In honour of our June product pick of the month, Bright Spark Enzyme Oil by Wildefruit, we’ve done a delightful Q&A with Wildefruit founder-extraordinaire, Nicola. Celebrating small, local brands that champion upcycling is the foundation of everything we do at The Upcycling Market. So, without further ado, meet Nicola and her Stroud-based circular skincare business, Wildefruit!
How did Wildefruit come to be?
I started Wildefruit because I've always suffered from a combination of sensitive and acne-prone skin. To top it off, I wanted a product that was made from plant-based ingredients, and I just couldn't find any products that worked for my skin type and my ethics. It was a long process of trying lots of different types of ingredients and formulas, and I found that my skin responded really well to plant oils, particularly fruit oils as these are lightweight but still really nourishing.
What has your personal sustainability journey been like?
I've always been eco-minded. I'm usually the one complaining about how much plastic packaging something uses or the needless air miles that go into importing food. Since launching Wildefruit, I have become more aware of the harm that overconsuming can do. But I have also started feeling more strongly about the real changes we can all make and how a mindset shift needs to happen. I think the best way to live more sustainably is to just be mindful of what you are consuming in your lifestyle. I've recently given up buying new clothes and have found a love of secondhand clothing.
"I truly believe that upcycling is the future and that closing the loop on manufacture is one of the best things we can do to help our planet."
Why did you decide to build a sustainable brand around upcycling specifically?
Once I had discovered the beauty of plant oils, I was a woman obsessed! I always knew that I wanted to create a company that did more good than bad and left the world a better place. I found out that lots of fruit oils are made from the seeds left over from fruit juicing and are typically considered a "waste" product of the juicing process. This made me very excited that I could transform unloved leftovers into beautiful and effective skincare. I truly believe that upcycling is the future and that closing the loop on manufacture is one of the best things we can do to help our planet.
What is your top skincare tip?
My top skincare tip is always that less is more. If you are struggling with breakouts, sensitivity, redness or even dryness, this may be because your skin is out of balance. The best way to find that balance again is to pare back your routine and start from the top. If your skin is really unhappy, I'd say start with a simple cleanser at nighttime and as your skin starts to become more balanced, you can start adding other products into your routine. I developed Bare Face Cleansing Oil for this very purpose. Since it is oil based, fragrance-free and made up of only eight ingredients, it's super gentle on your skin whilst still effectively cleansing and removing makeup and SPF. You can literally use this product to cleanse and then moisturise afterwards, and as long as you are applying a (reef-safe) SPF during the day, this can be your entire skincare routine.
What's a fun fact about you?
My day job actually has nothing to do with skincare at all. I work for a children's science magazine which couldn't be more different from pouring oils and mixing butters!
***Thank you for sharing your story with us, Nicola! You can shop the entire Wildefruit range on The Upcycling Market here. And be sure to follow Wildefruit on Instagram and TikTok to show your support!