I recently came across a brand that had me intrigued. I have to admit I was instantly attracted to the shiny copper product labels, so I decided to reach out to the founder to find out more.
Kate Protopapas is the founder of Isla Apothecary and she kindly agreed to answer some questions about her brand.
SYNERGY & BALANCE for the SKIN & SPIRIT
Delivering and celebrating ritualistic skincare and self-care, Isla Apothecary products marry organic, natural ingredients with aromatherapy experience.
Only the finest raw and natural, organic and wild crafted, ethically sourced ingredients are used, which remain pure and unadulterated.
Hand-crafted in London, all products are hand-blended in small-batches for optimum freshness in true apothecary fashion.
Formulated without animal-derived ingredients, parabens, phthalates, synthetic materials, preservatives or aromachemicals, all ingredients and products are free from animal testing, are suitable for vegans and are only tested on (willing) human participants.
What inspired you to create your own skincare brand?
I would say there are two parts to it. When I was really inspired, I was at a crossroads after having just completed a law degree, and being made redundant from the job I was doing alongside it. I sought out the opportunity in the midst of a lot of uncertainty, and that opportunity was in understanding what was important to me, and using the time to pursue something that was finally meaningful to me. I was experimenting more with natural ingredients and essential oils, and attending courses in my spare time and was getting good feedback. I wanted to share my experiences of going natural and organic and with all of the above, it grew from there.
Why aromatherapy based products?
I’ve turned to aromatherapy and essential oils for years for almost everything. The element of aromatherapy is a defining characteristic of the products because they were created to be experienced and enjoyed, rather than as part of cumbersome skin and body care regimens.
What has been the most challenging part of creating your own brand?
I spent a good solid year creating the brand and getting the business ready, and there were various legal challenges I had to overcome during that time. There was also the realisation that I may never fully be ready to launch the brand but that that was okay and I needed to just go for it, which I finally did in November 2015.
I didn’t have all the answers when I started but when I look back over the last year and a half, I see the evolution that’s taken place and that’s greatly reassuring to me.
If you had to pick a favourite product from your range, what would it be?
I love the Coffee + Cinnamon Body Polish, which I use religiously 2-3 times a week. It feels good for my skin, gets me going when I’m having a sluggish morning, and reminds me to scrub mindfully for better lymphatic flow.
For the face, I massage a few drops of Immortelle Scar + Blemish Oil nightly and it’s been transformative. Its like my skin has been nurtured to become more resilient, healing much faster than it used to when I experience break outs.
What are your top 3 tips for healthy skin?
2. Listen to YOUR skin and your skins’ needs. If your skin is problematic, you don’t necessarily require complex treatments. My experience has been the simpler, the better.
3. Know your ingredients. That goes for what’s in your skincare products and what you’re eating.
What’s next for Isla Apothecary?
I’m working on perfecting some formulations that I hope to add to the range by Spring 2018. I’m also working on a few limited edition products that I can’t wait to reveal in the coming months!
Thank you Kate for taking time out to share your story.
Find out more about Isla Apothecary on her website.
I will be reviewing some products soon and letting you know what I think. Follow me to stay updated.
Have a lovely weekend.