A few weeks ago I attended the Wellness Market, an event put on by Sarah Lipps, founder of BARE Bowls and had the chance to meet and talk to tons of health and wellness brands. One of the brands who I had the pleasure of meeting was Corson Beauty. I was instantly attracted to their product aesthetics–simple, streamlined black font against frosted white glass bottles–and so of course, I approached their table to get a closer look. I won’t say too much right now because I am currently testing their Night Oil and Toner–stay tuned for a full review coming up in a few weeks! I don’t know about you, but I love getting to know brand owners and picking their brains about their background, products and how it all started for them. Who’s with me? So needless to say when I connected with Marilyn and Bridget, I was excited to find out more about them and Corson Beauty. I hope you enjoy enjoy getting to know them as much as I did.
Q: When and what inspired you to create Corson Beauty?
We are two sisters who were brought up to think twice about what we put in (and on) our bodies. Most things around our house growing up from the food to the cleaning products were made from scratch. We’ve always questioned ingredients in our food. When we couldn’t find a skincare line that worked like we wanted, felt and smelled good, and most importantly was safe to use, we started trying out our own recipes.
Q: What’s your career background?
Marilyn – I studied psychology in school and currently work in recruiting and HR for an apparel company based out of San Francisco. Bridget - I have a degree in business administration and have worked in the hospitality and health and wellness industries.
Q: How did you become interested in plant based skincare?
While safe ingredients that are synthetic do exist, many of them have not been studied long enough to tell their long-term effects and potential dangers. In contrast, ingredients derived from plants found in nature have been around for thousands of years, and their benefits have been well-studied. There is no question around safety or effectiveness when using plant-based ingredients.
Q: What is your brand philosophy?
We believe that skincare can do more for you. We’ve created something you’ll be excited to use every day—a skincare line without compromise. Our products are 100% plant based, effective and creates a routine you’ll look forward to. We use nothing harmful, nothing artificial, and no fillers. From the key ingredients to the scents and preservatives, everything in our products has a purpose and nourishes your skin. Skincare at its purest.
Q: What does plant-based skin care mean? And how is it different from traditional skincare?
Plant based skincare means the ingredients are derived from plants. In our case, 100% of our ingredients come from plants.
Many traditional skincare brands use synthetic chemicals like artificial fragrances and preservatives. These chemicals are then absorbed into our bodies where they can cause a host of problems. Many common chemicals used in cosmetics are toxic, disrupt our hormones, and long-term, have even been shown to cause cancer.
Q: What challenges have you encountered in developing a completely plant based skincare line?
There is a reason why many brands use synthetic ingredients, harsh preservatives, and fillers. It’s not easy making a product that works well, lasts long, and quite honestly, looks and smells good, 100% out of plants. A lot of consumers are used to the look and feel of products made with synthetic ingredients. Smooth cream that is perfectly white, or a scent so strong there’s no way it can be natural. When we started Corson Beauty, we set out to create a skincare line without compromise. Something that works as well, feels/smells as good as traditional brands folks are used to and is completely safe. We think we’ve created something even better!
Q: Why was it important for you use plant based ingredients?
The earth provides ingredients that are nourishing and effective. With all of our ingredients coming 100% from plants, there is no question about their safety, and you know exactly what you’re getting.
Q: What’s the biggest misconception regarding plant based skin care/natural you would like to address?
“No preservatives” is usually not a good thing. Preservatives are still really important (and necessary), especially in water-based formulas. Although safe preservatives are few and far between, they do exist and are an important component to make sure products stay fresh and don’t develop dangerous bacterias.
Bonus: Products with “fragrance” listed on the ingredients label should be avoided. The FDA considers fragrance a trade secret and does not require companies to list specifics. Companies oftentimes hide unsafe ingredients in the fragrance category, allowing the rest of their ingredient lists to appear natural and safe.
Q: How and where do you source your ingredients?
We ensure that all of our products are sourced with quality and responsibility in mind. None of our ingredients are diluted, or contain additives. Our essential oils are therapeutic grade, our oils are cold pressed, and our rose hydrosol is steam distilled.
Q: What skin care type is Corson Beauty recommended for?
Corson Beauty can be used on all skin types! We use all low and non comedogenic oils, meaning they moisturize without clogging pores. We also use many ingredients that help fight blemishes. For example, the Manuka honey in our cleanser has antibacterial properties and the White Willow bark in our toner is a natural exfoliant. We’ve carefully selected a combination of ingredients that are (among other things) anti-aging, restorative, and filled with nutrients.
Q: What is one product from your line that you can’t live without?
Marilyn: The Night Oil – I can’t get enough! I have naturally dry skin so I use it in the morning and at night (especially in the winter) and it gives me the added moisture I need to feel hydrated throughout the day.
Bridget: For me it’s definitely a tie between the night oil and the cream cleanser. I love the scent of the oil, and the fact that it is easily absorbed into the skin. The cream cleanser works to get rid of dirt and debris, but leaves skin feeling soft and nourished rather than dry or stripped.
Q: What product(s) do you hope to add to Corson Beauty in the future?
Well, you didn’t hear it from us, but we have a few face masks in the works that we’re very excited about 🙂
Q: What is your favorite skin care ingredient?
We both have an obsession with hazelnut oil. It’s rich and nourishing, but absorbs deep into the skin and doesn’t feel greasy. That’s why you’ll find it as one of the main ingredients in our Day Moisturizer and Night Oil!
We sound like a broken record here, but oil, oil, oil! A lot of people steer clear of oil, as many of us have always been taught to stick to oil-free products, especially for oily or blemish-prone skin. This is a common misconception, as many oils actually help balance the skin’s natural oil production. Not only are they a miracle for keeping skin hydrated, but they do so without causing skin to become excessively oily. On the flip side, if you strip the skin’s natural oil with harsh cleansers, it will overcompensate by producing more oil. And better yet, all of the oils we use in Corson Beauty are non or low comedogenic oils, meaning they moisturize without clogging pores. It’s a win win!
Q: Fun fact about yourself?
A few years ago, we were on the game show Let’s Make a Deal. They created a special game for us to play as sisters, and we won!
Let’s Make a Deal?! So fun! And OMG, I’m kind of freaking out, as a huge face mask fan, I’m uber excited about the upcoming face masks! Corson Beauty’s current line includes four products: Day Moisturizer, Night Oil, Cream Cleanser, and Toner. You can check them out at corsonbeauty.com and give them a follow on Instagram