Through the Lens with May Lindstrom
Breath. Love. Dream. Close your beautiful eyes and pamper yourself with the most decadent ritual ever made. I am very honoured and grateful to be the first to bring to you this very intimate interview with May Lindstrom chatting all about her just-released Special Limited Edition Collection. The Steam Collection is an experience for your skin, a ritual that is healing, calming and infused with love. If you haven’t seen this yet, feast your eyes as this is a labour of love and a very special collaboration with two other truly inspiring artisans. Together, they introduce a ritual infused with sensuality, one that will bring out the gorgeous goddess that has been hidden in you all along. Did I mention there are only 50 of these available to take home worldwide?!
I was lucky to be in Los Angeles as this collection was being created. I had the enchanting opportunity to watch May formulate I Am Love. Friends, I have to share with you the Scent Experience is so delicious, so heavenly and by far the most sensual scent I’ve ever put on my skin. Before we get to the interview, it is with such pleasure that I share with you the making of the Steam Vessel, handmade by Los Angeles clay artist Melissa Brown. I was able to capture these precious moments of Melissa making the clay vessel in her home studio surrounded by meyer lemon trees. Can I live here forever?
Incredible, right? I now bring to you a very special moment.
Through the Lens with May Lindstrom
Elli: As a little girl growing up, what scents resonated with you the most and still do to the present day?
May: Is it funny if I say dirt? Truly, earth itself has the most magical scent. I grew up in Northern Minnesota, with a iron-rich red clay covering my land. I can easily recall the tinny, mineral-heavy scent, steeped in dampness from the river that danced through the property. And green, so much green. I was raised in a forest and the aromas of pine, oak and birch run through my blood. Nature offers an olfactory experience that is so far beyond what we can hope to recreate. This has always been my inspiration. I want to touch these parts of our subconscious, inspire the reveal of sensory memories and build new ones. Today I am much the same as I have always been. The earth moves me, and directs my vision. I am constantly influenced by the discovery of new plants and their essential oils, of spices, herbs and sweet honey…
Elli: I believe in adding calming and healing ingredients to create an experience that both the mind and body benefit from it. I feel that the new limited collection delivers a unique and special experience that encapsulates tranquility, self-love and intimacy. What feeling flows through you when you think of this collection?
May: Oh, Elli. This is my DREAM collection. Steam is such a magical and powerful thing and I am beyond delighted to introduce such a gorgeous new element to my ritual. This is the epitome of indulgent skincare – a routine that really forces you to slow down, to literally just sit with yourself and breathe into your self care. The vessel itself is a work of art. When I immerse myself in an evening treat of this steam, the tea, the oils, the silken scarf… I feel like such a woman. Beautiful, serene, steady and strong. I feel powerful when I’m given the space to tune in to myself in such an intimate way.
Elli: There is something really magical about the scents throughout this collection. I fell deeply in love immediately upon witnessing you formulate the pieces in this ritual. What should your clients anticipate when they receive this handcrafted limited edition gift set?
May: Scent is an integral part of how I formulate. It is foundational in my blends, something to root the experience, and inspire the romance. This collection is particularly aromatic – warm, sensual, with the kind of sweetness that you want to lean in close to partake in. The I am Love duo, with both the beauty oil and the scent experience, are particularly inviting. This is the kind of scent that whispers, and weaves itself into your subconscious, delicately painting magical moments deeply into your memory.
Tea is quiet and our thirst for tea is never far from our craving for beauty.
James Norwood Pratt
Elli: As part of a tranquil practice, the tea medley is used as a luxurious healing steam experience for the skin, but you can also enjoy the tea brewed. Can you touch on some of the ingredients and their benefits on our overall wellbeing?
May: Introducing steam formally and front and center to my ritual is something I feel very passionate about. The benefits are tremendous – this practice increases your blood circulation, stimulates perspiration and detoxification, deeply hydrates and delivers nutrients to your skin. Equally important is the time-out itself. Taking these moments to devote purely to our breathing is immensely important. Your stress levels and hormones will drop, you will feel anxiety melting away, and a beautiful calm is revealed. Chinatown Lover was inspired by the the fondness I’ve discovered for the little neighbourhood that has become my second home. We moved into our Chinatown studio one year ago on Valentine’s Day, and it really has been a love story. The community here has embraced us, and I selected each of the special ingredients to create this blend from my neighbors and their fantastically inspiring shops brimming with special teas, flowers, herbs and potions. Chinatown Lover is brimming with yumminess – jasmine flowers, China rose, kunlun chrysanthemums, roasted barley, hibiscus, rosehips, varietals of oolong and green teas… It’s a complex and delicious blend, nourishing and loaded with goodness for skin, both internal and external. A deeper exploration of the tea ingredients and their many benefits will be featured on my blog shortly, be sure to check it out!
Elli: The “I Am Love” beauty oil was part of a limited edition from last year, can you tell us why you chose to re-launch it?
May: I truly couldn’t help it! I’m enamored with I am Love. I created this originally as a total sensory treat. I wanted something that was simply indulgent, creamy, thoroughly enjoyable. I formulated this for pleasure. What I didn’t realize was how much my skin would absolutely love it. From the first use, I noted a visible difference in my complexion. I felt extra soft, supple, calm, and my results improved day after day. After the release of the very limited edition (only 35 sets were created), my inbox started to flood with inquiries from those who missed it and desperately wanted to secure a bottle, and with love notes from clients who had been in the lucky 35 and couldn’t get enough. The very strong consensus was that this was a winner, and we all wanted more. When I started piecing together this year’s collection, I played around with other blends, but ultimately my heart knew this was the one. It’s special, and exactly the potion that best compliments this deeply romantic and beautiful collection.
Elli: The scent is truly captivating and you truly don’t want the ritual to stop with the beauty oil. You included a delightful “I Am Love” fragrance made with essential oils to wear throughout the day. Are you considering launching a set of fragrances in the near future?
May: I can’t give away any secrets, but I will say that it’s certainly an idea I love. Scent is powerful, and play in this direction fully resonates with me. I have dreams about what this might look like, and I’m excited to start exploring if the reality can meet my incredibly high expectations.x
Elli: I want to touch on the handmade clay bowl. This piece of art is made by local artist, Melissa Brown whom I had the pleasure of meeting. She created a beautiful vessel for this experience that takes your facial experience to the next level. Can you share your thought process to include this bowl in the collection?
May: This bowl is the very essence and foundation of this collection. It’s truly stunning – no photo or video could do justice to what an incredible vessel this is. The bowl is generously sized, with an opening perfectly designed to softly cradle your face as you lean into the steam. The sides are soft and sloping, beautiful for the eyes and satisfying to your touch. The variation and textures of the greys quite literally give me goosebumps. I have several of these bowls in my house – for my steam ritual of course, but also as a table centerpiece. It’s gorgeous to float tealight candles or flower buds in, to fill with fresh fruit, homemade pasta or a mountain of beautiful greens for a showstopping salad. It’s an art piece, a conversation piece, the perfect gift, and an excuse to bring something beautiful into any room of your home.
Elli: Can you tell us about the scarf included in this collection?
May: Melissa, who makes our bowls, sent me a link to Shellie’s instagram many months ago. I was immediately enamored, and absolutely determined to come up with any reason at all to collaborate on a project together. Her work is an inspiration. Shellie sources gorgeous reclaimed silk from India, and then dyes each piece by hand. If this wasn’t special enough, she blends her own dyes, utilizing plants rather than synthetic colorants – many of these plants she personally forages! Our scarlet scarf is dyed with historically rich madder root, utilized for it’s colorant properties since Egyptian times. This silk is perfect for holding in the steam and warmth during your facial, while still being light and airy enough to allow you to breathe very comfortably. It’s also incredibly pretty to simply wear as a classic accessory, the deep red softly circling your neck and shoulders.
Elli: Can you share with me some of the rituals that help you nurture the self-love that you beautifully exhibit?
May: My absolute favorite Los Angeles getaway is to the Korean spas here. They are inexpensive, very functional and “no fluff”, and deeply rooted in self care as a vital daily practice, not simply as an indulgence. I try to go regularly, partaking in wet steams and dry saunas, charcoal oxygen rooms and havens filled with pink Himalayan salts. I scrub my skin until it’s fresh and pink, sweat and soak and nap. It’s total heaven. When I can’t get away for a day, I do all I can to recreate at least a taste of this at home – steaming over our special bowl, doing a deep exfoliation with The Clean Dirt, masquing with my favorite combination of The Problem Solver + The Honey Mud, massaging myself head to toe in delicious oils. I’ve learned that for me, this is a need. For me to be my best self, the best mother and wife and friend, for me to balance the joys and challenges of growing my business… these are my tools. My best self is the one that feels loved and cared for, first and foremost by me.
Your romance starts here.