Lisa Chetrit grew up in a culture that celebrated and indulged in all of the incredible benefits of argan oil, and with her line Kesh Beauty, she’s spreading the wealth! These multitasking wonders can bring out the best in your hair, skin and nails. Read on to discover why Lisa started her line, what makes Kesh stand out and what’s to come for this exciting brand.
Beauty oils, argan in particular, has grown rapidly in popularity over the past few years. Growing up in Morocco, did you always know about its beauty benefits?
I grew up in the states, but my parents were both Moroccan and we had a very Moroccan household. I’m married to somebody who was born and raised there, so my whole life has always been intertwined with Morocco. We always used argan oil for many different things – both culinary and cosmetic. Back then, you would get it on the sides of the street in empty Coke bottles! I used to put it in my hair as a hot oil treatment, on my body, in the sun as baby oil. As a culinary oil, I would use it in my salads, on eggs…all kinds of food. We always knew it was good for your body, good for your hair, good for your skin. It’s a lot like olive oil, in the sense that it’s not a good cooking oil, but it’s a good flavoring oil because it has a nutty flavor. It has all the same health benefits as olive oil, so it’s a great oil and food product.
What is the process of developing your argan oil? Is there anything that sets it apart?
It’s cold pressed, and I source it from a place that uses a triple filtration system. When they’re processing the oil, they’re trying to keep everything that’s good in it, but also taking out all of the impurities. They’re trying not to make it such a thick, gooey, heavy oil. Something that’s lighter on the skin. For me, I never liked that nutty fragrance, so I wanted to find a system that would take out as much of that scent as possible. We also use natural essential oils; there aren’t that many oils on the market that have a fragrance at all. That sets us apart as well.
Your line is so simple – I love that there are only three options: Pure, Rose Essence and Orange Blossom Essence. Why did you decide to go with those two scents?
If you go to Morocco, those are two very signature aromas that you’ll smell all over Morocco. There are rose petals everywhere, as part of the decor. Orange Blossom is used in home fragrances, for flavoring desserts, for flavoring water… One of the main visions behind the brand was to bring the best of Morocco here, so I really wanted to start with those two signature Moroccan aromas.
Many people with naturally oily skin are hesitant to use any type of beauty oil, though most beauty experts say it’s okay to use. What advice would you give to those who are hesitant?
I never used oil on my face growing up because I was afraid of breakouts. Until a few years ago, I would only use oil-free products on my face. There was nobody more afraid of using oil on their face than me! As I started to have different skincare needs, I realized I shouldn’t be so afraid. I began to try out different things and experiment, and the truth is, it is a lot of trial and error. Skincare is a very personal thing, but my advice is to try new things because your skin changes, and your skin has different needs at different times. My skin surprisingly drank up the oil; that’s how badly it needed the hydration and the restorative benefits. You could be really pleasantly surprised.
What are your favorite uses for argan oil?
I use argan oil in so many different ways, but let me tell you the ways I use it now on a daily basis. I use it to every day on my hair to tame flyaways – whether blowing out or not. Wipe it down, especially on the ends. This time of year, I use it on my legs – it gives a great sheen and shine to your legs, especially the rough spots like knees. I always loved using it as a relaxing bath oil whenever I have time. This time of year, with the sun and heat damage, I like to use it as a deep conditioning treatment. I’ll leave it in my hair all night.
The packaging of your products is gorgeous — what was the inspiration?
So I’ve always lived between two worlds – traditional Moroccan household, but also modern American culture. I really wanted the packaging to reflect this blending. I wanted to take things from traditional Moroccan design, like patterns, script, bright colors, and give it a modern feel.
Tell us about your typical beauty routine.
With four kids, my beauty routine can sometimes be the lowest priority, but if I had to break it down, the things I always have to do are cleanse, tone and moisturize my skin, morning and night. Before applying my sunscreen, I always put on a layer of the pure argan oil. I prefer the pure for my face, just because I have so many other products on, I don’t want the fragrances mixing in. On my body and hair, though, I use the fragrance ones all the time. If I have extra time, I like to add on anti-aging serums and creams. Most of the time, I don’t have time for that, and that’s why I feel like the argan oil is a great multitasking product to have. I can use it for so many different things – my face, skincare benefits, restorative benefits. It’s a staple in my beauty routine because it can do so much.
If we looked inside your makeup bag, what would we find?
I’m a pretty basic girl – you would find a tweezer, eyeliner, mascara, a blush, bronzer, cream concealer, a bunch of different neutral lipsticks and one bright red lipstick. I always have a mini argan oil, whether it’s a fragrance one or pure, in my bag. I have a separate bag with all my eye stuff for when I have events and need to dress up, but this is what I would carry with me on a typical day.
What are your Holy Grail, must-have products?
For a long time, I was using Awake, a Japanese brand, for this concealer, but they discontinued it after ten years of use! I found a similar replacement, though, and I have to give it props: Vincent Longo Water Canvas. I also use the Shiseido UV Protective Stick Foundation. I always loved my Guerlain Terracotta Bronzer. I’m pretty loyal to my Chanel mascaras – Inimitable and Le Volume de Chanel Waterproof. For lipsticks, I’m very into NARS, MAC and YSL.
Do you have any exciting plans for Kesh Beauty in the near future that you can tell us about?
Coming soon, you’re gonna see a travel sized argan oil sampler that’s going to have the three current fragrances, as well as a new one that will launch soon. Kesh will probably be in some beauty boxes in the next year. I’m also working on different delivery systems, like a cuticle pen. Also, I will definitely be launching some products with a base of prickly pear seed oil. I’m still in the testing phase, but that’s definitely the next round – something anti-aging.