Once the plants are harvested, they make their way to our apothecary-lab where we turn them into plant medicine for the skin.
Flowers & Plants
Every single whole plant we work with is organic or biodynamic, and we make no exceptions. We partner with artisan farms within 100 miles of our Lab to source all of the flowers and herbs that can grow in our California climate. We begin work with our partnering farms in the Winter during seeding and continue through to harvesting season when each plant is picked at their peak of vitality. Once the plants are harvested, they make their way to our apothecary-lab where we turn them into plant medicine for the skin. We process as little as possible to maintain the freshness, purity, and integrity of each the plant. While most bulk commercial plant extracts are far removed from their source, highly chemically refined, and have a low nutrient density and vibration, our extracts are made in-house, without the use of chemical solvents, to keep them as the efficacious whole plants Nature intended.
Our lipid integrity is the number one reason our products are so effective. All of the oils we use are organic or biodynamic, raw, cold pressed, unrefined, and pressed fresh for us by the farms that grow them or by artisan pressers. Oil quality is not something often talked about by skin care companies, but it is of great importance. Our oils are richly hued and have an unmistakably fresh smell, indicators that they are pure and unrefined. Commercial oils that have been chemically refined lack these features, and contain drastically reduced antioxidant levels. Most skin care lines use chemically or physically refined oils to cut down on the natural odor, a process approved by the USDA for organic ingredients, but the tradeoff is dire. Refined oils can contain petrochemical residue and remove beneficial antioxidants, nutrients and enzymes from the final product. Laurel’s commitment is to never sacrifice efficacy for commercial gain.
Like our carrier oils, all of our essential oils are of a rare quality that is hard to put into marketing terms. They are often distilled by artisan master distillers exclusively for our use. All essential oils are not created equal. Terms such as ‘high quality’ and ‘therapeutic grade’ are not regulated and can be purposely confusing to consumers. Adulteration of essential oils with synthetic components is far too common. Even purity testing is commonly falsified in the natural beauty industry. Laurel uses her unique background as a sommelier to help source only certified organic and biodynamic essential oils that have not been contaminated with pesticides or diluted with synthetics to ensure the most potent medicine for the most impactful results. It is not just our promise, but our responsibility to source these oils organically. A massive amount of land must be farmed to make something as concentrated as an essential oil. We feel it would be reckless to use conventional counterparts that do not require safe and sustainable farming and harvesting methods.
Our hydrating products are made with hydrosols: raw, living, bioactive, distilled plant waters that benefit our skin. Every hydrosol we use is organic or biodynamic and distilled exclusively for us by our artisan partnering farmers in California, Oregon, Washington, and Hawaii (for our tropical plants). Our hydrosols are made by distilling rain or spring water through freshly harvested plant material. This is a slow labor of love which begins with an early hand harvest and a slow distillation that can take all day. In turn, the steam captures many of the medicinal constituents as well as what many refer to as the ‘soul’ of the plant. Our hydrosols are hydrating humectants, and are cooling, soothing, and healing to the skin. They make each formula that much more effective. We choose to omit more traditional filler-ingredients like water, aloe (for post-processing reasons), glycerin*, or alcohol* in our formulas as those offer no medicinal value and are typically present in order to dilute formulas. (*We do use small amounts of organic glycerin and grape alcohol when we create our in-house plant extractions; this is not what we are referring to and can be seen at the bottom of an ingredient list instead of at the top.)