Giant popping pods, a tree called queen and vicious spines protecting sweet fruit – travelling along the Amazon Rainforest means discovering what you’ve probably never seen before, nor heard or tasted. In a region where nature is wild, abundant, and unique at the same time, the next “wow” is always around the corner. As well as inspiration and natural ingredients for our new formulation concept “BE THE EXPLORER” – a concept that captures the essence of the Amazon Rainforest’s botanical riches while respecting the spirit of local communities.
Dive into a travel diary
To make the power of the plants and their fruitful effects more tangible, we wrote an exciting travel diary that will take you to the Amazon, more precisely to “Belém do Pará”, a city in the north of Brazil, near the Marajó Island, where the journey takes place. Here we join a colleague from the research department on its expedition to discover hidden gems and design new formulations, inspired by local experts and supported by local farmers and communities.
After a short visit of the city of Belém, the real adventure starts: On a boat trip through the Marajó archipelago, the scientist discovers delicious Pequi fruit as well as Pracaxi trees and their giant pods which pop open during the flooding season. Immediately an idea emerges: these fruits could be good for people who need special hair treatment to care the frizzy hair (not least their own : )). Because heat and humidity are real hair stressors, investing in a powerful formula based on the conditioning potency of Pacaxi oil, the taming touch of Pequi oil, and the soft touch of Olive Squalane. Natural frizz control: Check.
During the 3-day hike through the Terra Grande-Pracuúba Reserve that follows, Brazil nut trees are crowning over the canopy. Brazil nut trees are the tallest trees in the Amazon therefore respectfully called the “Queen of the Amazon.” Their fruits are rich in nutrients, and they are used to their fullest potential as the shell is used for fire and the nut is pressed for its wonderful oil, making the harvest very sustainable. The hammock is comfortable but sleeping in a group of more than ten people is quite a challenge. There is a need for a “sleeping potion” with the restorative powers of Brazil nut oil, Brazil nut extract and some other natural ingredients that helps the skin to look fresh and rested the next morning.
No more spots
Almost as relaxing as a sleeping potion is a walk through the many different trees of the Amazon Rainforest: the enigmatic Andiroba, the restorative Copaiba, or the beautiful Acai tree. It’s like an Amazonian tree therapy for the mind – and the perfect blend for a new anti-blemish-formula, for the skin, relieving acne prone skin as well as irritations caused by heat, high humidity and layers of sunscreen and repellents. Since too many ingredients can cause even more stress to the skin, only white clay and a root extract of Ipomoea batatas are added. Fully refreshed and with clear skin, it’s time for the last stage of the journey.
Last stop of the trip is Salvaterra. More precisely, a place near a Quilombo sanctuary where a community of mothers and farmers practices traditional extraction techniques. People who have known for centuries how to take advantage of nature without exploiting it. Very inspiring! During a walk on the beach new ideas come up: Why not mix deliciously melting Tucumã butter with a gently scrubbing quartz crystal and the moisturizing powers of Buriti oil to re-create this refreshing shore walk, leaving the Amazon with velvety soft and renewed feet? And why not bringing the beautiful, handcrafted bags and acai seed chains to go along with the formulations? Exactly!
Recipes for success
The fruit of the journey? Four new formulations: “Tropical-(H)air-Control” conditioning mist, “Night-in-the-forest” sleep potion, “Hot-Spot” uplifting gel and “Footilicious” exfoliating cream. We are looking forward to introducing them to a wider audience at the In-cosmetics Latin America. There will be postcards with links to the full travelogue as well as the detailed formulas and sample kits to try all formulations directly at the booth. We worked closely with our partner communities to also design and produce the fabric cases the samples will be presented in.
Nature, next level
By the way, all formulations were developed by our South American subsidiary Beraca, one of the most important manufacturers of Brazilian biodiversity natural ingredients for personal care in the region. The company is deeply connected to local communities to ensure their participation in the global personal care business while being strongly committed to responsible harvesting and fair working conditions. Means: actives and emollients are obtained and extracted in ecofriendly processes, aiming to make their users happy – in a very natural way.