The Body Shop’s new line is inspired by Japanese culture
The benefits of drinking green tea have only been floating in our consciousness in recent decades, although green tea is said to have been first brewed in 2737 BC in China and its history and effects on health were recorded by Chinese scholars hundreds of years ago.
Fast forward to today, and green tea has morphed into one of the beauty and wellness industry’s favourite ingredients thanks to its antioxidant powers.
For The Body Shop’s newest line, called Fuji Green Tea — the first in its new “premium valorised” range that will be rolling out in coming months — its research and development team scoured all of Japan in search of the highest quality green tea, and finally decided on the tea cultivated in the foothills of the iconic Mount Fuji.
Green tea has been highly prized in Japanese society for centuries, and its place in their culture is epitomised in the Japanese tea ceremony. On the other hand, the use of green tea in skincare is one of their greatest secrets — it has been known for generations that green tea applied onto skin and into baths helps retain moisture and tighten pores.
It is exactly the reason why The Body Shop was adamant in its quest to find the best Japanese green tea that would enable an entire line of skincare products to showcase the magic it contains. This is further strengthened by the fact that strict quality control protocol is practised over the harvesting and processing of the tea leaves that are used in the making of any of these products.
“You get glacier waters flowing through the green tea plantations, and therefore, the purest water source for watering the plants. The foot of the volcano is also covered in a layer of ash-filled soil that makes it an extra fertile ground for growing tea,” explains Datin Mina Cheah-Foong, managing director of Rampai-Niaga Sdn Bhd, which owns The Body Shop Malaysia.
The Fuji Green Tea line offers an entire range of skincare products to detox, cleanse, moisturise and freshen the skin. These comprise a body scrub, body butter, body sorbet, body lotion, body wash, cologne, bath tea and even gift sets.
The Fuji Green Tea bath and tea infuser uses whole green tea leaves to create a detox tea bath that purportedly cleanses the skin while helping to remove toxins. Its cologne revives the senses with a sophisticated aroma of the specially made green tea, citrus, bergamot, camellia, jasmine and violet blend.
“Green tea has a very light, refreshing scent … it is impossible to make a green tea perfume without adding a lot of additives into it to make the scent stronger, and our goal is to showcase the main star, which, in this case, is the green tea. That’s why we only have a green tea cologne and not a perfume,” says Cheah-Foong
“All of our products are as natural as we can make them — some are 97%, some are 98% or 99% natural, and this is only because we need some sort of preservatives to make sure that the products stay fresh and consistent. Artificial colourings, for example, we do not use — we use only natural colourings, which is why although we know that certain products will look better with a brighter colour, we don’t do it in the effort to stay true to our beliefs,” she explains.
When The Body Shop was first set up in 1976, it was one of the first brands to champion the use of natural ingredients and place emphasis on not doing animal testing. Thankfully, the industry as a whole has progressed by leaps and bounds in the past decade, and it is now possible to source for manufacturers of natural ingredients used in the formulation of skincare products.
The Body Shop’s new Fuji Green Tea line can be purchased from The Body Shop stores nationwide.
This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on April 2, 2015.