The Aïny skin care line is the result of six years hard work by company founder Daniel Joutard and his team, having spent much of that time in the rainforests of Ecuador and Peru sourcing effective ingredients with the help of local knowledge.
Indeed, the name for the skin care range is taken from the indigenous language, Quechuan, and means ‘spirit of living beings' and ‘reciprocity’, reflecting the line’s ethical stance.
Four certification seals
That stance has helped it to garner four separate certifications, including Ecocert and One Voice – an achievement that is currently hard to match by any other product line in the category currently.
The product line was given its official industry launch at this week’s Beyond Beauty show, where it clearly became a favourite amongst visitors and exhibitors alike.
Indeed, Aïny walked away with show's Beauty Challenge Awards 2008 top prize for the ‘coup de coeur’ category, after a panel of 40 judges earmarked it as an outstanding concept that taps into the key industry trends of sustainability, natural and ethical production.
Distributors come a-knockin
A spokesperson for the company said that following the win it had been inundated with distributor enquiries, suggesting that the product will be hitting store shelves soon.
“We are aiming to get the product onto store shelves in France as soon as we can,” said Joutard. “The next step will be to target international markets, probably the larger markets in Europe, before then taking it global.
The product line currently includes five offerings – two make-up removers, one specially designed for night-time; a moisturizing and harmonizing cream aimed at women over 25; a regenerating cream; together with a nourishing serum.
Organic certified formulation
Key to the launch is the organic certified formulations, which include four active plant extracts: Sacha Inchi – known for its anti-ageing properties; Unurahua – used to repair skin damage; Achiote – a powerful antioxidant, and Tree of Life, recognized for its healing properties.
Although the ingredients have undergone significant clinical trials and scientific testing to confirm their efficacy and safety, Joutard says that he also relied on the knowledge of local medicine men, or shaman, to help him initially.
Indeed, the product line’s striking packaging incorporates a shamanic design by an indigenous artist, used to highlight the brand's indigenous Indian roots.
Pledging help to local communities
But in today's increasingly ethical business environment, businesses cannot cannot enter the market with a line of products like this - sourced from indigenous peoples in a developing country - without pledging to help the local communities in question.
Joutard says that the sustainable harvesting of the ingredients for the product line will help a number of different Peruvian and Ecuadorian indigenous tribes, including the Ashaninka, the Yanesha, the Achuar and the Quechua.
To back this claim, the company says that it will return 4 per cent of its turnover to these indegenous communities in Peru and Ecuador that are involved in its work.