Regular visitors to Altrincham Market have probably already encountered Christine of Cocoon Therapies. Any hipster types may suddenly have found their beards being anointed with her famous spicy beard oil. You may have received an unexpected but very soothing hand massage with one of her lavender scented shea butter and argan oil hand creams. Don’t worry – Christine is a qualified masseuse – she knows what she’s doing.
The market stall is one of the ways in which Christine sells her own line of beauty products which are all based on pure fair trade organic argan oil. We all know argan oil, of course, it is in shampoos and conditioners and even lipsticks. Mass produced beauty products boast of its moisturising powers whilst in reality adding only minute quantities of low grade oil to their products. The Cocoon Therapies range of products is entirely based on 100% pure organic argan oil which Christine imports directly from Morocco. The purity of the oil, its freshness and the way that it is stored in blue glass bottles ensure that its powerful moisturising properties are preserved. Argan oil has been highly prized by women in North Africa and around the Mediterranean for centuries for its rich but non greasy nature and its ability to moisturise hair, face, body and nails. The oil’s high levels of antioxidants, Vitamin E and essential fatty acids give it the ability to moisturise and revitalise dry skin and hair, protect against the sun and even reduce the appearance of wrinkles!
Christine is qualified in the production of cosmetics and holds a diploma from the School of Natural Health Sciences where she qualified with top grades. She mixes the pure argan with essential oils of lavender, rose, geranium and bergamot to produce light scented oils that are suitable for face, body and hair. The essential oils all have their own therapeutic properties. A particular favourite is the rose with its powerful anti-aging effects. Christine also mixes the argan oil with organic ethical Shea butter from Ghana to produce a richer cream for hands and feet. A lighter version of the cream works as her lip balm Happy Lips. Christine’s newest product is a beard oil infused with spicy oils which is selling very well at Bert and Bert Barbers in Altrincham. Robert says “We use it on our customers and recommend it for everything. Hair, skin, shaving oil and aftershave”
But there is more to this story than meets the eye. Several years ago, Christine was looking for a high quality massage oil for her massage practice based in Hale. She found that argan oil suited her purpose and she was fascinated by the story behind the production of the oil in a traditional way in women’s cooperatives in Morocco. Christine visited Morocco herself and met the Berber women who produce the oil. She developed such a warm relationship with the women and was so keen to preserve their right to a fair price for their product that she is now the sole UK agent for the UCFA, the first and largest union of Berber Women’s Cooperatives in South Morocco. So, buying your Spicy Beard oil or Happy Lips from Cocoon Therapies isn’t just good for your skin- it also helps to provide a sustainable income for 1000 women and their families.
Cocoon Therapies products are all available on line from http://www.cocoontherapies.co.uk/. The dates on which Christine will be at Altrincham Market are on her Facebook page. The range is stocked by several local retailers and a few further afield - please see list below. Christine sells wholesale to several other beauty manufacturers. She is always keen to talk to anyone who would like to stock or sell her product, including individuals who would like to sell her products at their local market or other venues. Follow her on twitter @cocoonargon
Bert and Bert Barbers, 33 Oxford Road, Altrincham, Cheshire WA14 2ED
The Greenhouse Health Food Shop, 43 Oxford Road, Altrincham, Cheshire
Bladons of Hale Chemist, 219 Ashley Road, Hale, Altrincham, Cheshire WA15 9SZ