It will soon be Spring gardening weather and now is a perfect time to introduce a skincare range especially formulated for gardeners and those who love being outside. Using the power of botanicals, my guest Dalia has formulated a powerful skincare range to help repair the appearance of sun damaged skin and to moisturise dry , chapped skin . I caught up with Dalia recently to find out more about her skincare range and her love of botanicals. Hi Dalia!
Hi ! I am Dalia, the founder of a natural skincare brand – Dalia Botanique. I live in Yorkshire with my partner, our cat and chickens.
What was the inspiration behind the setting up of your skincare brand, Dalia Botanique?
I decided to redo my partner’s garden and became really interested in wildflowers and all sorts of stunning botanicals. It was the first year of Covid and I had lost my massage business so I had plenty of time! I decided to undertake some skincare courses as it had been a dream of mine to create products for myself and others. I used to make balms for my family and friends! Whilst doing the courses, I learnt that many of the botanicals I was growing actually had wonderful skincare properties! As someone who spends a lot of time outdoors running, cycling & gardening, I wanted to create a range of products for people like me and use all the botanicals I was growing. A french twist on botanical is ‘botanique’ (I have a French mum)! and dahlias are my favourite flowers so it seemed fitting to put the two together! I love combining botanical art in my product branding too.
Your brand motto is “From Garden To Bottles” – what botanicals do you use in your products and what are their benefits?
I will pick a few of my favourites as there are so many! I discovered Lunaria Annua (Honesty plant) through gardening and studies. It has a really unique chain of fatty acids, sinks in well, feels luxurious and helps improve the appearance of sun damaged skin. Due to it being grown in the UK and cold processed, it has a low environmental impact. It’s also a great pollinator and bees love it! I source my oil from a farm around 100 miles away but I have also started to grow a lot in my own garden. White Poppy is really rich in Omega 6 and other fatty acids. It is also grown in the UK. Borage is another botanical I grow a lot of and I love seeing the blue star flowers bloom. It’s really good for dry skin and full of antioxidants. I must also give a nod to what I call “Old school country cottage favourites!” : Flowers and Evening Primrose, Lavender, Rosemary and Calendula. I remember making a hair rinse with Lavender, Rosemary and Calendula as a child! They have these wonderful healing properties that have been used for centuries!
I do love a good body butter- so what are your most popular products? Do you have a favourite product?
My Lavender and Ylang Ylang body butter sells well in winter! I have favourites for different things. My own cleanser is the first facial cleanser that doesn’t strip my skin. I love the scent of my Rose Geranium body oil. It feels like I am wearing a luxury perfume! I like my Cocoa and Monoi balm as it’s really good for dry patches and I carry it everywhere with me! When I have a cold I pop a bit around my nose where my skin has become dry and irritated. I love my facial oil as it’s so minimal, uses the UK botanicals I mentioned earlier and makes my skin bright and plump. It also has CoQ10, a powerful antioxidant which really helps repair the appearance of my weather damaged skin after long periods outdoors! I can’t imagine using anything else now! I use my own Rosemary and Green Clay shampoo bar and the smell of Rosemary reminds me of making the hair rinses mentioned above as a child. Rosemary is so wonderful for hair too.
Are your products suitable for vegans?
Yes! We use a plant based Keratin in our shampoo bars. We love animals and there is no reason to use them in skincare when there are so many plant alternatives.
What other products are in the pipeline can we look forward to?
I am working behind the scenes on a hand cream incorporating some interesting upcycled ingredients! I also want to work with mushrooms in skincare too as there is some interesting research now coming out about their properties for our skin health.
I love the fact that with every order placed, a tree is planted in association with Ecologi. How important is it to your brand that your ingredients are ethically sourced, where possible?
Very! I like to know how my ingredients are sourced and produced and I have a good relationship with suppliers. My UK botanical supplier is bee friendly and grows pollinators. I also re plant lots of bee friendly flowers myself. I am always looking for ways to reduce how much I take from the environment by cross using oils across my products. There is a future happening now where we can source nature identical ingredients that are produced in a lab. Meaning nature and plants can be left in their natural environment.
Are your products available to purchase & ship worldwide?
My products are available for UK and US customers only at present. After Brexit I was unable to sell in the EU and had to remove my products due to changes in legislation. One day I hope I can sell there again.
Growing up, have you always wanted a career in the skincare business or did you have sights on a different career path?
When I was younger I wanted to go into a more therapeutic and holistic area but I felt like it was more socially acceptable to go into more of an academic role. Throughout life I have had so many different jobs and also wanted to be everything from a Marine Biologist to a physio!
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I spend a lot of my time running, cycling and gardening. I also love a good coffee shop and great coffee with friends! My partner is a wonderful photographer so I often go out with him to do photography. I love curing stunning botanical displays for photographing too.
Personal now – what outfits and shoes would you normally be found wearing?
I’m so boring! Working from home in my other job, I’m usually in leggings and fleece top. Other times I will be in cycling, running or gardening gear-trainers, cycling shoes and wellies! It is nice when I do dress up though. I have a beautiful smart coat I LOVE to wear with some smart shoes. I love interesting and unusual clothes.
Do you have any favourite shops or online sites ?
My friend has a fantastic clothing brand called Home of the Soul and 80% of wardrobe is from her! I love how well fitting every piece is. I also love any gardening sites!
What’s next on your clothes/shoe wish list?
I really want some nice trainers, ones I can wear in the summer that are colourful and comfy. All my trainers are for running and I’ve been thinking for far too long now about having some casual but still smart trainers.
Boots or Shoes?
Wellies for the garden! Shoes for adventuring in!
Links you would like to share e.g. website/facebook etc so that readers can find out more about Dalia Botanique
Thanks for the chat, Dalia – I am really impressed with what you have achieved so far. I am also intrigued with the idea of mushroom based skincare – one to watch in the future!
All photographs have been published with kind permission of Dalia Botanique.