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Friday, December 23, 2011

Our 10 Best People, Things and Discoveries of 2011

This year has been pretty incredible for us at La Bella Figura.  Who knew that our love for organic products and everything European would make our little company such a success?  2011 was the year we launched our line and garnered the trust and loyalty of many customers, editors, bloggers, and retailers.  It's been such a rich learning and motivating experience for us.  We are so grateful and so excited for this new year to begin.  Speaking of "New Year" we will be launching our latest baby, Barbary Fig Renewal Serum in January of 2012, as well as our collection of organic perfumes in the new year and some other surprises we have in the works in 2012!

Our Barbary Fig Renewal Serum is especially exciting for us because it works like a dream to renew damaged skin and get it back in shape! The ingredients in the serum are all natural and potent fighters in anti aging, anti cancer and are sure to restore vitality and health back into skin that really seeks repair. We can't wait for lovers of Decouverte and Tesoro to try this little marvel.

As much as this has been the year for us at La Bella Figura, it has also been the year of appreciation and admiration for others we have been lucky to know or work with or simply discover.  We want to share our 10 favorite discoveries of the year 2011.  Happy New Year to you all, may peace be in your life, love, happiness and may you always be flooded in beauty.

xo Victoria and Karen
La Bella Figura


If you haven't read or heard about this online magazine with a heart, get to it now! We love everything about Ecosalon and you will too.  This is intelligent, fun, and informative writing that makes us happy every day and don't get us started on how we just adore the writers and editors...we'll make them blush, for sure.


There are some that have a flair for writing that just makes you want more.  We were lucky to have had such great reviews from these three lovelies who all adore beauty like no one else. If they didn't do it so well, we'd be up the creek trying to figure out the latest stories and beauty news. Nav Kaur, Jolene Hart, and Susan Linney. Ladies, you are the rockstars of beauty writing.!


When you want to know what's up, check out R29 for the latest happenings, beauty and fashion news in your area.  We just wish R29 covered every city, alas we are lucky our town Chicago has it covered.


Just like R29, Vital Juice gives you the low down all that is healthy and good for you.  We are especially thankful that the Chicago editor of Vital Juice, Maya Henderson who decided to try La Bella Figura and became an instant fan.  Her support of LBF in Chicago means a lot to us as we grow in our beloved city.  Drink your juice or in this case, read your juice!


Speaking of juice, everyone is suddenly juicing it up for health and wellness.  We have known for a while that drinking, fresh pressed juice is good for you, but did you know it boosts your skin complexion too. The vitamins and minerals in fresh juices are active and you will benefit greatly from fresh juice as opposed to juice that's been in a carton for a while.  Great news is that you can just as easily make it at home! Get to juicing folks and wait for the glow to appear in your skin.  Natural magic!


I can write an entire post about this and plan to soon, but this year Karen and I were reminded of the power female community can bring to inspire and motivate one another.  We had a major snafu at the end of the year when our sponsor for a holiday eco market we had organized, suddenly pulled out because of scheduling conflicts.  It had nothing to do with us, but it really threw us for a loop. After all the planning, organizing, and collaborating with local brands we were majorly bummed. We felt we had let folks down, yet the other women involved rallied around us in support and compassion.  Even to the point, of inspiring to organize a local Women In Business support group to meet monthly!  If that isn't community, then what is?   (Also, a reminder there is truth in the old saying; a closed door brings new opportunity.)


We didn't discover them in 2011, but we did discover the power they had in keeping us sane and being our favorite cheerleaders.  Thanks to my sister and best friend, Lissette and Denise for listening to my crazy stories and though it is fun, and to Karen's husband, Jason whom we drove practically insane with working for us for free (one day Jay, we'll get you that hand cut Armani suit), to Cori who gave us her smart advice, to John and Christine who show up to our events with smiles and friends, to Carly who wrote about us on her awesome blog, unpatterned, to James our handsome friend and photographer, to my Mom, Gloria who posts and shares our Facebook news, to my niece and nephew who said I was an innovator and mad scientist, to Anne and Josh who believe in us, to Chad for his help and research, to Jenna for being my personal tester, and to the many of you that have encouraged us.  Thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, we love you so.


We know you are the Goddesses that rock the earth.  So many of you embraced us and we felt confident in that embrace.  Yes, we are trying to bring awareness to health and beauty and create products that aren't just pretty in their packaging, but are effective in use and friendly to the planet.  We are especially indebted to our favorite "eco-Mama" Shiva Rose for her enlightening blog, The Local Rose.  Her raw, passionate and emotional writing makes us feel protected and teaches us something new each week.  Shiva isn't afraid to tackle the tough issues, (the harassment of Rawesome in Venice, California, a store I frequent when in town, or the support of Occupy Wall Street) this lovely can one day be on the red carpet in her vintage gown and the next voicing her opinions in The Huffington Post.  We just adore our little rose.


Okay, so we didn't exactly discover it, but we sure did our share of research, which wasn't so easy considering not many besides the Moroccans and Tunisians are cold pressing this wonderful oil.  Sometimes, it's called, prickly pear oil and although the fruit from which it emanates is common and grows all over the world, not many are cold pressing the teeny tiny seeds for its Vitamin E and polyphenol loaded wonder oil.  (The fruit itself has tremendous health and medicial benefits and is in use for these purposes from Sicily to Argentina.) This year we were able to experiement with the oil after finding a producer whose family does the time consuming job of gathering tons (literally tons to produce one liter of oil) of seeds to cold press on their organic co-op.  The price of the oil is no joke, but the results are so spectacular and because we are after all, La Bella Figura we wanted to use the best to make the best product for you.  Don't worry if you haven't heard about this oil before us, we are certain you'll be reading about it and discovering it everywhere soon enough. Remember who used it first though!

* Remember, fair trade and organic is the way to go. Anything else is cut or mixed, poor quality and exploitative of the people who work to press the oil.


Thank you for having faith in us, sharing our vision, and selling our products to your valuable customers.  We couldn't do this without you!  We hope to continue successful collaboratons and look forward to new retail partnerships with people that care, just like us.

Have a wonderful, healthy and organic New Year from us at La Bella Figura.

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