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The Process

From the Apothecary to you


Choosing our Ingredients

We look for ingredients that have the biological attributes we want to help with a particular skin function.  We also look for ingredients that will give us certain textures and feels that we want, We always buy unprocessed so the original qualities we seek are still there in all their glory. We then look where these plants are naturally grown and find suppliers from there.  We like to buy from areas where the plant or clay has always been from because those farms are likely to be old and well established and also suitable to how that plant likes to grow.  From this our ingredients come from all over the world, including some that are grown here close to home.  Some are still wild grown, many are grown organically and some are simply taken from the earth and carefully cleaned.  Eventually they find their way to our hands. Our active ingredients are bought from laboratories that have the original research and patents for that active.


Into the Laboratory

We love it when new harvests of ingredients come in. There is always subtle changes in colour, scent, texture, reflecting how that plant grew since the last harvest we bought.

Amazingly we still use no big machinery and our products are made with hand mixers and very large pots.  This is what gives our beautiful thick textures and richness to our products.  It also enables us to be very low energy users. It also gives us to the second visuals on what is happening at each and every stage of a product coming to life.


Perfecting our formulations

Formulating is very much at the heart of what we do.  Some formulas fall into place quickly and proceed along an undisrupted timeline.  Others, others have been difficult, some small but important feature I want on a molecular level will just not want to exist.  These take time, yielding, space for thought and trying again and again.  It is easy over time to forget the initial painstaking work of products like Luminous, Nutrient Hair Conditioner, Shampoo, Botanical and Hand Cream.  Once complete (1 to 2 years each) they are loved so much and we  make them so often trouble free that their effort at the beginning is forgotten.  


Packaging our products

Our products are packaged exclusively in glass or metal.  This ensures our product has no unwanted reactions or absorptions from our packaging and also that we are not introducing many thousands of plastic bottles to the environment.  We also have a very successful glass return system where customers return their empty glass bottles and jars and we clean and sterilise them and re use them. This has proven to be expensive in both time but far more expensive to the environment if we do not do it. Our glass is mostly amber to keep our products protected from light and also because it can be recycled over and over again.  Our clear glass is 50/50 flint and the greener recycled glass.  Our glass mostly comes from Germany and some is from Australia.  Glass also has this cool feel and I love how light passes through it, bending with the curves of the glass allowing different colours to stretch together.  It is like water that has suddenly become completely still.


From the Apothecary to you

We make to demand and products are never on our shelves long before they are in your hands.  We do all our manufacturing in-house from product concept to formulation, to trial, to final product, label design, packaging choice and final production.  A product is normally made on a 3 month cycle.  We send our product to our own stores where they are given to you by our own staff.  Some of our products, particularly the ones with biological actives like Vitamins, need consideration with how they should be used and we like our staff to be very well versed in how our products work on their own or in unison.