Girl Talk with Laurel Shaffer

June 23, 2020 (updated May 11, 2023) — Written by

Laurel Shaffer, founder of Laurel Skin, shares her favorite natural beauty products and skincare routine plus what she’s loving lately. Click here for more Girl Talk interviews!

laurel product flat lay

Today we are in for a treat friends! If you haven’t met Laurel skincare yet – you are in for an awakening. Laurel, the skincare brand is like none other.

In its truest form, Laurel is the definition of slow beauty. I’m talking biodynamic, impeccably sourced, plant-powered skincare at it’s finest. Based out of Sausalito, California, founder Laurel works side by side with local artisan farmers to procure over 150 plants each season. And when I say she works side by side, I mean she literally goes to the farms, cultivates relationships with her farmers, follows each ingredient from seed to harvest and ensures everything is grown (at the very minimum) organically. From there, the plants, flowers and herbs are brought to Laurel’s lab in raw form, steeped for months in handmade blends and turned into plant medicine for the skin.

(I mean, Laurel even makes all of their own botanicals extracts! This is just mind blowing considering #1, no one does this. And #2, commercial extracts can be a major buzzkill. They tend to be chemically refined and compromised nutrient density. So you are getting “it” but you are not really getting all of “it.”)

My all-time favorite product from Laurel is her Sun Serum. If you haven’t tried it, it’s a must. You can also check out all of my Laurel favorites here.

So excited to go behind the scenes today and get to know Laurel Shaffer, the founder of Laurel Skin a little bit better. Enjoy!

laurel smiling and looking at the camera

What’re your first 30 minutes like every morning?

I am a morning person so I usually wake up excited about the day. I cuddle with my dog, and I’m usually pretty noisy to intentionally wake my husband! LOL. I have a glass of Berkey filtered water with half a lemon and several dashes of Real Salt. On my best days, I make a conscious effort to not look at my phone or email for at least that first 30 minutes.

What’s your morning skincare routine?

I do sometimes skip washing my face in the morning, but then I compress instead with a warm cloth. This increases both lymph and blood circulation, and decreases inflammation and puffiness. I follow that with a generous misting of one of our Elixirs and 5 drops of Serum. Currently, I’m getting more sun than usual, so I’m using our Hydrating Elixir II: Support+Recover followed by the Sun Serum: Phyto Defense+Repair.

Do you wear makeup? What’s your #1 go-to makeup product?

I wear makeup probably only once a month, and then its always Gressa which is beyond the best! I’m so in love with the Minimalist Foundation, which I apply with a brush over damp skin. However, on a daily basis, I do wear Olio E Osso Balm in Currant…. so simple, and I love how it feels and looks.

What’s your typical breakfast?

Avocado Toast with local, organic, 2-ingredient whole wheat bread with olive oil, lemon, avocado and real salt.

Are you a coffee or tea drinker?

One cup of coffee in the morning with local, organic, raw, unpasteurized, grass-fed cream. (Sooooo pretentious, I totally get it. LOL!) And then I do love white tea and herbal teas of all kinds which I drink throughout the day.

What’s your exercise routine?

I do kundalini yoga regularly and try to go hiking when I can. I don’t have a strict routine though.

Can you share your playlist?

I like new American folk like the Oh Hellos and Lord Huron, and then I also love more eclectic spiritual music like Krishna Das or Native American flutes.

laurel formulating in her studio holding flower petals in her hand

What natural deodorant works for you?

I have tried so many, but I do always come back to Agent Nateur’s original formula… I love that it smells like a eucalyptus steam room at a spa.

Favorite podcasts?

I like podcasts that remind me to be more mindful and compassionate… so Jack Kornfield, Tara Brach and Sharon Salzberg all have podcasts at the top of that list.

What’s a book that’s rocked your world?

The New Earth by Eckart Tolle. I could read it again and again, and go deeper each time. I also really love Tara Brach’s Radical Acceptance, which I think could basically heal the world – if we all had more acceptance and compassion for ourselves and others.

Favorite health resource (IG/blog/pod)?

Zach Bush is currently my favorite doctor’s posts on IG.  I really feel he steps back to look at the overall picture of health in terms of human, planet, emotional, scientific, spirituality – all of it.  For a blog or influencer, I do love Janny Organically.  The research she presents always blows me away.  A lot like your Retinol post too, Lisa – I am always super impressed when someone can put all those sources together like a puzzle!

Favorite or go-to healthy dinner recipe?

I don’t love to cook, surprisingly. I am pretty boring, and am generally happy with a green vegetable and brown rice or a red potato.  I was hoping this quarantine would inspire me to cook new things, but after 6 weeks it still hasn’t!

What’s one product that everyone needs to try?

I think a good probiotic. Like a serious one – Made by a lab that specializes in probiotics. I keep mine refrigerated, which I believe is important. I like Custom Probiotics, IonBiome, and Klaire Labs. It can change so many things with our overall health from digestive to skin to the immune system.

Laurel Sun Serum

What’s your evening skincare routine?

I wash my face with our Support Cleanser, which is well suited to pore congestion and inflammation. I follow that with a generous misting of our Hydrating Elixir II, 5 drops of Antioxidant Serum and I’ve been doing an extended massage with our upcoming Miraval collaboration product: Tulsi Rose Balm before I go to sleep. (Launching soon.) I work that into my neck, chest, and shoulders—it is good for stimulating lymph and circulation.

Do you have a favorite skincare ingredient?

Not really a favorite… I love all plants and learning what makes them unique and special for treating our present skin symptoms. For me, that would sort of be like asking who my favorite child is! LOL!

What’s on your nightstand?

A Rose Quartz crystal, Lotus Wei Peace Mist, peppermint and lavender essential oils from Eden Botanicals, and that Miraval Tulsi Rose Balm.

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Being as lazy as possible and eating ‘junk food’, which I define as anything I know isn’t good for me.  That is often pizza or potato chips (food from my childhood).  I feel true to my Taurus sign in that I would be completely content holed up in my room surrounded by blankets and comfort food for days at a time.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten or given?

I’m not sure if its a specific piece of advice, but I am definitely always grateful for the understanding that we all have limiting beliefs. I started learning about our ego, mental constructs and biases when I was 19, and I am always learning in that regard. I don’t believe that anything is impossible, I just believe we haven’t moved beyond whatever limiting belief is there, either as an individual or as a society. Also, that we are all the same.  

How are you surviving right now?

Getting outside, getting sunshine, getting fresh air.  I feel beyond lucky to have access to the outdoors just by being at home. I’m also really grateful for my Laurel Skin team who has still wanted to come to work and are staying so positive throughout this experience.

By Lisa Fennessy

Lisa is the founder of The New Knew. Passionate about clean beauty, organic eats and nontoxic lifestyle, Lisa writes to create awareness. Conscious consumerism and informed decisions will impact the marketplace, our health and THE WORLD!

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