment selection to ensure we remain top of mind for valued industry professionals and consumers who love and trust our brand for their skincare needs. The Rapid-Restore Lip Balm was a perfect addition to our LipRenew Plump & De-Age Treatment product and pairs perfectly or performs great alone. It was formulated and launched as a direct result of great feedback from spa partners around the world.

You have been in business for almost 30 years, can you tell us some challenges you have had to overcome?

When your distribution worldwide is nearly 130 countries strong, there are always challenges to face and overcome. As a company, since inception in 1991, we have been committed to offering the purest, most natural ingredients within highly efficacious and cruelty-free, biodegradable formulas that are bottled in recyclable packaging. This challenges us daily to ensure selected vendors are doing their part and that our final decision fully align with our corporate vision and creed. We are committed to clean beauty and are constantly accessing our carbon footprint and the next steps we can take for an even greater carbon-reduced future.

Congratulations again on being a Finalist for CertClean’s Clean Beauty Awards! Can you tell us what makes your lip balm so well loved?

Kiss dry, chapped, and wrinkled lips goodbye and reveal a more vibrant, youthful-looking pout – even on the go! Whether your previously perfect pout is suffering from cold, dry, weather or from the effects of pollutants, drying lipsticks, or aging; trust Pevonia’s Rapid-Restore Lip Balm to deliver instant SOS! Clinically proven to visibly repair, smooth, and plump while instantly hydrating your lips and lip contour; its unique exfoliating texture works to quickly polish away toxins and rough, dry patches so that the balm’s deep nourishment quickly reaches its targeted areas of concern for lasting softness. Rapid-Restore Lip Balm’s de-aging and moisture-locking actions turn this compact, convenient, little tube into an intensive miracle repair treatment without affecting the color or application process; as it can be applied over lipstick or by itself for those who prefer a more natural pout.

Tell us a bit more about your ingredients that makes your natural lip balm such a high performing product!

Radical lip care that transcends way beyond your average lip balm, this proven effective intensive solution is formulated with an exceptional emollient blend of Dipalmitoyl Hydroxyproline, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Shea Butter, and Vegetable Olus Oil from Olives. • Dipalmitoyl Hydroxyproline: Firming effect; promotes collagen formation. Plumps and contours. • Tetrahexyldecil Ascorbate (Vitamin C): Antioxidant and anti-aging. Smooths wrinkles. • Olus Oil: Nourishing and protecting natural vegetable oil. • Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter: Nourishing and healing. Moisture shield. Softens skin texture. • Vitamin E: Nourishing, antioxidant, healing.

There is a more and more natural brands budding up in the industry. How is your brand different than the others?

Pevonia Natural Skincare is free from: SLS, GMOs, PABA, Urea, Lanolin, Cruelty, Formaldehyde, Alcohol, Parabens, Mineral Oil, Gluten, Artificial Colors/Fragrance.
Pevonia tests way beyond FDA standards. Our commitment to product excellence ensures that every consumer that places their trust in the brand for their skincare needs is purchasing clean beauty products aimed to deliver superlative results and exceed their expectations. Pevonia products are subjected to testing by a leading globally recognized University of Drug Sciences – University of Pavia in Italy. Aside from the standard list of FDA testes each product must successfully pass, they are additionally subjected to an additional fourteen tests as well as a volunteer perception evaluation for further data and insights.

Thank you Sylvie Hennessy for pioneering clean beauty!

See Pevonia Natural Skincare’s website, and follow them on Instagram or Facebook to support a brand with mission on making safer skincare for our use!

Learn more about the finalist below!

Rapid-Restore Lip Balm

2020 LipCare Finalist


PurPicks is the world’s largest directory of organic / natural / clean skincare products with thousands of reviews, like TripAdvisor for nontoxic skincare!


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Founder Spotlight: An Interview with Chad Zelensky from Lowen’s Skincare

#Founderspotlight - Lowens - Chad Zelensky

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#Founderspotlight - Lowens - Chad Zelensky

Lowen’s Body Lotion & Lip Balm are both Finalists of CertClean’s Clean Beauty Awards! What an achievement!

We took the opportunity to interview the brains behind the brand, Chad Zelensky, to learn more about Lowen’s Skincare and the mission behind the products that have the Clean Beauty Awards’ judging panel touting the performance of their body lotion and lip balm!

An intro to Lowen’s Skincare

Lowen’s is a family-owned and operated skin care company based in Calgary, Alberta Canada.

Conceived by a veteran Pharmacist (Chad Zelensky), Lowen’s is fiercely committed to using unrefined, organic, fair-trade, and/or locally-sourced ingredients to drive Lowen’s creation of unique, evidence based, natural skin care products that are safe, effective, long-lasting, and affordable. To demonstrate commitment to safer skincare, Lowen’s products carry the EWG verification mark and or the CertClean certification!

What inspired you to create safer skincare products? How did you come up with the brand name?

Lowen’s Natural Skincare is inspired by and named after our daughter, Lowen. After unsuccessful trials of commercially-available diaper rash treatments, we used our pharmaceutical knowledge and clinical experience to develop an innovative natural diaper balm using unconventional, unrefined locally-sourced ingredients. After some experimentation, we developed a formula that resolved Lowen’s diaper rash within days and, with continued preventative use, the rash never came back. We knew other parents faced the same dilemma we did and wanted to help them discover our product so that they, too, could prevent and treat diaper rash in their children. With that lofty goal in mind, Lowen’s Natural Skincare was born. After launching this flagship product, through extensive research and tenacity, we expanded our product line to include a variety of other balms, lotions, cleansers, scrubs, and creams.

Particular to the finalists, our entire lip balm line are based upon an early failure at our attempt in making Lowen’s diaper balm. My wife ended up applying it to her lips one late night/early morning when changing Lowen and told me that it wasn’t a good diaper balm but was the best lip balm she ever used!

What were some roadblocks/issues that you have faced? How did you conquer these issues?

Initially, we were a brand that didn’t fit. 10 years ago, the natural products sector looked at me coming from the medical establishment as suspect and then the medical community didn’t have a lot of respect for departures from conventionally established cosmetics/pharmaceuticals.

As the years passed, my credibility as a Pharmacist became a lot more valuable as did refining my approach to explaining the efficacy that drives the success of our product line.

You don’t just have one product as a Finalist for the Clean Beauty Awards — you have two! Can you tell us more about both Finalists? What makes them wonderful?

Rub it in:
It has a cool, memorable name that my wife came up with and the name is instructional. In the early days, users tended to use a comparable amount of our lotion as one would use of your typical formula – well the result was, “this is so greasy.”After explaining that they dispensed enough lotion for their entire body just for their hands, people found that when they “Rubbed the lotion in,” it quickly absorbed and stayed with the user – meaning even after hand washing, the moisturizing effects remained, reducing the need to reapply.

Creamsicle Lip Balm:
The flavour alone sets this product apart.That combined that our lip balms are actually solid emulsions (combining oil and water soluble ingredients) make it unique, incredibly hydrating and long lasting.Finally, not many lip balms include hyaluronic acid, an amazing ingredient…but Lowen’s does!

What are your favourite ingredients and why? 

It can get a bad rap sometimes but we love lecithin. It is in an incredible multi-functional ingredient in that it acts as a great co-emulsifier and helps thicken a product, but it also is very rich in vitamin e, which also stabilizes shelf life as well as being great for your skin.

Canola oil:
Another one that gets a bad rap and let’s be clear – not all canola oils are created equally. We use only certified organic, non-GMO canola oil that is farmed locally by a family that has owned their farm for well over 100 years. The oil you see on your grocery store shelves is likely genetically modified, exposed to all sorts of pesticides throughout its growth cycle and then is solvent extracted, potentially leaving behind all kinds of nastiness as well as stripping away any constituents that are of value (in my opinion). Our canola is incredibly rich in essential fatty acids, an “essential” constituent in your skin. They address inflammation, soften and can even address dietary deficiencies via percutaneous absorption!

We absolutely love the ethos of your company. Can you tell us more? 

Our Mission: Betterment (if you’re not making things better… what’s the point?)

Our Values: Relationships, Advocacy, Transparency, Sustainability, Inclusiveness, Balance

Our Guiding Principles: Safe For Us = Safe For You: We formulate our products using evidence-based, peer-reviewed, and personally-tested ingredients to ensure they are safe for you and your family. We ensure that our ingredients are thoroughly evaluated for safety, effectiveness, environmental impact, and animal welfare by the Environmental Working Group (EWG).

Do No Harm: We do not test our products on animals nor do we purchase ingredients that have been tested on animals. Furthermore, Lowen’s has also been vetted by PETA and are listed in their Cruelty Free Company database.

Simplicity: We formulate our products with hard-working ingredients. What this means is that any single ingredient can provide multiple benefits within a particular product. This keeps our ingredients list to a minimum number of “simple” components.

Source Sensibly: We source local, certified organic and/or fair trade ingredients whenever possible and continually review and refine our practices to adhere to the above. If we are unable to find an ingredient close to home, we expand our search to find unrefined, organic, fair-trade ingredients from other community-minded social enterprises.

Thank you Chad Zelensky for sharing your story and wisdom! And thank you for using your pharmaceutical knowledge and clinical experience to develop innovative and natural body products!

Check out Lowen’s Skincare, and follow them on Instagram or Facebook to support a brand with mission on making safer skincare for our use!

Learn more about the finalists below!

Rub it in Why Don’t Ya! Lotion

Certification: EWG Verified

2020 BodyCare Finalist

Price: $14.00 – $65.00

Creamsicle Lip Balm

Certification: EWG Verified

2020 LipCare Finalist

Price: $5.50


PurPicks is the world’s largest directory of organic / natural / clean skincare products with thousands of reviews, like TripAdvisor for nontoxic skincare!


Follow us on Instagram!

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