Tata Harper, founder of the eponymous natural skin care and makeup line, explains why going natural is the secret to youthful looking and glowing skin.
It’s 9am in Vermont and Tata Harper is completely makeup-free and impossibly fresh as she greets a remote media audience via Zoom, all eager to learn a few skincare tips and tricks from the ‘Queen of Green’ herself. Harper has invited us to take part in a masterclass – a step-by-step practical guide on how best to use some of her signature products, and her passion is undeniable as she zealously explains the science behind the brand. These aren’t just products aimed at tackling hyperpigmentation, for example, or sagging or dullness (although they definitely do that), but some, like her Elixir Vitae Serum, use neuropeptide technology to relax wrinkles with a topical botox-like effect. It’s clear innovation and science are just as important to her products as the various herbs and plants she grows on her farm.
Of course, not everything can be grown on the Vermont farm, but what can’t is carefully selected from sources all over the world. What can be farmed, Harper cultivates herself through organic processes. She explains her early motivation, which regretfully stems from watching her stepfather battle with cancer, and learning from his doctors about the toxic load that can build in our bodies from extended exposure to certain synthetic chemicals. Harper didn’t want to just make a basic cleanser or toner blend. She set out to make luxury skin care that could compete with even the most high-end, best-of-the-best legacy products for the consumer who wants the most active, toxin-free formula available.
It was a revolutionary idea in 2010, when Tata Harper officially launched. Not only was green beauty not yet a ‘thing,’ but Harper was the first to enhance advanced organic ingredients by utilizing and integrating innovative technology, something she says remains a work-in-progress.
“Our products are formulated for men and women who want to look and feel amazing, without having to compromise their health, or the health of the planet,” she says. “Our customers in the Middle East demand that the products they are using and putting on their skin are beyond authentic, of the highest quality, and are really effective.”
Beginning with the Regenerating Cleanser – a luxuriously creamy formula with exfoliating particles – Harper applies it to her dry skin, noting that the ingredients will work better without being diluted by water. An application trick? Add a touch of Resurfacing Mask for a double-whammy exfoliation and fast-track your way to that signature Tata Harper glow. The mask’s main ingredient is aloe barbadensis leaf juice, which is what helps hydrate and soothe the skin. It also includes kaolin (rose clay) to absorb excess oil and white willow bark extract to break down the surface layer of dull, dead skin cells.
Next up, a spritz of Hydrating Floral Essence (preferably straight from the fridge), an anti-oxidant moisture-boosting mist containing rose, lavender, and neroli hydrosols to prep the skin for the following serums. The aforementioned hero product, Elixir Vitae Serum, comes next followed by the Illuminating Eye Creme containing real diamond dust “for a highlighting effect.” Applied around the entire eye area – and even, as Harper suggests, on the lips – this lightweight creme is versatile and hardworking and certainly worth the investment. The final step is a generous layer of 100% natural and nontoxic Creme Riche – a velvety soft moisturizer that quenches the skin without leaving a heavy or sticky residue. Applying firm strokes along the jawline, cheekbones and forehead, Harper works the cream into her skin, explaining that the application will benefit from a few minutes of detoxifying facial massage to encourage absorption.
“It means the world to me to be able to share what we do with an even broader audience who hold the same high standards of self-care,” says Harper, “and who love and celebrate these rituals of beauty and grooming in the same way that we do.”
With a complexion 10 years younger than her 45 years, Harper is the perfect advocate for her products although she insists skincare has always been a high priority for her, even as a teenager. While turning back time to educate our younger selves on the aging effects of too much sun exposure, or the benefits of a proper skincare routine, is out of the question, all is not lost, and Harper proves that natural, intelligently-curated ingredients applied with kindness can make the world of difference.