The more we learn about the chemical and plastic content of our cosmetics, and try to eliminate problem plastics, the more we are interested in clean and green products. While there may be zero-waste food stores cropping up around the country, we still buy most of our beauty products, enrobed in plastic and full of environmental toxins, from large chain stores. Many of these products not only pollute our planet, but can damage our bodies as we absorb carcinogenic compounds and plastic.
Cosmetics products in 13 different categories of personal care, ranging from beauty products to shaving and baby care products, have been reported to contain ingredients that may cause cancer or reproductive or developmental harm. – California Safe Cosmetics Program
So wouldn’t it be great to have a one-stop shop for eco-friendly, natural beauty products? Well, NUDE FOODS, the zero-waste grocery store in Cape Town, is expanding its offering to include an apothecary which will stock products that are natural, plant-based, affordable, small-batch and locally produced.
To realise this new store, NUDE FOODS has launched a crowdfunding project with the goal of opening a zero-waste natural health and beauty store next to its East City store. Paul Rubin, the founder of NUDE FOODS, shared his vision for the space as “a modern twist on an old-school apothecary; purveying herbs, teas, tinctures, tonics, lotions and potions… not to mention oils, waxes, clays and powders”. It will be an exciting and dynamic environment which is sure to fascinate passers-by. The new space with a bright turquoise facade and a red interior will feature large bring-your-own dispensers, kegs and cylinders – a zero-waste dream.
Paul envisages the space as a haven for makers, as much as a store for finished products, providing raw, zero-waste materials for people to craft medicinal tinctures, brew elixirs, create herbal infusions and mix face and body products. Once the physical space is up and running, he will expand online.
The store will also serve as a marketing platform for natural health practitioners and provide insight on topics ranging from ancient Ayurveda to the medicinal uses of cannabidiol, how to start a healthy plant-based diet and the benefits of indigenous South African herbal remedies.
Because of the pandemic Paul is experiencing a sharp increase in demand for health-boosting products and potions. so when the building became available last year, Paul signed the lease. He knew the opportunity for a long-term lease of a heritage building on a prominent corner of bustling Harrington Street wouldn’t come around again. Six months later, travel restrictions and strict lockdown measures continue to stall economic expansion.
So, the NUDE FOODS family has created an exciting crowdfunding campaign on the African-born platform ThundaFund, calling on their community to help them over the finishing line – in exchange for some enticing rewards.
If you’re not familiar with crowdfunding, it’s a contemporary concept that involves gathering capital from your community, instead of taking a high-interest loan from a bank or other financial institution. There are a variety of crowdfunding methods, ranging from straight-up charity to equity-sharing and rewards-based campaigns.
The NUDE APOTHECARY has gone for the last of these options, offering supporters rewards based on the value of their donations, once the store is established. These rewards include mystery hampers of apothecary products; Zoom workshops on topics such as herbs and women’s health; Ayurveda, vegan nutrition and cooking demonstrations; and reduced-price early-bird vouchers which can be used once the apothecary opens. There are also corporate rewards available such as waste-reduction consultations and keynote addresses accompanied by zero-waste starter packs.
Zikhona Tefu, founder of of O’live Handmade Soaps and a supplier of NUDE FOODS says, ”I am so excited that [NUDE FOODS] is adding a stand-alone section for all things healing, beautiful and fine. And off-course, all things underpinned by ethical, eco-conscious and sustainable practices. It is such a privilege for me to be featured in this new apothecary. I feel a sense of pride to be associated with it from day one.”
So the space is set, the campaign is live, there’s already an incredible community behind it and there’s never been a more important time to support sustainable, health-conscious brands than now. Paul hopes to open the apothecary as early as October.
- This is a partner post
- Images: Supplied