When a ceramicist could not find a suitable soap for her handcrafted soap dishes, she started to experiment with making her own. And since she was creating the soap only for herself, she spared no expense and used only the finest ingredients. Today, the ambitious skincare concept is sold in more than 1,300 shops in 48 countries.
“It was back in 2008 and the selection of organic beauty and skincare products was very limited,” explains Mats Johansson, CEO of L:a Bruket, which he co-founded together with his wife Monica Kylén – the ceramist and visionary. Their idea was to create high-quality face and body care products, making no compromises on the ingredients. The couple is very much influenced and inspired by the spa traditions from the coastal town of Varberg, where they live, and by the harsh weather of the Swedish west coast. Using seaweed as a signature ingredient in the products is therefore no coincidence – the town’s residents have been taking saltwater and seaweed baths for generations. They vitalise and nurture your skin but also fuel your soul, giving you a renewed sense of energy and wellbeing.
Although old traditions may be an inspiration, however, the products are very much made for the modern city-dweller. “We normally have ten to 15 minutes of alone time every day, and that is in the bathroom. We want to make sure those minutes are well spent and that our customers, through our products, can experience a moment of reconnecting with nature,” says Johansson. “A favourite product is the sea salt scrub. Use it in the shower and it will give you an instant spa experience and the satisfaction of giving yourself the reward you deserve.”
The challenge in using all-natural products
The ingredients of L:a Bruket’s range are all natural – medicinal plants, essential oils and raw vegetable ingredients.
Consequently, yearly variations in weather conditions, resulting in different types of harvests, combined with
using only natural preservatives, such as vitamin E and rosemary, proved to be a challenge – but one which L:a Bruket was ready to take on. “Call us naive, but we do not want to compromise on the quality,” says Johansson. “Even though our production is increasing, we still mix our skin products by hand. This is our way of caring for and utilising every ingredient’s unique quality.”