ABA LOVE!

A radiant beam of light, Aba Gyepi-Garbrah, is a botanical alchemist of the highest order. You might recognize her from her days spent on the floor at our West Village location, sharing her knowledge and love for plants with all who entered our flagship. Today, we are proud to introduce her range of products to our virtual shelves; expect to be transported by her atmospheric and transformative creations and get to know her world.

What is your skincare philosophy? 

My philosophy is that the best skincare begins with food, exercise and sleep, and that in turn is supported by what is put on the skin. This can be a challenge as our bodies change and demand new habits that require the utmost patience and discipline. Coming from a person that loves sweets, I won't say this is easy! But it’s a perspective that can be rewarding when you finally decide to do right by your skin. 

What inspired you to start making skincare?

Aba Love all started when I began to crave a different way of caring for my skin. I became very drawn to natural scent when I experienced them in my acupuncture and reiki treatments during some very emotionally challenging times. 

I came to know scent as a powerful healer. I also found that they could be seamlessly formulated into skincare with essential oils and other botanicals. What also inspired me was that I saw the way people blossomed when I shared my creations. As a Cancer Rising, it certainly has been my way for being of service.

What is your skincare routine?  

AM

After hitting snooze several times I do some light stretches in bed and my morning meditation.  I brush my teeth with Living Libations Mint Condition Mineral Tooth Powder on my toothbrush and use a copper tongue scraper. I hop in the shower with a combination of essential oils for a stimulating steam shower. Eucalyptus, Atlas Cedar and Spike Lavender are amazing in the mornings. I wash my face with Epilogic Rosehip Gel Cleanser in the shower and suds up with Rose Petal shower from Enfleurage and exfoliate with a LUVSCRUB mesh cloth.

Out of the shower I oil up with The Body Tonic so it soaks up quickly. I literally don’t know who I am if I do not moisturize after a shower. Once I get to my face, I apply the Petal Facial Mist onto a Muji ecru cotton square, wipe off any excess oil and then massage in a couple drops of our Flower Crown Facial Serum. If I have a few extra minutes I’ll do some Gua Shua, I love that it relieves tension in my face and depuffs instantly.  Then I follow that with a dab of Super Goop Superscreen Daily Moisturizer! I swipe a dab of castor oil across my brows and fill them in with a pencil plus a swipe of copper eyeshadow across the lids and shea butter on the lips. Just before I get dressed, I swipe the new Chemistry Deodorant from Kosas, which I love (it works! ) 

PM

I like to wind down with a glass of magnesium powder in ice water, I brush my teeth, wash my face and floss. I make a cocktail of Petal Mist, Flower Crown Facial Serum with Camellia seed oil to massage into my skin. Depending on my mood I’ll either mist some Wanderlust Room & Linen Spray on my sheets or turn on my diffuser while the oils sink in. When I’m just about ready to hit the pillow I turn out the lights, let my eyes adjust to the darkness and say my nightly prayer.

What is your go to when your skin is feeling less than stellar? 

The answer always seems to be restful sleep, a good sweat, homemade green juice and a DIY mask. My go-to juice is kale, cucumber, ginger, lemon and a gala apple. If my skin is looking congested I like a Bentonite clay mask with a teaspoon of ACV. Or I’ll mix Sun Potion Chlorella with Activist Manuka Honey with a splash of Petal Mist.

 What other practices do you have that support you feeling your best? 

When I have a lot on my mind, I am grateful for talk therapy, self-compassion and laughter. Bonnie Crotzer’s fascia workshops are amazing and get me feeling limber again and a good dance puts my spirits on high. I really miss my MOVES class at Gibney Dance with Lauren Gerrie & Marisa Competello!

Who or what inspires you? 

Clever storytelling, art and nature inspire me endlessly. I constantly remind myself that the more I follow inspiration, the more abundance I am able to receive and share.

What is your favorite scent?

Scent is where I like to do the most, so I will share my favorite combinations. At home, I love a rotation of smudges. Sweet grass, palo santo and sweet palm beautifully sourced by dear friend Michelle Gagnon. Omani Frankincense resin is divine burning on charcoals. And as the weather turns crisp, I love the lingering scent of fresh beeswax candles.  On the skin, I love the Body Tonic, it’s a warm resinous floral of Geranium and Benzoin spiked with Rosemary and Cypress. 

How has your culture influenced your daily practices?

Daily prayer is the first that comes to mind. It certainly contributes to my fondness for ritual and connecting to my loved ones that have transitioned. I owe the knowledge of elaborate grooming rituals and adornment to my mother, grandmothers and aunts in seeing beautification as self-care. 

What do you wish more people knew about skincare and clean beauty?

That clean beauty can be FUN! Aside from the seriousness of educating ourselves on potentially harmful ingredients, one should feel a sense of discovery in trying new products that are offer a completely new experience, we are talking actual energetic vibes. It’s a real opportunity to connect to our senses on a deeper level if we make ourselves available to it.


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