We chat to May Lindstrom, founder of the newly launched May Lindstrom Skin, about her journey into skincare and skin philosophy, plus the unusual use of traditional kitchen ingredients…
How did you come to set up May Lindstrom Skin?
My journey into skincare began as a small girl. Growing up, I would spend full days mashing wild plants into a pulp and covering myself, and everyone who would humour me in “potions” made from these vibrant green liquids and the clays I would dig from the iron rich soil in my yard.
I am passionate about pure, potent ingredients and about a return to our roots. Our planet provides such an elegant bounty of delicious botanicals, clays, salts and spices that it is hard for me to fathom how we have strayed so far from that to the current trend of hocus-pocus performed in laboratories, mass produced plastic bottles filled with damaging synthetic chemicals and cheap fillers.
I created my line because I had a yearning for something different and when I looked around, I saw that I was not alone in this. Women (and men!) are hungering for skin treats that are nourishing and luxurious, deeply indulgent and beautifully packaged without sacrifice to purity and potency.
I was and still am fascinated by the idea of ritual, setting daily reminders to take time out and indulge in yourself. I am very much a romantic and I believe that the greatest love story begins with yourself and overflows from there.
What is your skin ‘care’ philosophy?
I believe in simplicity. While I have given an incredible amount of attention to designing a line that creates a feeling of decadence and celebration, my very core is as basic and grounded as it gets. Beauty truly does come from within and I know that without a healthy body and spirit, our skin suffers. I can talk for days about nutrition and the delicate balance of our inner workings. There is no magic bullet in a bottle, not from my line and not from any other.
More often than not clients come to me with skin that is overstressed, highly sensitized and exhausted. And I tell them their skin needs a vacation. I take them off all products, mine included. We design a recovery program where for a period of time they cleanse with simply water and maybe a few oils. They let their skin rest and renew. Only then will I even begin talking about my line.
What’s inside my bottles? Really, really, good ingredients – potent formulas, which garner serious results. It’s not magic, it’s better than that. The changes you will see in your skin over time will not be an illusion and they will not be temporary. My goal is always to restore your own natural balance, to bring health to your skin and to illuminate the vibrancy of your beauty in a way that will grow as you do, sustainably and naturally.
The range includes some ingredients from the kitchen that everyone will recognize but may not associate with having benefits for the skin. Can you explain the skin care benefits of ingredients like cayenne and nutmeg.
I formulate for results, but I also strive to create an experience. I love feeling my skin respond in the moment to the treatment I give it. Warming spices are very powerful. Not only do they provide an invigorating heat and tingle as they increase your circulation, but these plants have serious beauty benefits.
Cayenne pepper stimulates the blood flow to the skin, which enables oxygen and necessary nutrients to reach the cells. It reduces inflammation and swelling and delivers antioxidant carotenes, flavonoids and vitamins A and E. Nutmeg and clove are both anti-fungal and anti-bacterial, stopping acne in its tracks. Nutmeg is also a natural skin brightener, softening age spots and discolorations and clove has a stimulating effect on the mind, which eliminates mental exhaustion and fatigue. Cinnamon facilitates the synthesis of collagen in the skin, the breakdown of which is partially responsible for the skin’s appearance as we mature in years.
I have a strong background in food and formulate much in the way that a chef designs his or her recipes. I combine a learned knowledge of the characteristics of certain plants and minerals with an intuitive response to how these ingredients blend together, creating aromas and textures and reactions that are lovely for the skin and inspiring for the self.
Part of the range is made from powdered, dry ingredients. Can you explain how these work and why you choose to create the products in this way.
Powder formulas are wonderful. By leaving out any fillers or water, I am also able to skip questionable preservatives entirely – delivering serious results in the most body and earth conscious way. An added bonus is that the product becomes adjustable – you can customize the density and texture of every treatment depending on the state of your skin or mood. The Problem Solver and The Clean Dirt bubble and fizz and puff up to a soft mousse texture upon hydration, adding major fun factor!
Healthy, radiant skin is about internal health just as much as using healthy beauty products – do you have a favourite beauty tip?
Eat the rainbow. Move your body. Romance yourself each and every day.