Plant-powered organic skincare naturally has a shorter shelf life than conventional skincare because it contains fewer preservatives. At Botnia, we think it’s actually healthy and natural if skincare starts to turn a little off—that means it’s alive, just like fresh food! You can tell our ingredients are active this way. Conventional wisdom is that longevity equals quality. But with our bodies, we actually want the opposite; anything that goes in or on our body must be fresh and therefore have a short shelf life.
Think of the botanicals in our products like choosing the freshest organic produce—the colors are more vibrant, the fruits and vegetables more flavor-filled and nuanced . . . and also prone to spoilage, by design. That natural potency is what makes Botnia’s plant-based skincare so effective. Of course, now that you’ve invested in your skincare, you’ll want to treat it right.
Here are a few tips:
• Write the date of opening on the container so you can track the shelf life.
• Wash your hands before dipping them into jars (like our Daily Face Cream or Body Cream). Or use a tool instead of your fingers, like a cotton swab or a (tiny!) spatula or spoon.
• Keep your products out of direct sunlight and store them in the refrigerator if you don’t need to access them frequently.
• Store organic skincare outside the shower as much as possible: bacteria need water to grow.
A rule of thumb on Botnia: different products will have different lifespans. Products containing soap such as our face washes, Gentle Hand Cleanser, and bar soaps will last the longest, as will our Replenishing Facial Oil.
Cream products such as our face, eye and body creams have a large water content. This water content would allow bacterial cells to grow, but we fight this growth by using geranium hydrosol and by choosing essential oils that are both anti-inflammatory and antibacterial.
To combat any bacterial or fungal growth in our serum and toners, we package all of these products so that you never have to open the container or physically touch the product to reduce the introduction of bacterial or fungal cells.
Botnia’s preservative system is multi-layered: our preservatives all rate 0 or 1 on the EWG safety scale. We also use hydrosols mixed with ferments to create positive bacteria within the products themselves, similar to a kombucha.
Use your senses if you think a product might be turning bad: does the oil smell rancid? Is there a change in color or smell or a film on top of the jar? If so, then your product has likely spoiled and you’ll want to dispose of it. We’ll share more on what to look out for in a future blog post (with photos of our science experiments, too!).
Organic skincare isn’t filled with mystery ingredients. Botnia’s products come from the plants in our own garden and from local farmers and suppliers we know and trust. Through sourcing single ingredients and carefully hand-crafting products in our lab, we keep the supply chain simple and transparent. Healthy plants equal healthy skin.
Caring for organic skincare involves a bit more effort than for conventional skincare. But at Botnia, we believe this extra TLC is worth it to truly care for the health of your skin in the long run.