How about harnessing the power of plants to take care of your skin? After a first experience in the construction world, Charlotte Gass left her construction helmet to create Merci Suzanne, an artisan brand of natural, organic, local and zero waste cosmetics. Her goal? To offer you a beauty ritual consisting of a cold soap, a hydrolat and a plant-based treatment to help you have an elastic, soft and comfortable skin. Light on this busy project in which the designer pays homage to her grandmother and her childhood spent in the nature of Normandy. Discovery!
Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Charlotte and I am the founder of the cosmetics brand Merci Suzanne. I have one rather atypical career because before doing cosmetics, I worked in construction. We can really talk about a 180 ° conversion!
My role within the company? It’s very easy, I do everything (laughs)! Like all designers who undertake the adventure of entrepreneurship on their own, I have all the credentials: I am a producer, logistician, communicator, clerk, accountant and administrative manager at the same time. Obviously it is very addicting but just as rewarding. I have never learned so much about the business and about myself since I launched Thanks Susanna.
You can introduce us Thanks Susanna ?
Merci Suzanne is a trademark of eco-responsible cosmetics whose formulas are natural, organic, local and zero waste.
I design, produce and package my cosmetics by hand in Rueil-Malmaison. I prefer ingredients that come from our beautiful country to follow on local and ecological approach. Finally, I choose to pack my cosmetics in glass bottles, which I wish to deposit, to encourage reuse and recycling.
Merci Suzanne is the temple of minimalism: we go back to the origins with simple, local and effective products in a 100% transparent approach.
I propose a beauty ritual for the face in 3 steps, inspired by Asian women, to take care of us in a natural way. Depending on your skin type, harness the power of French plants.
The ritual takes place in 3 phases:
- The first step is cold soap to gently cleanse the skin.
- The second step is the hydrolat to hydrate and tone the skin.
- The third step is plant care to provide your skin with all the nutrition it deserves.
In 2 minutes, your skin is supple, soft and comfortable.
Why did you decide to embark on this adventure?
Thanks Suzanne was born out of the need to find meaning. With my engineering degree in hand, I went to work in the construction industry for 5 years. I then realized that this job did not satisfy me and that it was not in line with my values.
At the same time, I had been eating organic for years, being very careful about what I ate and what I applied to my skin. I have therefore been using organic cosmetics for years. When I decided to go even further and dedicate myself to zero waste, I started with solid cosmetics and in particular cold soaps. I later discovered the great benefits of hydrosols and adopted oils as a face treatment.
At the same time, on a trip to visit my grandmother Suzanne, I met Jacques, a passionate farmer who grows hemp in Normandy. The evidence was there: I want to highlight the wealth of France for its plants and flowers and to honor the magnificent work of the peasants.
If there is a peasant woman I particularly care about, it’s my grandmother Suzanne. She has been a farmer for 40 years. Through this brand I also want to pay homage to him.
What message would you like to convey through Merci Suzanne?
It is possible to have beautiful skin without compromising your health or the planet.
I wanted to bring a alternative to traditional cosmetics which I believe contain too many harmful ingredients and lack transparency. I know all the ingredients I use to make my products and where they come from. France produces a lot of flowers, clays and sublime oils: why fetch commodities far away when we have everything here? It is the certainty of a quality product made next to us: it is much more ecological.
Can you tell us more about your collaboration with the boutique in the meantime?
Meanwhile Boutique is a platform that brings together committed brands and eco-responsible artisans-creators to offer sustainable, ethical and ecological alternatives in the world of fashion, accessories, decoration and well-being, for women, men and children. Their selection card is based on 17 values and 5 pillars: waste prevention, craftsmanship, resource conservation, human and social impact and certifications and labels.
Of such as While Boutique card values is your brand the closest?
It will be difficult to choose because I feel close to many of them (laughs).
zero waste it’s truly part of Merci Suzanne’s DNA. I use as little packaging as possible. I collect empty glass bottles to give them a second life. One of my flagship oils is produced by nuclei: it is the principle of upcycling in which a new raw material is produced from an element that was previously seen as “waste”.
craftsmanship it is also at the heart of my values because I produce and package all my cosmetics by hand. I use the cold saponification method for soaps, a traditional know-how. My products are made in a radius of a few kilometers because almost all of my ingredients are produced and processed in France.
This approach goes hand in hand with the conservation of our resources. My origin from the territory is accompanied by a careful selection of raw materials: only natural ingredients from organic farming.
You are part of the While Boutique collective. In your opinion, why is it important to bring committed creators together?
We are always stronger together than alone in our corner. As a new and small designer, making yourself known is the hardest part. It is a great opportunity for young brands like us to have great exposure.
Mutual help between creators is also very important. When you are alone like me, you can sometimes feel a little lonely. Having a network of creators around makes it possible to exchange and find new opportunities.
One last word?
I know how much the use of cosmetics is a sensory experience. For those wishing to try my cosmetics, they are waiting for you in the New Age boutique, at 38 rue du poteau (18th). You can then start with your beauty ritual. Let’s keep changing the world of cosmetics together!
Do you want to take care of your skin? Appointment on Meanwhile Boutique to discover the artisanal, natural and zero waste cosmetics Thanks Susanna!