Scandinavian beauty – the next big cosmetics trend?

Scandinavian beauty – the next big cosmetics trend?

Heli Koskinen

Beauty trends have for a while now been dominated by K-beauty, the Korean 10-step beauty routine which aims at a glowing and luminous skin. However, the world of cosmetics is now buzzing about a phenomenon called Scandinavian beauty, or in short, S-beauty. S-beauty is the beauty philosophy of Scandinavian women which relies on the use of natural cosmetics and an easy-going approach to beauty – and life in general.

Back to basics with S-beauty

The appreciation of simplicity as well as a down-to-earth attitude are rooted in the character of the people in the North. Our beauty routines have also traditionally relied on keeping things simple – which is probably one reason why the exotic and innovative K-beauty has become such a big trend among us Scandinavians. The 10-step skincare routine of K-beauty has led many of us to believe that the lengthy routine and numerous products are the only road to happiness – that is, a beautiful skin. However, after keeping up with the laborious skincare routine, many of us are ready to go back to basics. S-beauty is a good reminder of the fact that taking care of your beauty doesn't need to be so complicated.

The key idea of Scandinavian beauty is that less is more. Unlike the multi-step skincare routine of K-beauty, S-beauty keeps things simple with a few high-quality key products. The products are based on simple but superb ingredients which originate from nature and are locally-sourced, if possible. Ingredients include for example antioxidant- and vitamin-rich berries, birch sap, rosewater and essential oils.

However, the beauty philosophy of S-beauty digs a lot deeper than mere skincare routines and beauty products. Beauty is considered to originate from a simple, down-to-earth and balanced lifestyle which values holistic wellbeing. Cosmetics is meant to just highlight your own natural beauty. Respect of nature is also essential in S-beauty which is another value deeply rooted in our Scandinavian culture. Natural cosmetics is produced ethically and ecologically, local ingredients are used as much as possible and the products are packed in environmentally-friendly packages. The fact that S-beauty favors less products is also better for the environment than having your bathroom cabinets full of different products.

The favorite natural cosmetics brands of S-beauty

Small Nordic natural cosmetics brands which choose the quality of ingredients and ecological production over competing with cheap prices are at the core of S-beauty. Natural cosmetics are very popular in Nordic countries like Finland where people have a close connection with nature and a desire to live off the land. The same trend can be seen beyond the Nordics, as natural cosmetics is becoming increasingly popular especially in Europe and the United States.

We suggest to keep an eye on these Nordic beauty brands which embody the spirit of S-beauty:

  • Flow Cosmetics was established in 2004 in Finland. Flow Cosmetics is one of the pioneers of natural cosmetics – and also the most popular brands – here in Finland. Flow Cosmetics is particularly known for their handy and ecological soaps for face, body and hair which keep packaging material at minimum. All the products are handmade.
  • INARI Arctic Beauty belongs to the luxury category of natural cosmetics. INARI comes from the Arctic Circle and their products are based on the excellent nutritional properties of plants and herbs growing in Lapland. These plants face extreme weather conditions as they endure cold and dark winters yet enjoy the Midnight Sun in the summer. This unique habitat makes them grow extremely rich in nutrition. The INARI products contain chaga mushroom, rose root, pine bark extract and berries such as bilberries and cloudberries, all full of antioxidants and vitamins which help to fight skin damage.
  • Hetkinen is a natural cosmetics brand whose products are based on the health benefits of trees. Hetkinen has deep knowledge of the healing properties of trees which has led them to create balanced mixtures which nourish, calm down and refresh skins of all ages. Trees are used in the products in many different ways, and the ingredient lists include for example pine needles, birch leaves and the essential oils from trees such as spruce, juniper, elemi tree and cypress. Another specialty of Hetkinen is that their products are packed in wooden jars made from pine trees.
  • Luonkos is known for their handmade cleansing cakes and body cakes which are made by hand from 100% quality natural ingredients in the historical city of Naantali, Finland. The brand draws from the centuries-old traditions of the Bridgettine convent of Naantali in which solutions for health, wellbeing and beauty were sought from the orchards of the convent. The products contain a lot of antioxidants, vitamins and good fatty acids important for the skin.
  • Globe Hope makes products which also belong to the premium category of natural cosmetics. The products are based on the super ingredients from the Nordic nature, such as lingonberry seed oil, rosehip oil, oat extract and birch sap extract. The products have been granted the Ecocert certificate.

More on the topic: What is natural cosmetics and how does it differ from ‘traditional’ cosmetics?

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