Brand of the Month: Rahua

Rahua has been making waves in the hair care industry since its inception. The brand has a strong commitment to sustainability, and its products are made with natural, organic ingredients sourced from the Amazon rainforest.

But Rahua's mission goes beyond creating effective and eco-friendly hair care products. The brand is deeply rooted in the culture and traditions of the indigenous people of the Amazon, and it is committed to empowering these communities and protecting the rainforest.

In this interview exclusive interview with co-founder Anna Ayers, we chat about the story of Rahua, its approach to sustainability, and its efforts to make a positive impact on the world.

What sparked the inspiration for the brand?

The Amazon rainforest was the absolute inspiration and purpose for the creation of the Rahua brand. Rahua was founded to preserve the Amazon Rainforest, and to introduce the world to the power and importance of Rainforest Grown Beauty. Rahua is here to shine a light on the beauty of Indigenous traditions in the jungle; and a lifestyle of living in rhythm with nature that enables active rainforest preservation.

rahua oil

How do Rahua products differ from other formulas on the market?

From the beginning Rahua products were formulated pure – meaning with pure plant ingredients. The key ingredient in our product collections is Rahua oil, a symbiotic ingredient. This symbiotic ingredient is grown wild (not farmed) deep in pristine areas of Amazonia; handmade through ancestral wisdom and Indigenous knowledge, and the makers are paid directly at an above fair trade price. The result of this ultra-special handmade process is a highly potent oil called Rahua, that transforms the health of the hair, scalp and skin. This way of ingredient-making, and honoring the source of the ingredient set us on our path of product creation and formulation.

Rahua oil presented us with a calling to create thoughtful formulas that show off the wondrous properties of plants in all their glory. Plant ingredients inspire and direct our product formulas and become what I call our “paint” literally as we use molasses and beautiful colors of clay and plant pigments to naturally color Rahua products. Another example of this is Palo santo oil, we initially starting using this ingredient, for a functional purpose to preserve and extend lifespan of our products, and now the world has come to know it for its meditative woodsy aroma (you can experience this shamanic scent in our Rahua Palo Santo Oil Perfume). Overall Rahua formulas are highly focused on performance, quality and results, and getting there with the power of plants.

Could you tell us a bit about the cultural tradition and the production of the rahua oil?

Rahua oil is made in an ancient traditional ceremony following special rituals. Rahua seeds are harvested twice a year following nature’s cycle. Quechua, Shuar and Achuar families work together to collect the seeds, taking long treks into the jungle, climbing trees with bare hands, the men use a machete to take the seeds down from the trees. The seeds are gathered and taken back to their hut where they begin preparation. The making of the oil is done only by women, they fast before they begin the process they have make up rituals and the ceremony is done in observance of the moon cycle, with certain humidity conditions and proximity to the river. The process is totally handmade, including a long cooking process with special wood to create fire and just the right temperature. The seeds are then pounded, crushed and cooked again, and eventually the oil separates, and becomes Rahua oil as we know it. All is done in symbiosis with the natural environment deep in Amazonia.

Rahua Natural Hair Products

How are you giving back to the local communities and preserving nature whilst building the brand?

From the beginning, we worked directly with Indigenous tribes and communities in Amazonia. When we first started working with Rahua oil, there were only a few women (the elders in the community), making the oil. Fast forward 15 years later we are now working with over 500 families to revive this beautiful handmade tradition with the new generations. My partner, Fabian, organizes workshops deep in the forest and brings the expert Rahua makers to new communities where they train the next generation on how to make Rahua. Now the people there are empowered with a sustainable economy. Additionally, we support these communities in tandem with our nonprofit organization, Ecoagents by providing legal support to help them gain the title property to their land, securing it in the rainforest for perpetuity. We are currently helping to preserve 150,000 acres of pristine rainforest, which sequesters 750,000 tons of CO2 annually. We are supporting Indigenous communities, who live in the rainforest, and are the guardians of this majestic place.

What are the benefits of choosing natural hair care, and how would you recommend making the switch?

There are so many wonderful benefits from switching to natural hair care – the number one being health. The health of your hair, health of your scalp, health of your skin, health that wellness rituals bring, health of the planet, health of the rainforest, health of our future generations. By choosing natural products, you are feeding your hair to health so the long-term benefits allow you to reach your hair goals like longer hair, stronger hair, shinier hair, improved natural texture of hair, balanced scalp, and microbiome... the list goes on. Also, switching to natural products is beneficial for the environment and the water, when you wash and rinse your hair from shampoos and hair products it is healthy runoff into the waterways becoming food for the fish.

How to best make the switch. Keep it simple, start with a great shampoo and conditioner, and a leave-in product that is suited for your hair type. I recommend Rahua Classic Shampoo, Conditioner, and Leave-In Treatment. With those three items this is the foundation to get you on your way to detox from prior products and set you up to achieve your hair goals.

rahua oil

What is your number one insider hair care tip?

Shampoo less. Massage the scalp and massage the hair with its natural oils and Rahua Elixir (pure rahua oil).

Is there anything else you would like people to know about Rahua?

I want people to know that with their support of Rahua and purchases, they are directly benefiting the health of the Amazon rainforest. We work directly with Indigenous communities, they are now empowered, and have the tools to protect the rainforest. soap that sequesters approximately 750,000 tons of CO2 emissions each year. Thank you so very much!

Discover the Rahua range here.

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