Natural-Born Trailblazer

Natural and organic beauty is booming. With more of us taking a holistic approach to wellbeing and a more scrupulous approach to what we eat, it was only a matter of time before we took the same magnifying glass to our beauty cabinet. According to leading global market researchers Mintel, 42 per cent of UK personal care consumers buy natural products because they believe they are better for the environment. In the United States, 57 per cent of consumers purchase natural or organic personal care products because they’re free from superfluous chemicals. Closer to home and 71 per cent of Kiwis are willing to pay a bit more to get the best organic, sustainable and ethically produced products available according to the 2016 Colmar Brunton Better Futures Report. While the future of beauty is without out a doubt set to be greener – it hasn’t always been the case.

When Dr. Hauschka launched its first skincare formulations in 1967, creating natural, organic beauty was anything but the norm. Dr. Rudolf Hauschka first began experimenting with natural-based formulas in the mid 1930s when he founded WALA but it wasn’t until he met Vienna-born Elisabeth Sigmund that his ideas came to life. Together, in a move that was well ahead of its time, the pair developed stable skincare formulations that we free free from chemical and synthetic emulsifiers and shunned synthetic fragrances in favour of natural essential oils. “When we developed these unconventional skin care products we naturally felt like rebels,” said Elisabeth Sigmund, one of the brains behind some of Dr. Hauschka’s original formulations.

Fast forward 50 years and there is barely a beauty house that isn’t reformulating and repackaging in order to go green. And while a more sustainable and ethical approach to the beauty industry can only be seen as a positive move, deciphering what’s really skin and environmentally friendly can be a tough task. Fortunately, Dr. Hauschka has continued at the forefront of natural beauty, ensuring every product is certified 100 per cent natural and organic. All Dr. Hauschka products bear NATRUE certification: what you see is what you get – genuine certified organic skincare and cosmetics.

But there’s more to Dr. Hauschka than natural, organic ingredients: sustainability is much more than a trend of the moment for the beauty house, it’s a company-wide philosophy and is at the heart of everything Dr. Hauschka does. Raw materials and ingredients are obtained through ethical, fair trade practices, and socially responsible partnerships. Damask rose oil, a star ingredient, comes from a collaboration with the World Hunger Organisation in Afghanistan which provides hundreds of farmers with a sustainable alternative to opium cultivation.


Dr. Hauschka through the years.

1935: Dr. Rudolf Hauschka and colleagues found the holistic pharmaceutical company WALA Heilmittel with the mission “to support the healing of humanity and the earth.” WALA begins the manufacture of homeopathic medicines.

Early 1960s: Elisabeth Sigmund discovers the role traditional herbs can play in guiding skin back to a healthy, beautiful state.

1962: Elisabeth Sigmund contacts Rudolf Hauschka, sharing her ideas for plant-based preparations that would support skin health.

1965: Dr. Hauschka invites Elisabeth Sigmund to join him at WALA to develop new holistic skin care preparations.

1967: Introduction of Dr. Hauschka Skin Care, a line of 100% natural skin care products.

1968: Iconic Rose Day Cream, formulated with rose wax, shea butter and rose petals, is launched.

2016: Dr. Hauschka celebrates its 50th anniversary and launches a new highly anticipated natural make-up line.


Angelina Jolie on Cambodia and the story that must be told

Angelina Jolie spoke exclusively with BBC on the set of her premiere screening of First They Killed My Father.

The UN ambassador and active human rights advocator said that she hoped the film, an autobiographical account of the Khmer Rouge genocide seen through the eyes of a child, would assist Cambodians in healing after such incredible trauma.

The film is based on the book of the same name by Loung Ung and bears witness to the horrific acts of the Khmer Rouge – a genocide where two million people died from either starvation, disease, murder or being overworked in labour camps.

Known as one of the worst human tragedies of the 20th century, the story of First They Killed My Father is one that Jolie felt strongly about retelling in film, and for a new audience.

“I came to this country and I feel in love with its people and learned its history, and in doing so learned, how little I actually knew about the world,” Jolie told BBC’s Yalda hakim.

“This country, for me was my awakening.

“I’ll always be very grateful to this country. I don’t think I ever could give back as much as this country has given me.”

Jolie’s screen adaptation of the book is predominantly in the local Khmer language and she believed that the representation of this story in a more authentic vision, would have an impact both internationally and domestically.

“I thought that this war that happened 40 years ago, and what happened to these people, was not properly understood,” she said.

“I hope it helps the country speak more,”she said, as many survivors have been unable to share their story with their own children.

The film will premiere on Netflix and had its first industry screening at the Angkor Wat temple complex in Siem Reap. .

Jolie was joined by her six children and Cambodia’s King Norodom Sihamoni, who had granted Jolie citizenship in 2005 for her incredible work establishing an environmental foundation in the country.

Jolie also spoke for the first time about her personal struggles over the last year, saying “It was very difficult.”

“Many people find themselves in this situation. My whole family have all been through a difficult time. My focus is my children, our children.

“We are and forever will be a family and so that is how I am coping. I am coping with finding a way through to make sure that this somehow makes us stronger and closer.”