With a background in publishing and public relations, Katharine L’Heureux was living in New York with her husband and three children when a chance visit to Morocco in 2007 ignited a passion that burns on. “I was approaching 50 and trying to live a healthier lifestyle,” she explains, “but the earthy organic smell of the more natural skincare products available at the time didn’t appeal to me as a luxury skincare buyer. I didn’t trust that these products would work for me. First and foremost, skincare needs to work. I was in the Moroccan desert and my skin became so dry that the local Berber women gave me some argan oil. It really worked, I loved it and I loved Morocco so much.”
These Berber women have used the pressed juice of the argan kernel for centuries to combat the dry desert air and reduce the signs of ageing. The oil is sourced from the argan tree or ‘Tree of Life’ as it is called locally, that grows exclusively in the Souss valley of southwestern Morocco, an area that is now a UNESCO biosphere reserve.
Overflowing in vitamin E, essential fatty acids and antioxidants, it helps soften, repair and rejuvenate every skin type.
Back in New York, L’Heureux began to import small quantities of the oil for personal use, when something on her radar enticed her to develop this organic, sustainable product a little further. So began the pure, natural and sustainable brand Kahina Giving Beauty.
It marks a timely move too, as she believes that the movement for pure ethical skincare is only just beginning. “As more people realise what is in conventional beauty products, and the health problems that these toxic ingredients can cause, as well as their effects on the environment and on animals, it is understandable that people will look for alternatives. Once they see the results they are achieving with natural skincare, the choice soon becomes clear.”