For Coimbatore-based Kruthika Kumaran, it was her mother’s skin problems and her daughter’s eczema that made her research natural soaps. When her hunt proved unfruitful, armed with a diploma in natural cosmetology, she started experimenting with goat milk soaps and after many attempts, Vilvah Store came into existence with a perfect recipe that she created for her family. But now, hundreds of Instagramers are loyal to this unique, effective formula.
Created with fresh goat milk as the base, the brand has a whole range of wellness products – from handmade soaps, body washes, moisturisers, and lip balms, to toners, body butter, face masks, and deodorants. For hair care, there are shampoo bars, conditioners, oils, and masks. For lovers of aromatherapy, they also have cold pressed oils. A clean and sustainable skincare range, we were particularly fascinated by its Honey Fix Cleanser, an oil-free formulation made with honey, a natural source of glycolic acid, alongside the goodness of blackberry, papaya, gotukola and orange peel.
Vilvah is a farm-to-face brand, and employs fresh ingredients that are sourced locally, obtained in their purest form. There are no harsh chemicals, additives, synthetic oils, or perfumes. We know this because Kumaran believes in full ingredient disclosure – transparency is the key to her. Plus, they’re cruelty-free and don’t use any plastic packaging – their products all come in beautiful aluminium and glass bottles.
We caught up with Kumaran to learn more about the brand.
What makes Vilvah different from other beauty labels?
Sustainability is our USP. More than being an organic and natural skincare brand, we pride ourselves to adapt to the concept of sustainability, (which is the need of the hour) starting from manufacturing to packing. Almost all our product packaging is plastic free, starting from ingredients we use, shipping materials to invoice, all of it are biodegradable, recycled, reusable. Recently, we have introduced bulk packaging in shampoo as a means to reduce the number of empty bottles and carbon footprint. We have plans of introducing refill machines for shampoo and conditioner in our physical outlets where a customer can bring their own bottles and refill their favourite products.
What are your bestsellers and your opinion on using local ingredients in skincare?
Our goat milk soaps and hair care products are our bestsellers. Your metabolism and body is best adaptable to locally-cultivated ingredients and which are native to India. Additionally, sustainability factor not only means plastic-free packaging, it also implies reducing carbon footprint by sourcing out locally-grown ingredients.
Tell us a bit about goat milk and why it’s such a popular part of your label?
Goat milk has a Ph level that is very close to that of the human skin. It’s, after all, naturally enriched with lactic acid and the fact that it’s high in natural vitamins, minerals, fats, and proteins is an added advantage. The main ingredient to know is Caprylic Acid, a form of alpha-hydroxy acid, which aids in cellular renewal. Goat milk is known to be an excellent complexion booster and aids in slowing down ageing. Cleopatra was known to bathe in goat milk. The goat milk that we use is sourced ethically from our own farms. The goats are milked thrice a week. And we leave the excess milk for the kids so they’re well-taken care of.
Creating a brand like Vilvah from scratch, how challenging was it?
Me and My husband were the initial core team. The initial challenges we faced are to procure the freshest raw materials and we have collaborated with many local farmers to cater to our needs. Being passionate agriculturists, sourcing directly from the farmers gives us a sense of satisfaction. The biggest challenge we still face is the growing demand and building infrastructure for the same. We are soon going to move to a brand new Green Building – production facility in 40,000 square feet with state of the art facility.
To launch more innovative products which are both great for all skin types and great for the environment, to adapt more sustainable practices and be a pioneer in Goat Milk skincare.
Pricing starts at Rs 290. Know more about Vilvah here.