Brand Spotlight: An Interview With JAK Organics
Jun 25, 2018
I met the lovely team behind JAK Organics last year, and they've quickly become one of my favourite local brands. JAK Organics has a ‘no compromise’ ethos, and they've done an amazing job in ticking as many eco boxes as possible. Their products are 100% natural, biodegradable, compostable, vegan, and cruelty free. Aside from these, their products contains no GMO, no palm oil, and they use sustainably sourced ingredients and materials. Plus, their products are also effective and affordable.
JAK Organics is Australian owned, designed, and made. The only products that aren't made in Australia are the wipes, because of manufacturing limitations. Recently, I caught up with the team to find out more...
Can you tell me a bit about JAK Organics history?
JAK Organics is made up of 3 sisters (Jemma, Alysha, and Karissa + 1 soulsister Kate, who interchanges nicely being another ‘K’). Having all grown up in the Sherbrooke Forest in Victoria, we have a well developed respect and deep love for nature. As sisters we were brought up by a health conscious mum. She had an impressive veggie patch and brewed her own kombucha. She taught us everything about the importance of living a life without unnecessary chemicals. When we were growing up, it was not the ‘in-vogue’ thing to eat a predominately vegan diet, make your own avocado face masks, or almond meal scrubs. Lucky for us we have a mum who put health first! The bonus was clear skin, bright eyes, and shiny hair. Our dad, being the entrepreneurial type, has always encouraged us to dig deep and follow our dreams. He taught us that there is almost always a way around 'no' if you are passionate enough about something. JAK is the perfect avenue for us to follow our passions and cultivate change in the mass chemical populated skincare marketplace.
What inspired you to start JAK Organics?
Our mum’s words of wisdom echoed loudly as we entered the next stages of our lives. When we became mothers we refused to use most commercial products. However, for the sake of convenience, we succumbed to using commercial baby wipes. From there it was the terrible rashes that followed. The process to recovery is what really spurred us on to create JAK. We didn't want to expose our babies to anything that would irritate their skin or compromise their immune system. So we started making our own coconut oil soaked paper towel wipes. They worked. However they were clunky, they ripped easily, were ugly, and hard to travel with. It generally failed in the convenience department. And because oils and water don't mix in the natural world, and we wouldn’t compromise on our ‘all natural’ ingredients list. It took the better part of 3 1/2 years perfecting our formulas before releasing them to the marketplace.
Why is natural and organic so important to you?
Mainly because ‘natural and organic’ have always been at the centre of most of our daily choices from a young age. It's always been really important to us. Consumers are now so much more aware of the importance of natural products. As a result, it's putting a great deal of pressure on commercial companies to clean up their act. We couldn’t be happier! This growing knowledge means that more and more people are making better choices, and supporting manufacturers that are bringing those better choices to you.
What do you use as a preservative?
For our botanical SCRUB, all rounder SOOTHE balm and GLOW wipes, we don’t use any preservatives - it's just the raw ingredients that make up these three skin treats. In our other wipes, because they contain water we need to use a preservative. For our BABY, FACE and BODY wipes we use a certified organic preservative combo of potassium sorbate and sodium levulinate. It is important to note that it is the certified organic versions of these preservatives that we use. We use these preservatives from their originals source: mountain ash berry for organic potassium sorbate and sugarcane cellulose for sodium levulniate. The non organic versions are not naturally occurring, they are synthetically made chemicals. In our AQUA water wipes we use certified organic preservative of glyceryl caprylate mixed with silver dehydrogen citrate. Unfortunately there's no certified organic version of this available. However it is non GMO and palm oil free, it's made from coconuts, and the salts of silver respectively. This preservative combo offers a broad spectrum antimicrobial function so it won't breed unhealthy bacteria and mould!
Are all your ingredients certified organic?
We use as many certified organic ingredients as possible when we're making our products. All the ingredients in our botanical SCRUB, our all rounder SOOTHE balm, and our GLOW wipes are. Not all the ingredients in our BABY, AQUA, FACE, and BODY wipes are certified organic but we use as many as possible. For instance, our BABY wipes contain 9 out of 13 ingredients that are certified, where as our closest competitors have only 1-3 certified organic ingredients. We are yet to find a pack of wipes that has more certified organic ingredients than ours.
What was the very first item you launched?
Initially we were planning to release our BABY wipes first. However, our FACE wipes were released first due to some manufacturing hurdles. Then SOOTHE and SCRUB came along to create a no fuss but highly effective skincare routine.
From the success of our FACE launch and by popular demand, we were then able to launch our BABY wipes, BODY wipes, GLOW, and AQUA wipes. We started with a focus on the personal wipes segment because it was a good challenge. There are many barriers to the entry in the marketplace and it was a space that really needed to be shaken up. We wanted to make baby wipes safer, better for the customer, and better for the environment.
Is there a JAK Organics product that is a customer favourite and why?
Our BABY wipes are definitely our most popular due to the amazing skin benefits, good function (great for poos as the oils literally dissolve the stick), and they help reduce nappy rash. But our AQUA and FACE wipes come in at a close second. Our FACE wipes are actually attracting quite a cult following amongst makeup artists, models, and beauty loving eco warriors.
Personally, what product are you most proud of? Do you have a favourite?
Definitely our BABY wipes and our SOOTHE balm due to the countless messages of gratitude for bringing out a product that genuinely helps people in their daily lives. We get so many parents telling us how our wipes have helped cure their babies' nappy rashes and our SOOTHE has been praised for helping heal customers acne and even lupus reactions. My personal favourite to use however is the BODY wipes. They're reinvigorating, and moisturising to the skin. And they smell amazing! They are perfect to help us stay fresh in our busy lifestyles.
What’s next for JAK organics?
We have some very exciting product developments coming up that we can't wait to share with you this summer. We are also always looking for ways to reduce our carbon footprint and plastic usage, and are on a constant endeavour to find a biodegradable option for our packaging.
Want to know more about JAK Organics? Shop the whole range here!
Image Credits: JAK Organics