RapDRB77Ld-mx3eeNmrgfM1UCIQvYUyqTTXu9-gZ--igKrlku1lGuTZ4SIPyjfohYB8jhaDVkZ8-2-FdGvY-SZTa0ttvrXaKFIXMwlBlYzkagrBxpZw6haooO8t7frvyiggQvYBjvFx5oSKFqWGat0_Kac2GWhcTO2AR7lCLnq-r1f-34iOoddLKa2ol65ohYjYwzWhenever there are natural alternatives to life’s problems, I’m on it. So when I found out that there was a “3 step” protocol to dealing with acne*, I jumped to discover more details. Where better to learn about Botáni Australia than from interviewing founder and naturopath Barbara Filokostas?

As founder of the brand, she has made it a priority to adhere to sustainable practices. She also incorporates her deep knowledge of plants and their interactions with each other. In the world of natural skincare—where a new brand seems to crop up overnight—this is sometimes, unfortunately, a rare occurrence.

Barbara’s answers are extremely compelling. Thanks to A-PURE, the US destination for Botáni products, for setting up this enlightening interview and for providing me with products to test.

1) What inspired you to create natural and organic products?

As a naturopath and herbalist with a clinical practice based in Melbourne, Australia, I noticed my clients presented with three major skin issues: acne, fungal infections and dehydrated skin.

As young children of Greek heritage, when my brother and I fell sick, we could always rely on Greek remedies from my grandmother, who was a herbalist and healer from Northern Greece. Like most similar with a Greek heritage, I have always had a connection to olives and olive oil from the time I was a young girl.

Witnessing the physical and psychological effects of modern day living on my client’s skin and the need to treat and address growing skin sensitivities, I began to understand how ingredients from nature could restore balance and overall skin health, and the growing need for alternative natural skin care.

Fascinated by the radiance of my grandmother’s skin, who had few wrinkles even in their 70s, I knew there was a magic within the olive that was greater than simple olive oil. I explored the chemistry of the ‘humble’ olive and discovered a key constituent of olive oil, Olive Squalene—and that reveals the magic I’ve always known.

Using a holistic approach to skin health and guided by a key principle of Hippocratic medicine (vis medicatrix naturae—healing powers of nature), I founded Botáni in 1994.

7X_Sv0-lvmSxDelul55I0IYv8wgwJIoeE5Va4ZQfCofIE6amHbKC7GtzJIhzu_GPcyoZ-g=w1416-h5912) What are your signature ingredients in the products geared to acneic skin?

Our products formulated for acne prone skin draw on the two key actives Golden Seal and Australian Lemon Scented Tea Tree Oil. Golden Seal is an amazing active that provides anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial benefits to our formulations, when used to treat acne it helps to reduce swelling and redness as well as to kill the acne virus to avoid further infection and irritation. Australian Lemon Scented Tea Tree Oil is known for its antibacterial properties which helps to reduce acne infections and assists lesions to heal.
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3) What is your skincare philosophy?

The skin is the largest organ, and it is therefore vital that we take good care of it. Botáni products are formulated using high quality plant actives that are bio-compatible with the skin to help consumers achieve optimum skin health. Most crucially, I wanted to create a range that would provide solutions to real skin concerns and problems that consumers are experiencing, including dehydration, sensitivities, acne, and fungal infections. With this in mind I have drawn on my naturopathic knowledge to carefully select raw ingredients that have healing properties and meticulously blended them to achieve our current range of natural cosmeceutical products. Lastly, with the key philosophy of Cleanse, Treat, Hydrate, Botáni has made skincare simple and healthy skin attainable for all consumers.
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4) What is your background in skin/formulations?

The Botáni brand was actually conceptualized whilst I was practicing as a Naturopath in my clinic in Melbourne, Australia, where I was seeing a growing number of clients who were frustrated with persistent skin concerns. I believe my knowledge in the field of Naturopathy and the Traditional Skin Sciences has allowed me to recognize a key need in the skincare market and provide real solutions that consumers can rely on to deliver results.

 5) Why are more and more people turning to natural alternatives?

Society is becoming more conscious of the effects external factors can have on their health. Given that the skin is the largest organ, it is no wonder that more and more consumers are becoming more aware of what they are exposing their skin to. We are also living in a society where consumers have greater access to information than they did five to ten years ago, and this has allowed consumers to be able to conduct their own research and become more savvy on what companies are selling to them. Interest in caring for the environment also has a large part to play and I believe that consumers are not only seeking out natural alternatives, but also ones that are sustainable and eco-friendly.

6) Do you agree with the term “alternative” when it comes to a holistic approach to wellness?

I certainly consider “alternative” as a way to describe the holistic approach to wellness. When I look at Botáni I believe that we are providing a real alternative to consumers, for example, our hero ingredient Olive Squalene is a fantastic natural alternative to the mineral and petroleum based oils found in mainstream skincare products.

 7) Aside from topical solutions, as a naturopath, what other protocol do you recommend to resolve acne? (I was referred to the company’s manual for this answer).

An integral facet of the Botáni philosophy is not just selling a skin care product, but educating our clients in a holistic approach to life, in order for them to attain good health.Our skin reflects our internal state.The following points represent the keys, as perceived by Botáni, to the maintenance of skin health:

  • Water:  Drink at least 6-8 glasses per day to keep the skin hydrated and to minimise wrinkling.
  • Proper cleansing is vital:  Gently cleanse the skin twice daily. Cleanser should be applied with a minimal, circular motion and rinsed with tepid water.
  • Nutrition for skin health:  Nutrients, especially the antioxidants, Biotin, Folic Acid and Zinc, consumed through the diet assist the skin structure and function, albeit systemically. Eat plenty of fresh, enzyme rich fruits and vegetables, such as avocados, papayas, bananas, mangos and sprouts.
  • Good circulation:  To improve blood supply and enzymatic activity, several effective methods can be used, including regular exercise, facial massage, avoiding smoking and alcohol.
  • Avoid excessive sun exposure:  For the purposes of ongoing skin protection, it is important to avoid the sun, where possible. From a cosmetic perspective, excess sun exposure can over time, result in decreased flexibility and elasticity, together with increased skin dryness, and premature ageing within the skin’s dermal layer, due to the fact that the ability of collagen and elastin to protect the skin, is reduced. Avoidance of the potential to develop skin cancer is extremely important.
  • Adequate sleep:  Get sufficient rest. Your face shows the first signs of fatigue and stress.
  • Maintain a positive attitude:  Particularly with the acne condition, a self – conscious body image will usually exacerbate the condition and cause emotional disturbance. Deep relaxation or meditation techniques may be beneficial to readjust the mental aspect.

You can find out more about Botáni from their website or connect with them on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. You can find Botáni products in the US and Canada at A-PURE.

Have you tried their products yet? If so, please share in the comments.

*If you’re the blogger who wrote about them originally, please let me know! I’d love to give you credit for finding this outstanding line.

** Excuse the formatting issues with this post. Grrr….Decided to publish anyway because I can’t figure them out.

 

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