Skincare Formulation 101 With Aesthetics Rx’s Nicola Kropach

Nicola has learnt a few lessons when it comes to creating skincare. We spoke to her on what it takes to make a great cosmeceuticals range.

Nicola Kropach is a veteran when it comes to crafting excellent skincare. She has worked for international powerhouses such as Clarins and Thalgo but now calls Australian cosmeceutical brand Aesthetics Rx home.

Aesthetics Rx was developed in 2004 by the owner of one of Adelaide’s first medical aesthetics clinics. Silk Laser Clinics‘ Martin Perelman then bought it in 2018, and that’s where Nicola came into the picture. She was recruited not only as General Manager but as someone who could take the brand, build its story and move it to the next level.

“Silk Laser Clinics already had an entry-level cosmeceutical range in clinic, but needed something that was geared towards a more sophisticated skincare user,” Nicola said.

Aesthetics Rx is a bespoke luxury cosmeceuticals range, and Nicola is involved end to end in formulation and distribution. She even tailormade regimes for customers via Zoom during the clinic closures earlier this year. You can’t get much more bespoke than that; custom skincare advice from the general manager of the brand!

“It was fantastic to speak directly to the consumer, find out what matters to them, and to come up with some new products down the track,” she adds.

Nicola Kropach

Nicola has learnt a few lessons when it comes to creating skincare that clients love. The first being, be kind to the animals. Aesthetics Rx is vegan and carries the cruelty-free accreditation, which means both its ingredients and final products are not tested on animals.

“That’s something that is important to consumers at the moment and is a trend people are looking for in skincare. Lots of brands will claim they don’t test on animals, but still test individual ingredients on them. It’s not acceptable,” she said.

The next lesson is to know your ingredients and know them well. Nicola says she likes to work with Australian indigenous ingredients where possible or scours the globe for the best quality alternative.

“I work hand in hand with the cosmetic chemists and look for ingredients that are trending and that people want to be using on their skin,” Nicola said.

She forecasts sustainability is a trend that will only strengthen in the coming year and likes to formulate with natural ingredients as much as possible. Contrary to popular belief, natural ingredients can be used in cosmeceutical skincare.

“These two things have always been parallel to the cosmeceutical field; people wanting to use more active products but at the same time want products to reflect their core values of sustainability through natural ingredients. We try to use botanicals when we can,” she explains.

The final lesson is to get your formulations right, and once that is done, work to improve them. Nicola says you will be surprised to find several brands share product formulations. Aesthetic Rx is made in small batch runs with the correct therapeutic dosage of actives for visible results. This ensures freshness and efficacy.

“The standard A, B and Cs are not going to go away because they are the foundation of really great serums and skincare, but what’s interesting is how we get them into the skin. I am always looking at ways we can get the ingredients absorbed by the skin even better,” she concludes.

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