Skincare for the ages

Ella Brantë

Following the discovery of a 150-year-old skincare regime, Ella Brantë is wowing customers with its all-natural products

Skincare products made from natural ingredients may be fashionable, but few brands can boast of formulae that date back a century and a half. While Ella Brantë is new on the scene as a skincare range, its original ingredients and combinations can be traced back to 1876.

Born in 19th-century Ceylon, now Sri Lanka, to an English father and Sinhalese mother, the company’s namesake inspiration, Ella Brantë, was influenced by both cultures. Her unique background meant that she was perfectly placed to draw on old traditions and contemporary techniques to create skin treatments.

From a young age, she would gather medicinal herbs for her mother from the surrounding jungle. Soon, Ella was treating locals and immigrants alike with innovative formulations that combined natural medicine and natural cosmetics. Her plant-based oils gained a reputation in the region as holistic beauty treatments. “That was 150 years ago,” explains Konstanze Gesthuisen, the German company’s co-founder and Brand Manager. “We discovered her recipes carved into a historic palm-leaf manuscript and written in Sanskrit.”

This treasure trove of knowledge was translated and reinterpreted, and the traditional formulae carefully tailored to contemporary processes and grooming habits, to create the Ella Brantë skincare brand. “The oil doesn’t feel greasy or oily on your skin,” says Konstanze. “As soon as you put it on, it dries, and it has healing effects.”

There are two main product lines: Divine Body Oil, and Ella Brantë for Men. Both use seven core ingredients that are designed to work together in harmony to produce a balancing effect on the skin and hair. They include fragrances such as lavender, ylang-ylang, Key lime and moringa, all of which can be found in Sri Lanka. Within these ranges, consumers can enjoy products as diverse as beard oil, body wash, cuticle oil and hand sanitiser. Further products are currently in development, all based on the original parchment’s recipes.

The Ella Brantë range is available in retail, hotels and spas, and is on sale internationally through the brand’s website. In keeping with the company’s nature-based origins, the products are not tested on animals and are suitable for vegans. As Konstanze concludes, “What unites the products is the good feeling you get from them, both inside and out.”