Sourcing ingredients is a crucial part of any cosmetics company, and we love that we can source such great local ingredients from here in the Pacific Northwest. One of the reasons we also love living and working here creating cosmetics is the wonderful natural environment. Some of the purest (and tastiest!) water runs through our rivers and reservoirs, and the varied climate across the state allows for a range of growing conditions. This means a variety of both native and non-native plants can thrive here. However, it’s also convenient that Portland lives up to its name–our port is an easy access point to receive ingredients from around the world, and we have access to some of the world’s finest ingredients.
Sourcing these ingredients means finding the best and most reliable suppliers on the market, and we’re lucky to find these premium ingredients in our own state. But it doesn’t only make us feel good, it has benefits for you the consumer and our local community. Here are a few ways that buying ingredients locally is better for everyone.
Reduced Carbon Footprint
When we find local ingredients it means that the carbon footprint is smaller because the shipping distance is so much shorter. Just one journey in a truck delivers us ingredients, rather than a truck to an airport or port in another country or state, that journey, and then delivery from a distribution center.
Lower Shipping Costs
When shipping takes up a smaller portion of our ingredient cost, it means we can pass on the savings to you both for raw ingredients and the products we use them in.
Know the Source
When ingredients are local, it gives us a chance to understand the exact growing and harvesting process, and even visit the farms and meet the producers. We know exactly how our Meadowfoam Seed Oil is processed for example and can visit the farms in the Willamette Valley. Having that inside look in addition to all the accompanying quality-assurance documentation provides a special connection with our growers and the local community.
Supporting the Community
Buying locally in any region essentially means profit-sharing with your hard-working neighbors. When we can supply our larger Essential community with local ingredients, it means that everyone along the chain benefits. Not only do we get to provide jobs, but we help small businesses and farms thrive too.
Some of our favorite Oregon-grown ingredients:
Klamath Falls’ own Blue Green Algae (USDA Certified Organic) – from the purest and most nutrient-intact algae available in the world. It’s prized for its bioavailability and full-spectrum of minerals, chlorophyll, B Vitamins, Beta-Carotene, Pro-Vitamin A, lipids, enzymes, amino acids, fatty acids and more! We love delivering its impact via facial masks (which are also great for the body)!
Daikon Radish Seed Extract – we use this to add a lovely dose of fatty acids to gels, washes, shampoos, or lotions. It also can replace silicone or dimethicone because it provides excellent slip while still absorbing easily into skin and scalp.
Roman Chamomile (distillate and essential oil) – Roman Chamomile is typically used as a relaxing scent in lotions, bath salts, oils or simply to diffuse in your room. The oil from these tiny, daisy-like flowers is powerful and a great addition to any skincare line up. The essential oil can have a slightly apply scent, while the distillate is more herbaceous or medicinal. It works beautifully in hydrosol sprays for the face and body, and could easily be incorporated into a relaxation or herbal line.
Olive Castile Soap – We love this to clean any water-safe surface, and depending on the dilution levels it’s appropriate to wash fruits and vegetables, body wash, or a floor cleaner.
Bonus! We source our OptiMSM (Methylsulfonylmethane) from our neighbor to the north, Washington State. It’s one of the only US-produced sources and is also vegan, which is unusual. MSM is wonderful at rejuvenating skin and is one of our Chief Formulator’s favorite ingredients!
Let us know which is your favorite, and other ways we can all support our local communities!