Finally the word is out, bathroom amenities face a new challenge; guests with an opinion and increased knowledge about skincare.
Recently I was discussing food with a number of people in the organic skincare industry, and one example struck me: a normal apple bought from the supermarket in 1930 had more than 80% less toxins in it as a regular apple bought today, and double the nutritional value. The reason the discussion came up was because we wanted to understand the bigger picture of the health and wellness of our body. So what can hotels contribute directly to our skin?
What is skin?
Skin exists of three layers, and is considered the biggest organ of the body, which is about 15% of the total body weight. With regards to composition the skin exists of 70% water, 25% protein and 2% lipids. Each one of the layers consist of different types of cells, the outer layer called the epidermis, renews itself every 3-5 weeks. We can help the renewal with scrubs, soaps and popular are mild peels, done by professionals in the Spa or Treatment industry.
To keep the skin looking young and fresh is determined by the type of product that we apply. The objective is to keep away toxins. The second layer of skin called the dermis plays a key role in that too. The dermis is important for the body to be able to breathe and nourish the skin. Only products that actually remain there and are natural enough to penetrate the first layer can improve this layer of skin. The third layer, called subcutaneous tissue, is the main protector of our body, and serves as absorber and heat insulator.
Bathroom amenities a benefit or a decision?
In research by MSNBC, question was asked to guests, whether they would choose a hotel by the type of amenities available. Many of the comments and answers were related to the brand of the product, and own label products. The brand impressed guests and was memorable whereas the own labeled brand did not leave a mark. Besides the brand, the smell is very highly rated. The choice of hotel reflects the wish for attention detail and really exceptional toiletries. So a luxury 5 star hotel should be carrying a product that impresses. But is it a decision maker? Do we change our choice of hotel because one has a product that suits better? The answer remains to be seen, and is not clear so far, because it is very individual, depends on expectations that come with the hotel brand and size (small luxury or boutique for example). One element came out very clearly, which is that for frequent travelers the toiletries can sway the decision on where to stay.
Organic right up there amongst the requirements like smell and brand?
Organic products are finding their way into society and becoming a significant alternative to what we see around us. Consumers are becoming more aware through the media, of the implications to our body of normal products.
The reasons for choosing real organic products, for which every ingredient has been checked, are many. The ingredients in many amenities to avoid are:
Sodium Lauryl Sulfates
Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate
Derivatives of Lauryl Alcohol
Propylene Glycol (Antifreeze)
Olefin Sulfonate (Deodorized Kerosene)
Finally some more facts from an article in Bodystream that point towards the use of organic products:
33% of personal care products have been linked to cancer
48% are reported to be potentially harmful to the reproductive systems
60% of ingredients that can act like estrogens or disrupt hormones
Most chemicals have not undergone any safety testing
The skin absorbs things easily, and in general is exposed to over 168 hazardous chemicals each day.
Hotel guests do not choose the products - hoteliers do. Luckily they are taking sustainability seriously and finding alternatives to waste products like bottles and lids. There is a cost to using certified and clean organic products, but with the way the trend is progressing, in 5 years the guest will not want anything else. A product a hotel or spa is proud of is the only way forward. And even though organic products are not in the top ten reasons for choosing a hotel, I believe the guest has already chosen.
About the Author
Jeroen Gulickx is originally from Holland, where he obtained two business degrees. Later in life he also certified as black belt in Six Sigma. He is Managing Director and founder of Mocinno International, a hospitality consulting company that started in 2005, focused on delivering incremental revenues for hotels, spa's and also hotel suppliers. Jeroen is well travelled and has extensive experience in the luxury travel segment. The main capabilities vary from streamlining cost and operational models, strategy yielding, business development, and marketing to digital marketing. Mocinno International works with a network of highly experienced, energetic and yet innovative people, based in key locations.
Jeroen leads Mocinno International originated projects and the highly skilled team and International partners and agents in many key locations.