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The Conscious Beauty & Wellbeing Podcast
The Conscious Beauty & Wellbeing Podcast

Episode 11 · 1 year ago

Sourcing sustainable & ethical ingredients

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

As the shift towards natural beauty is becoming more and more mainstream there is a danger that as the demand for natural skincare increases, so will the demand on the resources that we harvest from the planet. Unregulated and unchecked this can have devasting effects on the environment, wildlife and local farmers.

As brands championing natural ingredients in skincare we have a responsibility to ensure that the ingredients we source are sustainably and ethically sourced.

We’re joined by Shalom Lloyd, founder of Naturally Tribal Skincare to try and delve into the importance of sourcing sustainably and ethically.

Hello and welcome to another episode of the conscious beauty and wellbeing podcast, a podcast started by bloom and beauty and Sep and skin to shine a light on the conscious beauty and wellbeing industry. I'm Rabbia, your host for today's episode, and I'm Joel, joined by my gorgeous friend and colleague, summer, Co founder of Sep and skin, and also a lovely guest today, Shalom Lloyd from naturally tribal. Hello, Shalom. Thank you so much, ladies, for having me. Is Exciting to be here. Thank you so much for joining us. So, as a shift towards natural beauty is becoming more and more mainstream, there is a danger that as a demand for natural skincare increases, so will the demand on the resources that we have harvested from the planet, I'm regulated and unchecked, this can have devastated effects, devastating effects on the environment, the wildlife and the local farmers that produce our ingredients. For example, we only have to look as far as how the demand for palm oil has impacted arangutangs or the emergence of break through naturally ingredients that have put a, you know, a huge, significant strain on plant species. So, as brands champion natural ingredients in skincare, we have a responsibility to ensure that the ingredients that we source are sustainably and ethically sourced. So, Shalom, we've asked you to join us today because we believe what we understand, that you have a lovely, lovely story behind the ingredients, your stoks you source and actually naturally tribal itself. Could you tell us a little bit about your brand journey? Thank you again. Thank you so much for having me. It's really a pleasure to be here and can I just start by saying that one of the reasons why I'm really excited is to actually be on this podcast with another brand. Thing. It's amazing because it speaks to collaboration, it speaks to partnership, is speaks to brands working together championing each other. It's exciting for me and I love it. And the topic we're talking about today sustainability, and in this context, to me it's sat is just simply avoiding the depletion of natural resources and how do we maintain that ecological balance, you know, in the world I'm really, really proud of. We're both British brands right the UK. I think it was in June two thousand and nineteen when the UK became the first major economy to pass as zero net emission law. Okay, where the target? I think the target will require the UK to bring all greenhouse gas emission was the next zero by twenty fifty...

...or something. So it impacts us all really. Now, for me, I'm a pharmacist by qualification and I never internet own a skincare brand at all. Reason why my company started was because of me being a mother, and those of us who are mothers know about you would do anything to protect, to nourish, just support, to guard, to guide your children right. And being a Pharmacyty, totally understand the value of chemicals in our lives completely and totally understand the different approaches to skincay. You can take a medical approach and the natural approach, on asthetic approach, and there is nothing wrong with that. Everything in moderation, but it's all about choice. I've chosen to good on the natural route, respecting signs and nature. For me, sciences nature and nature is science. And the story behind my brand is really, really simple. We're after going through four cycles of IVF having my beautiful twins on my own, Joshua. Joshua was born with severe x in man. He was crushed to he bled, he was totally covered and personally, after going through Ivfrom pomping myself with those chemicals, I didn't want to then put more chemicals on this child. I was prescribed, you know, I had cut is, on steroids, etc. which I used, I have to admit, to start with, and they were but it just didn't sit well with my conscience. So I started going crazy mixing in my kitchen and the ingredients I chose to use with sheer butter because it's one of those ingredies that's tried and tested there other generations, as so many clinical papers around Sharbutter, and also my experience as a child lads being slathered with share butter growing up, you know, and you're shining like someone you fry and egg on your face type of thing, you know. So it's something that I grew up with and trust and from to say scientifically, from a scientific aspect, is one of the few ingredients that's an emolient, inclusive and humittant all in one. So it became naturally the base for my products. So mixing in my kitchen, stumbled across this formula. Three days later, joshuas squeak skin cleared and became what it should have been from breath, and that was a breath of mattery, tribal skinkre. Wow. Well, that's such a beautiful story. I think it resonates with us, isn't it somewhere, because it's so resonates. Hi Shalom, and thank you for joining us. And Yeah, you're it's this is exactly what I was thinking a Shillong was going through her story. It's resonates so much so that I think we pretty much and exactly the same journey from A to B to see wherever we are at now. And Yeah, you're absolutely like. We've been through those stages where we've had to use, you know, the culture zone, the steroids, all of that, but you're not. It really does play on your conscious and I think you've got it. You've got it spot on there, but it's I mean, you've you you you mentioned something which I think is quite important,...

...is that you are by nature scientists, but you have bought that scientific knowledge and you've combined it with your brand. But of course, aaring more on the side of natural. Absolutely, and I always say to people it's it's a choice. In this life. Everything we do is a choice and it's about what works for you. You know, we hear it all the time the skin is largest or want in your body. What you put on it is important, but the human body so different to the approach to it. We have to approach it like we do with medicine. So, for example, simple example is when I have a headache, the only thing that will work for me is a particular allergies right, so we're of my husband. That's because that's what what's for me. So it's really the same approach. Taking to skincare is finding that happy medium, finding the right thing that works for you. Every English has its place. We shouldn't Discott an agredient because you know, a product is of its ingredients. Just know what hurts your skin and what helps your skin. Thankfully, natural skincare is not anti signs. Natural Skincare is science and I love that. That is such a perfect way to sort of just phrase the whole thing, because we are everything around us is scientific. We've got chemicals around us. I mean you look at water and that is a chemical compact right, so you can't say we are not a you know, we use chemicals. It's just about choosing to adopt natural chemicals as opposed to synthetic or harsh or perhaps toxic cold and putting the the ones that are going to nourish our skins onto us. Now. You talked about sheer butter and I've had, we've both had the privilege of having a look at your products, trying your products when we met Gosh a few years back, and you do have the most beautiful, beautiful products, and sheer but it is one of your flagship ingredients in the naturally tribal skincare range, and what I think really struck accord with me was when we were talking Gosh when we first met, was that great lengths naturally tribal and you have actually gone through two ensure that your share butter is not only sustainable but ethical. So, and that's kind of what we wanted to focus on in today's thing, is about the importance of sustainable and ethical ingredients, because we've been given this choice, an option to use beautiful natural ingredients in our formulations. Why is going for a sustainable ingredients so important now more than ever, that's an amazing question and I have to say that it wasn't. I didn't sit there and think, Oh, I've got to go for a sustainable exhaust my...

...ingredients ethically. To be honest, that's not how it started. When the formulation that I made work for my son, I run out of share butter that my related to sent me from Nigeria. So I went online and bought some rule share, but it didn't work and he started who okay, maybe the efficacy of this thing lies in actually the share that I used. So at the time I was still working full time in the farmacycle industry and I took some time of work flew back to Nigeria really blind all. All I went to look for was just a source. Where can I just buy the share butter and come back here and make my products? There was no sustainability, to be honest, in my thought process at the time. Yeah, now it was now getting into the Kingdom of Sam this place I describe it as a little beautiful oasis in the middle of nowhere. It takes me five hours to drive from a Boujat sence. I leave at five am in the morning and get their to buck in the morning and getting too sn and meeting these amazing women showing me and demonstrating how share butter is made, something I was never really pretty to. I was just used to the end product. Some babies on their backs on the forty degrees heat, and the process is intensive. These women were fitted than you and me. They looked really you know, it took takes energy, and it was at that point that I just had this epiphany, I call it. My whole business took a whole different turn. I thought, my goodness, would it be a great idea to actually do something with and for these women? I left that place looking them in the eye and saying I will put you on the map. I don't know how I'm going to do it, but I and came back here to the UK. Like I always say, my poor husband said to David, there's something he will could to do something here, and we mortgaged our home. See well, and went back to Nigeria and started to build a factory in six hundred and sixteen acres of land in Essen, and I'm really proud to say that as of December, two thousand and twenty the factories man complete equipment. Is Not a needs in full production, and what that means is empowering the women, recognizing the women, and it's little things like having a crash and I had been blog where they can drop their kids off and go to work. Those sorts of things that make me happy. Right. So sustainability was actually not the at the start of my journey. I think it was just wanting to do something, wanting to do good. I was actually talking to a friend of mine earlier this morning and I said, you know, we live in this world, but in the current climate that we live in, and some covid is impacted so many people, people have lost...

...their lives. Right, but I want if I go my children, my five children, can turn around and say, Oh my God, look what she did, look how she impacted like look at the difference she made to the women of s and the people who use our products and to our planet, because for me, sustainability is really about taking from our planet but giving it back, replenishing. You know, it's all about replenishing and not killing our planet, and I made a pledgure this year that I would we would not do that. That was a pleasure I make this year and difficulty is that share butter. We talk about the benefits of shotter, which are enormous. However, after seventy percent waste, this beautiful share butter and seventyference percent weight, if ball from the tree you have to d husked, that Husk is waste. You process it, you get the residue, which is the cake. That's waste. Today the husks are burnt and there, you know, land fils for the cake. So the waste generated by share butter is huge. So that is an issue for me. So I can say to a customer, when you pick up a job of my product, you can trace this main ingredient back to sauce. You you can, you know, see where it's from, the Kingdom of ast and feel and push the women and you're empowering but at the same time I'm still cleaning the planet because with burning the huts and doing all this stuff. So the way we're trying to balance that is trying to say, okay, this particular share not I want to use everything, everything that is yeah, everything of it. So the husks we're looking at experiments with, looking to a language, you know, people like University of Bedford share to try and transform those husks into briquets, which is like firewood for the locals, and the cake can be more fertilizer animal feed. So is the the things that actually define sustainability for me. Oh Gosh, that is and you've gone and that is literally there's length, great, great length, and I guess you find out with it small indie brand where you are focused on an individual thing and individual ingredient, you can go that extra mile. It will take you a little bit longer because we don't have the funds behind us, but it's it's the core principle, it's your core ethic, it's ingrained in you. It is a bad think. You know, I'm proud. I think we should all all be proud, because I've built a company that sits on three solid pillars. The first we've talked about, his efficacy, product that work. Wanted US for your skin, naturally. The second I called Planet Hugging, is sustainable sustainability, sustainable...

...package in national ingredients, all these things I've talked about that hug our planet. And then the third pillars, ethical sourcing, actually doing things well and fairly, which I see as something simple. So for me, that that's really important and it's that transparency actually, that you've just been so transparent and said it will. Actually, I've gone the extra mile. I've built these factories of empowered hundreds of women to, you know, work on the far on the in factory and, you know, create this high grade sheer butter. But we're not perfect. There are flaws and we're still working on that and that's that's what's so beautiful and I think that's one of the things that as an individual indie, as a small indie brand, you know, we'll put our hands up and sort of say, yes, we're still striving, we're not a hundred percent there yet. We're doing our best, but, you know, things come in baby steps. You can do this my also, I also, I mean, I think the other positive that I can see coming out of this is educating locals, because very often, especially especially, I think, we we look at the cultures that we come from, they are very similar in that lifestyles are very simplistic, you know, and it's almost I mean, I think sustainability and recycling it's almost ingrained into in it in the most humorous a waste sometimes it's unbelievable. I mean a newspaper back where we come from Oh my God, you will see it recycled to the end of its life and beyond, you know, until the fibers of it come apart. You ast know what it's made of. And Yeah, you know, I think what and what locals don't realize is actually a positive impact that they're having by doing that. And obviously here in the West we've been able to break it down, but they because of simplicity and they're trying to make a living. That's that's ultimately what it's about. The buy, but with people like you setting up it's sort of inspirational sort of concepts like this, I think you're also educating, which I think is so important for future generations. I couldn't agree more because, I mean I think it was Mars two thousand and nineteen where myself and my colleagues team and, I feel, other people went from the UK to Sam and they were about three hundred and fifty women. We did the health and safety training for them. That was so it's self fulfilling. I guess the downside some of these is because we are small indie brands. We have purpose and impact in our DNA right. The problem with that, let's be honest, is that. That kind of is driving our it's drive. That's out one of our core drivers, right, you know the fact that this natural thing has worked for our kids and that fact that we're making an impact to people's like that becomes a driver. And then what happens, at least it happens to me, profit comes last. Yes, it's so focused on this amazing things you're doing, but you know, I still believe that for us it would build it. They will come. It's about the messaging out there. There are, somebody said...

...in in a forumer was in reason, the two types of consumers, one the consumers do their research, and those who want to be handed a solution. We actually cut across both, because the ones we want to do their research actually listen to our stories, understand why we've done what we've done and I think, like your brand as well, for us is about keeping it simple. There's no there's nothing worse than the customer picking of people and I just can't even pronounce what's in it. It's keeping simple, going back to nature, going back to our roots, going back to where what has worked for generation. Yeah, doing their research, oh my goodness, buying to that and the ones who wanted to be. WHO WANTS TO BE HEAD OF A solution? It is great for excellent, great, I love. I'll take your word for a type thing. You know, I think my brand, and I think yours as well, has really focused on people with skin conditions. They're not cures, but their natural ways of managing skin conditions without the NASTIES, right. So, you know, supporting and managing things like Eximers, arises, them at Tieh Tis and all this stuff, except dryer skin. But also, I think is important for us to say to people out there that it's also for normal skin. I use my it's also for people who want to maintain their skin as nature in tender exactly, and I think this is yet that this is literally the nail on the head there. It's the beauty of so many of these gorgeous naturally ingredients is that they are suitable for all and it's just about how you use them or how they've been formulated and with what they've been formulated that you can then say, yet they're targeting this condition or this condition or this is for very. So I mean summer is Archie formulator and she's where. She creates our body butters for example, a skin deep body butters. There's a different blend of essential oils and base oils that go with the sheer butter, the cocoa butter and the Manga butters that we use to target specific things, so specific concerns, and that's where you can say right, it is for all you've got. It's just about having that knowledge on how to tweak ingredients so that they cater for certain things and it's wonderful. So tell me more about the women that you work on the farm. They are, assuming, I'm assuming, their local tribal women. Yes, probably, but who literally, probably, are bread earners of their household, households, because not about excluding men, because in the building the factor we use. Look, we're trying to make everything local, using local builders, local, you know, local materials. Except true, and these women, ordinarily are. They just their farmers. You know,...

...they make their share themselves and sell during the season or they sell. There's a lot of rice in s and there's peanuts in air and there's lots of mangoes in airnds. So you know, these are things that they will typically do. So the environment we're trying to create for them is one that doesn't exist in s and at the moment in terms of giving them a livelihood, given them jobs. I absolutely adore these women. It is hard work because I don't speak their language. It's my heritage in terms of being Nigerian, but I don't speak their language. So communication is global communication. They understand what we're trying to do. They understand that it's actually beautiful. Sounds Weird. It's beautiful to watch and beautiful to communicate with them because they completely understand it. It's not about taking their traditional methods away. It's about actually putting infantstructure to enhance. You're making it in your house. You can make it here and you get paid for it. You have a job now, you can open a bank account, you can have savings. It goes way beyond my business, is naturally tribal skame here and the people that I involved with it. It really goes deep into the root of trying to create a sustainable source of income for this people, and that's what's so powerful, because you can. It's your giving them their dignity. There you know they're independent, they're able to provide for themselves and their families and it's not charity scraps. This is employment. This is, you know, your way to work, your way out, you know, and that's so important to women or anybody in developing countries, is to retain their dignity. Nobody wants to, you know, depend on handouts, and that's what's so beautiful when you about really sourcing sustainably and ethically and having that social responsibility. It's to empower those nations or those tribes or those villages so that they can continue to flourish. And it's so and it's so similar to kind of our own little argon oil story as well, whereby, when we were looking just to source argon oil, we didn't go to your Great Lens in the opening up of last I wish we did these, you know, we do are things like different ways. Amazing that pure eyes. It really does, because when we were in Morocco, and Morocco is absolutely flooded with women's cooperatives that source or that provide organic argon oil. And it's only when you actually delve and you speak to these women that you actually understand that, the work term, it's an unregulated industry in any developing country. You know, there's no government legislation to protect these...

...women, and so you find out when you do actually speak to them. It's not a cooperative. Then don't have shares in the profit. But it doesn't whittle down to the women, does it? The women are grinding hand, grinding these nuts and you actually then realize that, actually know they aren't part of a cooperative. It's just being termed that way. So I love that you said I still love that you said that, because I felt like I was being prispered at one point for saying I'm anti corporatives, not not that not a good thing, but it does not whittle down to Fatima at home. It does not whittled down to in a Judamin, and I said I don't. I don't want to cooperative. I want we say trade, not aid, Wonderful Hashtag, trade, not a you know, so beautiful, and that's what you saying. I think what we here in the West, we are fed that, oh, it's a women's cooperative. We have a very similar, very different outlook or an expectation of what a women's cooperative would be, versus what it actually is when you're in developing countries, and that's that was a shock for somewhere and I realizing actually, this isn't what we thought a CO operative is, and that's not what when we weren't happy. So actually, where we source our are gone oil from is the first thing the guy said was, I'm not a cooperative, and I said that's fine, and he was a little actually, he literally is a European Man Married to a local Berber woman. He had an Argent for farm and he said, I am not a cooperative, but I employ six hundred Berber women and I paid them as their wage. Brilliant, and we like wow, and then he said the same thing, very similar to what you guys have set up. In case of I have a crash, I have a classroom for their children, so they've got daycare, they can get education while their moms are working, and it's all singular. And then you'd thinking, you know what, that's a no brainer. It doesn't matter if it's costing a little bit more. But that's what we want to subscribe to, as opposed to just claiming it's a cooperative and knowing deep down that it isn't. It's not benefiting anyone, and I think when we recognize their skill in that way, the passion and the loyalty comes from them. Oh yes, and that's all we need. Yes, so we as brands, when we are selling a product, like you say, we're not selling it because of the profit we're making with the money when they were selling it, because we know it's pure and we know it works and we know it's work for generations. When you combine it with that passion that comes from actually producing it by hand, through time, through the age old methods. Actually, it's right, that's right. ADDS to that layer on the story, doesn't it? So it does. It becomes does I kind of agree with view because I'm also trying to I'm in the place right now where I'm trying to get that balance between...

...the balance of what we're all trying to do, doing good in the world, and actually we're in a business. I think that's where, sometimes it's indie brands we kind of fall flat, because when you think about consumers in the worst we're lucky to be in the Western world and have all the privileges right, and consumers here looking for things like GMO free to that it chemical free power. I've been free, not just on animals, Vegan and all this stuff, but also the consumers are getting savvy and sadly they looking for traceability. Yeah, there's lack of transparency. So they want that transparency. They want they want education, they want to know what's in it, what are the ingredients? And in this heavily saturated industry, we have to do the God called that extra miles to stand out right if you want to set ups, ultimately we want to sell, because the more we sell our products, the more we're able to support everything we've just said, women in moral kind and after so we help to set up products to be able to do that right and in an industry that generates over a hundred and twenty billion on recyclable plastic, we're doing our bit to actually speak to sustainability. There are so many facets to our businesses and that's why I said to you, indie brands coming together and doing this and not seeing each other's competition but actually raising our voice to say people we will we have similar stories. This is why we're doing what we're doing. You know that there is so much talk right now in the industry about clean beauty. I am sick of hearing that Phase Crean Beauty, but I do, I do use it because that seems to be what the consumer wants. To hear. But clean beauty is subjective. It means so many different things to so many people. It's a gain to the whole natural verssels, organic, they finish, you know. So you know. For me, I think somebody said to me talk about green beauty instead, and I love that, because Green beauty speaks to how we impact in our footprint on this planet, how we're impact in the environment that we live in, and I think that's all we're trying to do. What you call it clean beauty or green beauty or conscious beauty. I am another thing I've said to do right. You're wrong. The will stop focusing on the negatives and focus on depositives, and what I mean by that is, Oh God, how many times do we say from all we're free from paravents, we're free from this, we're free from math, and we don't speak enough of what we're good for. Yeah, I've rather talk about share butter and the benefits, about our the noire, about your land, your land, but Clarry sage, about Geranium and all this amazing things that we're doing. That's why I called my products body foods, because their food. I use not make cinnamon, you know, mean and whether we have in those stories. Is that actually going down the free from room? I think that's what differentiates us as indie brands. You obviously are a primary producer, not just...

...a supply and not to you know, you create from source. How easy is traceability for you to almost almost like communicate to your customers? Yes, but another excellent question, and we're still very still working. We're still working on it's working programs because it's easier for us in a way, because we can trace back to sm right now. What we're also doing in sn is it's been a labor of love has been held on earth, but it's been well worth it. Where we've divided it into, I think it's all good. I'm going to kill if I get this wrong. I think it's five, the five facts on five main villages. There loads of villages, but we've chosen five central villages to be collection points. Okay, so each of this area is that we've chosen has its own scale and its own area where a lot of you know, rural people bring in their share. Now where we weigh them and check them. Now when it comes into the factory, it's now putting sections so we know which region it comes from which village it comes from. We know it's all from S ad okay, but breaking it down to we're in San has this not come from? So when we convert it to butter, we then know, Oh this region, that the butter from this region seems to be absolutely incredible. That becomes a focus for you for your skink care because you thinking, oh, this is incredible. So we're thinking about in the next three to five years and funds Prov prebit saying is really looking at blockchain. Maybe he's in blocking schology to actually trace back to. We can trace back to the region. We can't trace back to the tree and I'd love to trace back the troe wow. I love to trace back to the woman who picked the nut from it. That would be awesome, that would be incredible, but that's down the line. But that traceability is really, really important. We actually had one of our stock is one of our very first stop is nature's corner in Newbury. A lot of those guys, the two women, bought their tickets, go on a plane and came to Sam wow wow to see this thing that's in their shelf in Newbury. Have let let's actually take this journey with you and I love, and that's the beauty of independent businesses and brands that it's so much more personal. Like become just about the profit, it becomes ingrained. It's more about the story, the impact that you're having on so many different levels, like you said, from the end consumer to the women who you've empowered to be able to harvest and process. There's no impact that we're having, though, because you're having the same impact in Morocco. If you think about it, you might not have a factory, but in a way you do because you...

...can do the same level of traceability. You can. Yes, yes, we can weave. So we yeah, we were able to say that it's single origin, from a trace from eight this this form. All right, but it's just it just goes to show you how how much of an impact and how profound it can be just making these small changes, because it's a huge it makes such a profound difference to livelihoods. I guess it has to, because the world we're living in today, we have to do you know, I always say, got other days of Nice and shine, when people squash the surface, it's got to be something of substance behind it, and that's what we're created way. I feel like we could just talk to you, Shalong, for absolutely hours and hours and end, but I know we have to cut it short here. Thank you so much for joining us and sharing your nuggets of wisdom. Thank you so much. Thank you, guys, because this, this has been amazing. It hasn't felt like it's a podcast. It feels like us having a doing the branch and conversation right. Thank you for that. Thank thank you giving make your opportunity and thank you for making an inclusive forum on thank you for joining us us and sharing your gorgeous story, and hopefully we will be back for an our next podcast very soon, next month. Take care. Bye, bye.

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