Meet Our Makers | Essence Of Humanity
It’s no secret that there are some amazing natural skincare companies out there, but it’s not everyday we come across a brand quite like Essence Of Humanity. For a start, they’re a 100% social enterprise, which means beyond the costs of running their label, all surplus profits go to helping children in some of the world’s most vulnerable communities. It’s not a model that would work for everybody, but Stacey Fraser, the founder, wouldn’t consider doing business any other way. Essence Of Humanity products themselves are just as beautiful as the story behind them. They are made ethically in Wellington, New Zealand, from truly unique blends of botanicals (think Kalahari Melon Seed and Kiwi fruit Seed Oils) that skin loves. If you’re not already a convert, we think you’re going to love Essence of Humanity too. Welcome Stacey!
We love the story of Essence of Humanity. What inspired you to start a 100% social enterprise?
It was the desire of two radically generous women who believe in the power of conscious commerce to change the lives of those in need, both financial and emotional. The collective experience and skills developed through our careers and our passion to create change has led us to found Essence Of Humanity and create products which enable consumers to use their purchasing power for good. I have been developing beautiful natural skincare products for New Zealand brands, including market-leading Trilogy, for 15 years and Cassandra has 12 years’ experience in international development and the non-profit sector. There’s a growing desire amongst consumers in the developed world to ensure that the products they buy and the services they use have value to the world so instead of making the rich richer, it is born out of passion and kindness that we are all connected and together we can “make the change”. Essence Of Humanity is a 100% social enterprise creating unique, quality, effective and ethically produced products to help some of society’s most vulnerable in life-changing ways. We keep no profits. Every dollar of surplus will go to support inspiring projects that alleviate poverty and social injustice.
Tell us more about the Extraordinary Facial Oil...what makes it extraordinary?
I wanted to create a Facial Oil that was unique and packed with power! It’s 100% natural and blended with 10 potent New Zealand native and African exotic plant oils, plus a light natural nurturing fragrance created specially for Essence in Grasse called NZ Fresh - African Happy.
When not running your business how do you love to self-nourish?
Tucking my child into bed, knowing she is happy and healthy, ending my day with gratitude and a feeling of achievement, whether it is big or small. I live by the sea so moments of fresh sea air and the sound of the waves always balances me out.
Was there a defining moment in your life that made you swap to clean beauty?
I’ve always been a “beauty product” lover, but the change came when I started working in a health store. Everything changed then, it was such an amazing education into health and wellbeing that has stayed with me throughout my career path.
What is your guiding ethos when it comes to purchasing skincare and makeup?
Buy what you believe in, we all have different beliefs and requirements. If it’s over 90% natural then I would consider it. If it’s organic it’s the purest you will find but it may not be as aesthetically pleasing as you find in other products. It must be commercially stable, it’s great if it’s natural but if it oxidises or becomes unstable it will not have any goodness to it. There is a lot of new and innovative natural skincare and makeup ingredients being launched all the time, it’s an exciting time to be in this industry.
Name one natural beauty or skincare product that you cannot live without?
Essence of Humanity Softening Cream Cleanser...it’s so easy, so efficient for cleansing and it leaves your skin soft and nourished. I make a little love heart with it every time I squeeze a little into my palm. It’s like thick cream cheese icing and smells heavenly. It has a special exotic ingredient called Mafura Butter from Africa.
What does your own daily skincare routine look like?
It’s usually pretty simple for time Cleanser, Serum/Facial Oil, Moisturiser and Eye Cream. If I have more time then it’s a Mask and also a Facial Exfoliant. When I get a little “warm” I love using a facial spritz to cool and calm me down.
What does living consciously mean to you?
Being “conscious” or mindful of what I do in my daily life and how that impacts me and the others around me. Making sure that everything I purchase has real value to me, so as not to get caught up in the “empty spending cycle”. We all live on this planet and we need to re-connect together to make our world a better place to live.