De La Finca A La Cara ~ Fresh Fruit Skincare
The tropical super fruits of Puerto Rico are an inspiration to many... their bright exotic colors, lush fragrances, and of course juicy deliciousness. But often overlooked is their vast benefits to the skin. High in potent antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, these botanical powerhouses are good for you inside and out. A treasure trove of ingredients that promote healthier, more youthful-looking skin, many tropical fruits have become coveted ingredients in the skincare world.
Being surrounded by an abundance of these rare beauties, I was naturally inspired to utilize them in my skincare formulations.
My journey with fresh fruit botanical extraction began with an Acerola tree in my backyard. While working on completing my Diploma in Organic Skincare Formulation through Formula Botanica, I came across several expert formulators who were creating their own fresh fruit extracts. Through the expert guidance of LisaLise, renowned skincare formulator, educator, and author, and the technical training at Formula Botanica, I began experimenting with fresh fruit extraction methods. This is how I created my first Acerola Serum.
From there I worked on an entire line of fresh fruit skincare products, one formulation at a time, harnessing the properties of papaya, dragonfruit, starfruit, guava... creating cleansers, scrubs, treatments, and creams, all incorporating the fresh tropical fruit extracts.
With the desire to help benefit the land, people, and eco sustainability, I decided to reach out to the community with focus on women-owned farms to supply fruits and botanicals grown by traditional methods, with the same passion and love that I put into my formulations... After all, so many women in agriculture of Puerto Rico have shown an unwavering commitment to sustainable farming and traditional knowledge but are often overlooked as having a profound impact in agriculture.
My first call was to author and botanical educator, Maria Benedetti. Maria welcomed me and the project with open arms, and for that I was so honored. I found much inspiration for the beginnings of Isla Mudra in her book, Earth & Spirit, where she accumulates essential herbal knowledge from Puerto Rican Elders and their traditional applications of plant medicines. She invited me and my team to spend an afternoon on her finca.
Maria shared a wealth of knowledge on botanicals indigenous to Puerto Rico that can be used in skincare preparations. She helped me learn identifying markers of these plants on a nature walk, and shared numerous contacts of women sustainably cultivating around the island. We concluded our visit by walking a forest-dwelling labyrinth, leaving with several book titles and lots of calls to make.
Soon after, a close friend contacted me about the Josco Bravo program, with the exciting news that almost half the program consists of women in agriculture some of who are interested in De la Finca a la Cara. We're so excited to explore these connections further in the coming months!
And finally, we had an amazing experience at Finca Pajuil with Jey Tulsi. Jey Ma, aka Jey Tulsi, was a plant spirit sister cultivating Ayurvedic herbs and exotic fruits in Puerto Rico, pajuil specifically being cashew fruit.
We talked at length about the healing properties of tulsi, picked fresh guavas and learned the tricks for selecting the perfect pajuil fruit including her many sayings like "if I cashew, you fall," and stayed for a homemade kitchidi with fresh calabasa and curry leaves from her land.
Other connections happened organically through vending at La Isla Sustainable Market, The Market Brunch, and Highly Meditated where the project was enthusiastically received, and personal references lead to a group of agricultoras in Adjuntas who share resources and support in their sustainable farming efforts.
These meaningful connections have laid the framework for our project moving forward and we are so honored to network and form allegiances with people who deeply care about sustainability and caring for the land.
As we solidify our suppliers of fresh local fruits through the summer, we'll be sharing more about them individually ~ so keep an eye on the blog and @islamudra for more info!
Here are some of the beautiful products in the works at the Island Mudra Lab, using fresh local fruits:
Payaya Seed & Dragonfruit Biphase Cleaner; Seeds of Life Superfruit Serum; and Ylang Ylang, Jasmine and Yucca Micellar Water
Hibiscus & Pomarosa Hydrating Toner
A closer look at the Papaya Seed & Dragonfruit Biphase Cleanser, because we love it. It's called Sunsets
Guava Microdermabrasion Scrub
Our Islandvedic Face Creams:
Anti-aging Pitaya Rosa; Brightening Banana Turmeric; and Cooling Hola, Olas! Cream with local Cucumber
We even released our the Isla Mudra Facial in collaboration with Inner Beauty by Waleska, a treatment featuring our Encanto Papaya Mango Ginger Face Wash, Pineapple Resurfacing Mask, Hibiscus Pomarosa Hydrating Spray, seeds of Life Serum and Banana Turmeric Face Cream beautifully complimented with foot reflexology, mini massage, and chakra therapy.
While this project has been a tremendous success in networking and connections, we did attempt a crowdfunding campaign that did not reach its goal, and you may ask, "why?"
Unfortunately, as with so many other people and businesses in Puerto Rico, we were displaced from our business location by someone willing to pay a whole lot more for that location. This has been a common issue on the island. But we are not letting that keep us from the realization of our goals to create this line!
We are excited to announce that if you contributed to this campaign, our first incentives with be sent our next week! And to all who contributed for the products, you can expect your incentives in the next couple months. We will be in direct contact shortly so you can ask any questions you may have.
If you did not contribute, but you are interested in these products, we also have exciting new for you! We are releasing the first products from this line before the Holiday season of this year. For exact dates, keep an eye on the website and blog, and make sure to follow us at @islamudra.
As always, thank you for supporting us in our efforts to make the highest quality, eco sustainable skincare for your tropical skincare needs ~ Skincare for Your Sol ~ For more information on this project, or if you'd like to play an active role as a supplier or contributor, please contact us @ email@example.com.
We hope you'll love these new, super fruit creations as much as we do, and we can't wait to share them for your use at home!