With a history that spans over forty-five years, Dr Hauschka Skincare is truly a stalwart of natural beauty. The first organic brand I found with any regularity in the pro make-up and department stores, Dr Hauschka offer a range of Skincare and cosmetics based on a holistic philosophy.
The Dr Hauschka story begins in 1914 with a series of lectures on farming by Philosopher and Educator Dr Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925). Steiner introduced the theory of Anthroposophy; a spiritual based science that went on to influence (amongst other things) agriculture and form the basis of a new method of farming – Biodynamics.
The 1914 lectures were attended by Viennese Chemistry and Medicine student Dr Rudolph Hauschka (1891-1969) who, inspired by Steiner’s advice, proceeded to study the natural world and the natural rhythms of life; such as light and dark and warmth and cold. It is through the study of these natural transitions that Dr Hauschka was able to create a process that enables a water-based rose extract to remain stable without the use of alcohol or preservatives for over three decades. That was the beginning of what was to come…
Medicines based on these water-based extracts were well-received by European physicians and so with an aim to support the healing of humanity and the earth, Hauschka and his colleagues founded the Holistic pharmaceutical company WALA Heilmittel in 1935 and began to manufacture homeopathic medicines. Now a multi-million pound company, WALA (an acronym of Hauschka’s processing method: Warmth, Ash, Light, Ash) employes over 600 people around the world.
Meanwhile, Esthetician Elisabeth Sigmund (b.1914) was beginning her own journey. Since her cosmetics training in Vienna, Elisabeth had been dissatisfied with conventional treatment methods and techniques and developed an interest in medicinal herbs and anthroposophical medicine and their use in cosmetics.
Following three solid years of research and development, Elisabeth founded her own beauty salon Salon for the care of beauty, in which she began producing skin-normalising cosmetics on a larger scale for the first time and worked constantly on their improvement. She also devised the technique of lymphatic stimulation based on the methods of Lymphatic expert Dr. Vodder and developed a set of facial exercises.
In the early 1960’s Elisabeth was approached by Dr. Hauschka to discuss her ideas about plant-based skin preparations and treatment methods. Following an intensive period of correspondence between the pair, Elisabeth was invited to join the Dr. Hauschka and his team at WALA to help develop a new line of holistic skin care. The foundation of the line was Elisabeth’s guiding principle: activate the skin’s own healthy functions.
The first line of Dr. Hauschka skincare products was introduced in 1967 and over the past forty-five years the brand has gone from strength to strength and now includes hair and body collections, natural remedies and make-up line. Although the products may have changed and developed over the years, the concept behind the brand remains the same.
All of the products are certified natural by the BDIH and contain the highest quality plant and mineral ingredients, each of which has been chosen for the way it interacts with other ingredients and the overall effects on the skin. The raw ingredients are sourced from thousands of acres of farmland and medicinal herb gardens around the world all carefully managed and farmed using Biodynamic methods. The careful management doesn’t stop at the land and its produce but also extends to the communities and farmers themselves; paying fair prices for the products products, supporting fair trade initiatives, economic self-sufficiency and environmental sustainability.
To find out more about the work that WALA do, go to www.wala.de
To find out more about the work of Dr Rudolph Steiner, go to www.biodynamics.com