Lisa and her niece Hunter in NYC for the HBA Expo.
Today's Employee Profile features the brains behind the operation, Lisa Walsh. Lisa is the Founder and Formulator of Indigena Skin Care.
What sparked your interest in natural skincare? Several things actually were inspirational to me and not all were positive at the time My aunt Sheila and I made eau de toilette from red and white clover and roses at an early age. I would have to say my biggest influence in life for the appreciation of nature came from her and my elders. I started getting acne when I was 13, by the age of 16 it was full blown and I was depressed over it. Teenagers can be cruel. It's a skin problem I have learned to control with natural ingredients, nutrition and exercise. My career in beauty was a direct result of this as I wanted others not to feel like I did about my acne. I became a Hairstylist at 18, I was so "head over heels " in love with the beauty business, it had me at Hello. I remember the first O'Regan's Hair show and knew I had made the right career decision. Later in my career I started experiencing health problems related to my trade so I started researching alternatives to chemically made products. I was also doing a conjoint degree program in Arts and Education while I worked in beauty. In 1993 I had the awesome opportunity offered to me to complete my teaching degree in Harlow Essex, UK. The UK is the global home of natural skincare of Aromatherapy. I decided to learn as much as possible about essential oils for formulating. Upon my return to Newfoundland I opened my first business, Impact Image Studio at the Battery Hotel and Suites offering the first spa handmade products in Atlantic Canada. By 2002 my doctors recommended I change careers due to lung problems and other issues. It was a dark day, I couldn't imagine my world without the fun of the salon and my clients, some of who became my dearest friends. I began teaching Esthetics and only then did I realize the ingredient lists in skincare was so toxic. I began making spa products for school spa days and the formulating continued during my days off. I traveled to small batch manufacturers in the United States to determine the feasibility of becoming a manufacturer, and I was hooked. Are there any interesting/surprising things in your beauty/skincare routine?
I'm hardcore with my skincare routine! I LOVE Seaweed, I take Sea Veggie baths regularly, it leaves my skin baby smooth and keeps my skin clear. I massage Labrador Tea Creme on my face everyday. The antioxidant properties heal and firm my skin. What is your favourite product?
I'm a product junkie and that answer changes with the season. During the summer I prefer the Sea Mineral Mist, it moisturizes my skin without the weight. It's great before self tanning, and if you can't reapply makeup it helps to refresh your face. Any New Products You’re Excited About?
Our patent pending Bi-phasic serums and our new serum (for clearing acne and problematic skin). We have a new men's product coming as well that is going to make men look more metro & sexy! Haha, I can't wait to see the reaction to this launch! Where do you imagine you’ll take the company next?
I see my role changing dramatically this year with the management team in place and Research and Development headed by new hire Sarah Rogers. I can now focus on training, sales and foraging for our indigenous ingredients. I've spent considerable time in Labrador and I have to say it is a magical, awe inspiring place that I cannot live without. Our partnership with Battle Harbour is amazing. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to set up the Wash House Spa on the waterfront where my grandfather once walked. We forage the land and sea for new ingredients there and Labrador is so untouched and wild, it suits Indigena. Check out battleharbour.com - the spa is listed under "Things to do." Sometimes no matter what your direction in life, people and partnerships can positively influence your direction. We are focused on the our team building, product innovation and quality, and having fun with it everyday. We have fashion magazines, photographers, writers, and bloggers visiting us this summer to check our the most authentic spa services and products in North America. Next up, we are bound for the Caribbean. There are great opportunities awaiting us in the West Indies that we are very excited about. We're also exporting to the rest of Canada and the States and will be expanding our reach this year in selected provinces and states. What are three things you can’t live without?
My family Chocolate The ocean Skincare secret:
Smiling and choosing to be happy everyday. Happiness is a choice and when you are happy you are more beautiful, open and giving. What is one natural item (makeup and/or skincare) that you think everyone should own?
I need 2! Lip Balm with naturally occurring SPF - 8, at least. You can use it on your face and body. I love using it under my eyes while walking in the winter months. Our Smooch is light; Partridgeberry, our latest one, is more of a lip treatment - its heavier. I alternate between the 2. Mascara is my favorite cosmetic.