catapult magazine

catapult magazine

Vol 5, Num 5 :: 2006.03.10 — 2006.03.24


Good things from the earth

Krista Bogertman is a distributor for Arbonne International, a company that creates and markets personal care and cosmetic products. She lives in Grantham, Pennsylvania with her husband, Tim.

How did you find out about Arbonne International? What makes Arbonne different from other cosmetic companies?

One of my friends asked me to host an Arbonne class for her last September. I was intrigued by her description of their philosophy and mission, so I agreed to host one. As a result of that night?s event, I was surprised and perplexed at what I learned about skin, our body?s health and what cosmetic companies choose not to tell consumers.

I believe Arbonne is unlike any other cosmetic company I have encountered. Arbonne (meaning ?Good Things from Earth?) started in 1980 and has been dedicated to people?s health since its beginning, which can be seen in its mission of creating ?pure, safe and beneficial? products. ?Pure? means that the company uses the best of science and nature to give the skin and body the best benefits. Arbonne?s Institute of Research and Development uses herbs, minerals and plants in their purest forms and gathers the finest ingredients from across the world to use in their formulations. ?Safe? means that they formulate their products to be safe for consumers to use without allowing bacteria, yeast and mold to grow. Arbonne?s institute also uses a volunteer human panel to test every product to make sure it is 100% free of irritation. ?Beneficial? means that the products must work, and that every ingredient serves some benefit for the body or else it is not included in the formula.

There are also eight defined ways Arbonne is different than other companies. Arbonne?s products are botanically based (?Plant-Derived?), pH correct, hypoallergenic, dermatologist tested, never tested on animals, formulated without chemical fragrances or dyes, formulated without animal products or by-products and formulated without mineral oil. This combination of principles ensures that almost every person who uses their products is going to be free of allergic reaction, safer and healthier. Through their extensive research process, they understand how the body works and formulate their products to address the body?s needs. As a company, Arbonne is dedicated to education, integrity and health over ?the bottom line.? They choose expensive testing procedures and expensive ingredients to ensure safety and health. They provide free trainings to their employees online, by telephone and through local teams. They encourage honesty, creativity and education. For all of the above-mentioned reasons, I am proud to represent this company!

How did you decide to become a consultant for Arbonne? What has the experience been like so far?

The word ?consultant? is a bit confusing as it means something different in Arbonne than in many other companies. In most companies, ?consultant? means a person actively sells the products to make a profit. Most consultants in Arbonne join the company to receive their products at a significant discount. Then they can make orders at any time with that discount. I started out this way. I have sensitive skin and have reacted to most skin care products I have tried. I regularly broke out in red, itchy rashes on my stomach, back, arms, neck and legs. I was hoping that in switching over to Arbonne, I would experience something different. I was not disappointed! Since the time I switched, I have not had redness, rashes, dry or flaky skin. I love that I can get into bed without having to scratch my legs for half an hour. What a relief!

I decided to become an active distributor of Arbonne products for several reasons. I wanted to educate people on body care, nutrition, and what the cosmetic industry chooses not to tell consumers about their products. I wanted to give others the incredible business opportunity that Arbonne offers to everyone. I wanted to show people how to take care of their bodies. I am a Hodgkins Disease cancer survivor! I do not think it is a coincidence that there are high rates of cancer and over 75,000 chemicals used to formulate products that we use on our skin and in our house, daily. I want people to know that there are healthy alternatives to the unregulated cosmetics we are socialized to consume. I am excited about what their products can do for people?s skin, but I am even more excited that this business opportunity has the potential to make a significant impact on people?s lives. On a personal note in terms of the business, I look forward to eliminating student loan debt, buying a house to live near family, giving anonymous donations to people who have given to us and volunteering time to serve others in our community.

Being an active seller of Arbonne products has been the most challenging and stretching things I have ever done in my life. It is a lot of work! I am not a salesperson by nature and have always feared making phone calls and talking in front of groups of people. However, I feel so passionate about this company, that I am motivated to talk about it to people I have never met. I have also made several incredible friendships. I work with a team of people who are concerned for my health, faith, my family and growth as a person. They challenge me and encourage me to step out of my usual and comfortable routine. I have been really blessed to have joined such a fantastic team of people!

What is your philosophy of personal care and makeup? What do you believe is the function of makeup?

We were created as spiritual and physical beings, made in God?s own image. Although we struggle through the consequences of our sin, Jesus offers us the opportunity to redeem the world for Him through everything we do. It is easy for Christians to think that once they are saved through faith, their responsibility on earth is to wait until Christ returns to be whisked up to heaven. However, I believe that we need to be faithful to Him in every area of our lives today, including how we spend our time making this world into what God intends it to be??on earth as it is in Heaven? (Matthew 6:10).

In addition, our bodies are temples to be used as agents of peace, reconciliation and love (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). We are to honor God in the each decision we make regarding our bodies. God did not intend for us to struggle through physical ailments, sicknesses, emotional and spiritual dehydration, difficulty providing food for our families and various other struggles. Jesus embodied holistic love through service of meeting people?s human needs of hunger, psychological pain, sicknesses, disease, thirst and spiritual brokenness. Therefore, part of His mandate for us is to work on making these areas right so that there is hope, health, joy and restoration of brokenness. Jesus cared for the whole person, and so should we.

In regards to personal care, culture tells us that we have to look a certain way when dressing, styling and using makeup. We tend to idolize appearance and worship ourselves when we value how we look over who we are meant to be in Christ. However, I do not think that personal care products and cosmetics are wrong in and of themselves. When we take care of our hygiene, cleanliness and appearance without obsessing over it, we are showing respect for ourselves and for others. Caring for our bodies can be redemptive, if it is done in a way that models holistic and right living. Cosmetics and makeup have several functions that include enhancing attractiveness, covering up blemishes or flaws and celebrating certain occasions. Regardless of the function, I believe that our worship needs to be focused on God rather than ourselves. Finally, we use basic items every day such as soap, shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, deodorant, multipurpose cleaners, and detergent to clean and provide order in a dirty and chaotic environment. So, why not choose to use products that are proven safe to use, are natural from the earth God created and are beneficial for our bodies?

What is Arbonne?s stance on animal testing? What are your thoughts on the issue?

Arbonne does not test any of its ingredients or products on animals. Their research institute chooses the more expensive route of testing on volunteer human panels rather than on animals.

To test products, Arbonne uses a Repeat Insult Patch Test, which means a volunteer human panel uses a product on the same site of skin for an extended period of time. To pass the test, the products must score below a 4 in skin irritation. Although many companies choose to release products that score a 3.9, Arbonne will not release a product unless is scores ZERO in this study! This means that there must be no adverse reactions from any person to any product in this study.

I do not believe that animal testing is a humane practice. I realize it is done because it is inexpensive, but as stewards of creation, I believe that we are responsible to care for animals, natural resources and the environment. As I have pursued additional information on these topics over the last several months, my question has become: what are we willing to compromise for the sake of money?

How does your work connect with your deepest faith values?

As a Christian, I am always struggling through this question when I participate in art, literature, work, school, shopping, television, leisure, exercise, relationships, church, etc. In being faithful to God and others in all I do, I want to be motivated by love, truth, justice, mercy and grace. I am concerned about the development and care of the whole person. I want to care for people?s spiritual needs but also be attentive to their physical needs. As a result, I want to help others treat their bodies in a safe and healthy way, as well as help them view beauty, personal care and makeup in light of our counter-cultural faith. Arbonne allows me to bring a bit of truth, education, personal growth and health to people who suffer skin ailments, sickness, low self esteem, disease, lack of time and monetary debt. I believe that God cares for our physical humanness and our work on earth so it is brought back to the way He intended it to be. I believe that personal care and makeup can be redeemed by viewing through a Christian worldview and by choosing those types of products that are healthy for us and safe for the environment. Living in a holistic way can be a model of redemptive living, and that includes caring for our bodies.

your comments

comments powered by Disqus