Fehmina Poonawalla Alam, the woman behind Bahrain’s latest homegrown organic and vegan beauty brand, explains what drives her.
When was Organicare launched?
Organicare was founded in 2012 and launched in 2013 around the same time I had my second baby.
What made you decide to go down this route?
I was searching for the cause of my health concerns, when even doctors didn’t have a simple answer. That led me to a path of knowledge and discovery and the overwhelming realisation of how toxic our environment has become along with all the products we use and the foods we eat. Part of the research made me realise that the silver filling amalgams used by dentists contributed towards my health concerns.
How do you develop the products?
Each and every product in the Organicare line has been created by me. I’ve dedicated a lot of time to researching each ingredient, their benefits and their function in the formula. I created and recreated the formulas till I was satisfied with the result. I didn’t want just a natural and non-toxic formula, but also one that can perform as well as its toxic counterparts, so there is no excuse for not going natural. I’ve also made sure the products [which aren’t animal tested] are vegan and halal.
Where are the ingredients sourced?
The ingredients are sourced from reputable and certified companies in the US. They take only the best products from around the world; companies that are ethical and mostly who have sustainable practices.
The products are all made in Bahrain; do you have a large-scale production facility here?
The products are currently handcrafted in small quantities and made fresh. We are working towards getting them produced on a larger scale to fulfil the growing demand and for easier accessibility.
How large is the product range?
Organicare started with a baby care range and expanded to skin care. We also have body care which mainly has body oils and deodorants. The make-up line has been a recent addition.
You recently launched “the first ever organic, vegan, natural and toxic free liquid lipstick” – is this a first for the region or for the world and what made you develop it?
As far as I know, this is the only one in the world that is not only vegan and halal, but also has organic ingredients, such as babasu, jojoba, chia seed and sea buckthorn. And the result is the same as expected from any conventional liquid matte lipstick, minus the toxins and with added benefits.
Many customers who’ve bought lipsticks and lip glazes asked if Organicare was coming out with a liquid matte lipstick. Seeing the popularity of this type of product in the conventional make-up market, I thought “Why not?” It was definitely a challenge and I took it up a notch and made it safe and nourishing enough to be used on your skin as a cream blush as well.
We launched Cheeky Lips, Liquid Matte Lip & Cheek Color on May 4 and, since then, customers have returned to purchase more for themselves, as gifts or have sent new customers our way.
What’s next for the brand?
We have gotten so much love and support for the products that we feel it is time to get them out to as many stores for easier accessibility. We are working on expanding the company from being home-based to being produced in a bigger facility.
Where can people find your products?
They can be purchased online at website www.organicare.me, through Bodyline Spa in Saar or through Jennifer Perrin, the make-up artist at Beauty Spot Salon in Hamala.
Anything else you would like to add?
As a consumer it’s essential that you read and ask questions from each and every company you buy from. There are many companies which are green washing and using the word “natural” and “pure”, yet they are anything but safe. Many people assume that natural is the same as organic and that if a company says its natural then that’s good enough. A sunflower oil can be natural, but when a sunflower oil is organic, then it is GMO free and free of any toxic elements, such as pesticides. Be an informed consumer and read the labels and question every ingredient being used — that includes those from natural and organic companies. Knowledge is power!