Weleda is a Swiss-based company that was founded in 1921, whose products are all free of any synthetic preservatives, fragrances, colors and parabens. The word “Weleda” itself refers to Celtic wise women that were healers and taught their followers to better understand nature.
The company was inspired by the concept of Anthroposophy, a Greek word that means “human wisdom,” and essentially teaches the concept that our minds, bodies, and spirits are connected to the world around us. This philosophy is what inspired the Weleda brand to integrate the power of naturally healing plants and botanicals into a natural, healthy line of skin and hair care products.
While many brand names are embracing environmentally conscious business practices, Weleda has its own unique manner of ensuing that their products are organic and fair trade. Weleda owns and operates the world’s largest Biodynamic gardens all over the world. According to the company’s website, the biodynamic process is as follows: “As in organic agriculture, Biodynamic® cultivation enriches the soil and yields plants that have not been burdened with synthetic/chemical fertilizers or pesticides.
Biodynamic cultivation, however, goes even a step further than organic, using biodynamic fertilizer preparations to further support the earth and the crops. Natural sprays, comprised of homeopathic preparations of silica and manure, as well as compost preparations from herbs such as Chamomile, Dandelion, Nettle and Yarrow, bring abundant life to the soil and support the cultivation of Weleda’s delicate ingredients.
It is these specially-prepared blends that further connect the earth to the cosmic rhythms and distinguish biodynamic® agriculture from organic and other farming techniques.” The company sources over 300 plants and herbs from various international locations; all of which provide organic ingredients and are fair trade farms, cooperatives, and trade companies.
What’s more, Weleda is dedicated to providing their high-quality products to everyone without charging an arm and a leg. In August of 2007, they launched their product line in Walgreen’s, bridging a unique gap that exists between Every(wo)man and spa-quality skin care. Because lets face it, we cannot all afford to shop at Whole Foods and other natural grocers all the time, nor shell out to kick a leg up at a fancy, shmancy spa in order to get a quality facial.
The products that Weleda offers are, in a word, amazing. The Everon Lip Balm ($5) contains rose and vanilla extracts and is completely petroleum free. It contains cocoa butter, lanolin, and jojoba oil and is scented lightly of roses. Being the chap-stick addict that I am, it is great to have a product like this one; that is to say, one that is free of any possibly dangerous chemicals or fragrances.
The Almond Facial Masque ($25) is a moisturizing, fragrance-free way to condition and revitalize dry, itchy skin…a symptom that I experience often in the winter; especially after this lovely rash of insanely windy days…after about 10 minutes outside my poor face feels like 40-grit sandpaper. But after using this masque, my skin was back to its usual 600-grit softness.
As a consistent victim of the phenomenon many baristas, waiters, dishwashers, and other food service employees come to know as “dishpan hands,” I was elated that the Sea Buckthorn Hand Cream ($10) provided relief from constantly having dried-out (but clean!) hands.
The Mallow Body Lotion ($12.50) provided the same relief in the form of a light, semi-oily (but not too greasy) body lotion.
Perhaps I am falling prey to the Boulder-hippy way of life, but I must say that the more and more I read about the horrible chemicals that manage to get into skincare products due to the lack of FDA regulation, it is very reassuring to use products like these; products that are not only good for you, but that are being created by companies who are doing good things for humanity as well. Thank goodness someone out there gives a damn!
Weleda products can be found at your local Walgreens, Whole Foods, Vitamin Cottage, Pharmaca, and Wild Oats.