It’s lip balm season, all right. But before you reach for the store-bought stuff… have you ever considered what’s in the products you’re putting precariously close to your mouth? What about skincare products? You know to eat organic, but is that artificially scented lotion something you feel comfortable absorbing into your skin? Can you pronounce all (or any) of the ingredients?
After a chronic illness forced Priya Narasimhan to give up her post-graduate studies in mathematics, she turned to nature to heal. “I found delight and inspiration in discovering herbalism,” Narasimhan says, of her early research of natural remedies. “In the process, I created products that eased my chemical sensitivities and made my skin and hair happier than ever.” She started a product line with her own health & self-care in mind – using only organic or ethically sourced ingredients. Natural balms, salves, deodorants and scents started appearing in her kitchen, and soon a business emerged.
With a large and eager market for natural, local, ethically sourced body-care products, Narasimhan has found a job that compliments her need for a flexible schedule, and a supportive community in the indie craft scene of Baltimore. Her company, Priya Means Love, now offers over 30 unique products. From lavender face scrub, to grapefruit hand cream, to orange blossom “dream salve,” there are even unisex colognes and deodorants in woodsy scents. All are made with eco-friendly, minimally processed, healthy ingredients. Owing largely to the ease of tracking natural ingredients, Narasimhan can also proudly call her line vegetarian, and cruelty-free. None of the products are tested on animals, and why would they be? Most of the ingredients are basically edible. The few that aren’t are easily recognizable, non-scary items, like clay and oil.
In December, Priya Means Love will join a handful of area small businesses in a new shop opening in Remington, where she will offer workshops and her entire product line. Already carried in multiple shops in Maryland, including Hunting Ground in Baltimore, Vita in Belvedere Square, Rooster & Hen in Elliott City, and Artifact Coffee in Woodberry, Priya Means Love is also available at craft fairs in the area, and online at priyameanslove.com.
Rachel Bone’s column – The Rack, is proudly sponsored by The Village of Cross Keys, celebrating 50 years of featuring some of Baltimore’s best shopping, dining and lodging in a courtyard setting. Click to See What’s Happening at the Keys this Season.
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