By Mary, Body Care Buyer and CN Blog Contributor
Given than Cambridge is such a wellness and culture hub, the Cambridge Naturals team has found that many of our customers have more tricks up their sleeves than the potions lining the shelves in our body care department. From DIY face masks and body scrubs to herbal foot soaks and breathing practices, we can all learn a little more about taking care of ourselves from our friends and neighbors. We’d like to introduce a new monthly series highlighting locals that inspire us to bathe ourselves in beauty, mentally and physically, every day.
As our environment begins to show signs of fall’s impending arrival, I feel a profound change in energy throughout the city. A change that always reminds me of F. Scott Fitzgerald when he famously said, “Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.” Students return, new apartment leases are signed, wardrobes are updated, and the produce section gets sprinkled with pumpkins in place of citrus. New beginnings such as these often require much of our time and energy to be poured outward, leaving us hard pressed to find spare time for the extra TLC we need.
It’s not hard, though, to notice the radiance of someone who does find time for self care. Our physical bodies, and the force of nature that they are, are as various in size and shape as they are in their needs. Getting to know those ever changing needs our physical form demands, non-judgmentally, can be a lifelong journey. But we’re here to help you along the way.
I first met Emma Bartolini, VP of Sales and Education at Shamanuti, back in July when she paid Cambridge Naturals a visit to teach a few of us about the brand. I’ve since become an avid worshipper of the Activated Charcoal Cleanser.
A Rhode Island Native, Emma now lives in Massachusetts with her husband and daughter, Isabella. I realized quickly that she was a wealth of skincare knowledge and self-care inspiration. It was Emma, after all, who taught me to treat my hands just as I would my face: exfoliators, serums, moisturizers and all. Read on to learn how this passionate plant advocate and super mom incorporates self care and beauty into her daily life.
How did you first become interested in natural beauty and self care?
I always had an affinity for eyeliner. It really started with my Mother. I grew up in a natural home, using natural products and eating natural food. She was elegant, and had very simple self-care routines. Baths, massages, tea, acupuncture, cooking and music were regarded necessary for self-care. Over time I included my own practices but always stayed true to her rituals as my own.
I found an accidental and successful career in natural beauty, health and wellness in 2001 and stayed impassioned by it ever since. I love real and honest ingredients and discovering what my skin craves and reacts well to. The exploration of scent, and touch of natural beauty products and how they make you FEEL is what is so engaging to me. That is ultimately what led me to Shamanuti, honest ingredients that transform your senses and skin!
What’s your daily skincare routine? Does this change with the seasons?
I would like to say that I wake up fresh and do yoga for an hour before greeting my day… but I have a toddler. My morning routine has shifted gears since Belle was born. It has to be quick, but it still has to be great.
I spend some time as I cleanse, allowing the Activated Charcoal Cleanser to really do its magic. I use a pea size amount in my palm, warm water and will use fingertips in small circles for about 5 minutes. Cleansing is so important for circulation, the longer I leave this cleanser on the happier my skin is. I rinse off with warm water, and then follow with the Seaweed Toner. The sea algae, hyaluronic acid and willow bark always bring my skin back to balance. While my skin is still tacky I finish with the Golden Light Crème, which leaves my skin dewy and radiant. Throughout the day I will use the Seaweed Toner or Organic Mist to freshen and hydrate my skin.
In the Summer I simplify my routine to Cleanser and Toner, and will use the Chamomile Cucumber Eye Gel or Sun Butter all over my face after being in the sun.
In the autumn, winter and spring I need the rich moisture of the Golden Light Crème.
Do you wear makeup?
Heck YES! I love makeup! Mineral Fusion Pressed Foundation and either the Espresso Gold or Sultry eyeshadow trios. I’m currently loving Aisling Organics black eyeliner and cork foundation and Shamanuti mascara. My usual daily go-to is a dramatic eye, and clean lip. But autumn has me craving bright and bold red lips!
How do you typically style your hair?
Is a Momma bun a hairstyle?
What is your nighttime routine?
I start powering down pretty early, and have a cup of Organic India Tulsi Sleep tea. I do another thorough cleanse with ACC, followed by Seaweed Toner and then incorporate a small drop of Essential Serum. Since your skin detoxes and regenerates at night, supporting it to do its own organic healing process is important. Allowing your skin to breathe and not hinder the healing. I rub Belle’s feet with Weleda Lavender oil and do the same for myself to help with relaxation and sweet dreams.
How do your self care and beauty rituals change while traveling?
I try to limit my travel bag to the essentials that I know bring my skin back to balance, and items that are multi-purposeful. Activated Charcoal Cleanser goes with me everywhere; I use it to take off my makeup, cleanse my face, as my body wash and my husband uses it as his shaving gel as well. I usually simplify my routine, and make sure I always bring my own pillowcase!
What has inspired or continues to inspire your beauty uniform?
I am a very visual person, and find inspiration anywhere from a walk outside in the garden to the produce section surrounded by exotic flowers and fruits. Pinterest and Instagram are amazing resources for visuals and tutorials. The only problem is realizing I just spent an hour scrolling looking at crystal mandalas or Grace Kelly photographs and should have gone to bed for beauty sleep! Events like Natural Products Expo West, the W.E.L.L. Summit or Indie Beauty Expo are the best outlets for all that the natural beauty industry has to offer. Our culture is so rich with inspiring, and brilliant people and the BEST products!
When do you feel most beautiful?
When I look at my gorgeous daughter. Everyone tells me that she looks just like me, and when I soak in how intoxicating and angelic she is, I really feel my own beauty.
What are your top three Cambridge Naturals products?
Well, after spending a long time in each aisle looking at all of the cool, new, on trend, local, awesome, products Cambridge Naturals has to offer I usually will choose a new lip balm because I can never have too many. My last purchase was the Wild Rose Herbs Pear Blossom.
I stock up on Jarrow Formulas FemDophilus, for healthy digestion and especially incredible for supporting great skin! And John Masters zinc and sage shampoo.
Thank you so much for sharing your beauty uniform with us, Emma! All Shamanuti products are 20% in the store for the rest of October. Come in and stock up on your favorite local facial care now!