How often have we just closed our eyes and inhaled in an aroma that soothed our senses or caught a whiff of someone’s perfume that made us smile ! I don’t know about you but I find that natural fragrances ,be they vetiver, citrus, sandal or cinnamon etc can be so intensely uplifting at the end of however long or challenging a day!
Unfortunately after to getting accustomed to urban amenities, traditional powders and oils slowly became replaced ,for the most part by soaps ,lotions,shampoos and so much more. With health issues ranging from skin allergies to respiratory problems more people are veering towards products made with natural ingredients albeit packaged in a fuss free / user friendly manner.
But where does one really go to in order to source such products? How can we be sure that they are in fact ‘natural’ is the question that most folks have on their mind.While hand made soaps and creams are becoming more accessible in stores and pop up markets ,it is really the other stuff that is hard to come by.
When walking about with my family at ‘Whispering stones’ where the recently concluded Gourmet Bazaar was held,we were extremely surprised on spotting a counter, selling home-made (natural) deodorants, lipsticks, lip gloss, mosquito repellent, mascara and sun-block.
This brand called Vilvah operates from home and is the brain child of Kruthika Kumaran. She launched her products 6 months ago via a Facebook page and has been successful in selling and shipping her products online. The need to create awareness about her products in Coimbatore and meet her customers face to face is what prompted her to market her products outside of her home.
Her line up of products not only look tempting but smell so wonderfully aromatic. It was most exciting to see lip products made with a coconut oil base. Hardly able to contain our enthusiasm ,my daughter and me were calling out to friends and neighbouring stall owners to come and check out Vilvah’s products. Kruthika’s sister who was helping her said that the colours (for the lipsticks) too were naturally derived from minerals, naturally mined in the UK.
After settling on earthy shades for lip care we were in a quandary whether to choose the orange and cinnamon deodorant or the rose and vanilla. Seeing that we were two of us,we took one of each. They smell great and suit the purpose to a T . It’s important to note that these are not anti-perspirants which can have adverse effects on the body. Deodrants on the other hand do away with odour causing bacteria without inhibiting the body’s natural release of toxins. All of her products are chemical free.The home made mascara and lipsticks are also a safe alternative for teenage girls who are keen to experiment with make-up. (I think parents need to make note of this,before you find yourselves frequenting skin doctors with your teen in tow !!!)
Kruthika who holds an engineering degree, got into this profession after tragically losing her mother to complications arising from skin afflictions. She adds that it was her mother’s wish that she make products that will help rather than harm the skin.
Kruthika then did an on-line course with a Canadian teacher and started experimenting in her kitchen at home.
After successfully churning out soaps and scrubs ,she asked to be tutored in the making of beauty products that are not very commonly made at home. The mosquito repellent and sun block also come in small roll on bar options as do hand creams.This makes them easy essentials to carry without having to worry about spills.
Kruthika’s personal favourite are her line of goat milk products. Since they rear their own goats at the family farm in Sathyamangalam, she is assured of quality as well as continued supply. She says that goat’s milk contains a variety of nutrients that are highly beneficial to the skin and treat a multitude of minor skin problems. Essential oils make up an important part of the ingredients used in Vilvah’s products and Kruthika has taken care to source from folks who share her organic mindset. Moringa oil from Erode, lavender oil from Kashmir , basil ,lemongrass oils from Kerala, bees wax from Punjab and the list goes on. It is important to recognize that which is available around us and use the same, is what she believes and therefore likes to use ingredients that are available locally, keeping in mind quality and availability. She does use a preservative which is free from paraben, sulfate and chemicals on select products (eye creams and body butters) as she finds no other alternative at present. While she thinks a bit of paraben is quite safe she refrains from using it because of the stigma associated with it.
Currently she has set up a space outside of her home,to manufacture her products on a slightly larger scale. She has plans to start a store but is clear that in order to retain quality,she cannot automatically exceed capacity just for monetary satisfaction. In order to do so would completely negate the purpose of her venture. All her packaging is done locally but she is looking for natural biodegradable options that appeal to her sensibilities. (Those in the business of natural packaging,please take note)
Talking to her,at her home,it became apparent that this shy, soft spoken person was hugely dedicated to her work . It’s not just a craft that she is passionate about but one that also is deeply connected to the memory of her mother.Instead of brooding about loss it’s inspiring to see folks like Kruthika try and overcome tragedy by helping others follow the path to wellness !
The people of Coimbatore truly need to support such entrepreneurs not only to succeed but so that they may continue to help and motivate others like themselves. In addition to that is the fact that we don’t have to carry back a sizable portion of bath and beauty products from our travels.To not only know what goes into your skin products but to also know the face behind it is rather special,don’t you agree?! Kinda like knowing your organic farmer.
Kruthika ‘s own beauty ritual is very minimal and comprises mainly of Vilvah’s spice scented, herb/ flower infused concoctions. She’s happy with just that and it’s easy to understand why.
No to fairness products and creams
No to animal testing, strictly humans only
All products are made with natural butters , oils and farm fresh produce
Contact : 9894875566
Click here to check out Vilvah products online