Friday, April 8, 2011
Boulder Market Interview
The Boulder Market started this past Saturday and we were there. This summer we will be doing both the Boulder and the Longmont branches of the Boulder County Markets. We of course will have to do a magic trick to be both places. This week I was happy to be featured in the weekly newsletter that the market sends out. I thought I would post that interview here as well.
What kinds of things does Sagescript make?
We make natural, botanical skin care and personal care products under the label Colorado Aromatics. These are all made on our farm in Longmont. We also do formulation consulting and customizing of products. Although we sell the typical herbal balms and salves we also have sophisticated, higher end, spa quality products.
Where do you get your herbs and flowers for your botanicals?
Most of the herbs and flowers we use are grown on our Longmont farm. We grow a variety of herbs that are useful for skin care including lemon balm, comfrey, calendula, roses, parsley, fennel, mint, yarrow, raspberry (for the leaf but we eat the fruit too!), and lavender. We extract these herbs in a variety of ways; oil extracts, alcohol extracts, watery extracts and we even distill some of these herbs to produce an aromatic water called a hydrosol. Customers are starting to learn how beneficial these herbal distillates are for the skin and face.
Sometimes customers don't realize that we are growers, but all of our products do contain herbs that we grow.
Where's your farm and what do you grow? Can people come visit?
We are just north of Longmont; a wonderful place because we are out in the country but so close to the benefits of town. I hope this summer to have special days for guests to visit; maybe once a month, but especially when the lavender is in bloom.
We notice you have a Phd! You're also an educator and writer on herbal medicine.
Yes, I have my Ph.D. in biochemistry and did cancer research for several years. I've now turned this knowledge to understanding herb chemistry and cosmetic chemistry and helping others understand these topics too. Until just recently I have been teaching anatomy and physiology for Colorado Community Colleges.
What do you think the most important thing for people to know about herbalism and skin care, or about herbalism and wellness more generally speaking?
There is a tendency now to avoid chemicals which is impossible since everything is chemical and plants are chemical factories in a sense. Natural products can be toxic just as synthetics so everything needs to be evaluated individually.
But there is also a tendency for people to pay more attention to how they treat their skin, just like they have been paying more attention in past years to what they eat. Herbs are very rich in antioxidants and other nutrients that are beneficial for skin, so they really do add benefit to a skin care product. Some herbs have specialized functions such as skin tightening and rejuvenation. Using herbs in skin care and for medicine is a life choice that I believe can help people live healthier and more sustainable lives on the planet.
What will you have at Saturday's market, and where can people find you? What kinds of questions should they ask?
We will be on the north side on Canyon Street. We are also members of the Longmont market so you will find us there to starting in May. Customers are able to try any of our products as we always bring testers. Feel free to ask me about any of the herbs we use in our products.
Also ask about preserving products. I have had some customers tell me they won’t use natural skin care anymore because products mold. As a microbiologist I understand the importance of using preservatives to keep my customers safe. We use the safest and most effective preservatives for your safety and do microbiology testing on our products too. After all, you don’t want to rub bacteria on your skin no matter how natural it is!