Vita Liberata $54
How an Ireland-native turned bronze to gold with her innovative approach to tanning.
Written By PUNCH HUTTON
In a new series, VIOLET GREY profiles female beauty entrepreneurs who are considered industry game changers for their individual approach to business. Each one entered the conversation in her own manner and maintained a steady, if not unparalleled, trajectory with her indomitable spirit. Here, we talk to the founder of Vita Liberata.
All hail Vita Liberata! It doesn’t matter what your skin tone, nationality, or tanning quotient is, almost everyone looks better with a splash of sun. (Unless your look is creamy alabaster – in which case, we will be profiling a brand inspired by Geisha beauty later this month.) The thing about real tans is that, as we know, they yield real skin damage. (Cue: Cher’s If I could Turn Back Time). The nasty little secret is that there is no such thing as a healthy tan. Unless, of course, it’s a self-tanner made from non-toxic and organic ingredients that actually moisturizes and helps to firm the skin. Wait, whaaaat?
For this rather genius product you can thank Alyson Hogg, an Irish woman, who, while creating multi-active skincare “gloop,” as she calls it, found a space in the market place. “I was making amazing skincare, and was always surrounded by very pale Irish girls who were desperately looking for something to darken their skin – leaving it patchy and orange,” she explains. “When I was asked to turn my attention to tanning, my initial reaction was not enthusiastic!” That smell. That texture. That streaking. Disgusting. But her friends encouraged and challenged her to make something better. And did she ever.
Vita Liberata launched the world’s first odorless tanning cream in 2007, and by 2011, its suite of non-toxic, organic, and paraben-free mousse and potions had become first in class. Hogg’s patented Odour Remove and Moisture Locking technologies, developed to obliterate odor (you know that gross fake-tan scent) and retain moisture, respectively, catapulted the entrepreneur into the global beauty consciousness.
Today, Vita Liberata is sold worldwide and is a favorite of celebrity beauties such as Sofia Vergara, Taylor Schilling, Bella and Gigi, and the Victoria’s Secret models. The collection includes bronzers, tinters, exfoliants, broad SPF creams, and fan favorites such as the Self-Tanning Anti-age serum, the Ten Minute Tan, and the Body Blur Instant HD Skin Finish, which is beyond perfection. It makes you flawlessly camera-ready – even if your iPhone lens is the only thing pointing at you.
Despite being a luxury beauty brand, Vita Liberata is still cheaper than a trip to Ibiza. So, go – get a tan without regrets.
What is the atmosphere of your bedroom?
Chaotic. I am always in a hurry. So when I run out the door, I invariably leave clothes on the bed and lotions and potions on the dresser!
What time do you wake-up?
I travel through so many times zones there’s no one answer, but [usually anywhere] from 5.30am to 7am-ish.
Do you set an alarm?
Do you set an alarm?
Yes, but I always wake up before it goes off.
How many hours of sleep do you require?
I generally manage about 6 hours, but we should all get 8.
Any bedside beauty essentials?
Glass of water - hydration is critical for good skin!
What is your morning skincare regimen?
Cleanse, peptide mist, and moisturize. I also use Vita Liberata Self Tan Serum a couple of times a week. And l agree with Emma Watson on the bath thing; even if just for a few minutes, I love it. I try to add an oil of some sort to soften my skin.
What’s your hair situation in the a.m.?
Hah! I try to get a blow out once or twice a week, and if I manage to do so then my hair is usually OK. Going blonde has helped a lot!
Do you drink coffee or tea, eat breakfast?
I drink decaf and I eat gluten-free toast or porridge oats and fruit. I am also partial to an egg white omelette if can get one!
Do you work out in the a.m.?
I would love to, but I always get caught up with work as soon as I wake.
What’s the first thing you read each morning?
My emails, then Instagram, then headlines from CNN and the BBC.
What business do you conduct before 10:00 a.m.?
When I am in USA I do UK business from wake-up till midday. In [America] - from midday until about 8pm
Do you have any meetings or calls?
Calls, calls, calls! The majority of my job is to be there for guidance and to give advice to my teams. That entails a lot of phone calls.
What time do you head to your office?
I actually don't have my own desk in any of our offices so I generally work from my mobile and then call in to for a couple of hours during the day if I am in Ireland, London or New York. But it is never at a set time.