MEET TEAM THESIS
Abby Mason gets up close and personal with HL&S Safe Beauty & Body Partners: Thesis Beauty
- When did Thesis launch? How has the beauty industry changed since that time?
We launched in 2009, relying mostly on Etsy. There were plenty of artisanal handmade items then and lots of them are now. It looks like small independent companies have gained greater market and heart share since then thanks to the shop local movement and a great support from smaller and larger retailers. It’s great seeing how small gets more powerful, at least in this industry. Small, artisanal companies have become thought leaders, trend setters, agents of change and a source of valuable, life-saving knowledge for customers. That’s amazing to witness and a privilege to be a part of.
- I love the name Thesis! How did the name of your brand come about? Did you know right away that this was the name for your company?
Thank you for the compliment 🙂 We actually started with a different name, but it caused mostly questions like “what is it?” instead of “how and why”, so we decided to re-brand. The new name resonated with personal and company values on so many levels. As a family, we are all about life long education as the world around us changes so quickly, and we must keep up. And at the brand level, Thesis is our proposition to the world as to what an ideal skin care product should be like: organic, vegan, eco-friendly and of course effective.
- In “Our Story” on your website, it states that “We created Thesis for all of you who want to end the tiresome and disappointing search for the perfectly healthy, pure skincare”. Can you tell me more about when, during this time, you decided to develop vegan, organic and green products (what was your inspiration and motivation)?
Reflecting back, it seems like a number of life episodes and events happening at different times culminated in creating this company. My husband and I at some point decided we must detoxify our systems from the abuse they took from years of studying and working hard, because we knew we would need to delay having kids until later, but needed to arrive at that point in a good condition. So we discovered all things organic. And once you are into organic, it doesnt take long to start thinking eco-friendly. And from there it’s also easy to make a natural transition to a vegetarian lifestyle. So one thing lead to another seamlessly. And once you are in that mind frame, you have very specific questions you ask yourself before you buy skincare, clothing, mattresses, furniture, and pretty much every little thing that surrounds you in your household. When it was time to switch to organic skincare, I couldnt find options that would fall into the tacit organic-vegan-eco rule. Many were also too expensive to make them part of the lifestyle. And most contained some kind of chemicals or preservatives, which my skin couldnt take lightly. So I had to start mixing my own formulas. I always thought cosmetics must only come from the lab to be called so, but I soon learned that things that were made in my kitchen beat all the skincare items i ever purchased at the stores. And they were also perfectly organic, vegan and eco-friendly in all aspects. This made me think that there are other folks out there who have to settle on products they dont entirely care for, so it was time to share my products with them.
- It is mentioned on your website that “Here you can be sure to get truly pure, vegan and eco friendly products that really work and are responsible in every way”. Would you say this is your company mission? If not, could you tell me what is? Can you elaborate a bit more on this and what it means to you?
This really is the essence of what we do. I strongly believe that someday this will be an industry standard, and not just in the cosmetics industry. We care about people’s well-being and therefore are committed to using only organic and mostly raw/ food-grade ingredients – because it is THAT important for your overall health. And we believe, that inherently such ingredients also have superior efficacy, so our formulas also work extremely well. Vegan is a non-negotiable ethical and eco factor, and we are proving every day that you dont need animal-based or animal tested anything to look good. When we think “Eco-friendly packaging” we think reusable, because reusing/re-purposing is better than recycling. So we are mostly using glass as it can be infinitely reused along with metal caps. We also strongly believe that the processes that produce an eco-friendly looking product should be also very clean and green, otherwise it’s just half good as it could be. So here is what happens behind the scenes: we make things by hand, from organic ingredients and use eco-friendly wrapping paper for shipping. We also go paperless wherever possible.
- Your products are made up of quality vegan, animal and cruelty free, certified organic, natural nourishing ingredients. I love that you use dark glass containers to protect the integrity of the ingredients inside. Is there anything else you would like to add about what you do to ensure that your packaging is eco friendly?
Yes, we experimented with different types of label materials trying to find the most eco-friendly substrate. And we are now switching to stone paper in 2016. Completely treeless!
- How do you embrace sustainability in your company?
We do our best to streamline processes and take advantage of technology, so we could go paperless in many areas in the office. We also recycle or reuse materials religiously. Cleaning is done with organic soap and essences.
- What makes your brand unique in the arena of green beauty and where do you think it is headed?
We are really the only brand so far that is organic+vegan+eco+effective+presentable+handmade and absolutely void of any chemicals or fillers. So we are really a complete package and at the same time affordable.
- What is your favorite healthy ingredient, and why do you love it? What products feature it?
We also sell it as a standalone ingredient. This is a wonderful multitasker suitable for all skin types and is extraordinarily healing.
- Your company supports PETA. What is the reason behind choosing this amazing organization? Are there other charities you are also passionate about?
We are all about cruelty-free practices and therefore all our ingredients are vegan and never tested on animals, and so are our final products. PETA is doing outstanding job in drawing attention to animal rights issues and being the voice of all the abused, neglected and exploited creatures. We also obtained Leaping Bunny certification in 2015 as a cruelty free and vegan company. We also became a member of Green America in 2015 as a company with eco-friendly practices. Every year we send donations to animal shelters and organizations such as Gentle Barn, The Humane League and others.
- Are Thesis products featured in spas? If so, which ones and what are some of your favorite treatments featuring Thesis products?
We are proud to work with some independent spa salons and estheticians – it’s a great testimonial that professionals choose to use our products on their clients. But one of the benefits of our line is that you can create a spa-at-home experience with any of our products. My personal favorite is mixing together chocolate mask and strawberry mask for an indulgent skin treat.
- Your products look amazing online! Where can I find Thesis products displayed so I can touch and smell the entire line?
Thank you 🙂 Our line is so extensive that most stores carry only select parts of it. Our good neighbours Cambridge Naturals on Porter square carry the most products. The entire line can be found online and we also attend consumer shows and events locally, such as Boston Veg fest for example or Wintergreen market in Somerville. Other than that, find Thesis at Whole Foods in MA, CT, and RI, Kroger, and an array of other fine retailers. Store locator coming soon.
- Where is your company based? Can you tell me a little bit more about Thesis headquarters, your team and your company culture?
We are based in Somerville MA, a very artistic and eclectic community which we are proud to be a part of. We are a small, family company striving to create a nurturing and inspirational environment. We are lucky to have onboard folks who wholeheartedly share company’s core values. Follow our Instagram and Facebook accounts to see our personalities 🙂
- How would you describe your ideal customer?
Our customer profile is less about dry demographics and more about values and aspirations. Anyone who wants to keep their beauty routine clean – is our customer. People with sensitive skin and the ones who experienced negative reactions from using impure or not entirely pure skincare – is our customer. People who understand the value of raw, organic ingredients and glass packaging which is better for the product – are our customers. Moms concerned with chemicals in advertised baby products – are our customers because we deliver truly pure products and dont cut corners.
- Do you have any new products or launches that we can expect to see in the near future?
We are working on Men’s line, lip products and expanding our Mom and baby offerings.
- I would love to know who inspires you and why?
I guess I am stuck in a perpetual curiosity mode. There is a piece of inspiration everywhere I go that can be applied in different areas of my life, my eyes and ears are always open. I find new inspiration daily from reading about discoveries in science, nature, business success stories and customer reviews.
- What is your favorite product in your line?
It’s hard to say you love one child more than all others 🙂 I use the most face serum Lullaby for Dry Skin – it’s my go to any time of the year and is always with me.
- What is your favorite way to relax?
I am obsessed with all things design, so browsing websites, blogs, or social media around interior design, haut couture, packaging, etc feels like traveling through time, space and dimensions 🙂
- What are your thoughts on the natural wave of green beauty and where do you think it is headed?
I believe consumers will be getting more and more savvy on the matters of ingredient safety and companies will respond to it by offering more transparency in ingredient information, practices, etc. And also clearer standards and terminology will come into place. Right now, many people are still confused by what is organic, what is natural, what’s the difference between the two.
- What are your goals for your company in the future?
We are excited about the amazing possibilities and treat this as a beautiful journey. My goal is to keep company’s philosophy intact while expanding our line and distribution so that more people could experience and benefit our products.
- How do you find balance while juggling life’s needs and work’s responsibilities?
I have yet to find the balance. Having a baby and a demanding business is surely a daily circus, but I’m taking it one day at a time now.
- What is your favorite edible ingredient to both eat and use on your skin?
Raw cacao! I cant live without chocolate, i’m very serious, and it’s an amazing, antioxidant-rich, nourishing treatment for all skin types, especially dry skin. We have a chocolate mask based on raw cacao and also a delicious body scrub. Yumm!
- What are two to three things you feel are important to share with your customers?
I’d like to invite everybody to SUBSCRIBE to our newsletter and follow us on social media to stay tuned on new launches, valuable tips, stores near you and more. We are also running giveaways and other wonderful promotions that you don’t want to miss. Happy 2016 from our family to yours and wishing you a beautiful and healthy year ahead.