I kept seeing Argan Republic on my feed all the time, and one day, I finally decided to follow the brand. After months of debating making a purchase, Marissa came out with a subscription box (not available at the time), in order for consumers to try and test out products. I thought it was the perfect time to finally give it a go.
I had it for 2 months, and fell in love with the Pumpkin Vanilla Facial, which was such a success last year, that it came back! This face mask is amazing, and of course I bought a full size the MOMENT it came back for pre-order.
Just a little note, there is a tab on the site, with all the 100% vegan items (woot woot). Now that we have all of that out of the way, let's get to know Marissa.
Argan Republic is a great line of handmade skincare items, what made you venture into this?
I have always been into health and wellness, but it wasn't until I had my daughter that I really started worrying about what went on my skin. I wanted to go completely non-toxic and heard about the amazing benefits of argan oil. I've also always struggled with combination skin and hormonal acne, so was really unhappy with the conventional choices. Formulating my own made perfect sense to me.
With that said, what did you use before you started making your own products?
Like most women, I've tried numerous products... everything from drugstore brands like Neutrogena or Aveeno, Kiss My Face, to Burt's Bees, Purity, Ren, Dr. Hauschka, and Tata Harper. I still use Burt's Bees and Tata Harper occasionally, if I need a thick eye cream or face cleanser. I usually use Acure Organics or Pacifica face wash. The thing about all those brands is that I never felt like any of them truly made a difference. When I started using natural oils, my skin felt the very best.
What has been your favorite creation and what has been the best seller?
One of my favorite products is also one of our best sellers, which is the Manuka Orchid Facial. It's just amazing for combination skin and the scent is something you don't get over or live without.
What can we expect in the year 2017?
Well, I'm a creativity junky so who knows! I don't like to limit myself, although I know I should scale back the number of products we have. I'm never going to be a traditional skin care line, we will always be changing and improving. I've had a request for a Blue Tansy Facial, which is something I am considering. I know an eye balm is something everyone would like (since the questions were received, Argan Republic now has a matcha eye balm, not vegan).
Now let's have fun, what is your favorite junk food?
Oh my gosh, I go through phases but right now my vice is Justin's Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups - one a day keeps the blues away! I'm also a chocolate cherry cordial addict, can't keep them in the house. If I go to the salty side, it's Cape Cod chips or kettle corn. That reminds me, I need to make a batch of kale chips to keep on track!
What are you usually doing when you eat junk food? Netflix? Reading a book? Nothing?
I really try to limit my junk food, it tends to be when I am out on the go and there's no other option. If I'm having a peanut butter cup though, it's usually at night with a movie.
What is your favorite scent and why?
Jasmine! It's just heavenly and luscious, although I do find it to be best if it's mixed with a little frangipani or neroli.
Growing up, what did you want to be and how did that change, if it did?
Fashion Designer. I made my own clothes in high school and was planning on attending FIT or Parsons, but went through some family struggles that prevented me from being ready to apply. I eventually lost my passion for that and went straight to work out of highschool. I refused to spend money on college when I didn't know for sure what I wanted to do. Luckily, I've now found my niche as wife, mother, and business owner. It's a really fulfilling combination.
If you could be described as one character in TV or movies, who would it be?
So hard! This is going to sound silly and it's probably influenced by the fact that I'm raising a toddler... but maybe Merida from Brave? Or at least aspects of her. I have always felt like I don't quite align with any particular trend or group. I'm just very determined to do what I want to do and I don't like being told what to do or how to conform. I just want to be me, and my family is very important to me.
What is one album you can listen from beginning to end, without getting sick of it?
So tough to answer! Even with my very favorite musicians, there's usually a song or two I skip over. I have to say that with the Marina & the Diamonds album Froot, every single song is really good. Definitely worth listening to! Also, if I'm in a mellow mood, Beck's Morning Phase is a masterpiece.
Do you believe in mythical creatures? Supernatural events?
I think the idea of mythical creatures is a really happy and hopeful one. I mean who doesn't wish they were a unicorn or a mermaid living the magical high life? I absolutely believe in supernatural events, angels, spirits. I'm a true believer that things happen when they are meant to... just when you can't take anymore on your shoulders, the universe delivers you a sign or a helper. I feel that my old dog was a purposeful companion through a certain time in my life. Also when I received the news that my grandmother had died, I was having this really lovely experience... picking kale in a garden with an elderly woman who owned a small farm. I had stopped to see if they had kale and she told me we could go out and pick some together. It was a beautiful sunny fall day and I look back thinking the universe placed me there at that moment when I would receive the sad news.
What are some blogs/magazines you read or follow?
I'm really bad about staying up to date on things, so leisure reading is more of a sporadic thing. But I always love what nutritionist Kimberly Snyder has to say, I love her blog and her books. I do follow a lot of green beauty bloggers on instagram and love what they are promoting. It kind of stresses me out though, to read too much about green beauty because I'll feel like I'm not doing enough or my competitors are ahead of me. I'm not a competitive person at all, it makes me feel negative, I like to just focus on what I am doing without a lot of outside influence (except my research of course). But of course I have to stay somewhat on the curve of what's new!
What are your thoughts on the makeup craze and trend that's happening lately?
I think it's super fun! So many extreme brows and big lips, lots of highlighter. I've always loved makeup so I love seeing all these trends!
On the same topic, what is your makeup style/routine?
I've found my comfort zone in a pretty natural look. Being a redhead, it's easy to look "overdone". Over my argan republic skin care, I wear a light porcelain Kjaer Wiess foundation, a little Josie Maran cream blush, Lash Star mascara (mascara is my non-negotiable because I have blonde lashes), and sometimes a little sheer powder. Also, sometimes I'll darken my brows with the Ecobrow rita color. That's pretty much it... I'm home with my toddler most days so I usually get away with less! I also don't feel like me, unless my nails are painted - even if they tend to be chipped, ha! Zoya nail polish is my fave.
To end this, give us an unknown fact about you.
I'm not sure if it's unknown, but I lived the island life in the Virgin Islands for over 3 years. I have always lived near the water since I was 18. Right now, I live on the seacoast of NH.
Reading Marissa's answers really inspired me. I think too often we get all caught up on what's popular and raved, and don't think about what actually works for us.
I can't emphasize enough that the natural route really does make an amazing difference.
With that said, are you going to pick anything up from Argan Republic? The Wild Cocoa Facial is next on my list to try, but I have WAY too many face masks right now. Use code PRETTYMELISSA for 15% off your next purchase (not affiliated).