Italy is known for many things – beautiful countrysides, luxury leather goods, fashion labels, fine wine and delicious cuisine. It is not particularly known for skincare brands, unlike its French neighbour, but one established Italian brand is gaining quite a cult following in South Korea.
OM, which stands for Officinali di Montauto, is an Italian company that offers certified organic skincare since 2005. The brand uses herbs and flowers like sage, olive, thyme, calendula and lavender, grown in its own organic orchard in Tuscany where the soil is fertile with minerals and the climate is a perfect crop-growing 16°C.
The brand is strictly organic so it does not use chemicals, pesticides, fertilizers and even the methods of extraction and production are free from solvents and uses only traditional and clean techniques to make skin and body care products like soaps, skincare concentrates and oils and moisturisers.
“No chemicals means no poisons,” said founder Luigi Skiona Milia, who was here for an exclusive press meet-up. He is a cancer survivor and that is what spurred him to produce clean skincare products. “Organic is better for your body and also better for the environment,” he declared. What you put in the soil, comes back to you and goes into your body, he believes. OM’s products are also formulated in collaboration with scientific studies with established universities in Italy.
Besides via shops in Milan in Italy, OM is sold in South Korea and Seoul the biggest market for the brand right now. It started when Luigi was asked to speak at an International Organic Organisation congress in Seoul and Vogue Korea ran an interview with him on the benefits of organic skincare products. Since then Korean celebs like Lee Hyori started swearing by the brand’s OM Sage Cleansing Milk and OM Astringent Lotion, and the two products started selling like hotcakes via GS Home Shopping online site. “We sell about 10,000 units of each a month,” said Luigi.
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The two best-selling products perfectly cleanse skin gently yet thoroughly and leave it smooth, balanced and visibly healthier and clearer. All the products smell amazingly of natural botanical aromas and the face creams, body oils and moisturisers feel rich and nourishing, yet remain light and non-cloying on the skin. It makes us want to keep applying it for the feel good factor plus the comfortable and healthy skin effects that you can see after.
You don’t have to go to Korea or Italy to buy the goodies from this brand or to buy online and pay exorbitant shipping charges from overseas, Officinali di Montauto is now available in Singapore via Beauty Kitchen by Face Bistro, a facial treatment and beauty retail concept store in Holland Village, and via its e-commerce shop www.facebistro.com.
Face Bistro founder, veteran makeup artist Dily Wang chanced upon the brand when she was traveling in Italy and exploring organic farms in Tuscany. When she found out about the meticulous production methods behind the well-made products, she decided to bring a selection of the brand’s products into Singapore as she felt they were effective, luxurious and suitable for the local market here. “Customers want products that are pampering and that work,” said Dily who first tested the waters by using the OM products on her regular spa and facial customers. “Customers loved it the moment they tried it, so I knew it would be a hit.”
Prices start from $28 for the Lavender Mist to $148 for the Elisiria Anti-Ageing Serum, available at Face Bistro 25C Lorong Liput (64624988).
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