Julie McKee makes skincare products so natural you could actually eat them.
She is a purveyor of the finest natural skincare and toiletries and is a clinical aromatherapist, cosmetologist, and perfumer.
Based in Bothwell, Julie founded Anderson Aromatics in 2017 and has recently finished in Silver place in the Good Health Magazine Wellbeing Awards.
All her products are natural, organic, hypoallergenic, vegan, never tested on animals, ethically sourced and free from all nasties.
Her jars and bottles are fully recyclable and she encourages her customers to bring them back for refill. She also sources everything as locally as possible.
Her products are made by hand in very small batches for maximum freshness and she uses only 100% natural ingredients with pure essential oils.
Julie’s products are self-preserving, with a maximum of six or so ingredients. They are expertly blended to harness the therapeutic benefits of essential oils.
“Aromatherapy is the art and science of utilising naturally extracted aromatic essences from plants to balance, harmonise and promote the health of body, mind and spirit,” she explains.
“They can naturally heal the body of all sorts of skin conditions, from eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, acne, and rosacea to skin tags, viral infections, burns, rashes, boils, and bites – all without the use of steroidal creams.
“They can also alleviate symptoms of teething, nappy rash, cradle cap and dry skin conditions in babies.”
Julie says natural skincare is often cheaper than shop-bought products because you are often paying for the fancy vessel and ‘name’.
“My skincare and toiletries work with your body, not against it! These are products you can trust,” she says.
While working as a clinical aromatherapy masseuse, Julie made a blend of carrier and essential oils for her mum, who suffered from psoriasis.
“She noticed a difference within a week or so and was psoriasis-free within five weeks,” says Julie.
“I started making cream for other family members who had eczema and psoriasis and now they no longer use steroidal creams – much to my delight!
“I started gifting my products to friends, and friends of friends, whose partners and children were affected by dry skin conditions and got fantastic feedback.
“Then, after I suffered an allergic reaction to a cleansing face wash, I turned the product around and read the full ingredients list.
“I set about finding out what those ingredients were, how toxic they were and why they had been added to what should be a natural product. I was absolutely horrified!
“So, I decided to make a facial moisturiser for myself with my favourite essential oil. And that’s exactly how ‘All About Rose’ was born.”
But the shift from making products for friends and family to launching a viable, commercial business wasn’t all plain sailing.
“I made the decision to launch Anderson Aromatics in 2013,” says Julie. It took a lot of hard work and research before I was able to launch.
“It took more than five years in total – entirely self-funded and with a lot of blood, sweat and some tears.
“There are strict guidelines to follow when making and placing a cosmetic product onto the market.
“All of my products have passed safety testing and are notified on the centralised European Cosmetic Product Notification Portal, which is the main regulatory body for finished cosmetic products placed on the EU market.
“It strengthens the safety of cosmetic products which reinforces product safety, while taking into consideration the latest technological developments, including the possible use of nanomaterials.
“But I’ve achieved my dream! My product list has grown over the past three years and will continue to grow.”
In particular, Julie’s all natural ‘Beastie Be Gone’ midge, mosquito, tick, and insect repellent, with SPF 15 and healing salve for existing bites, has been hugely successful – taking the outdoor market by storm.
Julie makes all her products at the weekend and packs orders in the evening, ready to drop off the next working day.
And she does all this while managing a full-time day job and being mum to her two children.
She is 100% passionate about her products and remains committed to educating people on the benefits of natural skincare.
“I encourage anyone who will listen to turn their skincare and personal care products around and read the ingredients listed on the labels,” says Julie.
“We care so much about what we put into our mouth by way of food but far less about what we put onto our skin.
“We scrutinise food labels religiously. If your food contained known carcinogens and chemicals, you just wouldn’t eat it!
“Our skin is an organ and it should be treated delicately. Anything applied to it absorbed into your bloodstream within 23 seconds.
“Conventional, mass-produced creams and moisturisers usually contain a mix of chemicals including parabens, synthetic fragrance, petroleum-derived ingredients and even chemical acids.
“They are packed full of preservatives to allow them to sit on the shelves of high street shops and stores for one to two years.
“On top of their drying effects, these creams and moisturisers are highly-scented and artificial fragrance is one of the top skin irritants!
“Any product that has the word ‘fragrance’ on the label means that it can contain hundreds of different chemicals and be labelled simply as ‘fragrance’.
“Natural skincare means your skin is rejuvenated, rehydrated and moisturised naturally.
“Your body is also free from toxic ingredients – allowing your immune system to function and fight free radicals, viruses and even cancers.”
Visit Julie’s website and online shop at www.andersonaromatics.co.uk