Naturopathica Table of Contents
Naturopathica Quick Facts | Naturopathica’s commitment regarding ingredients, the environment, ethics, and EWG and Good Guide Standing
I’ve just come from the Spa | How Naturopathica was Part of the Wellness Movement
Naturopathica Starts Simply | How Barbara Close Started Naturopathica
There’s Value in the Traditional, Too | How Traditional Remedies and Modern Medicine Compliment Each Other
Nature Plus Science | Science Still has a Place in Naturopathica’s Modern Formulations
Best Naturopathica Products | Products and Reviews
Naturopathica Quick Facts
Ingredients | Ecocert certified with 50% minimum natural ingredients; Free from Petroleum-derived products; Free from Synthetic polymers sunscreens, fragrances, colors; Free from Aluminum Zirconium and Silicone; Quaternary Ammonium Compounds and Hydroquinone; Free from Parabens, Phenoxyethanol, DMDM Hydantoin, Diazolidinyl Urea, Imidazolidinyl Urea, BHA, BHT; Free from SLS, SLES, ALES, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Octoxynols; Free from 1,4-dioxane, Ethoxylated compounds, Nitrosamines, Animal Ingredients
Eco-Friendly | Glass bottles, 70% post-consumer recycled plastic, 100% post-consumer recycled boxes
Ethical | Leaping Bunny Certified Cruelty Free, American Botanical Council, the Green Spa and other non-profits in their area
The Good Guide | Not rated
EWG | 1-5
I’ve just come from the spa
Naturopathica’s founder Barbara Close was well ahead of the current mainstream trend of holistic living when she founded her East Hampton spa in 1995.
Wellness and natural then was ‘sort of nut-and-granola back then’, she says, of the slightly hippie connotations that went with healthy living.
Still, the former social worker turned aromatherapist aesthetician persevered.
She founded Naturopathica’s East Hampton spa and lined the shelves with herbal tinctures and balms.
Not everybody got it.
People would try the herbal tinctures and say, “Ooh, these taste bitter,” and that would be the end of that.
But for every person who didn’t understand it, there were others who did.
Heidi Klum and Betsy Johnson became fans. Cousin and actress Glenn Close enjoys Ylang Ylang’s calming Bath Oil.
And in 1995, Martha Stewart booked a treatment out of the blue. Close and three assistants prepped frantically, tidying up and spraying the rooms to “make sure they smelled good”. It worked. She liked it so much that carried their $65 travel kit in her catalogue.
Today, Naturopathica’s an established brand carried in over 300 sites. In addition, they have a pretty solid reputation and people rate their products highly.
Naturopathica Starts Simply
Close hadn’t always wanted to be in the homeopathic business.
As the daughter of a D.C. estate lawyer and a home maker, she initially went into social work.
However, she soon found social work draining.
“It was hard not to feel depleted at the end of the day,” she says. She found stress relief in massages and she eventually decided to make it her career.
To ensure she had the right tools, she went back to school. She studied meditation, herbal medicine, aromatherapy and massage at the New Mexico Academy of Healing Arts.
Wellness isn’t a trend for Naturopathica. It’s an empowered approach to self-care.
Eventually, she set up shop in Manhattan in 1991. Her spa followed four years later and she created the Naturopathica product line with $75,000 in capital and two investors.
Originally, some herbs for the products were grown at her family’s 550 acre farm in Virginia’s Blue Ridge mountains. Products were blended at a former auto-body shop. People used stop by asking for an oil change before they realized that the oil being sold was a different type altogether.
Soon, the Naturopathica line expanded to other spas across the country. It is now widely available and is online, in spas, and in several high-end stores.
And recently, going back to her roots, Close opened a new Naturopathica spa in NY’s Chelsea neighborhood.
While it has 6 treatment and massage rooms, it also incorporates other areas that reflect Close’s perspective on total health. One wall has an herbal remedy section with botanical cures and essential oils. Another has a vitality bar with health smoothies. And of course, the best Naturopathica products are everywhere.
It’s a place for total health, which is exactly how Close thinks about what she does.
Our spa was never about beauty and pampering. My real passion is the wellness industry. My real inspiration for the Naturopathica spa was the old European apothecary, where people come in and learn to blend treatments and that whole aspect of curing yourself with natural therapies.
There’s Value in the Traditional, Too
Close believes that we need to bring back the kitchen apothecary.
The kitchen used to be the apothecary. In the home, there used to be a sense of nurturing. We need to bring back and embrace that.
There are a lot of traditional cures that have fallen by the wayside in modern life. For centuries, people used natural methods to relieve common complaints and address health issues. They were forgotten for many years, but Naturopathica believes they can be used alongside Western medicine.
In America, we have lost that whole ancestral knowledge of how to use these ancient healing arts because of the rise of antibiotics and quick fixes.
However, she doesn’t eschew modern medicine and science. She will go to a doctor when she is sick and she understands what medicine has to offer.
It is just that she believes that there is value in the old remedies that were used for centuries. Cures that were handed down in a family for common aches and pains can help, and preventive care and maintenance in between doctor’s visits is also important.
Nature Plus Science
I started in the natural space because I believe in clean beauty. I was looking for safer, less irritating ingredients and gentler alternatives.
What I don’t mean is to throw out the scientific cupboard.
I firmly believe science should be incorporated in every product. We’ve got to find things that work and are safer for us, and that’s what Naturopathica tries to do.
New-ingredient technology is constantly emerging, allowing us to push the envelope with formulas that have more powerful ingredients, such as peptides, stem cells, and retinols, but in clean, non-toxic formulas.
It’s definitely got the organic credentials though. Certified by Ecocert, several products have gone through rigorous assessment to ensure providence.
And the EWG ratings speak to a generally safe ingredient selection. I’m generally seeing a group of ingredients that are in the 1-2 range. Ingredients that rank higher are retinol and botanical extracts.
Also, the formulations stick to things that work. You’ve got xylitol and glycerin tackling skin dryness in the Aloe Cleansing Gel. You’ve got Vitamin E and Vitamin C working together in the Vitamin C Revitalizing Lotion, which is great. Vitamin A and E reinforce each other and help ingredients penetrate into skin.
I do have a few complaints. I’m firmly against jar packaging and even fragrances from essential oils, and would love to see less of each in the Naturopathica line.
However, Naturopathica is a great line. It’s got a very balanced approach to skincare by taking scientific knowledge and laboratory ingredients and pairing them with really lovely natural items.
Best of Naturopathica | Products and Reviews