“The challenge about working for such an innovative brand,” says Catherine Gore, President of Biossance, “Is that there are just so many amazing things to talk about!”
In four short years, we’ve grown from one solitary facial oil to an entire range of sustainable, science-based skincare that’s changing the industry. “For our birthday this year, we’re taking the opportunity to talk more about all the incredible things we’re doing,” Catherine says. This includes releasing a brand-new video and campaign to tell the Biossance story, and focusing in on the things that truly matter to us: Squalane, science-based innovation, and building an incredible community.
Squalane: Our Shark-Saving Hero Hydrator
For generations, beauty products were fortified with squalene, a substance that provided exceptional moisture to human skin—but at the cost of millions of sharks, which were killed for their squalene-rich livers. This harvesting of sharks harmed not only the animals, but also the ocean ecosystems that depend on this apex predator.
We imagined something better, that could outperform squalene without decimating this critical species. So our scientists engineered squalane, a hydrator that was purer, more ethical, and vegan—made from sustainable sugarcane. Squalane is a molecular match for the moisture that’s already a part of human skin, making it an incredibly effective bioidentical hydrator that also saves 2 million sharks per year.
“It’s really a miracle ingredient,” Catherine says. “It absorbs instantly and just leaves your skin so silky and smooth. Plus, when we combine it with other active ingredients, it helps them penetrate deeper and work more effectively, which is why it’s in each and every Biossance product.” The story of squalane is really the story of Biossance in a nutshell: Taking something unethical and unsustainable, and making a newer, better version of it, for the good of everyone. “We’re so proud of our squalane, we even sell it to other brands to use in their products!” Catherine says. “As I like to say, a rising tide lifts all boats.”
Did you know that many beauty products are formulated by third-party companies, and the brands themselves just buy them and put their label on the bottle? Not Biossance: Every product we sell is formulated by our own scientists, in our Berkeley lab, and undergoes nine layers of clinical testing to be sure they’re gentle but effective. Plus, every product is EWG-Verified to assure that it’s free of chemicals of concern. “What’s really special is that a lot of the ingredients we use are ones we create ourselves,” Catherine says. Beyond just being clean and banning known toxins, our scientists are constantly innovating in order to solve for issues like over-farming, extinction, fair trade, and negative environmental impacts.
A Community of Changemakers
Even with a track record of cutting-edge science and a powerhouse hero ingredient, the Biossance brand would be nothing without our passionate community. “They constantly push and inspire us to do better, and as they become more educated and more aware, that’s how things really change,” Catherine says. Biossance loyalists aren’t just here for the product (although they’re devoted to them, too)—they’re passionate about ocean conservation and the greater good of creating a more sustainable planet. “Last year, we really ramped up ways for our community to get more involved,” Catherine says. “It’s well-known that 30% of the plastic in our oceans comes from personal care products, and we take our responsibility seriously to be part of the solution.” That means making it easier to adopt a shark and donate through our partner Oceana, launching our Impact Award, to honor changemakers in science and social impact, and constantly launching new educational content on Clean Academy to help our clients make more informed, conscious decisions and connect them with real experts in the field.
“From the ingredient innovation in each of our products, to the work we’re doing around sustainability, I’m so proud of how far we’ve come so quickly,” Catherine says. For 2021, we’ve got incredible things on the horizon, from making new strides in packaging sustainability to creating new ways to grow our passionate community of changemakers. Plus of course, launching more incredible and uniquely Biossance products: Incredible formulas that marry ingredient innovation with unmatched efficacy, all guided by our belief in sustainability as the most important frontier in personal care. “When we say we’re ‘inventing the future of beauty,’ we’re not kidding,” Catherine says. “What we’re doing here will be influencing the entire beauty industry for years to come.”
Four of our favorite women on innovating, creating community, and making change.
Despite 2020’s challenges, we celebrated victories in the clean beauty space and took part in movements that we truly believe in. Join us as we reflect.
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