Formulating new products is a process that I love. I thought that I'd share a little bit about what goes on in the background before a product makes it into the collection!
First, I consider what I want the product to DO. What issue do I want it to solve? What skin issue will it work best for?
Then I work backwards by thinking of all the plants, oils, and hydrosols that can assist in bringing the skin into balance and achieve that goal.
Like most herbalists, I have a personal library of favorite plants that I use across the collection so I typically draw inspiration from there. This also keeps things simple, both in formulations as well as on the backend in terms of inventory ordering and storage!
I also consider what seasonal plants might work and ethically forage wild plants when it makes sense. If I can't find it in my local area, I work with small locally-owned farms and regional farms (you can learn more about our plants, process, and values here!)
Once I've worked out the plants I want to use, I have to consider the medium to best offer the botanicals, depending on the product type and what plant and what part of it is used in the formula.: infused oil, glycerite, essential oil, hydrosol, extract? There are many ways to approach this and this is where lots and lots of testing and playing around comes in.
I also like things to be super simple and always aim to have 10 or less ingredients in any given formula. Sometimes one plant does the same as another—so I choose my favorite and eliminate the other one.
Another interesting aspect of formulating is offering the product in the right packaging. For example, Nirvana Daily Restore Cream is not quite a lotion but not quite a thick cream, therefore it made sense to house it in a jar rather than a pump bottle like what you'll find Nectar Body Oil in.
And because I've made a commitment to using glass packaging over plastic (except the caps) that makes it easier to just choose from the simple glass packaging on the market like boston rounds and jars.
Once packaging is determined, then comes the testing! Some formulas are simple and I can add them to the collection quickly. Others take some time to test. It honestly just depends on the formula itself, the different packaging options, and if it reflects any other that I already offer.
After all that is said and done, label designing comes last. This is where I design the labels. This is always the exciting part because it means that the product is about to hit the virtual shelves and I can share it with you!
So much happens to get from idea conception to delivery and the process combines both science and art. It is always interesting, fun, challenging, and exciting to formulate something new for Lagom Body Co.