NOURISH THE SKIN AND SOOTHE THE MIND
By definition, psychodermatology addresses the interaction between the mind and skin. It is science based, merging psychiatry and dermatology in order to understand the relationship between internal ‘non-visible’ diseases and external ‘visible’ diseases.
What does this mean to us as a skincare brand?
Rewind to the year 2015, our founder Susie Coulter was on a work trip in Paris, rushing from one meeting to the next with her team, it was nonstop. She describes a specific moment on that trip where she and members of the team were in the back of a taxi digging in their handbags trying to find any sort of product to ‘freshen up’ with. This is where the idea was born, she needed a product that was on-the-go, hydrating and beneficial to the skin. In this moment she recalls observing the stress that was evident in each individual on the trip, work stress, personal stress, stress from traveling, the list can go on. So how could this product further provide an element of calm, restoration and a moment of pause?
Arq Botanics was born with that mission - to reduce the impact of stress on the skin, body and mind and deliver mindful moments that matter.
This is now even more necessary given the current world we are living in. In September alone, 75% of Americans reported experiencing moderate to severe stress and stress remains one of the number one health concerns of high school students (Patterson, 2022). It is evident that there is a spotlight on the effects of stress, especially after experiencing a global pandemic, and in trying to navigate through life post covid.
The term psychodermatology was brought to our attention in the beginning of 2021 as we tried to figure out a way in which to communicate our message, that we are more than simply another skincare brand. In a conversation we had with clinical psychotherapist Matt Traube he further echoed the sentiments regarding stress in our daily lives, likening these stressors to a ‘pressure cooker’, where the nervous system over produces cortisol (stress hormone) which causes inflammatory molecules that affect the skin. This may be in the form of breakouts, eczema, or fine lines and wrinkles, amongst others. He further emphasized the importance of breath, a common technique used in psychotherapy. Practicing mindfulness and giving yourself that moment in the day to pause and take repetitive deep breaths has been scientifically proven to reduce anxiety, stress and insomnia (Andre, 2019). With this information in mind we were able to understand more ceary how psychodermatology has been intertwined in our brand from the beginning.
Arq Botanics is the perfect blend of ingredients that benefit the outer layer of skin and the inner workings of the mind. As a clean beauty company we have sourced natural ingredients from all over the world and used highly concentrated extracts in order to provide maximum benefits to the skin, including anti-inflammatory properties, hydrating ingredients and antioxidants to protect the skin against free radicals (you can read more about each ingredient and its benefits in our ingredient glossary). For us, the addition of steam distilled hydrosols where essential in providing the transportive experience that encourages a peace of mind and helps calm the nervous system. For example, multiple clinical studies have revealed that distilled lavender can successfully reduce anxiety, depression and other related disorders. Researchers were able to scientifically prove this by monitoring the brain using functional magnetic resonance imaging technology which revealed a consistent pattern of brain waves in test subjects that were exposed to the lavender scent (Koulivand, Ghadiri, Gorji., 2013). We feature lavender in our Calm Facial Mist and you can find a variety of other hydrosols in our other unique formulas.
As previously mentioned, psychodermatology taps into the relationship between the mind and the skin. Another important part of our mission with Arq Botanics was to encourage people to take a moment to themselves at any point in the day. This may look like a quick pause between sending emails to grab your Refresh Facial Mist and spray it on your face, maybe even your hands if they feelings dry and deliver rich hydrating ingredients to your skin whilst inhaling the transportive scents and giving yourself a moment to breathe, be present and recenter yourself to gain mental clarity and dismiss any feelings of stress. Arq Botanics is anything but routine and it has been formulated for you to use at any time of the day. We are eager to keep exploring the field of psychodermatology and it is our hope to continue to be at the forefront of this beauty/care movement that will help people soothe beyond their skin.