Sup ya'll ! You know I am all about sharing great eco-info and hope that you use ecohookups.com to do the same. My boy Marc Royce
a dope New York photographer(former Richard Avedon assistant) now based Los Angeles introduced me to his homegirl Renata Helfman
the owner of Vert
, the no B.S., luxe, eco-chic beauty boutique offering high quality eco-friendly products from around the world. Below I share with you a lil' question and answer session I had with Renata and find out that she does not play when it comes to the quality of life...
Eco Hustler: How did you get your start in the beauty business?
Renata Helfman: I started out in this business as a makeup artist for commercials, print, and film. I had an amazing kit filled with gorgeous, designer cosmetics. I designed and created looks for years with products that were filled with harmful chemicals and synthetic ingredients, and I had absolutely no idea!
Eco Hustler: Why did you change direction toward Eco-Beauty?
Renata Helfman: A few years ago, I wasn't feeling well. It was a persistent, ongoing issue that became quite frustrating. I went to see a genius doctor who suggested that I try converting all my personal care products to ones that were natural, organic, and chemical free. She thought that the cause of my problems was directly related to the harmful ingredients in my beauty and skincare collection. I was blown away! I had always considered myself really healthy, and this was certainly a surprising suggestion. Still, I was desperate to feel better, so I started researching, slowly learning that everything I was using was filled with things my body didn't need- and was probably making me sick. Little by little, I began to find out that there were incredible products out there that were completely natural, effective , and safe. Not to mention, by using all these eco friendly products I was starting to do my part on a global level, which was an added bonus.
Eco Hustler: What makes Vert the eco-chic beauty boutique stand apart from it's traditional and non-traditional competitors?
Renata Helfman: VERT stands apart from its competitors in many ways. I have personally researched and tested every single thing on my shelves, and so has my staff. All my products adhere to the strictest standards of quality, safety, and effectiveness. Every single ingredient has to pass the test, or we don't sell it. And, I really take pride in all the lines we carry. They don't compromise luxury, because lets face it: people want to use luxe items that are aesthetically pleasing, as well as totally eco friendly. I am proud to say that everything at VERT fills the requirement of luxury and quality. And, I really try to stock lines that aren't available in every health food store. VERT is special, and so are the products we carry. I love the passion that my vendors have put into creating these lines- there are amazing stories behind them. I like to think that VERT is a small part of the global mission to make the world a safer, healthier place for everyone. Our website
: is a complete, user friendly journey into the world of green beauty and lifestyle. Ingredients are listed completely, you can shop by skin concern, you can learn all about how to choose the right product for you. My mission was to create on online experience that was as personal as walking into the retail store. Every shopper at VERT is given personal attention from a totally educated and enthusiastic staff that cares about the client. This level of personal attention makes VERT stand apart from the rest.
Eco Hustler: Like the fashion industry what will it take for the beauty industry to become Eco-Friendly?
I think the beauty industry has made amazing strides toward the concept of being eco friendly. People have really caught on that synthetic chemicals in their personal care items are not only unnecessary, but harmful. But, it is an ongoing process. I really think that we have a long way to go until EVERYTHING is as eco friendly as possible. I hope that people continue to see the importance of using natural products- not only for themselves, but for the overall health of our planet. I am trying to spread that message with VERT.
Eco Hustler: What advice would offer a non-green person?
Renata Helfman: A non green person needs to take " baby steps" toward a green lifestyle. We have clients who come into VERT on a frantic mission to completely overhaul their personal care inventory in one fell swoop. That can be super overwhelming! Start small- maybe with a few natural skincare items. It will become a natural progression. If you are using great, safe skincare you are going to want to use great, safe cosmetics, and the journey begins. Try CALDREA- a safe eco friendly cleaning line for your home that we carry at VERT. I guarantee that the beautiful smell of lavender or ginger will be more pleasing than the toxic scent of 409! And, educate yourself. Read about what is safe, and what is not. That is how I started, and the information out there is mind blowing! Knowing there are effective, safe alternatives available is a great way to begin the "greening" of yourself.