The skyline in my blog’s header pays homage to Toronto, the city in Canada that I call home.
Although I love to explore products and brands that hail from all over the globe, there’s a special place in my heart for local ones because I have a sense of Toronto pride.
Back in February, I had the incredible opportunity to ask some challenging questions and get great answers!
Here’s my Exclusive Interview with Bill Baker, the Owner of Consonant Skincare.
Consonant Skincare is proudly a Canadian company. All of their high-end 100% natural products are created and produced in Canada.
They have two locations in Toronto:
- Flagship store is located at 2479 Yonge Street (Store hours: Monday to Saturday from 10 am to 6 pm & Sunday from noon to 5 pm)
- PATH location is located at 120 Adelaide Street West, Unit R12 (Store hours: Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm) – Opens March 16th
But aside from geography, what stands out is that Consonant Skincare products utilize the highest possible concentration of organic botanical ingredients. Instead of being a “Band-aid solution” for irritating skin symptoms, Consonant Skincare products are formulated to work in harmony with the body’s natural chemistry to improve the healthy appearance of skin with continued use.
Consonant Skincare products make skin appear firmer, healthier, and younger-looking without using synthetic ingredients like parabens, sulphates, petroleum ingredients, phthalates, and silicone.
One of their customer favourites, HydrExtreme, recently won the Grand Prize at the Canadian Beauty Innovation Awards!
See the rest of this post to read my exclusive interview with Bill Baker, the official press release, and information on how you could win their Ultimate Consonant Experience Giveaway ($5,000 CAD value that’s good for one winner and four friends)!
Here’s Bill Baker, the owner of Consonant Skincare. (Yes, he’s quite handsome, isn’t he?) 😉
Below is my exclusive interview with Bill Baker! 🙂
Swatch And Learn: What is the biggest mistake that people make when it comes to skincare, and how can Consonant help?
Bill Baker: The one thing we ask customers to consider, is cleansing LESS often. As a culture, we are trained to be squeaky clean. The problem is, most of us are over-cleansing. If you wash your face before bed, you likely don’t need to wash it again in the morning; simply splashing with cold water will reinvigorate you, wake you up, and prepare your skin for your morning regimen. We recently received an email from a client who told us after she stopped re-washing her face in the morning, her skin actually became less oily, helping her achieve the best skin of her life!
Swatch And Learn: Aside from wearing skincare with SPF on a daily basis, what is one skincare product that people can add into their routine that could make the biggest difference to their complexion?
Bill Baker: What are the three most important things you can do to keep your skin looking healthy and young? Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize! Even people with oily skin should ensure they have properly hydrated skin, so we recommend HydrExtreme for all our customers. For customers with dry skin, there is no more potent or persistent hydrator on the market; our active ingredient is clinically proven to outperform Hyaluronic Acid, two to one! For customers with oily skin, HydrExtreme is lightweight (it is actually a water-binding sugar, not an oil) and can help normalize skin so it doesn’t produce excess sebum.
Swatch And Learn: What are some of the biggest skincare trends, and which Consonant products fit in with those trends?
Bill Baker: Trends we think are going to come and go are around certain vitamins (C and A are hot right now) and “dry” oils. Truthfully, we are not fans of either. In the case of concentrated vitamins, clients must be careful they’re not taking in too much of a good thing – while some Vitamin A and Vitamin C is good for you; too much can cause redness, irritation, photosensitivity and ultimately do more damage than good. In the case of oils, too many of the wrong ones can be heavy and cloying, clogging pores and causing breakouts.
On the other hand, we love the move to simpler, more multifunctional products.
For example, rather than eighteen different moisturizers, we have two. Rather than a cleanser, makeup remover and toner, our Foaming Wash accomplishes all three. And our SPF 30 is also hydrating and colour correcting with natural source mica tint.
Life is busy, and customers just want easy solutions. This is where we think the future is: simple, effective, multidimensional product that deliver results!
Swatch And Learn: Consonant is a very interesting name! What is the story or meaning behind it?
Bill Baker: We wanted a name that was unique, not stereotypically “natural”, and most importantly, meaningful. A consonant sound is a harmonious sound; so, Consonant Skincare is formulated to be in harmony with your skin’s natural chemistry.
Swatch And Learn: Not everyone can afford to see an esthetician. What are some affordable skincare tips or tricks we can do if seeing a skincare professional isn’t possible?
Bill Baker: Everyone can give themselves a super-effective spa-quality treatment at home without the cost or the hassle. The biggest challenge we hear from our customers, is carving out the thirty to sixty minutes you need to really focus on your skin. A beautiful at-home treatment, perfect for every skin type at any time of year, and one that will give you a noticeable result, is:
Cleanse with gentle but effective Foaming Face Wash. You’re accomplishing three steps in one: cleanse, remove makeup, tone.
- Leave skin damp, and apply our Detoxifying, Hydrating and Exfoliating DHE Mask; leave on for thirty minutes.
- Rinse the mask off, and pat skin dry.
- Apply a warm cloth to your face and relax for five minutes.
- Apply HydrExtreme to your entire face. Allow it to absorb for five minutes.
- Finish by emulsifying Face Cream and our Perfect Sunscreen SPF 30 in the palm of your hand, and apply evenly to your entire face, neck and décolletage.
Swatch And Learn: What is a Consonant product you use daily that you would recommend a person try if they’re being introduced to Consonant for the first time?
Bill Baker: Without exception, I use our Foaming Face Wash, Dry Skin Moisturizer and HydrExtreme every single day, 365 days a year. The HydrExtreme is a must have for many of our clients (and for me!), but we recommend new Clients start with the foundational products, cleanser and moisturizer, and build from there. You will see an improvement in your skin with just those two products.
Swatch And Learn: What are some of the challenges that you’ve faced in the skincare industry, and how do you handle them?
Bill Baker: The biggest challenge for Consonant in the early days was proving to Canadians that natural skin care can both feel good to use and deliver meaningful results that will make your skin look younger and healthier from the very first use. After we won Best Canadian Beauty Product for our Firming Eye Cream, and then the Grand Prize at the Canadian Beauty Innovation Awards for HydrExtreme, beauty editors, makeup artists, spas and aestheticians all started taking notice. Now, clients come to us as much for our results-driven products as for the fact they’re 100% natural and healthy.
Bill Baker’s Background
After more than 20 years working on the Client and Agency sides of consumer products and services businesses (including Bristol-Myers, AT&T, CIBC, Molson, and Microsoft) Bill was no stranger to positioning and branding of Fortune 500 companies and their brands.
But in 2007 his world changed when he discovered the virtues of healthier, natural personal care products. Having suffered from skin issues that required prescription intervention his entire adult life, a friend suggested he try natural skincare products as an alternative to the conventional products he had been using, and his skin cleared up overnight.
For the next two years, with the help of cosmetic chemists, homeopaths, herbalists, and other experts in holistic health, Bill learned the truth about the ingredients in personal care products, and became an evangelist for less toxic choices.
Unable to find progressive natural brands that were relevant to his urban, professional lifestyle, he partnered with an old high school acquaintance, a cosmetic chemist and owner of a boutique cosmetics manufacturing business, to develop Consonant Skincare.
Designed to take natural skincare out of the health food store and into the mainstream, and formulated to enhance the lives of consumers by delivering immediate results and long-term well being, the first Consonant Skincare products were launched in 2009.
Since then, the line has gained a loyal following across Canada while garnering critical acclaim in the fiercely competitive beauty industry. In 2011, Consonant won Best Canadian Beauty Product from Chatelaine Magazine for their Firming Eye Cream, and Top Canadian Beauty Product from beautyconnexion.com for their Foaming Face Wash.
Bill works hard to keep Consonant on the leading edge of the fast-emerging “healthy skincare” space in Canada. Consonant recently became a marquis and founding Pledge Member of the Environmental Defence Just Beautiful Campaign, and the company has raised several thousand dollars to support education for the Canadian Breast Cancer Support Fund.
Consonant Skincare launches second location
Canada’s favourite all-natural skincare line expands with a new downtown location in the PATH and a major social media contest to celebrate
Toronto, ON – Consonant Skincare today announced the location of its second store in Toronto. Located in the heart of the downtown core in the Richmond Adelaide Center (120 Adelaide St. W., Unit R12) in the PATH system: one of the world’s largest underground shopping complexes. Consonant Skincare’s new store will officially open its doors to the public on Monday, Mar. 16, 2015.
“We are more than excited to be joining the PATH family,” said Bill Baker, owner of ConsonantSkincare. “This expansion reflects Canadians really embracing an all-natural and healthy lifestyle and our new location will give us the chance to introduce more Torontonians to our high-end natural products.”
To celebrate the launch of the new location, Consonant will offer The Ultimate ConsonantExperience Giveaway leading up to the official grand opening. One lucky winner and three friends will be selected to win a prize valued at over $5,000. Those who “cross paths” with the new Consonant location and who follow Consonant Skincare on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter can share a photo of the new store’s temporary store front on social media with #ConsonantPATH to enter to win.
The new location is launching as an express, satellite location designed for education, consultation and quick service and will be designed by Erika Floysvik, Principal of Fia & Company. The aesthetic will reflect Consonant’s dedication to simple and clean design. In addition to being a quick, one-stop skincare shop the new store will highlight the education and benefits of Consonant’s all-natural products and on the spot skincare consultations. In line with the business-minded PATH customer, Consonant is planning an expanded fitness and travel product selection for people who want healthy skin care on-the-go, as well as offering same-day delivery for orders placed before noon.
Join Consonant on the official launch date on Monday, Mar. 16 for special giveaways, offers and a chance to win free skincare for an entire year!
More Contest Information
The contest will run from this Friday until April 20th, 2015.
Those who “cross paths” with the new Consonant location and who follow Consonant Skincare on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter can share a photo of the new store’s temporary store front on social media with #ConsonantPATH to enter to win.
The package includes:
- Manicures from Pause Beauty
- Skin consultation and personal shopping from Consonant Skincare
- Healthy makeup application by celebrity makeup artist, Suzanne Cyr
- Nutrition consultation from Joyous McCarthy, Joyous Health
- Healthy catering from Oats & Ivy
- & gift bags worth over $1000 each filled with products from the Freeze Clinic, Oats & Ivy, Yoga Tree, Greenhouse Juice Co., Pause Beauty Boutique, Merben Dry Brushes, Fuzz Wax Bar, Clementine Fields and The Healthy Butcher.
If you have any skincare questions and would like me to ask Bill Baker, please let me know. I’d be happy to share his answers with you! 🙂
Note: This post isn’t sponsored. I get nothing if you buy or don’t buy Consonant Skincare products. There are no affiliate links. I’m sharing this because some of my readers are also living in Toronto, and it’s cool to learn more about local companies. 🙂
Do you have any questions you’d like me to ask Bill Baker? What are some of your favourite skincare products? If you also live in Toronto, is there a store or person who you’d like me to interview? (I’ll consider it!)