A Q&A with Amanda Essery, the founder of Lovekins
We speak to Amanda Essery, the founder of Lovekins. Australian-owned, Lovekins is a brand of gentle, eco-friendly baby products and skincare born out of a desire for natural alternatives to eczema for her own daughter. Here, Essery shares her story.
What was your initial vision for Lovekins?
Our vision was to improve the health and happiness of babies by empowering families with premium Australian products infused with native and sustainable ingredients. Our purpose was to simplify parenting by using a collection of trusted products that would protect babies’ skin.
How has your early life in Darwin impacted your mission today?
I grew in a house full of tropical fruit due to the climate in Darwin. It was a very natural and simple upbringing. When I moved to Sydney, I felt out of place as the hustle of city life felt like I could not reconnect to the way I was raised in Darwin. Through Lovekins, our mission is through education. To share the simpler, more natural approach by harnessing the healing power of Australian nature.
What is your earliest memory from childhood?
Picking fruit from our garden and weekly trips with my parents to the markets to purchase fresh produce from local farmers
Can you tell us a bit about your hero ingredient, Kakadu Plum? What are some of its benefits?
Our Kakadu Plum is sourced from farms in the Northern Territory from a small pocket of land where this ancient native plant grows. It’s the richest source of vitamin C on the planet and it is high in antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, anti-viral and antibacterial properties. Indigenous Australians eat them as a food source and medicine.
What is your personal definition of family and community?
I feel that both are interrelated. The name Lovekins was created by choosing LOVE as in the strong emotional feeling and KINS meaning kinship. Kinship can be related to family or those in the community. Therefore, Lovekins means to love your family or your tribe.
What harmful chemicals, if any, can be found in commercial nappies, baby products and feminine hygiene products?
Chemicals “dioxins” is a result of bleaching that is often found in conventional personal care products such as nappies and feminine hygiene products. Petrochemicals such as mineral oil, parabens and synthetic fragrances are some examples that are harmful in baby care products.
Where do you source your materials and ingredients?
We source our native botanicals, Kakadu Plum and Blue Cypress, from my hometown of Darwin. The rest are sourced from reputable farmers and suppliers across Australia.
What legacy do you hope to leave for the generations that are wearing your products now?
The legacy I want to share is that by using our products we are simply not just purchasing a product to massage your baby or a sanitary pad to absorb fluid, but you are supporting the community and environment with sustainable ingredients we use to support farmers that help their livelihood and to keep jobs within industry.
What are your favourite products in the range?
If I could choose it would be all of them! But my favourites are the face cream as I use it on my own face due to the gentle formulation. My other choice is the massage oil. As a certified infant massage instructor, I learnt the benefits of baby massage and have been using these techniques with our oil on my kids since they were babies. The bonding and special connection you have during baby massage is something that only parents can share with their precious ones through touch.
What are three things everyone can do right now to lead a more sustainable and environmentally-conscious life? How can we involve our children?
Whilst I am not vegan, we made a conscious decision as a brand and company to have our entire range vegan certified. By incorporating a plant-based element into your life you are making a contribution to a better world. Children can get involved by encouraging to plant fruit and vegetable trees in the garden and watch them grow and harvest the fruits when they are ready. It gives them an appreciation of where our food comes from. Make informed decisions on everyday products that you use in your life. These include recyclable packaging of products to reduce a carbon footprint on our environment and again incorporate this as part of your household habit in teaching kids to recycle food packaging into the correct bins. Choose products that are Australian made or use Australian ingredients as you are supporting someone’s livelihood through job retention for a sustainable industry.
What’s next for Lovekins?
2020 is set to be a big one for us, we have so many extensions to our range to help even more women, mothers and babies around the world to live more healthily using toxic-free products.