Talking Clean Beauty with Lady Carole Bamford

"Clean beauty" is a term that's used often, and while you may be looking for a simple definition, the truth is that there isn’t one. So what do we consider clean beauty? We share tips from Lady Carole Bamford and from our team.

Published on: April 29, 2020

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"Clean beauty" is a term that's used often, and while you may be looking for a simple definition, the truth is that there isn’t one. Clean beauty is complex; for some, it may just be about avoiding potential toxic chemicals, while for others, it may go beyond that to include animal, social, and environmental welfare. So what does 1 Hotels consider clean beauty? We look for products that are safe for you and the environment, using non-toxic, plant-based ingredients for effective results.

Finding truly clean beauty products can be tricky. Many on the market are "greenwashed," simply labeled “green,” “natural,” or even “organic,” but the reality is that the beauty industry is unregulated, allowing companies to label products without backing up their claims. Due to this lack of regulation, everyday items like shampoo, body wash, and mascara (as well as their plastic packaging) contain toxic ingredients such as carcinogens and potentially-harmful chemicals like parabens. These toxic ingredients then wash down our drains and into our waterways, and non-recyclable packaging often ends up in our oceans and litters beaches. Once in our waterways, toxics and plastics harm marine life and get into their food chains.

Sustainable body care and beauty products are made with ingredients that are ethically sourced and proven to be safe for the environment, with sustainable or no-waste packaging made of glass, metal, or biodegradable paper or cardboard. Similar to plant-rich diets, the vitamins and antioxidants in organic and clean beauty products reduce inflammation, allowing skin to repair itself and correct visible damage. Who doesn’t love that?!

At 1 Hotels, we are huge proponents of sustainable body products and skincare, which is why we’ve partnered with a pioneer in organic farming and skincare, Lady Carole Bamford, founder of Bamford, for all of our spas, offering guests a selection of holistic treatments and services meant to nurture the mind, body, and spirit. Recently, we chatted with Lady Bamford herself to discuss her connection with nature and how she built her organic empire.

What inspired you to launch organic body and skincare lines?
Initially we decided to turn our family farm over to organic practices because we wanted to grow and produce nourishing food for our family. But I also knew that we needed to farm in a way that was right for the planet and its future. Organic farming works in harmony with nature’s rhythms – it nurtures and protects the earth and gives back to it, helping to build and sustain one of our most valuable resources, its soil. From there, my interest and concern for the way I was doing things grew and I began to look at other areas of my life and question the choices I was making. Our skin is our largest organ so it made sense to me that what I put on my body should be as nourishing as what was going into it. I decided to create a range of skincare and body products so that I could account for the ingredients going into the products, but also the ethical journey behind their creation.

What are the advantages to using clean products on your skin?
There’s a belief in certain circles that if a product is natural then it’s not going to be as effective as something formulated from chemicals, but I don’t believe that’s true and there are now lots of skincare brands creating wonderful products that are natural and organic. At Bamford it’s always been our aim to create products that achieved visible results. Many of the active ingredients and fragrances that we use at Bamford are inspired by flowers and plants that we grow on our farm at Daylesford. Our heritage orchard, which has 40 different varieties of apple, inspired us to look into the properties of fruit enzymes and we found that the malic acid in apples helps smooth and resurface the skin. It is now used in our range of exfoliating products. We grow seven different types of strawberry at Daylesford and strawberry is a key ingredient in our Life range, which is designed to protect your skin from the stresses and pollution of everyday life: strawberry seed oil is very high in antioxidants and omega fatty acids which nourish and deeply moisturise the skin.

What makes Bamford different from other natural or organic lines on the market?
I think it’s a dual focus of nurturing our bodies and a desire to remain connected to nature and to care for it. We harness nature’s powers and use them to nourish and soothe our bodies, but we also ensure that we give back to nature. We work hard to consider everything we do – from the natural fibres we use to craft our clothing, to our choice of packaging materials and sourcing policies, examining their footprint and always trying to lighten it. We also trace the journey everything takes to ensure we are working responsibly. We’re not perfect yet, but we’re constantly asking questions of ourselves and seeking to improve.

Any tips for home therapies?
As a child, my mother used rosehip syrup a lot – for healing our cuts and scrapes – and I still believe in its power to restore the skin. Rosehip contains natural vitamin A, which is rejuvenating. And I do believe in turmeric’s ability to help our bodies. I was first introduced to it in India years ago, as the Indians have been using it for centuries for its anti-inflammatory properties, and I still find it healing. I will drink a shot of juiced turmeric and ginger or a warming turmeric tonic whenever I feel like my body is under the weather or heading for a cold and I do feel like it instantly lifts me and gives me a boost of energy.

Which items do you always pack when you travel?
Flat sandals, a sunhat, a kaftan and Bamford’s Nourishing Mask, which is a lifesaver – I put it on in the evening and the next morning my skin is soft, visibly hydrated, brighter and glowing. It’s great for reviving skin after a long-haul flight. I also never go anywhere without the Bamford body splashes – One Morning and One Evening. I love how they can be interchanged depending on the time of the day or how you’re feeling. One Morning always makes me feel invigorated.

Ready to make the switch to clean beauty? Here’s a few tips from our team:
1. First decide what clean beauty means to you and what are chemicals on your “won’t use” list. Some of ours include talc, SLS, parabens, formaldehyde, and mineral oils.
2. Look for others to help you with suggestions! We trust Bamford, Beauty Counter, and Detox Market to ensure that we aren’t using any harmful chemicals.
3. Consider packaging. We love that Bamford products are in glass. By Humankind also avoids single-use plastics.
4. Create a plan of action. Tossing everything you currently own that isn’t “clean” and repurchasing isn’t necessarily the best plan of action and can create a lot more waste. Finish the products that are already lining your medicine cabinet and plan what “cleaner” version you’ll replace it with in the future.

To minimize the use of plastic in your own life, look around your home and work to identify plastic items. From there, seek to find alternatives.