Orchard View naturals was founded in 2007, a small health, beauty & wellbeing business near Ilminster, Somerset, with nature at its heart. Our core values have stayed the same throughout. We do what we can to keep our footprint as light as possible, while giving you truly special experiences. I specialize in Natural & Organic Facial & Aromatherapy treatments and handmade Natural Skin Care Products & Fragrance.
Lucy, OV naturals
It is important to me & my customers that all of the products & natural ingredients I use have been created in a sustainable way. It can be difficult to dig deep into the roots of some larger supply chains, so I source mainly from small, independent businesses in the UK, who can help me to understand origins & source responsibly.
Over the years I've probably made a complete pain of myself, asking question after question of my suppliers. Sometimes it baffles me that I seem to be the first person to ever have asked. For example, How is it harvested? Is it sustainable? Is it Fairtrade? Does it contain any palm derivatives? Is it Halal? Cruelty-free? What is the process it goes through? Are any synthetics used in that process? Can I get the relevant paperwork to back up the claims? And so on. While some suppliers go the extra mile to help, others can be very arms-length & it can be difficult to get the answers.
The demand for essential oils for many different industries can put a strain on the environment & by supporting ethically grown & harvested sources, we can drive change. Sadly, from over-use, East Indian Sandalwood is now a threatened species. The Sandalwood essential oil I use is from New Calendonia, from managed plantations. Other wood oils such as Organic Atlas Cedarwood & Blue Cypress essential oils that I use are from sustainable sources, their branches only are used to collect the oils, the trees are not felled for the oil & when they are eventually felled, new ones are planted. I keep an eye on the natural world & news about essential & plant oils & aim to be both pro-active & responsive. Even though this is only a tiny little business, I still believe it can make a difference.
Ingredients on OV naturals products are 100% Vegan, the ingredients & final product are never tested on animals & we source many Soil Association Certified organic ingredients, as we believe that these will be both pure & ethical. Not only that, but organic botanicals are grown without harmful pesticides or other toxins, so the strain on the planet is lessened enormously, wildlife is protected & bio-diversity can thrive. The Soil Association certification is a safeguard for each ingredient & supports both the environment and our own health. This means that there are between 84% and 99% Soil Association certified organic ingredients in each of our skincare formulas in the Heart & Soul Collection. We source the remaining ingredients from the same suppliers as the certified ingredients as we believe that they are trustworthy and have integrity. The non-organic ingredients are all from natural sources but they are not certified for various reasons. Sometimes certification can’t be given due to the fact that they grow wild (e.g. Frankincense), in plantations (e.g. Sandalwood), managed forests (e.g. Blue Cypress), or are produced using some kind of chemical or solvent during the manufacturing process to extract or create them (e.g. Olive Squalane, Vitamin E & Absolutes.) Sometimes it is the cost of certification that is prohibitive for producers, sometimes there may be issues which do not meet Soil Association standards. Read our Blog to find out more about our formulations
With packaging, this is where we are currently:
- Some Reclaimed packaging is used to protect your items in transit, including some boxes & “peanuts”.
- Glass bottles & jars are reusable & recyclable along with the glass element of the pipettes. Not all of the closures are plastic-free & recyclable, but suppliers are moving with the times and hopefully soon we’ll have more eco-friendly solutions.
- Leaflets are made from 85% UK post-consumer cardboard waste & printed locally. Square “thank you” cards are made from recycled T-shirts.
- Black shredded tissue is made from 100% UK recycled paper. Acid-free gold & purple tissue are printed in the UK.
- Kraft Presentation boxes are made from recycled card.
- Green Jiffy Bags have a Kraft outer and recycled paper cushioning.
- Cardboard mailing boxes are 80% recycled.
- Green bubble wrap is biodegradable.
- Little clear sample pockets are made from biodegradable corn starch.
Sadly, all of these above are more expensive in £s than their unsustainable counterparts, but much less harmful for the environment, so we think it’s worth it. All of these endeavours do, of course, add to the price of your finished products. Until the day when recycled paper & card, organic ingredients, ethical products are the norm, this is always going to elevate the cost of production. If this means less sales for OV, then so be it. If our planet buckles under the strain of the human race, we all go with it!
OV naturals offers refills of English Garden, Orange Grove & Lemon Tree Reed Diffusers & 15ml Golden Eau de Toilette - just return your containers & we'll do the rest. It’s harder to offer refills of skincare products because of hygiene issues, but we are open to it if we can find a way.
We are mindful of the confusion that consumers face when sourcing natural products. As such, we are transparent & clear about percentages of natural & organic ingredients in OV natural’s skincare, so you know exactly what you are using on your skin. We list full ingredients (INCI) along with the common name, both on the label & the website, so if you have a known allergy or aversion to anything you can avoid & likewise, if you love a particular ingredient (rose, anyone?) you can look out for it.
Lucy is a registered & insured professional – please see Our Story for more details. All OV naturals’ products are Cosmetic Safety Assessed & registered on the EU portal. You're in safe hands.
Ingredients used in OV naturals skincare & fragrance products are always cruelty-free, which is very important to us. OV naturals products are Vegan, the only exception to this being the Organic Face Cream, which is made for us & contains a tiny amount of beeswax. We also use a beeswax-based lip balm in the MAKE Facial. However, we can always adapt & if you are Vegan, let us know & we can easily swap out any the products containing beeswax.
A Green Practice
In Lucy’s facial & body treatments, current emphasis is on reducing waste & being mindful of the environment.
The industry's uniform offering is currently falling drastically short, but I am actively seeking sustainable workwear. Over recent months I have researched far & wide to try & find a sustainable, fairtrade uniform. The industry is currently wedded to polyester, which is terrible for the environment & can be scratchy & uncomfortable to wear. Most suppliers have little interest in helping the consumer understand provenance & most uniforms are made in Asia. I found 3 suppliers who make uniforms in the UK. One uses polyester. One only makes black & white uniforms & the other I had problems with their customer service & sizing. So, still looking!
I have always used, where possible, non-disposable items such as headbands, mitts & sponges, which get washed with the towels and are re-used over & over. While I do use some tissues & cotton wool, I try to source products which are made with eco-friendly materials which bio-degrade naturally, such as Organic Cotton wool & tissues. To minimise use of these disposables, I use the washables mentioned above. I also have some washable tissue-on-a-roll which is fantastic for cleaning surfaces. Any cotton-wool buds I use are free from plastic. Hand disinfectant is 100% natural. I use natural cleaning products. Even my Hot Stones, bought in 2009, were ethically-sourced, from the base of a volcano, rather than being swept from the sea bed which is commonplace & destructive.
Going forward, I am are seeking solutions to reduce water consumption & energy, reduce waste, reduce single-use materials & to consume less generally.
Watch this space as we add to our eco-friendly practices. If you have any ideas on how we can become more eco-friendly, we'd love to know.