DISCOVER THE HEALING POWER OF THE FOREST
- 25 Oct 2021
The forests are an open mine of unfathomable benefits. From the very early ages, mankind has derived entire livelihoods from forest resources. New research and developments pop up everyday in medicine, care, and basically every sphere of the world. Yet, nature as a base remains constant. It’s nature that we still depend on, directly or indirectly, and will continue to do so. This is where the very valid popularity of natural skincare comes in. The pure and natural formulations are chosen for their toxin free benefits.
In Sweden, the forest holds immense importance. For centuries, people have cherished all that it provides and found the best uses for it. It is multidimensional, from providing medicinal benefits to having a cultural significance.
SKÖG, is what you would call a forest in Swedish. Here at Skög, the mission is to explore the most beneficial gifts of the forests of Sweden. Dive into some rewarding ingredients that are present in our best selling skincare solutions.
The Elderflower appears in clusters of white, which makes the view look magical. It blooms on the Elder Tree and has five tiny petals.
HISTORY AND CULTURE
The scent of the elderflowers is said to be the harbinger of summer. According to beliefs, the Elder Tree is said to ward off evil spirits. As the saying goes, the Elder Mother lived in the Elder Tree. She would either bless the people or punish them. Clearly a very powerful tree indeed.
Apart from this, the Elderflower is also considered auspicious. It is said to bring good fortune, and blessings to expecting mothers. It is also used during weddings for good luck.
Speaking of celebrations, it's a staple Swedish in parties. Put it in food, garnish with it, or (most preferably) mix it with some Aquavit. As for its flavour, many say it tastes like spring. For some, it is the taste of royalty. Whatever it may be, it has a subtle floral taste, and if that doesn't sound magical, we don't know what does.
As a typical use, Elderflower is added to cakes (with lots and lots of strawberries), infused in drinks, and added to creams and syrups. This surely is something you want to taste. Moving ahead to its medicinal side, Elderflower has innumerable health benefits. It is used as a remedy for flu and cold, and also for problems like diabetes.
Elderflowers are packed with anti-inflammatory, which makes them most suitable for fighting skin problems. They are also rich in vitamins, flavonoids, and quercetin. The bioflavonoids present work as an anti-wrinkle treatment and keep the skin firm.
The main problem causing factors - the sun and the free radicals, both are shielded against through Elderflowers.
They are packed with Vitamins A,B,C, and E.
This helps in reducing any kind of pigmentation and dark spots. If you are having trouble with uneven skin tone and texture, this is the perfect remedy for you. It also works as a detoxifier and minimises breakouts. It has antimicrobial properties that help to keep skin healthy and clear.
To top all that, it also reduces pore size and keeps them right. You can find this fascinating ingredient in our Clarifying and Brightening Serum. It is perfect for all skin types. It adds a radiant glow to the skin and works to fight all skin problems that you may have.
Clarifying & Brightening Serum
These flowers, as we rightly said, are nothing short of magic. To have so many qualities in such a tiny form is what keeps us in awe of them.
Cloudberries, also known as Arctic Gold, are native to North Sweden. They grow in plants that are about 10-25 centimeters tall. Their leaves are green but unique and it has white flowers. These flowers grow into beautiful berries that become bright amber in colour as they ripe.
But, these are said to be extremely rare which justifies their high price. Pollination requires both the male and female plant. Even after that the plant takes 7 years to bear any fruit. The harvest window is also small. So you have to be proactive to not miss the few weeks when these fruits show.
HISTORY AND CULTURE
As legend goes, the location of cloudberry plants is kept as a family secret. This information is passed on from generation to generation only. The fruits are picked by hand, and can survive temperatures as low as -40 degrees.
From the time of the Vikings, this rare delicacy has been a popular supplement. The voyagers took them along on their journeys, as a cure/prevention for scurvy. At the time, this probably seemed like sorcery, but is now a known fact. Scurvy is a disease caused by deficiency of Vitamin C. Cloudberries contain 14 times more Vitamin C than oranges, so you can imagine the reason behind their so-called magical powers.
Traditionally, Cloudberries are preserved by either making them into a jam or by freezing them. This makes sense also, because who wouldn't want to keep these rare golden berries in store for happy occasions all year round. In Sweden, this Cloudberry jam is used as a delicious topping for pancakes, waffles and anything else you want to have!
Cloudberries, as we have already mentioned, are super rich in Vitamin C. Apart from that, they also contain Vitamin E, which shields and protects the skin from free radicals.
Because it protects collagen, it is a great ingredient to fight aging, reduce wrinkles, fine lines, and lackluster skin.
It is also full of Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, that help retain moisture in skin to keep it hydrated. It is a best friend for those who have sensitive skin. It is beneficial to calm redness, irritation and Inflammation. But apart from this, the best thing about them is that they are suitable for all skin types.
Cloudberries are a great addition to your skincare, and if you haven't tried these yet, we urge you to do so. You can find them in our Cloudberry/Sea Lettuce Hydrating Cream. This is a lightweight formulation which is perfect for everyday hydration.
Cloudberry / Sea Lettuce Hydrating Cream
As you can tell by now, we are big Cloudberry fans. We hope we have given you enough reason to justify this obsession, and also inspired you to try them for yourself!
Birch trees are found abundantly in Sweden. It has a white bark, which it grows tall with green leaves that turn yellow in autumn. The sap from the birch tree is tapped only once a year. The early spring season is the perfect window for this purpose.
HISTORY AND CULTURE
The Birch Tree has always been a symbol of purity. It is a highly valued tree whose leaves, bark and sap have been used for ages. The collection of the birch sap is an event that is looked forward to. The month of March has come to be known as the 'month of birch'. The sap is collected by drilling a hole in the tree. The sap flows out of the bark and is collected in bottles.
Back in the 19th century, a famine hit many parts of Sweden. During this tough period, Birch came as a saviour. It was called a 'poor man's cow'. Because of the lack of food resources, it was used as food and a drink to go along with it.
Birch sap is also made into some delicious mealtime drinks. It has a subtle and sweet taste. It can be infused with any alcohol of your choice. Apart from this, Birch wine is also very popular. More creative ways of having birch are also as a birch beer or even birch mead. Who would say no to a refreshing drink? Birch sap is also saved up by making it into a syrup. This works as an excellent topping for pancakes (and whatever else you want to add it to, really). Birch vinegar is also used in many households.
Birch sap has been used for skincare in Sweden for ages. It is primarily used for maintaining skin health by fighting free radicals.
Healthy skin can also be witnessed as birch stimulates cell turnover, boosting the skin barrier functions. It also reduces skin inflammation and acne.
It is loaded with minerals like zinc, copper, potassium, calcium and magnesium. Quite a lot of elements to this simple yet effective ingredient!
It also has antimicrobial properties and plenty of antioxidants. This makes it great for both skin and hair.
Birch sap also contains vitamin C and vitamin B groups, 15 different amino acids, and enzymes. These nutrients refine skin texture and complexion.
Birch Sap Facial Tonic Mist
Birch Sap Facial Cleanser
We have listed a few benefits. This list continues as you expand your imagination with this dynamic forest resource. You can find pure Birch Sap in our Birch Sap Facial Cleanser and Birch Sap Facial Tonic Mist. This duo is remarkable for oily, acne prone, sensitive, and combination skin. Adding this to your daily routine is a sure way of getting clean and clear skin.
SEA BUCKTHORN (HAVTORN)
Sea Buckthorn is found in leafy bushes, with leaves that can look like silver. The berries are bright orange and can be spotted from a distance. The most intriguing fact about them is that they contain 15 times more Vitamin C than an Orange! You can draw the parallel and see how beneficial this must be for our overall health.
HISTORY AND CULTURE
Growing Sea Buckthorn is somewhat of a tradition. It is said to be the first plant to be grown in Sweden when the ice melted away enough to grow greenery.
The harvest season of Sea Buckthorn is celebrated. Families invested in this activity sit for long hours to pick the berries by hand. It is not the easiest thing to do either. The bushes are thorny and it takes a long time to filter out the berries from the plant. But the end result is worth it. The berries have a sour taste and have to be reduced to a jam or preserve before eating. This tangy jam is paired well with cheese and bread.
Another way to consume them is by taking out it's oil. The berries are pressed to obtain the well demanded Sea Buckthorn oil, which has endless benefits. Apart from skincare, this oil is used to heal burns and wounds as well.
Sea Buckthorn, as you know by now, is a mine of Vitamin C. It pushes the regeneration of the skin tissue and gives you a vibrant glow.
It also contains more Vitamin E than any other plant based oil. It protects the skin, and keeps it firm.
The oil also contains essential Omega fatty acids, and a huge mine of minerals.
All these make Sea Buckthorn perfect for sensitive skin. It works to reduce redness and inflammation. It also calms many skin infections, and makes skin smooth and elastic.
It repairs the skin too, and is excellent for hydration. You can find it in our Lip Repair Oil. This ingredient makes the sensitive skin on the lips strong, so it avoids getting chapped.
It also is a primary ingredient in our Clarifying and Brightening Serum. It reduces pigmentation, dark spots, uneven skin tone and blemishes.
Clarifying & Brightening Serum
We love this ingredient for all its worth and how perfectly it fits in. A well rounded super berry, it is a great addition to your skincare routine. It indeed is a miracle berry!
These are a few of the fascinating finds from the forests of Sweden. We use the purest forms of ingredients to provide you with the highest form of benefits. Our ethos lies in nature, and we respect all that it gives us. Stories and cultural significance differs from region to region, and we are sure you have some of your own.
We would love to know your experience with these wonderful ingredients. Share your thoughts and generational knowledge with us in the comments below!