Antje about Zero Waste Natural Cosmetics and No Poo
During my zero waste journey, I try to learn as much as possible, from as many as possible different people. Next to reading books, watching documentaries, following Instagrammers and YouTubers, I also decided to visit people who are professionally engaged in a sustainable lifestyle. By taking pictures and a little interview, I want to share stories from these inspirational humans.
I'm starting this new series with Antje. Antje is the owner of ERiCA Naturkosmetik and you will almost always see her face (and beautiful colored hair) when you visit the shop. I got to know her shop last year, when I was looking for dry shampoo, and I was very excited she agreed to share her story on my blog.
How did you get the idea to start a shop with natural soaps?
My mother has been making soaps commercially for a long time and has mostly sold them to local traders on the Baltic Sea. At one point she said that it would be great if there was a shop in Berlin that she could supply. The rest is history.
By the way, the name "Erica" is easy to explain - as this was my grandmothers name. That almost makes it a three-generation company.
What do you think is challenging when trying to live a sustainable lifestyle?
The change is certainly not easy. We are all used to everything happening as quickly as possible. It starts with the shower. We squeeze our shower gel out of the tube and are soaped in no time at all. For a quick snack, we have a salad from the disposable bowl and to get from A to B quickly, we jump into the car. It is important to be clear about the points at which you can switch to a sustainable alternative and then simply do it. It takes a bit of effort, but it is a sure-fire success once you have started.
What sustainable actions are the most important to you?
Mindfulness is very important to me. I think about it before I consume anything. Do I really need this to-go coffee right now or is it enough if I make myself one at home later? If I can assume I'll survive getting my caffeine kick later - okay, if not, I'll buy the coffee. It is important to be concerned, but please do everything without dogma.
Do you feel that there is an evolution in what customers want?
Yes absolutely. In recent years, customers have increasingly found the link to unpackaged and natural products. The demand for plastic-free, unpackaged, animal-harm-free, fair trade and vegan has increased enormously. That's great.
Can you give some more information about the 'no poo' concept?
There are different variants of this concept, no poo actually only means “without shampoo”. Surfactants and synthetic active ingredients in general do not have a very positive effect on the hair and scalp. Personally, I hardly wash my hair anymore (only when I dye it), but brush intensively every day with natural bristles. Ultimately, it's about getting the sebum produced by the body from the scalp into lengths. Over time, the body produces a lot less sebum on its own. This has many advantages: the lengths don't dry out, the hair grows back very efficiently and healthily and I don't have to constantly re-dye.
Are you interested in a portrait or social media session?
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