‘Natural’ has become a bit of a buzzword in the skincare industry. It’s a trend bigger companies have taken full advantage of; a quick search for ‘natural skincare’ now returns over 620 million results, and a carousel of big name brand adverts, with mass produced products.
That’s why, for this week’s Meet the Maker, we were so pleased to (virtually) sit down with Louise of Salix Moon Apothecary; a brand fully committed to bringing the healing power of plants to the public in the form of special skincare products ‘handmade in small batches by a moon witch’ — even when it can take years (yes, years) to get a product just right.
Hi Louise! Can you tell me about Salix Moon Apothecary, and how you got into making your own skincare?
I became interested in making skincare through my love of the natural world and foraging. It all started with me collecting wild plants as a way of connecting to nature and the seasons. I would make remedies for myself and family, often using wild herbs that humans have used and benefited from for thousands of years. Over time I became fascinated by the remarkable medicinal and beautifying properties found in nature and felt drawn to explore them further. I felt frustrated at the time with the lack of natural and plastic-free skincare which then led me to develop botanical concoctions for the skin. Salix Moon Apothecary was born out of my love and respect for the natural world and a need to connect and experiment with it. It was a way of getting creative with nature, combining my infatuation with herbs with my love of vintage design, botanical illustration and potion making.
What does a typical working day look like for you?
A typical day requires me to put on many different hats… I am a product formulator, graphic designer, photographer, social media manager, administrator and shipping department! Haha! I’m sure many small businesses can relate. A morning in Salix Moon HQ would typically consist of my partner Max and I packing up orders, doing a stock check, general social media and email admin with the afternoon reserved for product making!
What has been the biggest ‘pinch me’ moment of your journey so far?
In the early days Urban Outfitters contacted us expressing their interest in stocking our products, which was a bit of a boost to say the least! Our most recent pinch-me moment was when we got our products in the “Old Op” Apothecary shop in the infamous Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret in London, which is the oldest surviving operating theatre in Europe!
Were there any parts of launching and running Salix Moon Apothecary that you found more challenging than you expected?
There have been countless challenges, but I try to see them as a positive, as it means we are constantly learning and taking risks. The more complex natural formulas we create, the more problem solving there is, but the feeling you get when you finally crack it is amazing.
If you had to pick a favourite product, which would it be, and why?
Achilles Charm. This herbal healing ointment took my partner and I one year to perfect. It contains a powerhouse of regenerative herbs that help to soothe and protect dry and irritated skin. We have received some truly amazing feedback for this salve… knowing it has helped people’s skin conditions makes me want to cry with joy!
Tell us what’s next for Salix Moon Apothecary?
I dream big. I hope one day we will have a workspace with some land to grow all our own herbs, as I would love to be as self-sufficient as possible. Until then I’ll continue to make products from my little kitchen…
We loved hearing more about what goes on behind the scenes at Salix Moon Apothecary, and we hope you did, too!
Go and give them a follow on Instagram @salix_moon_apothecary for more behind-the-scenes shots and soothing, natural vibes. And don’t forget you can shop Salix Moon Apothecary wholesale here at Creoate — they really are the most lovely products with the prettiest packaging.