Created by two californian herbalist - Sarah and Marina from Earth Tu Face introduces to us their beautiful range of botanical beauty products!
How did it all started? What motivated you to start your own brand?
We are both herbalists and we went to a program in Berkeley to become clinical Western herbalists using plants as medicine. We began the program in 2007. The started coming together in 2009 (under a different name and broader vision).
We connected because we were the only two herbalists in our program with vast medicinal gardens that we were making products from: tinctures, teas, medicine, and also topical treatments for beauty and healing. When we say “gardens” you may think of a tiny plot of land, but we had almost an acre between us which as actually quite huge. The entire use of the land was growing herbs, and in California you have a year-round growing season, which is abundant.
We came together not knowing we would eventually create a beauty company, it was a happy accident! We realized there was a need for something truly green, not just for people but also for the environment, and that there wasn’t really anything else like it in the marketplace. One where every aspect of the end product is considered: from the ingredients (are they endangered? What are their skin benefits? How and where are they grown?), to the packaging (Is it wasteful? What happens when the product runs out? Where is it made? Is it harmful for the product inside or the environment?), to where the products are made (Can we support our own economy? Can we help people earn living wages?). We went down a rabbit hole to try to create win-win solutions instead of sacrificing our ideals and Earth Tu Face is the result.
We were both born in Northern California (Sarah in San Francisco and Marina in Berkeley). Northern California is rich in gorgeous outdoor diversity - we have costal lands, snowy mountains, redwood forests, meadows, lakes, wetlands, and valleys. Knowing regional plants and using them give us a sense of place and tradition. Working with plants that grow around us connects us to the land where we are from and to people who have employed these plants before us. It also, most importantly, ties us to a bigger purpose of dedicating our brand decisions to the Earth.
The idea behind Earth Tu Face was to start a beauty revolution, helping people (women, men, people of all ages) to see it matters what you put on your body just as much as what goes into your body. And at the end of the day how we treat the Earth matters the most. We wanted to create products that are healing to people's bodies made with practices that are healing to the planet.
Why is using natural ingredients so important? Where do you source them?
We grow organic calendula, lavender and rose petals in our garden, along with many other medicinal ingredients that we use for seasonal products and internal teas and tinctures. All of our ingredients are sustainable. We do not use endangered plants or ingredients that are environmentally destructive such as Palm oil. We try to use as many California and West Coast ingredients as possible. Our Lavender essential oil is made in Oregon at the organic lavender farms / we California lemon / California organic Olive Oil, etc. There are some ingredients that we source outside of the US because they don't grow here. Our Coconut Oil comes from a sustainable coconut plantation in the Philippines. Sandalwood is an a heartwood that has become endangered from over-harvesting in the wild. We work with sustainable sandalwood cooperative in Australia. They are actually farming and replenishing the sandalwood (its not wild-harvested), kind of like a christmas tree farm. We split hairs over our ingredients and sourcing, considering every angle and its possible impact on the planet. Its one of the most important things to us.
Our ingredient sourcing alone pushed us into the luxury category. Things like organic rose petals, jasmine, and precious oils are definitely a luxury experience, but it’s something that everyone deserves. Even at the highest price points, many products are completely made with chemicals, most of which are incredibly cheap to make. Regulations have just become so lax that it’s hard to even tell which products are good for you, especially in regards to many companies that brand themselves as “natural” simply as a buzzword. Luxury products tend to focus on short term results rather than the impact they’ll have on the user’s long term health and wellness, which is why they often focus on buzzwords and “miracle” chemicals, but there is no forced accountability in the U.S. at all.
We’re curious about you as well – what is a typical day in your life like?
Instilling health boundaries from the get go to prevent burnout was really important to both of us because owning your own business truly can take up all of your time. It’s like having a newborn that you’re in charge of constantly needing you. How we deal with it, and we’re getting better and better at this, is by doing something like building in a hike almost every day that we do together. That way, we can be bouncing ideas off each other while still moving our bodies and getting outside. It essentially functions as our “conference room” and whenever we want to take that time we’ll go outside, which seemed monumental at first but now it’s almost non-negotiable. We also keep a lot of good, delicious healthy food around for snacking because we are not on the “no eating” train, and we also drink a lot of great teas and tonics from our gardens. Keeping a healthy lifestyle and not giving in to stress is so important. We also don’t work on the weekends unless we are out of town at a show or event. We definitely are most focused in our apothecary creating, but we also get so many of our ideas moving outside. Our entire company is inspired by nature and depends on it to exist, so being outdoors really connects us to our mission and allows us to hatch plans and make clear decisions. As herbalists, we work with many plants that we know and love intimately. When we're formulating, we get to be in the creative magic while drawing on our botanical skincare expertise.
What are your wellness tips for us?
Get out in nature daily and as much as possible. For us, skincare and food are one in the same. We believe in a healthy and delicious diet that makes you happy. We are both focused on nourishing our selves from food to skincare to time spent outside in the natural world. The line is inspired by primarily by nature and secondarily from Alice Waters in both the packaging (artwork) and also the idea of the food movement she pioneered at Chez Panisse. She really brought farm to table, supporting your local farmer, and California begins to be taken seriously in the culinary world into the main stream. The food movement and the natural skincare "beauty revolution" are not separate. You essentially eat what you put on your skin since its soaks right into your body. Having said all this, we basically believe in health, happiness and nature built on a foundation of integrity and care for our planet. This is a lifestyle that equals "wellness" to us.
Check out their range here.