Irene Forte talks about her natural skincare range. It's the “Mediterranean diet” for your skin.
When did you found the brand?
“I debuted a skincare line in 2015 for Rocco Forte Hotels called Forte Organics.
“The positive reception made me want to launch an even bigger line. So this is why I set up my own company, Irene Forte Skincare, in December last year.”
How long did it take to develop?
“It took me three years to launch Irene Forte Skincare. I’m working on a few additional products for next year.”
Where are the products made, and the ingredients sourced from?
“Each product is created with ingredients grown on the organic farm at Rocco Forte Hotels’ Verdura Resort in Sicily.”
“This allows us access to … quality ingredients like organic olive oil, floral hibiscus, fragrant lavender, and herbal rosemary.
“Other ingredients are sourced from reputable farmers in the local area of Trentino, and other areas in Sicily.
“They are handmade in small batches in Trento, Italy, with Dr Francesca Ferri, and we control the process from start to finish.”
Can a natural skincare brand still be active in terms of ingredients?
“Yes, that’s why we call our skincare ingredients ‘performance naturals'.
“Just like the Mediterranean diet, we supply the skin with a wealth of natural vitamins, fatty acids, and antioxidants to help enrich, rejuvenate and protect.”
How important is sustainability?
“Extremely… We’re committed to ensuring that our processes are truly sustainable and ethical at every stage of their life cycle.
“We aim to be as seasonal as possible and we use ingredients that are not over-farmed or encouraged with harmful pesticides.”
“We also avoid the use of palm oil, mineral oil and plastic microbeads in our skincare, all of which can have a harmful effect on our environment.
“And our products are free from phthalates, parabens, artificial colours, sodium laureth sulphate, sodium lauryly sulphate and abrasive fragrances. This helps to minimise soil and water pollution.”
What is your personal skincare routine like?
“In the morning I use my almond cleansing milk and hyaluronic toner, followed by the hibiscus serum and the almond eye cream.
“At night I massage the rose face oil or orange blossom face oil onto my skin, and finish with the hibiscus night cream.
“I also use Elta MD Skin’s UV facial SPF 40 sun cream every day as my make-up. It is lightly tinted as well as paraben and phthalate-free.”
In terms of wellness, how do you take care of yourself?
“I travel weekly for work so I have to find a number of tools to help me relax.
“I’ve always been relatively sporty and I’ve tried not to lose that since leaving school (a long time ago now).
“I tend to work out four or five times a week and try to do 20 minutes of Vedic meditation every few days, or some simple breathing exercises.
“I also have monthly at-home facials with Desi Valentine. She is amazing, and I have her Cryo facial once a month.
“I have a massage every other Saturday at home with Lucja Maslowska.
“Last but not least, I sleep at least eight hours a night.”
Did the spa treatments at Brown’s hotel launch at the same time as the products?
“Yes… I really love the Age Defying Etna Facial with hot and cold volcanic stones directly sourced from Mount Etna.
“For the body, our Mediterranean Nourishing Body Treatment is my secret to super-soft, smooth skin.”