In the new modern beauty industry that is starting to focus on natural and nontoxic solutions, Tata Harper’s eponymous line of skincare and wellness products has been fast-tracked as a must-have for the enlightened consumer seeking effective, luxurious products that are developed using the latest technology. Formulated with the highest-quality natural ingredients available on the global market, Tata Harper products have garnered a devout fan base with the most discerning of customers, including celebrity fans such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Lake Bell, Christy Turlington, and Julianne Moore.
Tata, a Colombian-born mother of three, has parlayed her industrial engineering degree into a personal mission to redefine the beauty industry. Tata sought to provide an alternative to luxury beauty products that were laden with industrial synthetics and potentially toxic chemicals, and to beauty brands that “greenwash” their customers with false claims. Therefore, she embarked on a four-year journey with a team of 8 chemists, herbalists, and biologists to develop from scratch a premium line that not only treats skin issues and offers real anti-aging results but is a pleasure to use. Her quest for the most potent and effective active ingredients took her from ancient-walled castles of Europe to the Brazilian Amazon to the far reaches of Egypt, where she consulted with the world’s top botanists and natural beauty experts.
The fruits of Tata’s journey are evident in her award-winning products, which are produced from start to finish on the Harper’s 1,200-acre Julius Kingdom Farm, a certified-organic farm in the Champlain Valley of Vermont where the company is headquartered. Nothing in the production process is outsourced, allowing Tata to oversee the entire process to ensure maximum freshness and quality. The line is sold at select retailers, holistic centers, and spas throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe, and has been garnering national press including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and Vogue, ELLE, Vanity Fair, Allure and Whole Living magazines.
Soulivity Editor-at-Large, D’angelo Thompson, got the chance to spend some quality time to ask about her life and journey to success, as well as, insights about passion, purpose, and higher quality living. Enjoy!
DT: What inspired your skincare brand?
TH: When my stepfather was diagnosed with cancer, I realized that our daily habits play such a major role in our health and well-being, including the products we use in our homes and on our skin. As I helped him change his lifestyle, I started to recognize that the products I was using were full of potentially dangerous chemicals; and, I couldn’t find any natural options that offered the results and luxury I was looking for. So, I set out to create my own because no one should have to sacrifice their health for their beauty.
DT: Describe your daily skincare regime? Evening?
TH: For my morning routine, I always start by exfoliating with Regenerating Cleanser – exfoliating daily really lets my skin breathe and glow since it gets rid of any build-up that accumulates overnight. It also helps products absorb better. I follow with Hydrating Floral Essence to help prep my skin for treatment and help my serums penetrate deeper. Then, it’s all about layering — I use Elixir Vitae on my whole face; next, I’ll use Elixir Vitae Eye Serum; and then, Repairative Moisturizer.
At night, I always start with double-cleansing. First, I use our Nourishing Oil Cleanser to get rid of that top layer of dirt and grime from the day. Then, I follow with the Purifying Cleanser to actually cleanse and detox my skin. [After that], I use Hydrating Floral Essence. For serum, I use Elixir Vitae on my face and Boosted Contouring Serum on my neck. I prefer a thicker eye cream at night, so I usually use the Boosted Contouring Eye Balm. I also like a richer moisturizer at night, so I finish with Crème Riche.
DT: How important are beauty and skincare trends to you? Do you cater to the teen market, as well? Which I think is a crucial time to learn about and use good skincare products?
TH: We are always in the process of developing new formulas and products. I love working with our R&D team to improve products based on client feedback and to create new ones to fill industry gaps. I feel very happy [about] creating a product that not only makes your skin beautiful but also keeps people healthy and improves [the] quality of life.
It is never too early to start thinking about the impact that products have on our health, which is why we would definitely consider creating a line for teens. I would love to make clean beauty accessible for all ages.
DT: What shift do you hope to see in the future of skincare and beauty brands?
TH: Most of the packaging used in the beauty industry is not sustainable. A lot of it is made of plastic that is not recyclable and ends up in a landfill, sitting there for 500 years or more. Plastic packaging makes up a huge amount of the trash in landfills; and, beauty is a big part of that. Sustainability in the beauty industry is, of course, in a better place now than it was ten years ago. But, it’s still not enough. The natural category has grown rapidly; and, you can see the industry shifting in that direction. However, I believe that natural beauty needs to go beyond the ingredients used in the products. It has to be about putting those natural formulas in packaging that doesn’t pose a risk to the environment.
DT: What great lesson would you share with future entrepreneurs, especially women in business?
TH: Truly think about doing something that helps people live better lives, instead of making more of the same. Always think about how your work and contribution will make the world a better place. Always seek answers and be curious and care about bettering the lives of others with what you make.
And, for fun….
DT: What is your life’s purpose personally and professionally?
TH: It is my personal philosophy to make decisions that will help the planet and improve the lives of others. My professional purpose is to continue to help women look and feel beautiful without sacrificing their health.
DT: Finish this sentence, “the shift I would like to see in the world is…”
TH: “…people taking responsibility for their carbon footprint and the impact they have on the environment.”
DT: Where do you find inspiration?
TH: Women around the world inspire me and the products I create. Every time I speak to our clients and hear how beautiful our products make them look and feel, how happy they are when they put on amazing-smelling essential oils instead of synthetic fragrances, I feel so motivated.