A tête-à-tête with Meenakshi Ganesh, founder of Light Up, a homegrown PETA-certified clean skincare brand that’s all about the inner glow.
At Light Up, the premise for creating a product is very simple. They follow ’10 Clean Commandments’ to ensure all the formulations are completely toxin-free. Namely, none of their products contains parabens, sulfates, harsh lighteners, urea, talc, mineral oil, or alcohol. Sounds simple, but in reality, the task of achieving an effective skincare line without these harsh ingredients is a mammoth one. Yet one, that the brand’s founder Meenakshi Ganesh is committed to.
“When my mother and I started this brand we shared a shared vision as to what we wanted to achieve with Light Up. We spent almost 9 months formulating and coming up with a simple skincare regime with 6 products revolving around natural brighteners, antioxidants, and hydrators. Every product went through 19 – 20 rounds of formulations before it was finalised and prepped for launch. We tested our products on all genders and skin types through a clinical testing company headquartered in France. Keeping all parameters in mind we believe in launching limited yet thoroughly researched products to the market,” shares Ganesh. After heading the beauty category for Zalora, one of South East Asia’s largest online shopping platforms across Singapore, Hongkong, Philippines, Malaysia, and Taiwan, she felt drawn to creating her own brand that ticks all the correct boxes. The young brand currently offers limited but multi-purpose clean formulations that defend against pollution, hydrate your skin and naturally enrich it.
The packaging of Light Up is bright, young, and sleek but for the brand, the most important aspect remains the formulation. It’s a constant endeavour to research and select the finest combinations that truly sets it apart from the burgeoning array of beauty brands in the market. “The GOLD Standard of Vitamin C, i.e THD Ascorbate works 3X faster than traditional Vitamin C to penetrate the deepest layer of the skin thereby delivering results. Other brands work with water-soluble variants of Vitamin C and as skin repels water, these creams and serums bounce off, delivering no real benefits,” shares Ganesh. As consumers become more aware of what goes into their products, Light Up upholds the principles of ingredients transparency over marketing gimmicks or Instagram beauty trends. Here is a quick run-through of some of the key aspects of this PETA-certified brand, as told by their founder Meenakshi Ganesh.
What’s inside the Light Up skincare products?
We believe in the magic of Superfoods and have incorporated them in every formulation like the use of matcha, avocado, chia seed, blackcurrant, beetroot, kakadu plum and several more. While we do use certain international ingredients such as THD ascorbate, 3 million-year-old New Zealand glacial clay, bio-retinol, and milk peptides, all our products are locally manufactured, filled, and packed in India itself.
Is the brand sustainable?
With every country geared up to cut carbon emissions in the next decade, it is also critical to switch to eco-friendly packaging to reduce one’s carbon footprint. Wherever possible, we use recyclable packaging like our aluminium pump bottles for Green Juice Superfood Brightening Face Cleanser and tin packaging for our FLASH Facial and Body Powder Wash. We are consciously moving towards the same for the new range that we will be launching in 2022.
Your thoughts on the clean beauty scene in India?
I strongly feel that in the absence of a regulatory body, the words “clean” and “non-toxic” are being used loosely by crafty marketers to lure customers. Clean beauty as a term is open to interpretation and brands are taking full advantage of this to sell products based on fake promises. We feel the future of clean beauty lies in being honest and transparent with your customers. We are constantly educating customers about the severe damage caused by harsh skin lighteners and commonly used chemicals in mass skincare formulations. At Light Up, we want to push our customers to read the label properly and make intelligent, informed purchase decisions and not give in to marketing gimmicks.
The must-try product from Light Up?
Our bestseller is undoubtedly our Vitamin C dream team which comprises PRISM Vitamin C Glow Cream and BLAZE Vitamin C Glow Serum. While PRISM has a rich thick texture and is perfectly used as a night cream, BLAZE serum has a lightweight texture that delivers all-day hydration. Our BEAM Glacial Glow Mud has also been a favourite amongst repeat customers. We have also enriched it with our proprietary R.U.M Complex (rice, urad, masoor) which naturally brightens and shrinks pores along with jasmine and rose hydrosol that deeply hydrates.
Light Up is ‘the official glow keeper’, how did this become the brand motto?
Light Up stands for embracing one’s skin tone and saying no to heavy layers of makeup and filters. We want our customers to achieve a natural healthy glow and radiance with our Superfood activated range. Inspired by the popular terminology of “Goalkeeper” who protects the goal post; we think of ourselves and our customers as Glowkeepers (official custodians of the glow). With regular usage of the Light Up range, we think our customers can easily embrace and nurture a healthy radiance. Our strength lies in using natural ingredients as key actives to make our formulations deliver real results. FLASH Brightening Face and Body Powder Wash is unique in terms of its ingredients. It is 100% natural, chemical and fragrance-free. We created FLASH by crushing fresh Rose Petals, Marigold and Hibiscus and blending it with Goat’s Milk, Guava and Gotukola for creating an unforgettable exfoliation experience delivering deep hydration and nourishment.
Learn more about the skincare brand, Light Up here:
All Images: Courtesy Light Up.