For Lisa Mascareno, "natural" isn't just a health trend - it's a way of life that has translated itself into a unique Burnaby-based business that continues to grow by offering handmade, natural makeup and personal care products. She talked to reporter Christina Myers to share some insights into her business.
Question: Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Answer: My name is Lisa Mascareno, and I am 44 years old. I have always been interested in the healing benefits of "Mother Nature."
Q: Why did you decide to start Affera Cosmetics?
A: It's just not necessary to create chemicals, synthetics and fillers when there are so many plants, trees, oils, clays, minerals, silver, etc. available naturally for us to use.
My main focus is to provide the most healthy products possible. Women need to be educated on the ingredients in their beauty products - read the labels and Google those big words to find out exactly what you are putting on your skin.
Natural and organic products really only have to have one ingredient that is natural, but what about the rest of the ingredients - are they natural and good for us? Not likely.
Q: The NOW last talked to you in 2009 - how much has changed since then? What kind of new items have you added to the line?
A: We are celebrating our fifth year in business with lots of new healthy products in addition to Affera's 100 per cent mineral foundation. -
My most exciting news is that I have been given the OK from Health Canada to make my own colloidal silver. Silver is a natural antibiotic and antiseptic with tons of healing properties. This is so very exciting for Affera Cosmetics to be launching my colloidal silver. - We would like to see Affera Cosmetics Colloidal Silver Spray available in the next year at health stores across Canada.
Affera Cosmetics Colloidal Silver Spray has many benefits and can be used as a travel hand sanitizer (without those yucky chemicals in most sanitizers), spray onto cuts, burns, acne and skin infections, spray your makeup brushes to kill bacteria instead of alcohol, they are so many uses.
I have been formulating for past couple years to create a mineral sunblock, mineral liquid eyeliner and mineral spray-on tan without using chemicals, alcohol, synthetics or harsh preservatives - and I did it.
Love, love, love them! Especially the spray-on tan: it's not orange, doesn't come off onto your clothing, is sheer and silky smooth. I already sold out at the last two markets, time to make more. It's going to be a popular product this summer.
Q: Do you create all of the products or do you source out products from other companies?
A: I make by hand, package and label the 100 per cent mineral foundation, blush, bronzer, eyeshadow, eyeliner, raw moisturizer, essential oil face and body mists, concealer, soy mineral lipstick, "Plump Your Lips" balm (like a natural botox), Titanium lip balm, mineral lip stain, anti wrinkle balm, camellia body oil, men's aftershave, Splash of Liquid minerals, and liquid eyeliner.
The brushes, microfibre cloths, mascara I do not make.
Q: Where would you like to see Affera in five years from now?
A: In the next five to 10 years we will expand across Canada using direct sales online.
Direct sales online is the perfect tool for us as a local independent company to share our natural products directly with our customers. Direct distribution, also.
Affera Cosmetics is online at http: //afferacosmetics.com, and at local farmers' markets (check http: //afferacalendar.blogspot.ca for the schedule of locations).
Mascareno also hosts makeup parties and lessons, as well as wedding and bridal party makeup.
Contact Mascareno at lisa@ afferacosmetics for more information.