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Calithea: The Evolution of Skin Care
With so many oils out there touted as being good for you, Greeks has always known that olive oil is a tried and true elixir of health benefits and a valuable serum of beauty. Yes, beauty. Greeks have been making soap out of it for years, and over the years have expanded the olive oil beauty regimen to include moisturizers, cleansers, toners, and hair products. I will admit that I have tried some of these soap products in the past and was not enthusiastic with them. The soap felt more like a piece of cardboard, lacking in fragrance and sufficient lather. There was no doubt in my mind that it was anything but what the packaging said it was – 100% pure olive oil soap. If it’s going to feel and smell this bad, it has to be good for you, right? I never could get used to it, no matter how good it was for my skin, so I went back to regular soap – the kind that was full of dyes, chemicals, and fragrances. They leave a thick layer of film on your skin and clog your pores, no matter how hard your rinse, but still they smell good and lather you up into a spin cycle full of dirty laundry. Soap was soap and there was nothing to be questioned. I’ve been doing it all wrong – everything – from the type of soap I use for cleansing to the type of moisturizer I use to protect my sensitive skin.
As a woman with fussy skin, I have tried expensive products and natural products masquerading as snake oils. Maybe I haven’t tried the right one. I am still trying, seeking and searching the perfect moisturizer – the one that won’t clog my pores, make me break out, or leave a greasy layer of caked-on residue that just sits there. That’s what we call a dead-beat moisturizer. Finding the right product for your skin type – the one that will complement your skin perfectly – is like finding a partner for life. Once you find it, you wear it like a second skin that breathes with you, walks with you, and never fails you throughout your aging life. I finally found the perfect skin mate.
I was very excited to receive my first shipment of Calithea products, and they came just in time for the holidays. I tore through the box like a little girl in a candy store. Could this be the key to a new beauty regimen? The first thing I noticed was the packaging. It was attractive and highlighted the unique benefits of each product. Each soap was made of 100% pure olive oil or included additional moisturizing and exfoliating benefits, like shea butter and oatmeal, and donkey milk. I tried the soap, expecting to experience that familiar cardboard texture of barely there lather that had disappointed me with other olive oil soaps. To my surprise it lathered up quite nicely, not too much and not too little, which really made me feel clean without feeling filmy, and was fragrant without being fragranced. It was moisturizing and absorbing, leaving my skin feeling soft and cleansed. Then I tried the moisturizing facial cleanser, made up of olive oil and babassu oil (an Amazonian superfruit) and infused with aloe vera and linden extracts. It gently cleansed my skin without drying it out. I followed the face cleansing routine with Calithea’s refreshing organic olive oil toner made with plant extracts and designed to balance your skins’ pH levels, which can get stripped from the harsh effects of tap water. It was cool, refreshing, and nurturing to my sensitive skin.
The real stand-out product was Calithea’s olive oil day moisturizer made with aloe vera, prickly pear, carob, and honey. I was a bit skeptical at first. I have been searching for the perfect moisturizer, and haven’t had much luck with the ones I have tried. This came as very pleasant surprise, almost like a miracle treatment. It glided on like satin, was immediately absorbed by my skin, and left absolutely no residue of flakes, film or grease. This was as perfect as a moisturizer gets, at least, for me. It’s the type of moisturizer that agrees with all skin types and feels like a second skin – baby soft skin. It really is an “evolution of skincare”, evolving from a Greek grandmother’s kitchen straight to her granddaughter’s curiosity.
Elena Kazas, the founder of the Calithea skincare line, was always fascinated by her grandmother’s beauty and radiant skin. At her overnight stays, she observed her grandmother doing something unusual before bedtime. She would take olive oil and apply it to her face. Elena’s grandmother knew that the key to glowing skin is not only what you eat, but also what you wear. Upon observing her grandmother’s nightly beauty routine, she started experimenting with homemade face packs and skin care treatments at home, using all natural ingredients. With the help of her entrepreneurial father and a partnership with a chemist in Greece, Elena decided to launch her line of beauty products devoted to olive oil, the holy serum of Greek remedies. Her products are free of parabens, silicones, propylene glycol, paraffin oil, allergens, phthalates, synthetic dyes, alcohol, ethanolamine and GMOs. Deriving its name from the Greek word meaning “beautiful view”, Calithea can literally be translated into “beautiful goddess”. The result is a vista into clean beauty you can see and feel.
So why not just dab olive oil instead all over your face and save yourself a few bucks? Well, for one thing it’s greasier. I certainly don’t want to walk around with a can of olive oil on my face during the day, but if it’s blended with other natural ingredients that turn it into a perfect moisturizer that brings me great results, I’m willing to sign up for my shipment of Calithea’s olive oil day moisturizer delivered straight to my door. The olive oil body lotion was equally “skinsational”, and in these winter months replenishing lost moisture is the key to keeping your skin feeling hydrated and soft. I can confidently say I found an agreeable line of skincare to help me feel my goddess best.
Calithea Products can be found in two Markets Districts, part of the Giant Eagle stores, a local grosser in western PA, but for those of us who don’t live in Pennsylvania, we can just visit their website at calitheagoddess.com, click on our favorite product, and have it delivered straight to our door. $1 dollar of every purchase gets donated to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Elena has a personal connection to the hospital, after her youngest brother received treatment there.
Elena continues to expand her line of skincare and research new options for products that can be added to her skin wellness collection. It’s all part of her commitment to the evolution of skincare – from grandma’s secret in the cupboard to a product that breathes new life into dull, tireless skin to keep it fresh, hydrated, and vibrant all year round.