“The Inside Story”
Some of the most beautiful things in life are born out of chaos, and an involuntary retrenchment for Kara-Leigh Baker in 2017, was the catalyst that propelled the dynamic mother and daughter duo, Vanessa Ralston and Kara-Leigh to pursue their passion for natural and organic products. Creating the French Lemon brand, that South Africans know and love today, was fuelled by the adoption of their beloved Russian-born bulldog Ian, who has not only become the inspiration behind the brand, but also the face on their environmentally friendly packaging.
With collective backgrounds in the corporate world, what started out as a pursuit to become purveyors of preserved lemons and other lemon edibles for mom Vanessa and daughter Kara-Leigh; soon evolved into the passionate production of 100% natural, vegan and animal friendly bath and body products. Three years later, Vanessa and Kara-Leigh have built their fledgling business into a profitable venture that has created employment and skills development for their team of ten, as well as established a respected and reputable proudly South African cruelty-free brand.
As more people call for better ethical practices; advocates of beauty without cruelty, Vanessa and Kara-Leigh, together with their French Lemon team, are continually developing, trying and testing products that cleanse, nourish, moisturise and soothe skin from head to toe.
Vanessa has developed a series of secret recipes; their scrubs, steamers and signature scents are made to order, with their bestseller for men and women being their pumice bar. Each product in the Collection is handmade with love, and their inspiration is drawn from vigorous research, and the exploration of essential oils and the various responses that they trigger. This process results in the development of products with a purpose, that Vanessa and Kara-Leigh know their clientele would love to purchase and use.
Going back to basics, and birthed out of personal skin sensitivity, French Lemon embodies an ethos of kindness and compassion. Fanatical about what is found inside their products, their entire Collection is SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulphate) free. A surfactant found in bath and body products; and not only bad for your body, but for the environment and animals too, French Lemon uses coconut as a natural alternative foaming agent; and their products contain kaolin clay, coconut oil and shea butter. Their Collection is also palm oil free, and they do not support deforestation and the animals that are affected. Committed to the cause, their packaging is also bio-degradable, and made possible by local suppliers that provide sustainable environmentally-friendly options.
From their very first market in March 2017, French Lemon has spread their wings into Mauritius, Zambia and Zimbabwe, and while still operating a boutique production line from home in Bryanston, their plans include growing into a bigger space to accommodate their 2020 vision.
Natural and pure, the Collections, which are reimagined and reinvented every year, are suitable for women, men and children who are conscious about cruelty-free products and who also want to prevent absorbing toxins through their skin, bath and body routines.
Vanessa and Kara-Leigh’s creativity is contagious, and with an indomitable spirit and entrepreneurial outlook, this mother and daughter team is a powerful force to be reckoned with. French Lemon has branched out into DIY scrub and lotion stations for events and parties; where the handmade process is shared with guests, who can build their own bath bombs and create signature soaps and scrubs.
The ultimate gifting solution, and a decidedly different take on soaps, scrubs, salts and scents, there is something for everyone at French Lemon.
The French Lemon Collection is available exclusively online at www.frenchlemon.co.za
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