As an avid docu-holic, I usually dedicate my Sundays to watching documentaries and TED talks on Netflix. While many have launched me into (often temporary) action, my most recent foray really got me hyped up to act. The Human Experiment “lifts the veil” on the chemical industry, showing the chemicals in our everyday beauty products and what they are doing to us. In my search for organic, chemical free alternatives to things like deodorant, soaps and makeup, I came across some great Michigan-made products that I would love to share with you.
Deodorant was one of the stories that really stood out to me in the documentary. Traditional deodorants have been linked to things like breast cancer and infertility. Priority number one was to find an aluminum-free deodorant. It seems I was not the only one on this hunt!
Kasia Rothe, Rustic MAKA’s CEO and founder, was having trouble finding an organic, alternative deodorant that worked. During her pregnancy with her first child, she admits she didn’t like the body odor she was developing. It wasn’t until after her second child that she developed a deodorant free of parabens, aluminum, gluten, corn, soy and GMOs. “Our main product, Pachy deodorant, was the result of a personal experience combined with pretty much giving up on what’s out there,” Rothe says. “We needed something simple and good for you, but at the same time it needed to work.”
Using a “less is more” approach, she found the best (organic when possible) simple ingredients. Pachy sent me a sample of the deodorant, and it works! I love the smell of both the Calming Fields (Lavender and Spearmint) and the Sweet Lemonade (Sweet Orange, Lemon and Vanilla). Not only did I smell good but the antiperspirant factor worked too. Most organic deodorants do just that — deodorize and not absorb perspiration — but this stuff really absorbs, and it does it with baking soda instead of harmful chemicals.
Eve Organics is another great Michigan-made line that really believes in pure, safe products. Their products are completely free of all petroleum-based ingredients, chemical based fragrances, phthalates, parabens, sulfates and all of the Dirty Dozen ingredients.
Sharron Pinheiro founded the company in 2007 out of necessity. “I have very sensitive skin and rosacea,” she says. “The skincare and makeup products I used either made me breakout or caused my face to turn red and my eyes to burn and swell.” As a certified massage therapist with a background in aromatherapy, she knew that she didn’t react to any of the body oils and scrubs she made for her customers.
Their superstar products are bismuth-free calming foundations and skin-type targeted moisturizers. I also got a sample of these to try. They really work together to make my face feel and look great. I tried the balance skin care kit, which helped with my combination skin. It didn’t over-dry, and it smelled great! What’s also unique about Eve is that they offer sample sizes for all of their mineral makeup, so any customers can find their perfect color before purchasing a full size product. How awesome is that? I can’t tell you how many wrong shade foundations are in my makeup bag right now!
Next on the horizon? She’s about to launch an organic serum line formulated to focus on solving specific skincare issues, including sun damage, dehydration, acne scarring, fine lines and wrinkles, called “Embrace The Skin You’re In™”.
Holly Rutt is a born and raised Eastside Detroit native. “I take great pride in my state,” she says, “partly because there are so many industrial types who aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty making something from scratch.” During her day job as a floral manager, she was constantly surrounded by beautiful scents. This sparked the idea to began making natural soap from an heirloom moisturizing recipe made with only essential oils (derived entirely from plant roots, flowers, peels etc.).
Rutt began selling her soaps at local craft markets. Her customers loved them so much, she began expanding into lipbalms and a muscle rescue balm. At the same time she also started her own wedding floral design business, Sweet P Floral, which is still buzzing. She claims the wedding floral industry is the perfect complement to the soap business because one is busier in the summer and the other is busier around the holidays.
So what’s next for this busy woman? Well yes she will be adding candles, bath bombs, deodorant, beard balm, beard oil, essential oil, a men’s soap and working on some super luxury Mother’s Day Gift Sets. Follow The Little Flower Soap Co. on Instagram for launch details and giveaways between now and April 1st.
She and her husband have also just purchased a farm in Chelsea with a pole barn studio, plenty of room to grow lavender and a 5 bedroom farmhouse that they plan to list on Airbnb. Now that’s a busy woman!
Best of the Rest
This husband and wife team take “bottom of the barrel” brewing ingredients from their native Kalamazoo area breweries that are naturally beneficial for your skin and turn them into men’s grooming products.
Jan Reaves’ interest in making soaps started as a creative hobby and turned it into her own body care line using unique recipes for all-natural body creams, oil blends, sugar scrubs and more.
Makeup Geek is a website that makes applying makeup easy and fun! Although the products are not made in Michigan, all of their products are created in the United States and Jackson, MI serves as their distribution center.
Based in Ferndale, the founder and chief formulator has over 17 years of experience formulating cosmetics of all variations. She creates products that actually improve your skin in fun trendy custom-blended colors.
What are your favorite Michigan-made beauty products? Tell us in the comments!