The natural skincare brand you need to know about: HAECKELS

I was recently introduced to British skincare brand, Haeckels, who use the natural ingredients from their native Margate to create bespoke products and treatments. I went along to see for myself: find out all about Haeckels here…

Image cred @madeinmargate copy
Image credit – Instagram @madeinmargate

As a Makeup Artist, I’m lucky enough to be sent new products to try out all the time, which means I get to see a lot of different formulas, textures and fragrances – but I have to be honest, it takes quite a lot for me to be really impressed.

When I went along to BEAST recently, I was introduced to Haeckels for the first time, and instantly liked their hand crafted, natural ethos as well as the feel and smell of their skincare products.

WHO ARE HaeCKELS?

Founder Dom Bridges - Image Credit @curioinmargate

Haeckels, named after marine botanist, Ernst Haeckel, was founded in 2012 by Dom Bridges, film maker, volunteer beach warden and Margate resident. The brand initially came about when Dom began experimenting with seaweed and the natural materials he came across on the beach. He began making things on a very small scale in his kitchen, just based around what he needed for himself – simple, natural products that really worked, and which celebrated Margate and its rich botanical resources.

Soon after his initial experimentation, Dom’s wife Jo encouraged him to move things to a lab space in Margate, where he built up a team and continued hand crafting the products, but on a larger scale.

Haeckels still use the same botanical, natural ingredients local to Margate, and are ever involved with costal protection – something that is really integral to the brand. Fortunately though, the company has expanded beyond their flagship Margate store and now retail their products worldwide and in multiple London based outlets. Find out where you can buy Haeckels here.

Spa pop up

THE PRODUCTS

Haeckels’ products are a carefully curated edit of skincare essentials; there aren’t any products in the line ‘just for the sake of it’, and it’s immediately apparent that it’s all very fuss free – right from the simple, old apothecary style packaging, to the ingredients list on the back of the tubes.
The fragrance and skincare products are 100% natural and are naturally rich in antioxidants. It’s long been known that the water, mud, algae and minerals native to coastal areas are super powerful for healing the skin, body and mind, and Haeckels have bottled it!

WENDYS TOP PICKS

WENDY’S PICKS:

Traditional Seaweed Bath

Packed with vitamins and natural anti oxidants, this hand harvested seaweed bath helps to repair the skin and is proven to help fight ageing and cellulite and relieve the symptoms of arthritis and eczema. Great for after a workout!

Seaweed and Geranium Hand Balm

This hand balm has a gorgeous natural scent; it’s really spa-like and refreshing. Containing natural coastal flower extract, it’s really soothing, replenishing and it absorbs really quickly and easily into the skin.

Seaweed and Seabuckthorn Facial Cleanser

This cleanser is incredibly healing and the formula is rich in natural botanical extracts that help to balance the skin at the same time as healing and cleansing it.

Seaweed and Carrot Seed Face Serum

The formula of this serum is super light and absorbs really fast into the skin so it isn’t sticky. It works to hydrate and repair the skin and contains natural B and C vitamins.

Seaweed Sea Lavender Lip Balm

This lip balm is a very potent, natural remedy to soothe and repair dry lips. It doesn’t contain any silicones or paraffin and is designed to use regularly – it’s also matte and so doesn’t look shiny on the lips: perfect for men as well as women

Smudge Sticks 

I absolutely love these smudge sticks – natural dried mixed herb incense, you light these to help purify and cleanse spaces to bring about a renewed sense of calm. The herbs vary depending on the season (which I love!) and are harvested from a community garden in Margate.

Image Credit @madeinmargate
Image Credit – Instagram @madeinmargate

THE TREATMENTS

As well as their products, Haeckels offer a range of treatments using their products – which they call Thalassotherapy – taken from the Greek word thalass, which is the term for medical treatments using seaweed and seawater.

Originally, Haeckels’ treatments were limited to their Margate boutique in their treatment room or using their amazing sea bathing machine, however I was lucky enough to catch them in their pop up residency in BEAST London to find out more about their therapies and give them a try for myself.

Treatments

I decided to try their Reflexology treatment to balance energy and hormone levels. On entering the store, I was led downstairs into the pop up spa area – a really unintimidating, unisex set up with simple wooden cladding and linen curtains, it felt immediately very private and relaxing. The sound of the sea was playing and Haeckels’ Juniper Incense created a super calming environment, with Haeckels’ candles creating a spa like feel inside the intimate treatment room. My therapist, Laura, explained a little about the reflexology treatment in the most relaxing, soft voice and once I was ready, she began the therapeutic 60 minute foot massage. Firstly, Laura cleansed my feet using Haeckels Seaweed Body Cleanser, which smells amazing and left my feet feeling super soft. Using an oil, Laura massaged my feet, working on various pressure points and explaining that certain areas of the foot relate to other areas of the body, such as the stomach or the thyroid or the mind – and wherever there was any slight discomfort or an unusual sensation like tingling or numbness, it was a sign of imbalance in the body.

The massage had been so relaxing that I was almost asleep by the end, but when I woke up, I realised my eyes were really tearful and I’d been crying. Laura took some time to explain what certain sensations I’d experienced might relate to and explained that the tears and the area of my foot that had brought about the crying actually related to the brain. She suggested there was something related to the mind that needed to come out to release emotion – and she made some holistic suggestions for how to restore balance in other areas where I’d experienced tingling and numbness too. Laura also told me to drink loads of water to help flush any toxins and get maximum benefit from the treatment and I ended up needing the toilet constantly for the rest of the day, which was quite a nice feeling because it really felt like it had really done something!

Haeckels Pop up

Other treatments that Haeckels offer include Deep Cleansing Seaweed Facials, Back Neck and Shoulder Massage – and also Pregnancy Massage – perfect for men and women alike. If you visit them in Margate, the spa is adjoined to their shop, so you can pop in for a browse of the products and a treatment at the same time.

Although Haeckels’ pop up in BEAST is only a temporary residence for now, I got wind of Haeckels’ treatments becoming available on a full time basis in London based spas very soon, so if you miss them in BEAST, then stay tuned to find out where you can expect to experience their therapies.

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