I am thrilled to be able to introduce you to Toni, the Founder and Formulator of Naturallogic Skincare. Whether you are newly discovering Toni’s line or are a longtime fan, you are in for a treat, as Toni was exceptionally generous in our conversation. I am delighted to be able to share our candid and heartfelt interview, which I believe will deepen even loyal fans’ appreciation for Naturallogic and the unique love, expertise, and intentionality Toni puts into her craft.
Instead of an Introduction, a brief Note: After the interview, I was wracking my brain, trying to figure out how to describe or “sum up” Toni in a few words, and I found myself at an absolute loss. Anything I could think of was trite or oversimplifying. After staring at a blank screen for a while, I emailed Toni and asked her how she would describe herself in a few words. She replied, “I can’t answer a question like that. I don’t feel the need to describe myself. And 2-3 words would never do it, anyway.” I smiled the moment I read her answer. She was completely right, both that 2-3 words would never suffice and that the question might not be truly answerable, at least not to any degree of truth or satisfaction. Moreover, Toni’s willingness to easily and kindly turn down my question led to a revelation for me as I realized that I could just let go of my self-imposed expectation and forgo an introductory description entirely. The idea had truly not occurred to me. [Sometimes (and I mean almost all the time) when things aren’t working, I forget that “stop forcing it” is an option.]
The above is just one of countless examples of how interacting with Toni–even over email– is eye-opening, refreshing, and change-inspiring. Toni has a way of being utterly true to and honoring herself that I have rarely encountered before, and she is one of the most generous, loving, and emotionally giving people any of us could hope to encounter. Though it took me a while to understand, this self-honoring and deep generosity go hand in hand. As Toni has said (and explains in more detail below), “Being the truth of who we are in every moment is true humility.” Suffice it to say, I find Toni herself and the love and intentionality she brings to every product she makes incredibly inspiring and refreshing, and I urge you to check out her outstanding high-performance holistic line. Naturallogic features true botanical wonders that have an almost magical ability to elevate skin care to nourishing self-care.
You healed yourself of diabetes, PCOS, and severe acne by changing the way you care for yourself physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Can you describe some of the healing changes you have made?
My body healed itself. It might be difficult to pinpoint specific things because I wasn’t specifically looking for healing. I did change my diet drastically. Also started walking every day. I felt a longing and knew it was something I wanted to do. Prior to that, I was a terrible eater. Despite growing up surrounded by the healthiest foods. I started eating primarily vegetables overnight, and before long I started craving them. I felt + looked years younger, and I had more clarity. A different kind of intelligence came with it, as well.
What I think was the most powerful part of it was why I did it. What I realized about myself + how I felt about myself, that instigated the change. And then changing how I treat myself. Self-care, self-honor, and not betraying yourself are very key to health and healing. They are also very personally defined, so they can look different for different people. It’s about honoring the truth of who you really are in every moment.
How has changing the way you treat yourself changed your ideas about beauty?
Being who I am gives me a sense of freedom that, to me, feels like the source of true beauty. When I first started Naturallogic, I had a hard time calling it a beauty brand. I considered it a health + wellness brand, and that’s still true. However, I want to plant seeds about the idea that beauty is an experience rather than how something or someone appears. It really is in the eye of the beholder. It’s the one looking and experiencing beauty, who is beautiful. They, in that moment, realize it as who they are, and that’s why they can feel it + experience it. I would love for people to realize that they are beauty itself, and have the actual experience of it.
I read a little about how you became a formulator in your interview with Dallas of My Strange Days. How did you decide to move from creating products for yourself to launching a business?
People in my life were asking for it. Whatever I was making for myself, I was also sharing with friends + family. Eventually, they asked for more and someone put the idea in my head that I could do this thing I loved for a living. It took about 3 years from there to really learn and discover how to craft proper, efficacious skin care, as well as learn how to start + run a business.
When it comes to your journey of starting and running Naturallogic, what have the biggest challenges been at any point along the way?
Customer service has been a huge growing experience for me. I didn’t know how hard it was for me to be true to myself until then. Customer service pushed all of my buttons and brought things up in me I didn’t even know were there. Fear. There were huge, truly testing times when I would go through periods of intense fear that I had to look at and really learn from. It was difficult, but also one of the greatest times of my life.
Fear is just a story in the mind. It doesn’t really exist. It never did. It just “seems” to. There’s a clarity that comes with that, that has opened the door to more creativity. And fear has transformed into fun + adventure. I have fun figuring out how to help and be of service.
What have the greatest rewards been?
For me, one of the greatest rewards is the freedom—the freedom to be and to discover who I am, while doing something I love + that serves others. I love the flexibility I have had over the last 10 years and the fact that things can change. I have the time, space + flexibility to discover + enjoy life while evolving my line + creating greater + greater experiences for my customers.
I’ve always had a desire to serve and take care of people, and Naturallogic is my way of doing that. It’s my ministry.
How would you describe your beauty and skin care philosophies?
Beauty is something we inherently are. Knowing and experiencing that is the best gift you can give yourself.
In my mind, skin care and self-care are the same thing. It can be a tangible tool to work with when you’re paying attention to yourself and giving yourself the love and time that you might not have had the chance to give yourself all day. It’s a way to just sit and be, a reset button, a chance to feel your own touch on your skin, which anchors something in your subconscious that is just invaluable: that you care about yourself. To feel those feelings in your body when you’re taking time and doing your self-care—whether you’re taking a bath or misting your face momentarily before getting back to what you were doing—there is the opportunity to just take a few seconds to go beyond the thought in your head and just sink down into your body and feel something lovely about yourself. The joy of who you are.
What are your biggest goals as a formulator/maker/founder?
When it comes to specific skin needs, I feel that oxidation and inflammation are at the root, whether it’s acne or eczema or aging . . . . So I like to work with antioxidants and anti-inflammatories in every product that I make.
And overall, I like to stay on the nutritious + nourishing side of things. I’m sure you know our skin is our largest organ and it will absorb up to 60% of a lot of what we put on it. What we eat is also important, but what maybe you don’t know is that out of all of our organ systems, skin is the last to receive nutrients from our food. Because of this, using nutrition topically is a really good idea.
And, I view skin care as a mini-meditation. It’s nice when people allow silence and sit and eat their meals without being in a rush, and I hope they’re the same way with their skin care practice.
What do you think skin troubles can teach us?
This is a multi-layered thing. On a physical level, skin conditions are going to show us something is out of balance in the body. I personally believe that these types of things start on an energetic level, however, and so if there’s something going on in the body physically there’s very likely something going on energetically that started that chain. Beliefs, suppressed emotions . . . . Skin troubles are messengers, and these messages can typically be detected way before they reach the skin, but we miss them. They are subtle, and we are preoccupied with our day to day life, most of which we spend in our head.
You just need to pay more attention to yourself and love yourself, if that makes sense. Do you notice how all these brands are now calling skin care a ritual? There are so many shamans in the skin care industry right now, it is unbelievable. These people are coming forward as spiritual teachers. Taking time for yourself, to BE yourself + honor yourself, really opens things up that have been blocked from flowing. When that energy gets flowing, it can open up and let life force in. Love can flow through you without getting stuck.
How do you source and select your ingredients to ensure optimal performance and potency?
I choose ingredients based on their nutrients + ability to provide certain results. When it comes to sourcing those ingredients, I’m very picky. I try to harvest locally as much as I can. For the ingredients I can’t find locally or don’t have the time + extra hands to scout, I look to local farms + co-ops I’ve known for years who have a love for what they do, impeccable ethics + reverence for plants. Same goes for ingredients I source globally.
Are you self-taught? Either way, how did you begin and can you describe how you have become such an accomplished formulator today?
I spent a lot of time researching and experimenting and practicing. I sought out and spoke with formulators and other skin care entrepreneurs. I liken it to being a self-taught chef. Maybe you didn’t go to formal culinary school, but if you work hard and train with the right people, you can become very accomplished.
Throughout the process of learning, you fall down rabbit holes of discovery and learn unexpected things as well. The internet is a great resource, but you still have to practice your butt off. Eventually, formulating becomes intuitive. My intuitive connection to plants and ingredients has come recently, after lots of experience. This new connection is impacting the way I formulate now, so I’m changing and updating my recipes. I’m a better formulator now than I was 4 years ago. In an effort to constantly strive to make the absolute best products I can, I have to revisit all my recipes and make sure they’re the best possible version. I want every product in the line to live up to an incredible level of excellence.
You said in your interview with Dallas of My Strange Days that your newest products tend to be your favorites because they have come from the most realized version of yourself. Can you describe how your own evolution and growth is connected to and translates to the products you create?
My understanding of my environment reflects my understanding of myself. And plants, formulating, efficacy, + potential outcomes are included in that. When I expand + embody more clarity, I’m able to see everything in a different + more conscious way. With my products, there’s a fine tuning that’s happening. Recently it’s as if a recipe is handed to me intuitively in an instant, and I just have to create it + put it through a test phase.
What do you see as the greatest success of your line so far and what are your hopes for the future?
Just look at my Love Notes page. What it’s done for people.
Naturallogic is my ministry.
I’m honored just by the fact that Naturallogic happened and that it’s still happening. It’s part of everything I do, almost like a partner. Some customers have become dear friends. It’s my life and gives me incredible joy.
Where do you get your ideas (for your line, products, etc.)?
Ideas can be sparked by anything, anyone or anywhere. Something someone says (whether in passing or maybe a blogger), or I’ll notice a need . . . customers may write me with ideas they would love to have access to. Sometimes it can be inspired by a new ingredient or something unconventional (like LUNA). It always starts as something intuitive and then begins to solidify and come into clear focus as I take the first step with whatever it is. I use my background knowledge, intermingled, from there.
What would you most love to change about the beauty industry?
I don’t really know anything about the beauty industry. I’ve been on the outskirts of it, so far. So, it’s hard to say. My focus is always on what I’m doing, not so much on what others are doing.
What inspires you?
Inspiration! I don’t really know how else to answer this question. Inspiration is a powerful force. It happens, I notice, I act.
Where do you hope to take Naturallogic in the future?
Depends on how far into the future. I’m much more interested in the present moment.
I DO think about and plan for the future, but not so far ahead that being flexible with new ideas and inspirations, and able to adapt to + flow with change as life unfolds are encumbered in any way. It’s more like I have a vision I want to create or something I want to achieve, and I set it in motion and start to live it, do it, create it. There’s not a plan for wanting it to happen in a certain time frame or by a certain date. I like to do things organically and let them flow in a way that I can work with, mold or reshape them as time goes on. Flowing organically in this way allows for that without things ever being difficult to adjust to or uncomfortable to change when I change and, therefore, my business has to change with me.
How do you think Naturallogic stands out in a crowded marketplace?
It doesn’t feel crowded, to me. I know there are a lot of green beauty brands, but the ones that stand out are the ones being original and authentic. And, that’s how I live + create. If I do stand out, it’s because I create from a completely inspired place, that combines traditional herbal wisdom, ancient plant wisdom, modern science + the alchemy and conscious intention of each person who uses + enjoys the products. From the formulation of each recipe to the packaging, to the website, to the idea Naturallogic was born out of, you won’t see any other products that work like or even resemble them. And that’s why I can stay so in love with it. I’m true to myself and my own ideas.
Can you suggest a few example Naturallogic skin care rituals you would recommend for different skin types or goals?
Sure! There is a Collections page on the website that covers this in more depth, and you can always send us a note for more personal recommendations at firstname.lastname@example.org. The line is quite extensive, and most products are wonderful for all skin types, so you can search by category (cleanser, mask, serum, etc.), find a product that you’re interested in, and be very confident that it will love your skin. For the basics for specific skin types, I recommend these:
Oily, Acne Prone
Cleanse: BALANCE Cleansing Oil
Tone/Mist/Essence: BALANCE Neroli Nutrient Mist
Oil Serum: BALANCE Clarifying Serum
Cleanse: BALANCE Cleansing Oil
Tone/Mist/Essence: HYDRATE Rose Nutrient Mist
Oil Serum: RAREFY Flawless Complexion Serum
Tone/Mist/Essence: HYDRATE Rose Nutrient Mist
Oil Serum: PHYTO-NECTAR Super Fruit Radiance Serum
ANCIENT EARTH Micro Exfoliate is fabulous for all skin types, as a bi-weekly exfoliate.
And most of my masks are amazing for all skin types.
Can you describe the magic that has gone into your limited-edition mask/cleanser LUNA and how this magic translates to amazing skin benefits?
It’s the Moon!! It’s such an essential part of the process that creates the main ingredient. The red wine + lees.
The lees separate + settles beneath the wine during seasonal artisan wine crafting, form over the course of several lunar cycles, and are collected at each new moon.
The interaction between the probiotics + the moon cycle creates such a lush, nutrient rich, dark purple clay that literally hydrates, nourishes + transforms skin, while giving such a divine treat for the senses. It smells deep, sweet + slightly earthy with wine + berry notes + a chocolate finish. And the feel of it on skin is cushiony, like a long, soft hug. You can leave it on for an hour or more, and you’ll want to. It’s a deeply self-nourishing + loving experience. Try to do this for yourself at least once a week.
How do you think self-limiting beliefs impact skin?
Self-blocking creates stuck energy. A block to our own expression, emotions or joy/creating our desires can definitely show up on the skin. Congestion. Inflammation. Whatever is going on internally can + likely will show up externally. It seems more obvious in some rather than others to the degree it’s happening internally and how we all deal with it, let it flow, release… I woke up with a pimple this morning because I’ve been ignoring my need for sleep, lately. That’s a block in the sense that when my body tells me it’s tired, I stop the flow of that energy and say no by continuing to pull all-nighters. It can be that simple, or it can be something really deep. But the mechanism is the same. Stopping energy from flowing the way it naturally wants to. Then that stuck energy turns into a symptom that speaks louder to get our attention. Our body is always on our side, and will use whatever it can to reach us in a language we will notice, listen to + do something about. If we can catch it at the subtle level, we can free the energy and let it flow before it becomes a louder symptom.
Self-limit is saying no to who we are. It’s important to be humble. Truly humble. Being the truth of who we are in every moment is true humility. Not always putting others first or doing what we “think we should” be doing. Of course, it doesn’t mean putting others last, either. It’s about being what wants to come through us in each moment. Without second guessing it. That requires humility. Complete surrender, in the sense that we have to submit to the truth of who we really are, rather than trying to hide, or control or change it. That’s self-love. And our love for ourselves causes us to be love to others in the truest way.