Welltalks: On happiness and all natural perfume with Lost and Found Apothecary’s Sasha Tong
I first met Sasha when I was a publicist and she was (and still is) a producer at eTalk. I think the fact that today, a few years later, we're talking about natural skincare - me as a holistic nutritionist, and Sasha as the founder of all natural perfume brand Lost and Found Apothecary - is a testament to how so many of us have started gravitating to a more natural approach to health and wellness. In addition to perfume making and TV producing, Sasha is also a contributor to LaineyGossip.com, and co-hosts a podcast with Lainey called Sasha Answers. I chatted with Sasha about her new adventure into natural perfume, why it’s so important to put natural products on your body, and the importance of figuring out what it is that makes you happy.
Welltalks with Sasha Tong, founder of Lost and Found Apothecary
How did you decide to start Lost and Found Apothecary?
I think there’s a definite trend of people wanting to move to all natural products and eat cleaner food. I was starting on that path, I was Goopin’ it here and there, I was intrigued. But when I started having health issues of my own, which were related to my eyes, it rocked my world. I was so depressed and so confused. I went through the process of seeing all these medical doctors - by no means do I knock that, it totally helped in some ways - but when it comes down to actually figuring out the root of your problem, you really have to go inside and figure out what you’re eating and what you’re putting on your body. So it just became this journey of
feeding my body and my soul good stuff, and that probably sounds cheesy, but fuck everyone who thinks it is, because it actually worked. The perfume came out of me trying to find some happiness in my life. I took this course, and it was just one of those things that clicked and made me think, “Yes, I like this, yes I’m good at this." So I started tinkering away and came up with these four perfumes.
I love how you said that you found perfume through searching for what made you happy. Finding a silver lining, or having something positive happen as a result of a negative experience is sometimes the only way we can come to terms with the experience. Can you talk more about this?
You need to find what your true joy is. We’re so inundated with all these other things to try to make us happy, whether it’s Instagram likes or having to have these certain jeans, that’s all a bunch of garbage at the end of the day. So with the perfume line, do I hope it does well? Totally. If it doesn’t, I’m still really happy making perfume for even one person, because it’s fun for me, and I think that’s what people need to do. Find something that makes you happy because a lot of people don’t have that in their lives.
What ingredients do you use to make the perfumes?
I have a couple different places I get my oils from; one supplier is in California and one is in Ontario. There are four different perfumes and each have up to 16 different oils in them. So it’s not just sandalwood and patchouli, it’s a bunch of other things as well. Everything is 100% natural and comes from plant extracts.
Can you describe the four perfumes?
I think while the perfumes are a little hippie, there are two that are a little more mainstream. Willow has been really popular. If it’s your first foray into natural perfumes, there’s still hints of vanilla, but it also has sandalwood in it so it does have that bohemian vibe. Breakup is a bit spicier - and I hate using the word sexy, but it's kind of the sexy scent. And then Ember and Burn are like, put your peace signs in the air.
In your opinion, why is it so important for us to put natural products on our bodies?
Your skin is your body’s largest organ, so it only makes sense to put good stuff on it. If you’re putting toxins on it, of course it’s going to get into your bloodstream and not do good things for you. I think we’re seeing a big trend in autoimmune disorders and infertility issues, and I’m not a scientist but I think it’s interesting that the more we are exposed to toxins the more sickness that seems to be prevailing. So for me, it’s just common sense that good stuff should be ingested. I wouldn’t drink toxins so why should I put them on my body? I think we’re seeing this big movement towards natural skincare and natural beauty, Gwyneth Paltrow has her new line for example. You have these luxury brands that are going that way anyway, so now you don’t have to sacrifice beautiful things in this day and age. You have all these options, you might as well try them.
How do natural beauty products, and your perfumes specifically, compare to conventional ones?
What I think is interesting is I’ve said to people “You have to reapply the perfume every 2-3 hours” and they say “Oh you have to reapply?!”. We’ve become so lazy – you can quirt something on in the morning and it can last until midnight. But what’s in there that’s making it last that long? That’s not normal. What’s normal is putting on a natural scent that comes from our environment, from all these magical places, and because it’s natural, it’ll fade. Redefining your beauty regime is a learning process but I think it’s just something people have to change their mindset on because as I said, we’ve just become lazy. We have to realize that yes, there might be more effort involved in natural skincare, but that’s a good thing.
What natural beauty products do you love?
One of the biggest things for me was finding a natural deodorant. Agent Nateur was a game changer, it’s hands down the best natural deodorant. I don’t have a child but if I did I would give it up to prove how good this deodorant is. I’m also using this new brand called Graydon out of Toronto, I also love all the lipsticks from Ilia, and love Bite Beauty’s lipstick. RMS is also great.
*You can purchase Lost and Found Apothecary perfumes online here.