Here at Opal Avenue, we aren’t just a marketplace for finding the best products for your store. We are a home for products that are honestly good. Out of the countless brand applications we receive, only a small few surpass our rigorous ethical and safe ingredient criteria. Today, we introduce you to one of our trailblazing Opal Avenue vendors – Allyson Owens and Pleni Naturals Skincare.
Allyson, thank you for being here with us today! In a sea of skincare brands focused on creating similar benefits, it can be easy to blend in. But not for Pleni Naturals. You are elevating skincare in a completely new and exciting way that people are raving about. Can you tell our community more about your unique products?
Yes, I’d love to! The skin is our largest organ and we feel it’s important to feed the skin the same nutrition we feed our bodies. At Pleni Naturals, we are all about healthy, vibrant, and efficacious fruits and vegetables in all of our formulas. We create products for children and adults so a family could basically “grow up” using Pleni Naturals from baby to adulthood. We also go through the stringent process of MADE SAFE certification so there isn’t any green-washing going on over here. Customers can trust that not only are the Pleni Naturals formulas truly safe for us to use on our bodies but also our ecosystems.
Our mission at Pleni is to inspire a deeper connection with healthy foods through our fruit and veggie-filled products and inspiring packaging. Any exposure to healthy foods beyond the dinner table deepens our connection with healthy foods – kids and adults alike. Plus, if you check out our Instagram we plaster gorgeous photos of fruits and vegetables daily and the responses we get are, “now I’m hungry for tomatoes” or “you won’t let up on the fruit and veggie posts and I’m not even mad about it”. We love this type of response and feel it really represents what we are trying to accomplish at Pleni Naturals.
As far as our skincare collection is concerned, we focus on skincare for your face. You won’t find nipple butters and belly oils in our skincare collection for adults. We recommend moms-to-be to use the multi-functional products in our collection for children for themselves too, no need to duplicate. Our Berry + Olive Barrier Balm and Cucumber + Grape Baby Oil have incredible ingredients to support a growing belly and nursing care like mango seed butter, avocado oil, red raspberry seed oil, and cranberry seed oil. On top of these nourishing formulas, there is peace of mind knowing they are certified non-toxic through MADE SAFE.
Where did the inspiration to create Pleni Naturals stem from?
The idea for Pleni Naturals was planted when I was a skincare product development consultant back in 2010 and I had my first baby at home. I would go to the store looking for baby washes and balms and as a former aesthetician-turned-product developer, I always flip the bottle or jar over and immediately read the ingredient list. What I realized is what is formulated into baby care products are very similar, mostly some sort of combination of calendula, lavender and chamomile. Don’t get me wrong, I love these ingredients but I told myself if I ever launch a baby care line we will pull from the library of clean ingredients we used in prestige formulations – premium fruits and veggie ingredients like red raspberry seed oil and cranberry seed oil. The time had come to do it better.
You take great pride in having the most effective combination of ingredients in each Pleni Naturals product. What are some of these honestly good ingredients?
I love red raspberry seed oil and cranberry seed oil for their high levels of omega-3 essential fatty acids, which are super important for repairing barrier function. We’ve used these two ingredients a lot in prestige formulations in my product development life before Pleni. I also love the plant sterols found in cucumber seed oil and the light, non-greasy texture of broccoli seed oil, which is referred to as “nature’s alternative to silicone” in face and hair care formulas. Plus broccoli seed oil provides great skin nutrition with its essential fatty acid profile and vitamin A, C, and K. Also, I don’t believe ingredient lists should be super lengthy, but at the same time, I believe in ingredient combinations to achieve a more desirable result. I will use a food example here; if you eat oranges every morning for breakfast this would be considered healthy but not as healthy eating the combination of oranges, bananas, and strawberries. The same goes with skincare – a product with a single ingredient in it won’t perform as well as a product with multiple, synergistic ingredients. Speaking of, the word “PLENI” in Latin means “full”, and you will always find an abundance of healthy fruits and vegetable ingredients in each Pleni Naturals product.
You are making healthy skincare accessible for the whole family, especially with your adorable children’s products. What have been some of your favorite customer testimonials?
Our favorite customer testimonials are the ones that come with before and after photos! We have before / after photos of parents’ using the Pleni Naturals children’s products saved as a Highlight on Instagram. Some other testimonials that make us smile huge are, “Our family’s new favorite! My kids love the vegetable characters on the label, I love the clean ingredients, and the only shampoo and body wash I’ve found that both cleans well and doesn’t dry out their skin.”
Another one being, “The cleanest oil cleanser in the industry! The Enzyme Cleansing Oil feels amazing and is unscented so it’s great for people who are scent sensitive, pregnant, or a new parent! I love using 4-5 pumps as my first cleanse at night. It does not dry out your skin. It even doubles as an enzymatic exfoliating mask which helps reduce the number of blackheads I have from wearing face masks. I do love essential oil scented products, though I would prefer unscented than to buy from another brand that does not disclose all the ingredients in their “natural fragrance”. Easily my current favorite oil cleanser! This would make a great gift to yourself or a loved one!.”
Your stockists also enjoy having Pleni Naturals on the shelf. What are some of the ways you help support your retailers?
Offering support is a big part of who we are. We send marketing cards for retailers who desire them. We also have fun fruit and veggie tattoos! And we always provide an array of extremely attractive professional product photography which can be used for social media and the store’s website. Gift with purchase promotions are something I enjoy collaborating on with our stores as well.
As a founder with an extensive skincare background, I happily offer product education and training on Pleni’s products. It’s also so fun to partner together on Instagram takeovers, lives, and podcasts! PR gets directed to our retailers whenever possible. We even give our brick & mortar retailers very cute coloring pages of the fruit and veggie characters from our children’s collection for kiddos to color in while the parents shop! Supporting our retailers is so important to us.
I know this is a tough question but if you could pick a most loved product from the Pleni lineup, which would it be and how can a customer enjoy its benefits to the max?
This is like asking a mother to pick a favorite child! In all seriousness, everyone needs a good cleanser. Leave-on skincare products cannot penetrate through dirt, debris, and dead skin cells so in the children’s collection I will say the Apple + Broccoli Hair and Body Wash. A customer can maximize the wash by using only a little bit! The tiniest amount creates an abundance of foam so no need to squirt half the contents of the bottle out to get the kiddos clean. And in the skincare collection, the most loved is the Enzyme Cleansing Oil as it is a 2 in 1 deep cleanser plus exfoliation mask, meaning the cleansing oil can be left on dry skin for up to 10 minutes as a mask for a deeper exfoliation before rinsing off. The feedback we get from customers is they cannot believe how soft and smooth their skin feels from using the Enzyme Cleansing Oil as a mask a few times per week.
And we can’t help to ask, as a small but mighty business what’s next for Pleni?
We definitely plan on expanding our skin care collection for adults! Right now we have two products in the collection with our Enzyme Cleansing Oil and Day Squad Face Oil, with two more products currently in development. One of those in development is scheduled for a fall launch. Can’t wait!
Conscious, clean, and courageous. All of Pleni Natural’s products are cruelty-free and are verified free from over 2,000 ingredients linked to health & environmental concerns. Truly, honestly good.
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