Let me ask you a question – would you go to any dentist in any town for your routine check-up? Are you happy to go to any hairdresser who has an appointment? The answer will be no! – we do business with those we like, know, and trust!

As customers we want to know if we can ‘like, know, and trust’ the companies we buy from, so in this series we ask the person behind some of my favourite natural and organic companies to step out into the spotlight.

It’s the turn of Marian Hardiman from Silvan Skincare.

Tell us about yourself and your company…How did you get started?

As a massage therapist I was looking for oils and balms that had the texture that I wanted and also specific ingredients to add therapeutic value to my treatments. Not only did they need to have excellent properties for massage, but also I wanted them to support the work that I was doing at a cellular level.

There wasn’t anything that worked for me in the way I wanted. I was looking for a long oil which would soak in quickly so that I could work deeply without sliding around. I wanted a choice so that I could select different oils for different needs, for example for inflammation, post injury, scar work, stuck tight congested muscles or purely for relaxation.

So my very first developments were the Silvan Skincare massage and body oils. Having been taught by my stepmother how to make creams and by studying the techniques and subtleties of blending plant oils, I experimented and created my range. There are now six varieties including the base blend – Cool, Rejuvenate, Warm, Bliss and Soothe.  My skincare range then grew from this starting point and now includes facial oils, creams and balms – all of which harness the wonderful properties of plant oils.

What were you doing in a previous life?

I was (and still am!) a massage therapist and run a small clinic called The Retreat in Presteigne on the beautiful Welsh borders.

Why natural/organic/sustainable?

I have sensitive and reactive skin, so have always been looking for products which work for me and my family. I understand the benefits that plant based ingredients can bring to the skin and want to use products that make the most of them. The manner in which these plants are grown affects their potency, but I also want to buy from suppliers that support and facilitate sustainable practices for all our benefit.

What’s your USP? What sets you apart from your competitors?

Being a therapist myself, I am interested in creating products which have a therapeutic value. Every single ingredient is there for a specific reason; thoughtfully placed to make a well-rounded, effective product. I make everything by hand, with love, in small batches. I am interested in building relationships with my customers, practitioners and suppliers, no hard sell, and believe in allowing the products to speak for themselves.

What kind of feedback have you received from customers?

My customers are impressed by the ingredients which I use and recognise the knowledge and thought which has gone into creating my products. I often get people coming up to me saying, “Look at my face!” clearly delighted with the results!

What’s the next big launch / project coming up for you?

I am working on a range of vegan body and lip balms which I am pretty excited about. Watch this space!

What’s your big dream?

To be a recognised brand that is trusted and sought after for our high quality and effective skincare products.

Where can we find your products?

On my website, from selected practitioners and retailers, please see list on-line.

Website address: www.silvanskincare.com