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Ligne St Barth, Skincare, Body Care, Men's Care, Fragrance, Beautyhabit

Ligne St. Barth as seen on forbes.com...

... and available online at Beautyhabit

How To Visit St. Barth Without Leaving Home

If there’s anything I love to do, it’s to discover beauty products in my travels. That is, local beauty products that are made with ingredients that are indigenous to the destination where I’m at. I’m currently in love with the luscious Ligne St Barth upscale line of luxury skin and body care made with the posh Caribbean island’s local fruits, flowers, and herbs (even though I’m writing this at my home office in Boston).  Who wouldn’t like a visit to St. Barth – without the actual trip and jet lag?

It all started in repurposed rum bottles  — it’s become a cult classic — and it’s quite the story.

In fact, the brand is luscious, gorgeous, and very French – sort of like Brigitte Bardot in her heyday.

Ligne St Barth is a family-owned business and Herve Brin is its CEO. Mr. Brin started the company in the 1980s selling pure, pressed avocado and coconut oils in re-purposed rum bottles to tourists on the beach. It is now a global phenomenon available in 30 countries, with 40 products in the line, including a collection tailored just for men. Beloved of celebs, tourists, and locals, Ligne St Barth has a spa at the Eden Rock, offers dockside yacht service of spa treatments in St. Barth – who wouldn’t love that? – and they offer natural sun and skincare products made from all that is local - mango, papaya, lily, vanilla orchid and more - with recipes handed down in their family from descendants of the Arawak Indians.

When you do arrive in St. Barth, you can enjoy a little slice of Ligne St. Barth at the Eden spa at the tony Eden Rock hotel.  Mind you, this gorgeous getaway was the first hotel built on sunny St Barths, and for more than 50 years it has welcomed a privileged clientele seeking tranquility and white sands. I spoke with spa manager Laura Derozey, who told me, “We offer lots of treatments with Ligne St. Barth – it is an olfactory journey.” The most popular treatment, she told me, is the Eden Flower Treatment, a relaxing massage with frangipani (plumeria) flowers. “We chose an iconic local brand because we are an iconic hotel in St. Barth.”

I also conducted an exclusive interview with Mr. Brin by phone from his office in St. Barth. Here is what he told me.

What made you decide to start a product line with ingredients from St. Barth?

It’s a funny story – it was a tradition in my family to produce our own coconut oil and avocado oil – my grandma was well-known physical therapist helping local people with health problems. I grew up with my grandma who taught me about plants and herbs. My nanny was my grandma. Later on I started in the discipline of science – and decided to make a business out of it – at that time my grandparents used to produce coconut and avocado oil – I decided to do something with it and modernize the presentation. I used rum bottles as the packaging – I hand-wrote the name of the products with a golden marker – I opened a small shop for locals and tourists.  It took time but it prospered through word-of-mouth. Even celebrities come to my shop for the products.

What are some of the bestsellers?

In summer it’s the roucou oil – a tanning oil.  (The deep red seeds of the roucou shrub were used as a traditional form of sun protection by the Arawaks due to the high proportion of Vitamin A.) And now we are developing a sun spray with SFP 30. The Avocado Oil with the tiare flower fragrance – people love it as a skincare oil. And the Mango Butter Cream.

What are some of the indigenous ingredients used in the brand?

Avocado oil from Martinique, roucou seed from Dominica, the aloe vera from Curacao, and some bottles from French Guyana. We have two shops  — one in Gustavia by the harbor and one at the facilities where they are produced. It’s in the countryside. 

Tell me about the products offered dockside for yacht service??

We have a full spa service such as at the Eden Rock– and at five-star hotels around the world. Spa service, upon request from clients on their yachts  — our teams of spa therapists can go dockside and provide treatments from our spa menu — that works very well Our clients love it.

What is your bestseller for men?

The Aloe Vera Gel With Mint. Men love it as an after-shave. It’s very refreshing with spearmint.

What celebrities use the products??

Princess Charlotte of Monaco (Prince Albert’s wife), French actors and Steven Spielberg used to order a lot of products from us. Claudia Schiffer. Melanie Griffith.

Why is St. Barth so loved by celebrities?

It’s very peaceful - a very relaxing atmosphere –  no one will try to sell you anything – they are captivated by the beauty of the landscape, the brightness, friendliness, cleanliness. No advertising billboards or fast-food-chains. Very good infrastructure and very good Internet services, and a good food supply chain from the US and Europe – we have world-class gastronomy with great chefs and great choice of restaurants. Plus French cabarets in a beautiful atmosphere. Here, women can wear their most beautiful jewelry and men can wear their most expensive watches.

Ligne St. Barth, I would say, is the epitome of fragrant flowers, exotic fruits – and Caribbean nonchalance. It is available at beautyhabit.com but the brand site at www.Lignestbarth.com is also extensive. Voila!

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