Stepping into Ashleigh-Jane Denton’s spacious Art Deco apartment, we are introduced to her personal design aesthetic (think reclaimed vintage furniture and an abundance of plants) as well as the workshop where her skincare range, Deity Skin, is currently created. According to Ashleigh, all the nutrients our skins need can be found in natural, non-animal products – and her glow is a testament to that, which is reason enough to learn more about this local beauty brand.
Tell us about your skincare products
Deity Skin consists of four vegan face products that can be used together as a set or incorporated into an existing skincare routine as stand-alone treatments. Each is comprised of a few quality, plant-based ingredients chosen for their skin-healing benefits. The first step is the Tea Tree & Poppyseed Face Polish, a gentle face cleanser or exfoliator with a clay base. Next is the Aloe, Rose & Frankincense Toning Mist, which consists of a blend of hydrating plant hydrosols that calm the skin and mind, aiding concentration. It’s also the perfect midday pick-me-up and make-up setter. Third is the Rosehip Seed & Avocado Face Oil, a moisturiser and treatment oil that can be used day or night for extra hydration. Finally, the Activated Charcoal & Turmeric Face Mask is a nourishing skin treat that brightens the complexion and deeply cleans the skin. It’s completely customisable and can be activated with any fresh ingredients, such as mashed banana, yoghurt or honey.
Deity Skin is marketed as being an entirely vegan skincare brand. Why do you think so many of today’s consumers are going cruelty-free?
I believe that plants hold all the necessary resources we need to look after our health and wellbeing. I also believe that people don’t want to be labelled as consumers any more and want products that suit their lifestyle and work for them – not the other way around. With the obvious reason of animal rights aside, using vegan products is much better for your skin. You need to remember that your skin is your body’s largest organ and everything you put onto it is absorbed into your bloodstream. There are a few animal by-products, like honey and beeswax, which I do think can be sustainably harvested if done correctly in small batches. I’d love to learn how to cultivate my own beehive one day.
Take us through your personal skincare regime – what works best for you?
In the morning, I wake up around 7AM and splash cold water on my face to wake up my skin. I use the Deity Skin Face Polish every second day, and on the days in between, I just use water and a Konjac Sponge in the morning. Scrubbing my face with too many products causes dry patches, so I’m gentle with it and never use a lot of soap. Next, I liberally spritz my face with the Deity Skin Toning Mist, which I use every day and sometimes more than three times a day if I need a pick-me-up. It’s calming on the senses and forces you to take a moment to just breathe. The next step is moisturiser. In winter, I use my Deity Skin Face Oil every day and night, but at the moment I’m mainly using it at night and on the days when I feel my skin needs some extra hydration and a bit of a boost. At night, I cleanse with a blend of jojoba, olive and castor seed oil and rinse that off with a cotton face cloth. Then I spritz again and use five or six drops of Deity Skin Face Oil as a rich moisturiser.
What is currently your bestselling product and why is it so popular?
The Diety Skin Face Polish has been a bestseller ever since I launched in August last year. It’s a niche product and people are genuinely interested in how it works. I love it when I get emails from people desperately needing a refill because they’ve run out and there’s nothing else that works like it. A gentle face exfoliator that needs to be activated with water before use, it leaves your skin velvety soft, clean and fresh. I have really sensitive skin, so when formulating this product I made sure that it would be gentle enough for all kinds of facial skin irritations, such as eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis and rosacea.
Deity Skin began as a result of your passion for aromatherapy and herbalism. How have you incorporated these interests into your products?
I use essential oils and medicinal plants in all of my products for their healing benefits – not only for the skin, but also for the effect they have on the senses. Inhaling the scent of certain essential oils and herbs can signal the brain’s limbic system, which controls emotion. Not only do the ingredients used in Deity Skin products nourish and feed your skin, they help increase circulation, reduce anxiety, relax the mind and strengthen the immune system.
Where can we find Deity Skin?
You can shop Deity Skin online at Faithful-To-Nature or at Indigenous Store in the Woodstock Exchange in Cape Town. I’m looking at expanding my retail base nationally as well as internationally, and I’m also in the middle of setting up an online store for Deity Skin, which I’m really excited about. Customers can email email@example.com or get in touch via social media to view prices and place orders. I think the latter is the best option because then you get to speak directly to me.