a collection of 100% natural and organic skincare products with wild-foraged medicinal plants and herbs grown right here on our Fallston, Maryland property. Each product is made with love in small batches and carefully tested for safety and efficacy.
Conventional skincare products, even many that are more "natural" than most, generally contain ingredients that at best do nothing for your skin, and at worst, harm your skin. Preservatives, stabilizers, colors, chemical fragrances and other potentially harmful ingredients, as well as a lot of water, fill these products in order to make them easy to use, shelf-stable for years, and in forms that we've become used to. Not only can many of these chemicals harm your skin, but they are absorbed into your bloodstream and can cause other health problems as well.
Cristabel's products contain nothing but ingredients that benefit the skin. They do require a bit of a shift in your skincare routine, don't look like the products we've all become used to, and need a bit of practice to perfect their use. But with this shift comes a myriad of benefits that not only prevent us from using harmful ingredients but are also more concentrated (leaving out the 70% water content of conventional creams and lotions which means you can use about 70% less product). They are full of herbs, natural cold-pressed oils, raw beeswax, vegetable glycerin and vitamin E, and other ingredients that have been scientifically proven to benefit the skin in different ways, and each of which functions to help restore skin's vitality, calm irritated skin that has reacted badly to years of harmful products, and is kinder for our earth.See below (underneath the list of products) for more on how to use oil-based moisturizers.
A near-magic cure for any skin irritation, inflammation, itchiness or histamine reactive skin. Particularly good for mosquito bites, poison ivy, eczema, irritated skin on the hands from over-washing and -sanitizing, mysterious rashes or inflamed/sensitized skin reacting to harsh chemicals in conventional skin products. Concentrated wild-foraged herbs combine with soothing, easily absorbed oils and beeswax to rush relief into unhappy tissues to provide quick relief. Apply to irritated area and massage into skin. This product can be used on wet or dry skin.
Ingredients: Olive, hemp and flaxseed oils infused with wild-foraged violet leaves, plantain, chickweed and deadnettle; raw beeswax, glycerin, vitamin E and tea tree oil.
Lavender, Rosemary and Spearmint After-Bath Body Balm
An after-bath, nighttime, deeply moisturizing and nourishing body balm with a very soft, smooth consistency for easy application on wet skin right out of the bath or shower. It is scented with lavender, spearmint and rosemary essential oils for an amazing aromatherapeutic experience bringing a sense of calm and setting the tone for a restful sleep. We add seasonal wild-foraged herbs to address the skin's shifting needs as the seasons change. Apply a sparse amount to WET skin after bathing, give skin a vigorous rub-down to emulsify the water and oils, then allow skin to air-dry.
Ingredients: hemp, extra virgin olive and sunflower oils infused with: spearmint, rosemary, English lavender, licorice root, and seasonal wild-foraged herbs; raw beeswax, glycerin, vitamin E, and lavender, spearmint & rosemary essential oils.
Exfoliating Vitamin C Fizzing Face Mask
A gentle alpha- and beta-hydroxy powder mask that you mix with water just before use. The vitamin C will fizz when mixed, creating a very effective "acid peel" mask to clear up dead skin cells and reveal the glow hiding beneath. Bentonite clay draws out impurities as does the added activated charcoal. White willow bark contains natural salicylic acid, a beta-hydroxy acid for additional exfoliating action. Witch hazel is an effective astringent herb, helping to tighten pores and clear up acne. This mask is good for any skin type.
Ingredients: bentonite clay, Vitamin C powder (15%), witch hazel, white willow bark and activated charcoal.
A highly absorbent and nourishing facial oil designed to moisturize and tighten aging skin. Anti-aging rosehips combine with anti-inflammatory herbs and astringents to clear irritations. Facial oil can be used either by itself cleansing or to boost the moisturizing and benefits of your favorite face cream by mixing in a few drops before applying. If using alone, apply between 5 and 10 drops on WET skin, gently massage into in to emulsify the oils and water, and allow to air-dry. If your skin still feels oily after about 15 minutes, try using less next time; if it feels tight, use more.
Ingredients: hemp, jojoba and sweet almond oils infused with: calendula (calming and nourishing), rosehips (perfect for smoothing aging skin), violet leaves and licorice root (to calm irritation), and witch hazel (good for clearing up angry spots); vitamin E oil (a natural anti-oxidant to prevent oils from going rancid, also great for deeply moisturizing dry skin and healing scars and pockmarks), and glycerin.
Rosemary-Mint Apple Cider Vinegar Herbal Infusion for Hair
Apple cider vinegar is great for your hair and scalp, especially the kind that is naturally fermented with beneficial bacteria (referred to as "the mother". It is also great for clearing up scalp issues such as itchy, dry, flaky scalp, and helps to remove build-up from hair products. Formulated to nourish the hair and scalp with herbs that: provide astringent action to clear dry, irritated flaky scalp spots, bring shine and strength to the hair shaft, encourage healthy hair growth and reduce hair loss, as well as leave a bit of "slip" with mucilage-containing herbs to make hair easier to comb and loosen tangles. Depending on your hair type, you may be able to replace your usual conditioner with the rinse, or use to augment your usual hair routine to prevent build-up and provide all the benefits listed above. The vinegar smell will dissipate as your hair dries, and only the slightly herbaceous and rosemary and mint scents will remain.
Ingredients: organic apple cider vinegar with "the mother" and spring water infused with: yarrow, rosemary, spearmint, licorice root, chamomile, and; tea tree oil, scented with rosemary and spearmint essential oils.
Custom-made products and individual consultations in our apothecary-studio in Fallston, MD
We are happy to speak with our customers to develop an individualized skincare pack that addresses each person's specific skin issues. Consultation appointments can be either in-person or through Zoom/facetime (video is necessary to allow me to observe your skin). The $50 charge for the consultation will be applied to any products you choose to purchase.
We stand behind every product we make. Local customers can return to the apothecary to allow me to add additional ingredients to perfect the product for your skin, exchange for something else, or for a refund. Distance customers can contact us for personalized solutions. We recognize that everyone's skin is different and may react in different or unexpected ways and our goal is to help improve everyone's skin and health. We ask that you contact us as soon as possible if you are unhappy with your product; adjustments and refunds can only be made within two weeks of purchase and as long as at least 3/4 of the product remains.
Detailed instructions for use of our products: making the shift to improve the health of your skin
Using oil-based moisturizers
Conventional creams and lotions are oil and water emulsified (or mixed) together. The oil moisturizes while the water encourages absorption so the oil won't just sit on your skin. Unfortunately, because they contain both water and oil, they require preservatives to prevent contamination by mold, fungi and bacteria. Chemical emulsifiers and thickeners are also added to stabilize the product, ensuring the ingredients don't separate. Coloring agents are often added to create a white color that folks have come to expect. Lab-created fragrances are added to mask the smell of the other chemicals and to make the product smell "good." All of these chemicals do nothing for your skin, they just make the product slightly easier to use. You don't have to shake it, or massage it in for a minute, or take a few minutes to allow your skin to air-dry. With a small, mindful shift in your skincare routine and with the proper techniques, you can avoid using these chemicals altogether. We created our herb-infused, oil-based moisturizers with only ingredients that have a positive effect on your skin, and none of the ingredients that cause irritation or carry health risks. Our moisturizers contain no water, and thus no preservatives, and are applied to wet skin after cleansing, an important step that allows the oil to absorb into your skin. Our products contain no fillers, thickeners, chemical fragrances or stabilizers. We add natural vegetable glycerin to aid emulsification as well as nourish the skin.
Our oil-based moisturizers do require a shift in your skincare routine. It may take a few minutes longer than you're used to but your skin will thank you! Apply a very small amount to the skin, gliding it over the area without trying to achieve full coverage at first. Use dry hands when touching a balm and avoid getting water in the container; oil droppers should be kept from touching anything. Using a gentle circular motion (for face) or a vigorous rubbing down for hands and body, work in the oil after applying. Be sure at this stage to achieve full coverage of the area but ensure that you aren't using too much product: just enough to provide a very thin layer over the entire area. Massaging the oil well into the skin will emulsify the oil and water, aiding absorption and mimicking the effect of a cream. If skin feels greasy after about 15 minutes, try using less next time. If skin feels tight, try using a bit more. Adjust until your skin feels deeply moisturized but not greasy. It may take your skin a bit of time to adjust, and if you like you can use our liquid facial oil as a "boost" to your current face cream and then slowly reduce the amount of cream until you are using only the oil.
We grow many of the herbs ourselves (e.g. lavender, spearmint, yarrow, mullein, chamomile, calendula) or native, wild-foraged medicinal plants (e.g. plantain, chickweed, violet, deadnettle). Many of these herbs have been used for thousands of years to benefit the skin and all the herbs we use have been shown to be safe and effective by recent scientific studies. All herbs not harvested locally as well as other ingredients such as clay, vitamins C and E and glycerin are of the highest quality, fresh and 100% organic.
Our oil-based products last about 3-5 times as long as creams or lotions because rather than filling our containers with up to 70% water, our products use the water already on your skin after cleansing. Remember not to towel the water off your skin before applying! Allow the skin to air dry if possible; if your routine does not allow the time for this step, you may gently pat skin dry (but we advise using your older towels for this as the oil may result in unpleasant-smelling towels--this may be remedied by adding a cup of vinegar and a couple tablespoons of baking soda to your wash).
Facial products are always unscented, although they do have a light pleasant herbal scent. Body and hand products are available unscented or scented with our signature lavender, rosemary and spearmint essential oil blend.
Using our face masks
To use our fizzing face mask, place about a tablespoon of the powder into a small glass bowl (you can keep this container in your bathroom, just rinse and store for the next use). Drip a small amount of water into the bowl and add a few drops at a time as necessary to form a thin paste (make it thinner than a conventional face mask and more the consistency of a serum, as it is more concentrated and you only need to apply a very thin layer). Mix the powder and water with your finger to mix (it will dissolve and start to fix quickly), then apply to dry, clean facial skin and neck. Allow to dry or almost dry then rinse; you can also apply right before showering and allow the steam to help the product absorb into the skin and rinse at the end of your shower--it is not necessary to allow the product to dry. Follow with our facial oil while skin is still wet. Use 2-3 times per week.
Using our hair rinse
After cleansing your hair, and at the end of your shower, tilt your head back and starting at the hair line, squeeze a small amount of the rinse onto your hair. Work backwards, applying a small amount horizontally across your head. If your hair is long, make sure to apply to the length of your hair. Gently massage into scalp. You can rinse the product out or leave it in, just be aware that the rinse can stain clothing, sheets and towels while your hair is still wet if you leave it in. After turning off your shower, squeeze the excess off onto your shoulders, back and chest (it is good for your skin as well so you may as well let it do double-duty!). Gently towel-dry and style as usual. You can use it daily as a conditioner or as-needed to remove product build-up.