QH: First of all, we’re intrigued… what does Indagare mean and how did the name come about?
“Indagare (In-da-ga-re) is Latin for ‘to investigate’ and I chose the name because the launch of our organic skincare brand came about after my own investigations into mainstream skincare products. I’ve struggled with hormonal congestion and sensitive skin for decades; then as my 40s approached, ageing reluctantly became an issue as well. I’d bounce from dermatologists to the counters of some of the most expensive skincare lines in department stores, but nothing worked long term. I was living in China when the final epiphany came – worried about pollution levels outside I happened to notice that one of my prescription creams had a poison warning on it and I realised I needed to become a conscious, informed consumer. It was time to take control of what was going on my body as well as in my body.”
QH: What was your inspiration and purpose in creating Indagare Natural Beauty?
“The idea of launching my own organic, socially conscious skincare line started brewing while I was studying natural skincare formulation. Initially, I did this course thinking I’d cure my skin woes, spending over ten months formulating a multi-active face oil trying to find the magic formula for a multi-tasking, toxin-free – yet highly nutritious – a serum that just about any skin type could use with visible results. I purposefully chose a mix of skin issues with my many human testers. My sister also struggled with hormonal congestion, my mother was nearly 70 and was wanting to minimise the appearance of ageing, and I chose friends with various annoyances, ranging from sensitivity to rosacea. This first oil blend eventually became one of Indagare’s top selling products, Signature Night Recovery Oil.
During this time, I realised that there was a market of women who wanted high-performance, yet truly natural, skincare that had an element of luxury about it. The brand evolved somewhat organically from there, word of mouth grew, and eventually, we opened an online shop. Many of our customers used to pay in the hundreds for well-known luxury skincare brands, but absolutely love the results with Indagare, not to mention the sensory element with subtle, eco-luxe scents.
We blend batches by hand, using only the very finest ingredients and a gentle and time-consuming formulation process, storing each batch in a large Miron glass jar and turning by hand over a few days before bottling.”
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QH: How did you end up going to Morocco for your prickly pear seed oil?
“When I was going through the trial period for our flagship face oil, Signature Night Recovery, most of our testing panel started using it twice a day (which is fine). But as it was the middle of a typically hot and humid Queensland summer, I could see there was a gap for a face oil that didn’t behave like a face oil – something that had all the nutrients and potency that botanical oils offer, but which absorbed immediately and felt super light on the skin. I’d read a lot about prickly pear seed oil over the past year, and it sounded amazing – particularly for someone like myself who was struggling with acne and the signs of ageing!
It sounded truly magical, but the ones I’d tested here in Australia were leaving me underwhelmed. As with everything, I’d already learned there is a massive range in quality with beauty oils, and logically I figured I hadn’t quite found the standard of prickly pear seed oil that I was reading about. So, we turned to Morocco and tested three potential partners there. Each one got better, and then our final trial resulted in us seeing the ‘magical glow’ I’d read so much about prickly pear seed oil offering. This is now what our Illumino Youth Serum has centred around – pure, certified organic prickly pear seed oil with just a touch of neroli, which we chose from a sensory point of view. We were looking for something to complement the more layered night oil which has 18 gorgeous ingredients such as rose, immortelle, and lavender. It is quite seductive, so we wanted Illumino to be more uplifting, but all the scents are subtle in our face oils.”
QH: Can you tell us more about the cooperatives in Morocco?
“Oh, I love this part of the business! After working in advertising for two decades, I really wanted to create a business that not only helped women feel and look good while minimising their exposure to toxins, but I wanted a socially responsible model that helped improve lives. I still refer to Indagare as my passion project, because our decisions are mostly guided by our values, rather than financially. Working with a charity down the track is a top priority for Indagare. For now, though, we love that by working with these small cooperatives in rural Morocco, much-needed jobs are being created. And, when you consider this feeds down into the community with schooling and healthcare and essential services some of the benefits, it makes the decision to continue supporting a business model like that even more important in our point of view.”
Discover more from Indagare Natural Beauty and shop their beautiful range of natural skin and body products online at www.indagarebeauty.com