Over the years, Birkenstocks have made quite the revival. First, they created comfy shoes, then they conquered the fashion circuit, and now the brand is looking to corner the skincare market. You heard me right, the brand that's known for comfy sandals is releasing skincare. Birkenstock's skincare line is not only going to be equal parts Instragrammable and all natural, but cork is a main ingredient. I did a double take as well, but your skin will thank you because cork has a lot of beneficial properties. Unless the cork gets stuck in your wine bottle, then that's a travesty.
This new venture may seem random, but it's actually a long time coming. Birkenstock have produced shoes with cork for over 240 years, and they've finally discovered that cork not only creates durable shoes, but also doubles as a powerful skin care ingredient. The skincare line, called Birkenstock Natural Care, will include 28 products that are designed to boost anti-aging and provide ultimate hydration for skin.
The products are coordinated into five treatment categories. "Naturally Fresh Cleanse" will offer products for your body, skin and hair (it will also feature an enzyme peel). "Naturally Ageless Repair" boasts moisturizing face, hands and body products, while the "Naturally Pure Prevent" line includes hyaluron-infused face, lip and body care products. There's even a category for the men in your life (so they don't feel left out) called "Natural Man Refresh." And perhaps most obviously Birkenstock is offering products for our feet.
Sustainability is of supreme importance to the brand, and 13 out of the 28 products will feature refill systems. Every single one will harness cork on the packaging.
The Birkenstock Group (which oversees Birkenstock) created a division called Birkenstock Cosmetics. All of the products will be developed and produced in Germany. The all natural skincare line will utilize ingredients like cork oak extract, arctic moss, aloe vera, argan oil, avocado, baobab, calendula, cranberry, ginkgo, green coffee, moringa, ginger, jojoba, macadamia, mint, elderberry, grape and botanical hyaluronic acid.
So How Does Cork Benefit Your Skin?
Don't be alarmed, chunks of cork are not going to be in these products. A natural extract called suberin is taken from the cell walls (outer layers) of cork oak. Suberin gives cork its elasticity, so on your skin, it will help promote suppleness. The multi-active oak complex will reduce skin redness, stimulate collagen formation, and fight pesky free radicals in the air. Cork oak has existed for over 60 million years, and the evergreen broad-leaved trees grow in the western Mediterranean (primarily Portugal).
According to an interview with Women's Wear Daily, Birkenstock's CEO Oliver Reichert wants everyone to know that the brand is looking to transform the way customers view skincare.
While we were doing our research regarding a healthy product concept in the skin-care segment, we realized that scientists in the cosmetics industry had discovered the highly effective antiaging effect of suberin, a remarkable substance which is contained in cork oak extract. That’s how the whole project started. We then took our time in terms of developing the whole natural cosmetics range, with product quality coming first at all times with a team of experienced experts.
So when can you match your skincare to your sandals? You'll have to wait just a little bit longer, because the line will not be released in stores and online until the fall. The price range for the products will run from $17 up to $74 for cleaners, moisturizers, and balms. That's super affordable for a line that features some vegan products, and the entire line is free of paraffins, parabens, silicone, synthetic scents and dyes.
For now, I'll be dreaming of self-care Sundays with a cork in a wine bottle and cork on my face. Olivia Pope would have gone over a cliff for these products.