When Cassy Burnside started paying more attention to the ingredients in her food, she quickly realized that the ingredients in her skincare were just as important. But her quest to find chemical-free and raw products turned up few options. So she started making her own, and FATFACE Skincare (recently rebranded as FATCO) was born.
How did you come to scrutinize ingredients in the products you use?
Cassy Burnside: Six years ago, I was working a nine-to-five job as a manufacturing engineer in the automotive industry. I was an avid runner, living a somewhat healthy lifestyle. In 2010, I read "It Starts With Food" by Melissa and Dallas Hartwig. I did my first Whole30 [month-long clean eating program] shortly after and, from there, my life was transformed!
How did this spawn an interest in skincare?
CB: I started adopting a more "paleo" diet and lifestyle, and I started paying more attention to the ingredients in my food. Along with this transition, I also started to pay more attention to the products that I was using on my skin. I eventually learned that your skin is your largest organ, and everything that you put on it gets absorbed and must be processed by your body. Unfortunately, most store-bought products contain ingredients you wouldn't dare to eat. And if you wouldn't eat something, then why would you put it on your skin? In my quest to find pure, raw, natural skincare products, I didn't find anything that fit my criteria, so I decided to make my own. And this is how FATCO was born.
Why did you decide to focus on fats?
CB: For a long time, the word "fat" has gotten a really bad rap. But, more recently, many people in the medical community are beginning to recognize the health benefits of integrating healthy fats into your diet. Things like coconut oil, avocados, and grass-fed butter are becoming more and more acceptable, and are even being touted as good for you! We use similar vegetable-based fats (shea butter, coconut oil, cocoa butter) in our products, but we also integrate healthy animal fats into our formulations, too.
Tell us more about that, especially the tallow you use in some of your products. Are there any misconceptions about its use?
CB: Tallow (rendered beef fat) is very high in vitamins A, D, K, and E, all of which are super important for skin health. Tallow is also structurally very similar to the sebum in our own skin, and it has an incredible ability to heal our skin.
We use tallow in our Stank Stop Deodorant as well as in our Face Cream and Baby and Body Buttas. We are very picky about who we source our tallow through. This is because using fat from factory farmed cattle can be very dangerous. Animals store toxins in their fat, so when factory farmed animals are slaughtered, all of the toxins and junk in their system remains in their fat. Therefore, using tallow from factory farmed cattle (either ingesting it or applying it topically) can be toxic to your system, and it can really wreak havoc on your hormone levels. Therefore, we only use the highest quality tallow that comes from grass-fed, pasture-raised, happy cows! Our two primary sources for tallow are based out of Colorado and Georgia. We would love to be able to source our tallow from a more local source, but we have yet to be able to find a local source that meets our high standard of quality
What kinds of products will retailers find in your line?
CB: Our product line contains facial skincare products like Cleansing Oil, Face Cream, Face Oil, and Toner. We also sell body care products, like our Hair Oil, Stank Stop Deodorant, as well as a few different scents of our Body Butta. Our Baby Butta is similar to our Body Butta, but is free of essential oils and was specifically formulated with little ones in mind. Tallow is amazingly healing for skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis, and we have heard from lots of moms that, after using our Baby Butta on their children's eczema or KP (keratosis pilaris), have seen incredible results.
Why will natural beauty devotees appreciate your line?
CB: Unfortunately, many commercially available body care products on the market today are full of toxins and chemicals. This makes it very difficult for the general consumer to know what's "good" and what's "bad. Many products contain ingredients that can affect our fertility, disrupt our hormones, and cause cancer! Many companies claim that these chemicals and toxins are found in such small quantities that they will never really cause the consumer harm. But considering that the average woman uses 12 skincare products per day, and that these products are used repeatedly every single day, this can result in our bodies being bombarded by chemicals. And this is from products that we believe are going to be helping us.
At FATCO we specialize in making organic, natural, real skincare products that aren't full of preservatives, chemicals, and toxins. We make healthy products that are safe, but are also effective.
Your products carry an expiration date—how do you respond to some of the challenges associated with this?
CB: We recommend that users open the products within one year of the manufacture date, and use the product within six months of opening. We believe that people need to start treating their skin like they do the rest of their body. We buy groceries once a week and eat food products that are perishable, so why is it acceptable for us to use products on our skin that have a three-year shelf life?