SANTA MARIA NOVELLA
April 11, 2018
It's hard not to love a brand which is steeped in tradition and history. Santa Maria Novella not only has a beautifully poetic story that dates back centuries, but many of its products remain unchanged since their creation. Find out how this iconic brand has stayed relevant in today's fast-paced cosmetic landscape.
By Trudi Brewer.
SANTA MARIA NOVELLA
What is it?
Santa Maria Novella began as a herbal apothecary range of medicinal balms and tinctures more than 800 years ago and has a rich, spiritual history. The products were originally created by and order of Italian Dominican monks, who used the herbs and flowers found in the gardens of their monastery just outside Florence to treat the skin ailments of patients in their infirmary. Today the range is loved by supermodels and celebrities alike and many of the formulations remain unchanged since the day they were created. A rare find in our fast-paced world where beauty is lost and found on Instagram, this collection of divine skincare formulations and delicate fragrances has stood the test of time.
What makes it special?
Made in one of the oldest Italian pharmacies in the world, the Officina Profumo Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella, the first elixir was created from distilled rose petals. It was used as a household cleanser following the plague that ravaged Europe and its heavenly scent and antibiotic and antiseptic properties made it very popular. Four hundred years later in1612, the pharmacy opened its doors to allow women to buy natural salves, lotions and balms to use as beauty therapies. From the garden to the gate, those same products are unchanged today and have achieved a cult following.
What's in it?
The best natural products, plant extracts and oils with healing properties, including virgin beeswax, sweet almond and grape seed oils, egg yolk and glycerin, all designed to nourish, rejuvenate and fragrance the skin. The collection includes the famous rose and orange blossom toning waters and skin tonics, hydrating creams such as Crema F the Vitamin F Cream, eye serums and night oils, as well as an exfoliating mask and facial washes. The body is also well catered for with specific creams, powders, washes and fragrances. Products include Melograno Body Powder and Rose Bath Oil, as well as hand and foot treatments. Finally, the sun care range includes post-sun washes and SPF lotions.
What do we love about the range?
Starting with skincare, the Pasta di Mandorle, or almond paste, is thought to be one of the first products the Dominican monks created. This hand cream has been touted as one of the best, along with the rose and orange blossom waters, body milks, and dusting powders. When it comes to fragrances, you are spoilt for choice, as there are 48 in total. These include traditional scents, such as Gardenia, Magnolia and Iris, and more unexpected aromas, like Tobacco. The brand might look to the past for new product innovation, but it remains relevant today by meeting women's skincare needs while retaining its notable heritage.
EDITOR TRUDI BREWER'S SKINCARE PICKS INCLUDE
Santa Maria Novella Idrasol Cream, $159. Santa Maria Novella Skin Tonic, $69. Santa Maria Novella Cleansing Milk, $129. Santa Maria Novella Talborina Dusting Powder, $89.
FRAGRANCE PICKS INCLUDE
Santa Maria Novella Citta di Kyoto, $229. Santa Maria Novella Angels di Firenze, $229. Santa Maria Novella Colonia Russa, $229. Santa Maria Novella Santa Maria Novella, $229.
The full range of exquisitely wrapped fragrances, skin, bath and body care for men and women, in addition to Iris Toothpaste, Armenia Scent Papers, Melograno Scented Terracotta room diffuser and even pet care, is stocked at WORLD.