Naturopathica

Skin care brand Naturopathica is all about providing a clean, holistic experience for the consumer — and at a time when consumers are more discerning than ever, the once herbal apothecary is checking all the boxes.

In its 15 years, Naturopathica’s attention to detail has products that have maintained high standards of cruelty-free, natural, organic ingredients all certified by Ecocert and made in the U.S. The brand’s latest product launches, calendula essential hydrating lotion and the calendula & butterfly ginger eye cream, are an extension of the brand’s popular Calendula line.

“When I started the company in 1995, not a lot of people know that when I opened in the Hamptons, it was an herbal apothecary; we had floor-to-ceiling herbs, teas and tinctures, and one of my favorite herbs has always been calendula; I grow a lot of it in my garden,” said Barbara Close, founder of Naturopathica. It’s just a sea of orange flowers in the summertime. And the reason for that is that calendula has been used in European apothecaries for hundreds of years; it’s known as a soothing herb for the skin, and even internally.”

Notably, Naturopathica first released its calendula essential hydrating cream in 1997, and according to Close, it has since remained the brand’s number-one selling product. The new collection, however, has been updated to include an SPF component — an ask from consumers who have taken note of growing needs including exposure to blue light.

“Clean [beauty] is here to stay,” Close said. “There’s no going back and with the internet, social media consumers are very savvy, you know they want to know what every ingredient is and how it adds value to the formula. And I think that’s great. For the longest time, let’s face it, there was no transparency in the beauty industry and so we were one of the first companies to be certified because I thought that was really important that people could see everything that was in a label so I think that’s definitely here to stay.”

Barbara Close

Barbara Close, founder of Naturopathica.  Charlie Juliet Photography

Another growing demand from consumers is the ask for sustainability. And while Close notes sustainable practices have been part of Naturopathica’s DNA since the beginning the brand is always continuing to set the bar higher.

“I think there’s a heightened consumer demand because all of us are seeing the effects of global warming or global weirdness in our own lives,” Close said. “I think with COVID-19, it’s changing how people are looking at health, you know, their own health. And in a strained economy, people are also thinking more about how they’re spending their money. People are going to be much more discerning. And it’s that ability to be more conscious in how we spend our resources. I definitely think COVID-19 has brought that into sharper relief.”

With the launch of the two new calendula products, the company has also launched a production partnership with TerraPass to deliver a zero net carbon footprint in the manufacturing of the collection.

“We’ve always been aligned with the American Botanical Council, which really looks at sourcing and sustainability because there’s not enough raw materials out there for all of these manufacturers to make a product with [a certain ingredient] so from our inception sustainability has been very much a part of our DNA,” Close said. “Our evolution is really looking at somebody like TerraPass that can really help lend further credibility to our brand. They’re very committed to sustainability, especially doing something about climate change and carbon offsets and what they have done is certified all of our offsets.”

Moreover, while Naturopathica has made it part of the brand’s mission to openly and transparently communicate with consumers about ingredients, with TerraPass Close told WWD she appreciates that brands and consumers can see not only carbon offsets but what they are doing with those offsets including some reforestation. “It’s a real, clear achievable outcome that we can all feel good about,” Close said.

Conscious consumers are here to stay, Close told WWD. “It’s the ability and appetite to do your research,” Close said. “I think you can tell an authentic voice when you hear one. We all know in the ’90s and in the early 2000s when the greenwashing was really at its height, from my point of view, and you would see these beautiful botanical images but then you’d look behind the curtain and [there was nothing there]. With the advent of social media, people do their research and I’m always surprised at the inbound [questions we get] and I think that’s good. I won’t say there’s just one thing but it’s more like a sum of all of these pieces add up to create a better future for beauty.”

With Naturopathica’s introduction of its two new products the brand is introducing certifiable carbon offset and by the end of 2021 hopes to have all products certified.

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