Tell us more about how Pixy started and the people involved?
Pixy Natural Skincare products originated as an in-house project in 2010 in our pharmacy in Mallow, Co. Cork, Ireland. There were many natural skincare brands we could have been an agent for, but we wanted to develop our own products and keep control over the ingredients and consequently, the price. And we wanted to make something Irish.
Mary set to work researching and trying out loads of delicious ideas and Nigel designed us the most fantastic packaging and website visuals. As we got more and more positive feedback on our products from our delighted customers and staff, we realised we might have a winner and in March 2012, Peter took Pixy to Dragons’ Den. Two of the Dragons made an offer, but wanted more equity in our fledgling company than we were comfortable giving; but their interest showed us that we could bring the joy of Pixy to people all over Ireland and abroad. As we expanded, Denis coordinated making our beautiful website that Nigel created, into an online shop to spread the joy of Pixy.
Are Pixy beauty products suitable for sensitive skin?
No two people who suffer from sensitive skin will be exactly alike in their symptoms or trigger factors, so it would be misleading for us to suggest that any particular Pixy product will not cause a bad reaction for you. With this in mind we list all our ingredients on the labels and on our website, so you can look out for any ingredient that you know can cause you difficulty.
Having said that, we have had very positive reviews on our products from people living with sensitive skin. The main advice given for those who suffer for dry or sensitive skin is to keep your skin hydrated. Pixy skincare is rich in natural oils and butters that will gently and deeply moisturise your skin. Evening primrose oil, macadamia nut oil and borage seed oil, all high in gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), have been shown to be especially helpful in eczema.
However if your skin is very very sensitive we would always advise you to do a patch test and watch for a reaction, which would usually be immediate, but could occur up to a few hours later. (Why not buy something you want to try out as a gift for a friend and ask to ‘borrow’ it!!)
Our face and body scrubs are gentle and richly moisturising but if you have sensitive skin you shouldn’t over-exfoliate, but give your skin time to rest and rejuvenate between uses.
Pixy was developed to be a fun and fragrant skincare range using natural ingredients, unfortunately some people with sensitive skin find even natural fragrances and essential oils can cause them difficulties. We list the main constituents of essential oils that can be a trigger.
For a soap to clean it must have a surfactant so the dirt can be washed off; we have avoided sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) or sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) which are widely regarded as two of the worst triggers for sensitive skins. Pixy soaps are all rich with moisturising oils and butters. We use the minimum amount of gentle preservative necessary to keep your purchases in good condition and do not use any parabens. Again, we list our ingredients so you can make an informed choice.
We use a tiny amount of mica as a decoration and to give a soft glow in some products, in general this does not cause any skin problems, however those with sensitive skin would be advised to patch test with these products first. Currently the colours we use are synthetic.
Although the Pixy beauty range was designed to give you products that are rich and moisturising, it wasn’t initially developed specifically with sensitive skin in mind, so at the moment, all we can do is give you general pointers. We are looking forward though to rising to the challenge of developing new products and expanding our range to focus on healing moisturising ingredients and avoiding as many known triggers as we can!
Can I use Pixy if I have a nut allergy?
It is generally the protein in nuts that causes the allergy but in skincare the oil part of the nut, which has very little protein content, is used, so unless you have a most severe nut allergy, you should be ok with our nourishing sweet almond oil, enriching macademia nut oil and moisturising coconut oil. But of course, if you know you are susceptible, do a controlled patch test first.
Is Pixy suitable for vegetarians and vegans?
We don’t use ingredients made from animals and the only animal products we like to use in our Pixy natural skincare are the wonderful moisturising properties of beeswax, honey powder and goat’s milk powder. Vegetarians are happy to use ingredients that animals make because the animals aren’t killed to produce it, but vegans are careful to avoid any product that involved an animal in the making of it. We still have loads of choices for you though across our range, that bring you the deep moisturising properties of butters, oils and plant powders. We list all our ingredients so you can make an informed choice.
Do you test Pixy products on animals?
We buy our ingredients from suppliers who source them from manufacturers who don’t test on animals. Once a Pixy product is made up, we enjoy testing it on ourselves 🙂
Can I use Pixy Products while I am Pregnant?
Pixy products are full of wonderful, moisturising ingredients which will pamper your skin as it gently stretches as your baby grows. Some of our products contain essential oils, and it is generally recommended that any products containing essential oils should be avoided during pregnancy.
This is an awful shame because there is conflicting evidence about many essential oils and the easiest solution is to officially say ‘No’ to everything, because obviously no-one can carry out safety tests on pregnant women.
Essential oils are concentrated extracts from plants, some of which have traditionally been used medicinally. Some essential oils can help you relax, some can make you feel energised, both of which can be very beneficial in pregnancy!
However there are some essential oils that are best avoided, because in large doses and applied undiluted, they can mimic contractions or hormonal changes. Some, while easily tolerated by adults, could be overpowering on developing babies. Any essential oils in Pixy products are obviously well diluted amongst the moisturising ingredients, but just to be on the safe side please do NOT use any of our products containing Black Pepper, Cedarwood, Clary Sage, Fennel, Lemon, Peppermint or Rosemary Essential Oils or Borage Oil. If you are pregnant and realise you have been using a product containing these essential oils, don’t panic, you are very very unlikely to have used enough to have caused you or your baby any harm. Speak to someone in the healthcare team monitoring your pregnancy to ease your mind on this.
After the first trimester, when the period of rapid growth for the baby has slowed down, many essential oils such as lavender are considered safe to use, but as every pregnancy is different, you MUST check first with someone in the healthcare team monitoring your pregnancy. Also check that a product does not also contain an essential oil that is not recommended in pregnancy.
If you have a history of miscarriage, epilepsy, heart problems, diabetes, liver, thyroid or kidney disease or blood clotting problems it is best to give essential oils a miss altogether during pregnancy. If you have any questions or concerns, make sure you speak to someone in the healthcare team monitoring your pregnancy.
So congratulations on your pregnancy, we hope you can enjoy this special time! There’s a list below of products which do not contain essential oils that you might like to try out and enjoy.
I am Buying a Gift for Someone who’s Pregnant. What can I give?
Although some essential oils are safe in pregnancy for some people in the second or third trimester, if you are giving a gift it is probably better to avoid products with essential oils or borage oil altogether, unless the recipient of your gift has checked with the healthcare team monitoring her pregnancy and knows which essential oils may be safe for her. Please ask the recipient of your gift to check with the healthcare team monitoring her pregnancy before using any product containing essential oils or borage oil. If she has sensitive skin, a patch test is always recommended before using a new product.
Fortunately there are still LOADS of fabulous, moisturising, scented Pixy products to choose from, which don’t contain essential oils:
- The fun fizzing moisturising Bath Bombs (apart from Lavender Bath Bomb).
- Our amazing moisturising Shower Mousses (apart from Lime Sorbet Shower Mousse).
- Some of our creamy moisturising soaps: like Mango Bliss Soap Slice and Oatmeal Soap Slice don’t contain essential oils.
- The incredible lightly whipped Glowing Body Butter and Shimmering Body Butter.
- Our gorgeously scented creamy Lip Balms (apart from Peppermint).
- The gently exfoliating Face Scrubs.
- The silky moisturising Sensual Bath Oil.
- The soothing Relaxing Massage Oil.
- Our tropical Coconut Hand Cream and Coconut Foot Cream.
- Our easily absorbed Renewing Body Oil.
Is Pixy suitable for babies?
Pixy was developed to be a little bit of skincare fun, an Irish made product using natural ingredients, delicious fragrances from essential oils and fragrance oils, with a splash of colour. We only had adults and older children in mind.
Small babies have very delicate skin so you need to proceed with caution with any product, especially if there is a history of sensitive skin in the family. Essential oils are not recommended for newborns, and for young babies it is suggested that you stick to products containing lavender or chamomile essential oils. (Some essential oils such as peppermint or eucalyptus are not advised until your child is over 6 years old). Our fragrance oils are a mixture of natural and synthetic oils and again, you should proceed with caution when your child is very young.
However we have had some fantastic feedback on how children love our fizzing bath bombs (and parents particularly love them using our lavender bath bomb at bedtime for the calming effects of the lavender essential oil!), love sprinkling the ‘Pixy dust’ of our bath salts and enjoy the rich smoothness of our shower mousses!
We use natural moisturising ingredients which are gentle and softening, we don’t use any mineral oil or petroleum products, and avoid parabens in the products that need a small bit of preservative to keep them in peak condition for you. Soap has to have a surfactant so the dirt can be washed off but we don’t use sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS) or sodium laureth sulfate (SLES). We keep the rich glycerine in our soaps and add moisturising oils and butters.
We list all our ingredients so you can make an informed choice.
Has Pixy a natural product for removing fake tan?
Yes our Pixy lime body scrubs are ideal for removing fake tan. Check out the reviews in the product page for our fake tan remover.
Have you ever thought of expanding your range?
Yes we are bubbling over with ideas, but we’re a young company and at the moment we’re concentrating on getting ourselves organised in the giant leap from making products in a tiny kitchen for a small market, to setting up a system where we can bring deliciously moisturising natural Pixy products to as many people as possible.
I thought you were a natural product company – what’s with all these chemical names on the labels?
The EC developed an International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients (INCI name) for labelling skincare products, which consists of the Latin name, based on the species of the plant or chemical. This means that you can pick up a skincare product anywhere in Europe and recognise the ingredients. But even the fabulous shea butter looks ‘scary’ under these circumstances - butyrospermum parkii.
Essential oils have many and varied incredible healing, uplifting or calming properties, but as a natural product they have a myriad of constituent parts, some of which, when isolated by perfume manufacturers, can cause irritation for people sensitive to it, so these specific components are listed on the label (generally linalool, limonene, gerianol, citronellol), even when the essential oil is used in its natural state.
Our soaps, bath oils and shower mousses are rich in moisturising glycerine, butters and oils, but in order to do their job of cleaning you, they need a surfactant, which binds the dirt and body oils to itself so it can be rinsed off, before the moisturising ingredients replenish your skin. We avoid sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) as these are well-known for triggering a bad reaction in sensitive skin. In our shower mousse we use disodium lauryl sulfosuccinate which is a gentle foaming agent, and despite it’s similar sounding name, is not a sulphate.
Some products contain ingredients that are oil-based and water-based. These do not mix naturally so an emulsifier is used to keep the molecules together so that they form a cream.
We have to keep your Pixy products free from harmful bacteria, fungi, moulds, microbes and yeast that will grow in any skincare product, so that it is safe for you to enjoy. We don’t use parabens or formaldehyde but use an effective chemical preservative that is gentle for all but the very most sensitive of skin types. We operate a tight turn-around production schedule, and recommend that you use up your delicious Pixy products within a year, so that we can keep these preservatives to a minimum!
Where can I purchase Pixy beauty products?
The widest range of Pixy Natural Skincare products is available here through our on-line store or you can find our best sellers in our growing list of approved stockists. We have been working hard building up our brand and are delighted you can now find our natural skincare products in almost every county. This list will be growing so keep an eye out for the Pixy styled packaging in your local store.
If you still have further questions or wish us to add to our FAQ page, please let us know via the contact form.