Nearly All Of The Products At Rocky Mountain Soap’s Toronto Pop Up Have 10 Ingredients Or Less

While most pop-up shops last about a month, Rocky Mountain Soap has set up at Toronto’s Eaton Centre and Yorkdale Mall until early January, and it’s the first time the Canmore, Alberta-based natural brand has brought its store experience to Ontario. Their entire range, which adds up to just over 300 products, is on offer and according to founder and CEO Karina Birch, about 90% of them meet their 10 ingredients or less philosophy. Though it was an approach the brand took when they started in 1995, as they expanded into skincare, they allowed themselves to get more complex than they needed to be, excited by the prospect of newness their suppliers would present to them. But in recent years, they decided to return to their simpler roots.

“You can have six ingredients at one per cent or half a per cent, but I’d rather put something in in more abundance and really focus on the benefits of one or two ingredients,” says Birch. “And as we formulate in that way, we really see the difference is obvious.” Another way the company bolsters the potency of their ingredients is by buying some in their original state and processing it themselves so it’s fresh, like the oil they extract from carrots. “We do small batches and then we make our foot butter, rather than having the carrot oil sit there for months at a time.”

Rocky Mountain Soap’s best seller is their Pomegranate Day Cream, but if there’s one item you should check out ASAP it’s their Natural Sunscreen SPF 31. Made with 20.1% zinc oxide, it smells like vanilla coconut and blends like a dream, which took the company three years to perfect. The trick was in adding the shea butter and some of the other ingredients first, mixed under a certain temperature for a period of time, with the zinc being added after. “It creates this net that the zinc sits in so when you apply, it’s got this even application and it allows this non-whitening effect,” says Birch.

Despite using the word ‘toxin-free’ in their marketing like so many other brands in the clean beauty space, Birch says she wants to start moving away from it entirely, believing it’s not necessary and that it makes people feel bad. “There’s no advantage to that,” she says. “Let’s talk about the solution and the positive aspects of the ingredients that we’re using.” We couldn’t agree more.