By Anna J. Anthony
Anna Anthony: Janet, what attracted you to working in the skincare industry, and specifically organic skincare?
Janet Thompson: In 2009 I was diagnosed with breast cancer. While I was taking my chemotherapy treatments my skin was terrible! It was extremely dry, and started aging more rapidly. I couldn’t find any products that I felt worked well with my skin, so I started formulating my own products using healthy and natural ingredients. This is what inspired me to study esthetics. I worked out of my home for a short time, then opened Spa La Vie shortly after.
AA: The term “organic” gets used very freely in the beauty industry. What advice would you give to consumers on how to select the purest form of organic beauty products?
JT: I always look at the first five ingredients, because those are the most highly concentrated ingredients in the product. If I don’t like the first five I move on. The most important thing that I think we have to be careful of is the type of preservatives we have in our products. The FDA requires a preservative, if it is a water-based product as water carries bacteria. Oil-based mixtures don’t require this. It’s important to know what’s being used to extend the shelf life. Parabens, including methylparaben are cancer-causing preservatives and are found in many skin care formulas. Preservatives and bactericides are not all bad. In some cases, the effects of the bacteria can be much more severe if there isn’t a preservative or bactericide present in the product. Organic products can also take some getting used to, as they lack the silicone, and slip-and-slide of non-organic products.
We live imperfect lives, so we must do what we can to limit the amounts of toxins we expose our bodies to, especially our skin. I believe in living a life of balance.
AA: You manufacture some of your own products. What are some of your top sellers?
JT: My toner is the #1 seller! I never realized the benefit of toner until I became an esthetician. Toner is a hydrator, and the base is a liquid aloe vera. It also includes fruit acids that gently exfoliate. No matter how much water we drink in a day, we can never hydrate that dead layer of skin on top, so we must hydrate internally, as well as externally. It helps balance the skin’s pH level, which is crucial to skin health. When your pH is out of balance, your skin is constantly out of whack, and is fighting against itself. Toner is great to spray on your legs as well, as it helps pull moisture in when your skin is dry. My eye cream is a great buy at $19.95, and it contains a variety of powerful organic ingredients.
AA: What is unique about the services you provide at Spa La Vie?
JT: I am driven by integrity. I want my clients to walk out feeling amazing! Telling someone that they need a load of services and products they don’t need isn’t going to create that amazing feeling. Everyone’s skin is different, requiring a different regimen and treatment. Some of the special offerings we provide during facials are our anti-aging facial massage that helps stimulate collagen and elastin, and our enzyme exfoliation, which gently exfoliates and kills dead skin cells, brings up pH levels, and prepares the skin so the product can go directly into the pores. Our services are very gentle on your skin, after all, it is your skin we’re talking about! Your face shouldn’t burn during or after a facial. We’ve adopted the mindset as a society that if it doesn’t hurt, it isn’t working. WRONG! We offer skin care classes on how to care for your type of skin, and the best products to use. Watch our website, as well as the Midwest Pulse Calendar in this magazine for upcoming dates.
AA: You also have some special programs for clients undergoing cancer treatment. How can our readers get involved?
JT: I feel very fortunate to be alive! One of the ways that I give back is by offering free facials to cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy or radiation. We just ask that you have a doctor’s note. We also sponsor an annual “Get Inked!” Campaign. Tattoo artist Michael Figueroa joins with me, sharing his talent, and offering free tattoos to women who have had a mastectomy. Designs can be natural or decorative to artistically cover scars, which helps women look at their scars in a whole new light. We’re currently looking for recipients. Check spalavie.info under “Get Inked!”
Anna J. Anthony is the Advertising Coordinator for Conscious Community Magazine. She is passionate about collaborating with and promoting local artisans, Lightworkers, and conscious business owners. Anna studies the art of tarot, the paranormal, and is curious about various forms of consciousness, and spreading light and magic to others.