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April 24, 2024

Image Courtesy: Forest Essentials

Exclusive: In conversation with Mira Kulkarni on the launch of Forest Essentials makeup range

As someone deeply invested in skincare and makeup and fortunate enough to even write about it, I’ve witnessed the remarkable evolution of the Indian skincare market, particularly in the realm of homegrown brands that prioritize holistic consumer needs. Not just the country, these brands are making statements on the global pedestal as well. Forest Essentials is a shining example of this transformation. Its founding story is special in more ways than one. Originating from humble beginnings as a small handmade soaps and candles venture by a determined single mother with a modest investment, the brand has emerged as a trailblazer in luxury Ayurveda, both domestically and globally. After almost two decades of swaying people away with their exceptional offerings, Forest Essentials has now expanded its repertoire by introducing an exclusive skincare infused makeup line, marking a significant milestone in its journey!

As the brand debuts their makeup line, we got a chance to speak to the brand’s Chairperson, founder, and woman of the hour, Mira Kulkarni, to delve into the journey of a luxury Ayurveda skincare brand venturing into the realm of makeup.

Luxebook: What inspired Forest Essentials to dive into the world of skincare-infused makeup?

The inspiration for this collection came from Leonard Lauder, the Chairman of the Estée Lauder Group of Companies himself. Several years ago, in New York he had said it would be very interesting to envision a range of completely natural make up which could integrate with our high-performance skincare. As an immediate reaction, I said that we were focused on skin care and thought that make up was a completely different vertical. Subsequently and very gradually, I realized that there was a huge untapped world out there, for makeup that could enhance beauty as well as incorporate care for the skin, using authentic fresh Ayurvedic ingredients with transformative high performing actives.
Forest Essentials’ venture into makeup products came as a thoughtful evolution, carefully crafted to align with our brand’s legacy in skincare. The ritual of using skincare infused makeup has significantly catalysed the use of makeup, especially for those with sensitive/ concerned skin or simply for people who do not like wearing heavy makeup on a daily basis.

Image Courtesy: Forest Essentials

Luxebook: What are some key Ayurvedic ingredients incorporated into the makeup line and their unique benefits for our skin?

The makeup range goes beyond beauty; it’s more about responsible luxury with a 100% natural, clean, and cruelty-free range, that is kind to one’s body, one’s skin, and our planet. To begin with, the Som Rasa Silk Skin Tint is enriched with traditional Ayurvedic herbs including Gotu Kola, Guduchi and an innovative fermented oil complex. These are potent antioxidants with youthful properties that improve the texture and tone of the skin blended with high performance actives and a high concentration of Vitamin C with a pure ghee wash. The natural blush has been crafted through the ancient Shata Dhauta Ghrita method, encapsulating the goodness of Fermented oils and Vitamin C, while the Nayantara Lash and Brow serum is made of Castor Oil, Liquorice and Amla that enhance volume and fortify both lashes and brows!

Luxebook: How can we incorporate Ayurvedic principles into our daily makeup routine for glowing and healthy skin?

Growing up surrounded by the rich traditions of Indian skincare passed down through generations, I learned invaluable beauty secrets from my mother and grandmother. From homemade remedies to DIY kajal crafted from the soot of our household diyas, their wisdom was deeply ingrained in our beauty rituals. Inspired by these age-old practices, our Gulaab Khaas Kajal incorporates two essential ingredients: pure Cow’s Ghee and fresh rose petals, known for their soothing and rejuvenating properties. The process involves using earthen diyas filled with cow’s ghee, left to burn overnight until a rich black residue forms on the surface. This natural soot serves as the foundation of our kajal, delivering both tradition and efficacy in every stroke. For starters, I’d suggest young girls to take notes of their mothers’ timeless beauty wisdom by embracing their cherished nuskhas.

Image Courtesy: Forest Essentials

Luxebook: What’s the most captivating aspect of your journey with Forest Essentials, building it from the ground up?

Opening our very first store in Khan Market marked the beginning of an exciting journey. Reflecting on our achievements, one of the biggest milestones we’ve reached is pioneering a whole new segment in the market. Back in 2001, there was a noticeable gap for premium Ayurvedic skincare products. The perception was that what existed was mass-produced and lacked quality. That’s when Forest Essentials stepped in, introducing the first Luxury Ayurveda range in India. Since then, we’ve expanded to over 150 company-owned stores across the country. What’s more, we’ve proudly become the first Indian Beauty Brand to venture into international territories with stores in London, Dubai, and Kuwait. It’s been an exhilarating ride, putting India on the global beauty map while crafting high-quality, aspirational beauty products.

Luxebook: Lastly, what’s your personal favorite product from the new makeup line, and why?

Back in the day, I’d occasionally dab on a dash of Armani shade whenever I felt like dolling up. But ever since we rolled out our new skin tints which are super light, hydrating, and downright skin-transformative—I’ve been slathering them on daily.

 

Check out the Forest Essential makeup range here.

Anushka Manik

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