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Our catchphrase is "redefining bad." We're also taking significant steps to redefine the way skincare is formulated, manufactured and marketed. We love gentle, environmentally conscious, and animal-friendly components as much as anyone. But we're not interested in helping perpetuate false dichotomies or marketing ploys. A few premises:

  • Ease of pronunciation is not a quality of a skincare component. We will not condescend to our customers by assuming they lack dictionary access or basic linguistic skills.

  • Technically, all substances are chemicals and all materials originate from nature. The word "chemical" has been loaded with connotations that are not necessarily warranted. We refuse to exploit legitimate fears of the unknown by using emotionally charged language.

  • Even some "natural" components have been processed and compromised; extracted with solvents, grown with pesticides, over-processed at high temperatures, homogenized, hydrogenated and several-steps removed from the "natural" materials they're derived from. These processes aren't always unnecessary, but they should be acknowledge as such and not sanitized with the "natural" label.

  • Companies that do not animal test often use components which were animal tested. Most animal testing takes place long before body-care components are made available to small-formulators. Small-formulators don't usually have the budgets for the "ground-breaking new developments in skincare" where most testing is deemed necessary.

We approach things a little differently at Villainess. Our customers are educated regarding their skincare needs, and informed about the issues. Rather than sell the latest market-trends, we're meeting them on equal ground and frankly discussing the challenges we face. We are committed to:

  • Candor - We operate on a full-disclosure policy regarding the quality, origins and purpose of every component in our formulas.

  • Accountability - We refuse to use animal products that involve cruelty, and screen potential components for their animal-tested history. We contact each of our suppliers to inquire if they've tested or commissioned testing, and trust that they're asking the same questions.

  • Safety - We consider the pH balance, possible irritants and potential sensitizers in each of our products and tailor those considerations for the application (we screen "natural" components as vigorously as their "synthetic" counterparts). The end-user's application of bath products takes place in a warm, damp environment - a breeding ground for molds, fungus and bacteria - and we preserve our hydrous products accordingly. Preservatives are (by their very nature) toxic, so we've chosen preservatives with track records for the least potential irritation and no long-term effects.

  • Efficacy - Skincare should be a pleasure, not a chore. We employ emulsifiers, surfactants and emollients to ensure our products perform with zero fuss on your part. We often talk about making "the right compromise" in formulation; selecting a key synthesized molecule to optimize product performance, and limiting its concentration.

  • Indulgence - You, and your skin, are worth the best possible ingredients. We use raw and unrefined components - vegetable fats, nut butters, fruits, herbs, essential oils and precious absolutes - as often as we can. Most of our formulations resemble desserts because we believe you should treat yourself.

Want more? Check out our founder's bio.