Susanne Kaufmann: ”Responsible packaging is the new definition of luxury”
After scaling a product line — first intended to be used in her own spa — into a global brand, the Austrian natural skincare pioneer now gets help from her friend Ben Gorham to finally launch a fragrance.
By JOHAN MAGNUSSON
October 02, 2023
In 2003, when natural skincare wasn’t what it is today, Susanne Kaufmann launched her line of effective skincare, which she describes as ”powered by nature, and born in the spa”. Over these two decades, when growing into a global brand, the philosophy has remained the same.
— It’s about harnessing the properties of local Alpine ingredients, and bringing them into skincare in a modern way to deliver holistic benefits, she explains. Spending time in the Alps has benefits for your well-being. This is down to the mood-boosting combination of green and blue space, which studies have shown helps to reduce anxiety and sadness.
What started as 24 products for her spa in Bezau, Austria, is now a collection of over 90 products across skin, body, and bath.
— Our brand was never a start-up but a passion to make the best skincare possible for the spa. We have never veered from this approach. I have always wanted to challenge the world of skincare, how it was made, and how it was consumed. Keeping our footprint as small as possible has always been essential to me. We are always researching the latest innovations in skincare, as well as exploring the natural ingredients we have in abundance here in the Alps. Next year we have two very exciting launches that celebrate local, upcycled ingredients and deliver highly effective results for the skin and body.
What’s been the most challenging when building and growing your brand?
— We are constantly looking to further minimise our impact. For me, the packaging is there to protect the product inside and ensure that it arrives safely with our clients. The challenge we all face here is maintaining the same look and feel; the same high quality the brand has always had. It takes a lot of research to find the perfect alternatives. For me, responsible packaging is the new definition of luxury and that is why ours is purposefully minimalist in design.
Susanne Kaufmann just joined forces with Byredo for a new collab which is inspired by Bregenzerwald, a forest region in the Austrian Alps and home of the brand. Looking to combine the two brands’ respective expertise in skincare and fragrance, the line (pictured above) includes a moisturising scented body oil and a roll-on fragrance oil made of locally sourced, antioxidant-rich oils. For Kaufmann, the partnership is about her friendship with Byredo founder Ben Gorham — and finally fulfilling a wish to create a fragrance.
— I think it’s a breath of fresh air because it combines a high-performance body product, which has all the benefits of skincare, she says. But also, on top of it, a fantastic scent, created by a fine fragrance expert. The two products are infused with notes of jasmine and subtle hints of sweet fig, to form an energising yet comforting scent, evoking the feeling of strolling through a serene forest.