What was your inspiration when initially launching Ursa Major?
"Ten years ago we moved from New York City to the mountains of Vermont to simplify our lives and be closer to the great outdoors. It didn't take long to notice the effects of our new, healthier lifestyle: mind, body, spirit and skin - all changed for the better. Inspired by adventurous days on the trail, we created Ursa Major to help others - no matter where they live - get that 'healthy mountain glow'."
Where did the brand name ‘Ursa Major’ come from?
"Ursa Major (the ‘Great Bear’ in Latin) is the largest visible constellation in the northern sky and has long been used to find True North. To us, it’s a powerful reminder to follow your inner compass and forge your own path in life."
Why was creating a conscious beauty brand important to you?
"We both have a professional background in the traditional “grooming” and “beauty” industries, and strongly believe that the days of overly gendered, overpriced, underperforming, complex and mandated routines are over. Skin is skin. We started Ursa Major to raise the bar and do things differently: real ingredients, sensible pricing, no bogus marketing, an emphasis on sustainability and social responsibility (we’re a certified B Corp!) and not taking ourselves too seriously."
Personally, what are some of your favorite products from the Ursa Major line?
"It’s really hard to choose a favorite - it can change daily or with the seasons… but I have to say that I always go back to Golden Hour Recovery Cream - especially in the cold winter months. There is nothing like slathering on some Golden Hour after being outside in the cold, wind and sun - it instantly sinks in and gives your skin a healthy glow."
Can you share any pro tips for how to use any of the Ursa Major products?
"One of the best parts about our brand is that you don’t need to be a pro or doing anything tricky. It’s straightforward and it works. We say, YOU make the rules!"
What are some of the hero ingredients featured in the Ursa Major line?
"We infuse Ursa Major products with forest-infused actives (at active levels, so they really work) that evoke the trails that inspired our company: like birch sap, which reduces the appearance of redness and uneven skin tone, and willow bark, which is an amazing natural source of beta hydroxy acid that gently exfoliates and soothes skin."
"Our newest product, Forest Alchemy Eye Cream, is packed with forest-infused actives like the name suggests: chaga (suppresses melanin production to ease up dark circles), tremella (absorbs 500 times its own weight in water, which makes skin feel super hydrated), pink snow algae (increases collagen production to address fine lines) and wild birch (contains 17 amino acids, minerals, enzymes, proteins, antioxidants and vitamins). Like we said, it’s packed!"
Are there any new products that you will be launching soon? Can you share any details?
"Yes! We just launched our Making Moves Milky Cleanser this month, and that is getting rave reviews - it’s so soothing and smells incredible… plus it’s a dream for sensitive and dry skin. Later this year we’ll be launching a sort of super serum…. it’s unlike anything I have ever used before. It’s magical."
What are your favorite non-Ursa Major products or brands at AILLEA?
"Innersense Quiet Calm Curl Control is my everyday go to for controlling my curls and frizz - I love it."
"Kosas lip fuel in Pulse - The texture is so silky - it’s very natural looking, but still makes me feel polished."