Behind Closed Doors: Alison Carroll


Grandeur in simplified living is the North Star for Alison Carroll, creator and co-founder of Wonder Valley Olive Oil. And she's a living testament to the power of thoughtful and considered consumption. Read on to discover the latest additions to her routine, what she's traveling with and how she’s making her way out of the kitchen and into our medicine cabinets. Welcome to the wonderful world of Wonder Valley.

What is your skincare philosophy? 

My philosophy is that the skin is our dashboard; it communicates when we're eating inflammatory things, running on too little sleep, drinking too much or juggling too much stress. I go for a holistic approach to beauty and to address any skin concerns; adjusting supplements, diet, managing stress, drinking more water and exercising along with the products I create and use. 

What inspired you to start making skincare?

We’re creating for ourselves, so this was just an extension of not only my love of olive oil but is rooted around this concept of Grandeur in Simplified Living. How can we live with less but invest in the best quality items? How can we make something everyday, like washing your face or making a salad, extra-ordinary? 

It started with a face oil, which I formulated and created a very grounding, unisex fragrance (cedar, neroli, frankincense, blue chamomile) and it was transformational to my skin. We’ve just kept it going from there. 

Why is olive oil such a powerful ingredient internally and topically?

Our olive oil we produce vibrates with life. We pick it underripe for that bright, green flavor profile but also for its higher concentration of polyphenols. That vitality is felt when consuming our oil but also when applying topically. There’s no greater quality or potency to a formula than growing and harvesting the key ingredient yourself. 

What advice do you have for living more simply? 

What you surround yourself with should be in use: if there’s items in your closet that rarely get worn - thin it out, if you’re buying beautiful pantry or beauty items; use them, don't be precious with it, enjoy it and don’t let things collect dust. To me, to live more simply is really removing distraction and excess and having things in my environment that I love and use and wear all the time. 

Tips for living in a desert climate?

Drink water, and oil, oil and more oil for skincare. 

Tips for skincare routines on the road? 

We’re pretty nomadic for part of the year, driving cross country to live in Maine for the summers. So I pack light and lean in deeper to my routines. Our face oil, body oil and oil cleanser are truly my workhorse staples; bonus that I share them with my husband so we’re traveling extra light. At home, I apply hair masks and face masks weekly but on the road, when I don't want to lug around more product, I get pretty DIY with the bonus skincare routines. I’ll do a simple yogurt and honey face mask. I’ll coat my hair in olive oil while taking a bath for a really nourishing conditioning treatment, then wash it out and do a little apple cider vinegar rinse (usually pre-soaked with rosemary). For the body I like mixing olive oil and coarse sugar for a great scrub. 

What is your skincare routine?

AM: drink a liter of water (major skincare booster!), a shot of olive oil, a handful of vitamins and a few drops of Alexis Smart flower remedies first thing. Skincare starts internally!  Then I wash with our Oil Cleanser (applied dry, massage for 1 -2 minutes, add a little water to emulsify and wash it away without needing a washcloth), I apply a few drops of our face oil after that, a little mascara and that’s pretty much it. We have a few (coming soon!) skincare products I’ve been testing for the past 6 months that are a part of my routine, can’t wait to share these… 

For body: dry brush neck down, apply WV Hinoki body oil neck to toes. I layer on a lot of handmade perfume oils I make for myself, right now I have a sandalwood and jasmine one I’ve been enjoying. I love layering perfumes, like Sigils with my body oil. RTH makes a great vintage spray that I apply mostly to my clothing. 

For hair: brush, some salt spray, like La Tierra Sagrada, a little oil (I use our body oil) on the ends of my hair. I sleep on it wet and just let it stay a little wild and imperfect. Photo by Jay Carroll

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