Vancouver Loves Natural Beauty: Sasha Plavsic of ILIA Beauty

Vancouver Loves Natural Beauty is a blog miniseries running during the month of September, and highlighting the great organic and natural beauty and skincare labels founded right here in our fair city.

ILIA Beauty has come a long way since its founder, Sasha Plavsic, first launched a collection of tinted lip conditioners. Now ILIA has expanded to include high-pigment lipsticks and face products, with even more offerings coming soon. With each new addition to her growing line, Plavsic still manages to stay true to her original vision: cosmetics with 85% or more organic content that are as effective as their mainstream counterparts. I had a chance to talk with Plavsic about all of her successes in the past year and ask what she has planned for the future.

A lot has changed for ILIA in the last year. Can you give readers a quick rundown of the newest products and developments?

Yes, we are launching six lip glosses, four mascaras and two new limited edition shades later this fall. It's been steady growth and we've had many requests for the two new products that are entering the collection soon. Colour will remain a focus for the time being and eventually we will make it to foundations, which is a different ball game altogether, but an important one to consider.

Organic makeup gets a lot of flack for having boring colours. How do you achieve bright and on-trend shades like 'Neon Angel' and 'Voila' while keeping the organic content percentage high?

The organic content stays high due to the percentage of organic ingredients, such as beeswax, and the various oils we use in the product. The color is such a small percentage and in order to achieve the bright shades we mix natural iron oxide mineral dyes with mild food grade dyes. Not all of our shades contain food grade; some are 100% natural. Yet we find the combination of the two to be the most successful for achieving on trend colors and good consistency.

ILIA is carried at Colette (congrats, that's huge!). How did this partnership come about?

A little luck and good timing. When ILIA launched last spring, I sent a package to Colette in the mail with a really nice handwritten note. I think handwritten pieces go a long way today and can have a much stronger impact than just sending an email off into cyberspace. Luckily, the product was well received and a relationship to grow ILIA in Paris with Colette worked out for the best.

What are the ILIA products you've been using regularly all summer, and which ones do you see yourself using well into fall?

This summer, I've been on the road a lot! Every morning calls for a little 'Sway' on the eyelids followed by a blend of 'I Put A Spell On You', 'Sway', and 'Polka Dots & Moonbeams' along the cheek bones. For lips, I've been using 'Crimson & Clover' and 'In Paradise' a lot. With fall around the corner, I will move to deeper richer shades like 'Cheek to Cheek' and 'Femme Fatale'.

Finish the end of this sentence: "When I'm not working, I can be found..."

...sitting on the couch in London with my friend who is pregnant and talking about how crazy life is! Well, that's today at least, tomorrow will bring new things!


  1. I've been meaning to try out this brand - because of the organic ingredients. Thanks for the reminder!

  2. I've gotten to a point where 1/2 of my bathroom counter is ILIA. Can't wait for all the new products!


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