For centuries, people from all over the world have tapped into their natural surroundings to create DIY beauty treatments and cosmetics. Thanks to our modern world and innovations in technology we’ve come a long way from the makeshift beauty – our ancestors would be gobsmacked if they saw magnetic eyelashes or our chopstick hair styler.
However, these are our favourite brands that celebrate their cultural rituals and ingredients. All harnessing the surroundings and properties of nature – you’ll want to invest ASAP in their healing and nourishing qualities.
Skyn Iceland was developed specifically to treat the depleting and damaging effects on the skin using pure ingredients from this European country. Now 15 years old, the brand harness the natural oasis of unspoiled, mineral-rich waters and volcanic soil to produce products which fortify and nourish the skin. Iceland’s culture is also present in the brand’s name, skyn – which translates to ‘senses’ in Icelandic. Try the Antidote Cooling Daily Lotion, it’s a lightweight lotion that will hydrate and calm redness or irritation on stressed skin.
This eponymous, genderless perfume brand focuses on artisanal blends that are centered around Maya’s Swedish and West African culture. “An old photo album of mine inspires the current range.” – in it, Nije was inspired by images of her family and their composition and color palettes. “Even though they are personal to me, they are also relatable to others, which forms a connection between the fragrances and the wearer.” Try the Vanilj Eau De Parfum, it’s a traditional Swedish combination of Vanilla and Cardamom.
This brand centers on the power of shea butter. All products are 100% vegan, cruelty-free, and void of parabens, SLS and chemicals. LIHA Beauty takes inspirations from Yoruba culture and African roots – speaking to Harpers Baazar Liha said “The town in Nigeria that makes our shea butter has done so for centuries – we realised that there were so many people in the West that weren’t aware of this all-natural wonder ingredient in its raw form. Shea butter is known as ‘woman’s gold’ because it has helped so many women into financial independence through co-operatives, and also because it is used for absolutely everything – from stretch marks and wrinkles to lip balm and a base for aromatic body rubs and scrubs. We gave all our products Yoruba names to honour these ancient traditions.”
Try the Queen Idia candle that will fill your home with the scent of floral notes of lavender and hibiscus.
If you didn’t know already, Dehiya (which the brand is named after) is historically known as the Queen of the Amazigh (‘free people’) and one of the most powerful warriors in Northern Africa. Still historically prevalent today, the general sentiment is she was a woman of extreme beauty and tended to her skin with plant-based ingredients.
Mia Chae Reddy, who founded the brand, fell in love with Moroccan beauty rituals while travelling and how closely they were connected to land and nature and wanted to share the traditions in a meaningful way. The centuries used Beldi, also known as Moroccan black soap, continues to be used to moisturize, exfoliate and cleanse the skin – try the brands Alia Argan Cleanser to see the benefits for yourself.