TYPOLOGY- THE PARISIAN SUSTAINABLE & VEGAN SKINCARE BRAND YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT
Ning Li is transforming the beauty industry with the minimalistic style of Typology. We spoke about what inspired the founder to launch the company, why he uses naturally sourced ingredients and what are the French skincare tips we should follow
Words: Emily Georgieva
Taking care of your skin is so important and nowadays there is more access to information about what you should and shouldn't do than ever before. Millennials are given so much choice of products and with brands launching daily it is hard to keep up with all the trends. Luckily, thanks to the internet and social media, we are able to make much more precise and informed decision about the products that we use and make our routine tailored to the needs of our own skin type.
Choosing the right brand that is sustainably sourced, ethically minded and uses only natural ingredients is the goal. We spent a while looking for the perfect balance between a company that cares for the environment and is on the mission to revolutionise skincare with a forward-thinking approach. When we came across Typology on social media, we knew we had found the one brand that does it all. It was love from fist sight.
Typology is a Parisian beauty brand that uses only natural ingredients to create formulas that have proven to stand the test of time. The founder, Ning Li, and his team take this ideology to a new level. The French-raised, Chinese-born entrepreneur is challenging the beauty norms and paving a new path for skincare products. Transparency and honesty are core values of the neutral beauty brand. Typology has decided to go back to basics and use only the best ingredients sourced from nature to offer their customers a modern and elegantly simple way to rethink their skincare routine.
‘‘The swims in the “O Sole Mio and Cape Town Campaign” were inspired by my last year’s trip to India, specifically the rich hues and architecture of Jaipur.’’
Ning Li, founder of Typoloy for NOMADSofORIGIN Magazine
Vegan and cruelty-free, Typology has launched several sub-brands: "Raw", "Lab" and "Ten", each one allowing customers to use the products differently. "Raw" is all about personalising the experience so the line comes in deconstructed box that contains spoons, powders and oils, which can be mixed and matched to create one-of-a-kind masks, as well as hair oils. "Lab" is a set of serums created for different skin needs, while the "Ten" product line takes us back to the foundations of skincare as it contains basic products that have just 10 or less ingredients.
Even though the formulas are simple, Typology doesn't compromise the quality of their products. Ning Li believes in the importance of using ingredients with proven positive results across different generations instead of following in the footsteps on beauty brands that use newer molecules, which have fewer studies to back up their purpose. As a result, the customers always know where the ingredients in the bottles of Typology came from. Sourced gently from sustainable farms, all ingredients are combined after careful consideration to create exotic scents and exclusive products.
As if all this wasn't enough to make you want to shop their lines, Typology is also entirely dedicated to keeping the environment clean. Their packaging, not only minimalistic, stylish and sophisticated, is entirely recyclable and often made from recycled materials. The company uses aluminum and glass in their packaging to allow customers to make the most of the products they buy and reuse the bottles or dispose them accordingly. They even have B Corp certification to reflect the brand ideology.
This year the company launched in the UK and we couldn't be happier. We spoke to Ning Li and his team about the difficulties they have faces while launching Typology, why they decided to create an independent, sustainable beauty brand and what are the French skincare tips we should be following.
NOMADSofORIGIN: We fell in love with Léa The Label from first sight.
Léa: Thank you so much for the kind words and excited to be a part of this interview with ORIGIN Magazine.
NOMADSofORIGIN: Your products are a carefully crafted balance between minimalism and contemporary eccentricity. What is your must-have all-time-favourite swims design from all the collections?
Léa: I love all of our styles in our collections as each piece is designed for different occasions or specific wear, our styles range from casual to resort. I have to say our signature styles like the Loren Top and Portofino one-piece for example are some of my favorite and most unique pieces but I absolutely love my staple go to basics, such as the Palermo and Elba Tops and Loren or Capri Bottoms for all around comfort and everyday beach wear.
NOMADSofORIGIN: Sustainability is a huge part of your ideology as the brand is eco-friendly. You work with ECONYL® and use Italian materials to create premium swimwear that’s comfortable and resilient to chlorine. Do you think more labels, especially in the fashion industry, need to adapt to a similar approach of working with eco materials and sustainability in mind?
Léa: I think if eco-friendly luxurious fabrics that are more durable than most swimwear fabrics are available in the market, then why not make the positive change and contribute to help save our oceans.
NOMADSofORIGIN: The designs in each collection are influenced by a place. PRIMEIRA is inspired by Algarve, Portugal; O SOLE MIO is by Puglia, Italy; and CAPE TOWN is by Cape Town, South Africa. What are your go-to travel destinations that each lover of the sunny days spent at the beach should know about?
Léa: Travel definitely plays a dominant role in my inspiration from the design process to shooting our campaigns. The swimwear designs are inspired by my travels and experiences around the world with an appreciation for culture, art, style and yoga, as I practice yoga daily and have been an instructor for a couple of years now, something I am very passionate about, all of which have played a part in the birth of the brand.
For example the swims in the “O Sole Mio and Cape Town Campaign” were inspired by my last year’s trip to India, specifically the rich hues and architecture of Jaipur. We currently also manufacture responsibly in Bali, which is one of my preferred serene islands to unwind and recharge, a place where the yoga, beach culture and sustainable visions are widely common.
Photography: Aura House
Photography: Aura House
NOMADSofORIGIN: What is your bestseller swimwear design?
Léa: Our best selling pieces have always been our signature Loren, Portofino and Monroe swimsuits, however we are beginning to see a broader variety depending on the country as each market is quite different.
NOMADSofORIGIN: Your swimwear is made from ocean waste. Post and pre consumer waste such as plastic, fishing nets and nylon are collected, cleaned and transformed into your timeless designs. This is an amazing superpower! Why did you decide to create this incredible label in such a unique way?
Léa: The fashion industry grew rapidly over the years compared to when I was still at University and it is still growing at a substantial pace. During my last year at University, I specialized in lingerie and swimwear, as I found it so intriguing and challenging to create something so minimal. However I felt that there is more to fashion than just designing pretty clothing and was determined to create with a purpose.
My earliest childhood memory was the ocean in Lebanon where I spent a large sum of my youth, and watching the blue water disappear over the years and being replaced by plastic bags and waste was quite daunting. So why not create while reducing our carbon footprint.
Our concept is more focused on supporting the slow fashion movement with minimal and timeless collections and avoiding fast-fashion and mass production to allow more time for creativity and construction. We want to focus more on ethical fashion using the highest luxury eco-friendly fabrics for an affordable price and offer staple pieces to ensure our consumers that years down the line, their swimwear is still durable and in style. Even the slightest changes can go a long way. We hoped and continue hoping that by creating our swimwear from 100% regenerated nylon we can contribute to saving our oceans and help bring awareness and change.
NOMADSofORIGIN: If you could collaborate with any other brand, which one would it be?
Léa: There are many inspiring companies and people in this industry that we look for and would love to collaborate with who share a similar approach on ethical matters and sustainable ways.
NOMADSofORIGIN: You have created quite a community of consciously shopping travellers. How would you advise them to change their fashion shopping habits beyond purchasing swimwear?
Léa: It is very easy to be discouraged in the fashion industry, and always having to keep up, whether that is a brand, a fashion student or a consumer. It is important to have the understanding that it is acceptable to move slow and shop or design consciously, rather than moving fast and compromising on quality. Of course it is difficult to always shop eco-friendly as it is not constantly available, however I think that by shopping timeless quality and staple pieces, it is already a positive step forward.
NOMADSofORIGIN: We are so happy to be part of your community! Keep up being amazing and use your superpowers for good. Is there anything else you would like to add to this interview?
Léa: Thank you so much for the support and the opportunity to share our story. Less is always more and it is lovely to see many brands shifting to sustainable ways.
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NOMADSofORIGIN x Typology
NOMADSofORIGIN is an independent annual publication with a focus on sustainable travelling and global cultural values. Each issue features interviews, engaging articles and photo guides, which take our nomadic readers through different destinations and introduce them to local people's perspectives.
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