Aren’t we all sceptical about adding new skincare products to our regime? Don’t we all scroll through hundreds of skincare pages while choosing which products will reap maximum benefits? I am sure you do. There is always a part of us that tilts towards natural products especially when it has to be part of our skincare and I don’t blame you for that either. You should be cautious and aware enough to know what is best suited for your skin. There are hundreds of products available in the market, the choice is always yours, to see and get equipped with the best products available but here we are going to talk about that one brand that held my attention. A brand equipped with the earthy properties of Volcanic Sand and Dead Sea salts to ethereal lavender and therapeutic turmeric, and each portion of which does wonder to your skin. The Mystic Valley is intriguing, it’s natural, handcrafted, environment friendly and gleams on your skin. So what’s stopping you from joining the Mystic Tribe?
Well, if you have any more queries, here’s something interesting for you. In the recent interview with Sociotab, Kamakshi Kumar, Founder, Mystic Valley opened up the secrets of her Mystic Valley inspiration and how it is soon going to reign your skincare regime.
1. How did you get your start in the skin & hair industry?
My husband Dhruv Kumar, comes from a family background of Skin & Hair Care manufacturing since 1978
His father started an Ayurvedic natural brand by the name of “Herbline”. Under his mentorship, Dhruv gained a lot about the industry and has been manufacturing Skin & Hair Care for the last 10 years. That’s how I got a start in the industry after joining his business.
2. You also have an ayurvedic pet grooming brand, this is something I find intriguing. Please tell us about it
After Skin & Haircare, we knew that the Petcare market in India would grow, taking into account the fact that couples in nuclear units treat their pets like their children. It was our vision to introduce completely natural and safe grooming solutions for the four-legged family members. Like we are very careful about using products without harsh chemicals for our children, the same way Petveda has been designed to offer the best to the pets with natural ingredients and no harsh chemicals or sulphates, that would in the long term harm your pets.
We have tested the Shampoos, Conditioners & deodorising sprays on ourselves before launching in the market, as the products have been made Human Safe.
3. Kamakshi, you quit your job in a bank to completely focus on the Marketing and Product Development of Mystic Valley. That’s a complete shift in your career, how was your overall experience?
Quitting my job with the Bank and starting work in the company was a very big change for me in terms of my background & knowledge. Nevertheless, I feel it’s the best career move that I could’ve done. Being involved in the product development, testing and finalising each aspect in the launch of the Mystic Valley range, as well as working on strategies regarding the marketing was something that I had never done before, made me grow as a person and acquire technical knowledge which I would’ve never gained if I was still with the bank.
Not being in a job, but being responsible for your own business and its performance, and when people turn around and give you positive feedback about the product’s packaging, for which you have been personally involved with each step of the way, gives you a whole new sense of accomplishment.
4. Kamakshi, what are your favourites from your brand?
Honestly, since I have finalised essential oil blends & tested all products on myself before launching in the range, the entire brand holds a special place. But to highlight a few that I use in my daily routine and swear by are Saffron & Rose Shower Gel, Lavender Chamomile Body Lotion, Rice Water Cleanser, Vitamin C Serum, Non-Oily Day Cream, Pearl Protein Night Cream & my go-to Monoi Oil Hair serum. Keep these extra in stock for myself.
Our 14 yr old daughter only uses the Neem & turmeric face wash & the Anti Acne serum, that’s how mild the products are that can be used by any age group.
5. What was the motivation for you to cultivate a brand that reflected the values of Ayurveda, cruelty-free as well as sustainability?
Dhruv & I are firm believers in the healing properties & benefits of Ayurveda and research found that combining Ayurvedic extracts with Modern-day actives helped formulate products that deliver what they promise without the use of synthetics or harsh chemicals that may cause skin irritations or allergic reactions.
We believe in giving the consumer what we promise and not just putting fancy ingredients on the label.
Our nature is suffering as a cause of human negligence and every little effort counts, we do not manufacture products using any harsh chemicals that may cause damage to us or the environment. We are completely against animal testing, to the effect that even our pet care brand, which we have tested on ourselves and not our pets, and make sure by getting a declaration from the suppliers that none of the ingredients used in our products is animal-derived.
6. What kind of sustainable business strategies are you implementing?
We do not use any Micro Plastic beads in Mystic Valley exfoliating packs or body scrubs that a lot of cosmetic brands use, as they are a major source of pollution and harm to humans, animals and our ecosystem.
To reduce wastage and our environmental footprint, we cure waste Coffee grounds to use them in our products.
7. What are the areas of concern most prominent in the beauty industry?
I feel the beauty industry has become very unreliable, a lot of brands make claims like Non-toxic, sulphate free, eco-friendly, use of fancy ingredients on the labels & Chemical free, to fool the consumer, as a layman they do not really know the ingredients that have actually gone into the products. Firstly, I would like to clarify the false notion of “Chemical Free”, in actuality no product can be made Chemical-free but can be made without using any Harsh Chemicals.
Brands using microplastics claim to be eco-friendly & sustainable or Sulphate free, but when you read the ingredients in fine print on the label you see Sulphates as one of the ingredients.
Consumers need to be educated about false marketing practices and just buying a product by getting swayed on the claims and what’s written on the front label.
8. What sets Mystic Valley apart from the other home-grown cosmetics brands?
Unlike a lot of other brands one of our biggest ethos of Mystic Valley is Honesty, we do not believe in making tall claims and not delivering to the consumer what’s promised. For us the biggest sense of achievement is when people swear by our products.
9. What is in store for the future?
We are already in the process of formulating & testing a range of products with EcoCert certification and hopefully should be launching the same by beginning next year.