Meet the Maker: Pratik Kanath – Mystic Ved
In conversation with Pratik Kanath, founder of Mystic Ved about soap-making, forgotten ancient knowledge, the difference between natural and organic products, and much more
It’s mind-boggling to think that natural methods of personal care are considered to be a luxury. ‘If it’s expensive, it must be good’ seems to be the unfortunate perception, and this, despite the fact that these natural ingredients have been available to us since pretty much the inception of humanity. What’s worse is that if you head to the market, you’ll realise that these products are extremely expensive or unavailable, and of course, there is no standardisation of any kind.
Pratik Kanath’s Mystic Ved is a ray of hope that aims to change that. The brand aims to provide great quality natural body care products at prices that make it accessible to everyone. From products to packaging, it’s 27-year-old Pratik’s dream to create a 100% natural and eco-friendly brand — and we spoke to him to learn more about the same.
Tell us a little about the story behind Mystic Ved.
The name ‘Mystic Ved’ comes from our belief of bringing the mysterious benefits of the forgotten ancient Ved in the form of products to people. While there is an increase in awareness about genuine and natural body care products, there remain some doubts about the benefits of the ingredients, products for specific skin type and the actual price point. Commercial products are chemical based and seldom yields results, and thus, we usually resort to the natural remedies as it treats internally and not just externally. However, these are often incredibly expensive in the market, and I, on the other hand, wanted to provide the best natural products at fair prices. This led to the birth of Mystic Ved.
What do you exactly mean when you say you use ‘forgotten ancient knowledge’?
As mentioned earlier, whenever one faces skin related issues — be it dry skin, oily skin, or darkening — the tendency is to turn to the commercial products which contains chemicals in various forms. All these issues can be treated by the ancient knowledge of benefits of various natural ingredients. For example, milk works great as a moisturiser, orange is a very good cleanser, and tea tree accelerates healing. However, we have forgotten these ways of treating our skin and hence we say we use ‘forgotten the ancient knowledge’ to create our products.
What is the biggest difference between a handcrafted body butter or face scrub made by Mystic Ved, as opposed to the commercial ones available in the market?
We have formulated our face scrub in a manner that allows it to be customised by mixing with it milk, honey, or water. These soaps have higher proportion of Shea butter which acts as a terrific moisturiser. Another great moisturiser is glycerin, which is actually formed as a byproduct in any soap making process. However, in commercial soaps, this is extracted which takes away the moisturising quality, while it is retained in our handmade soaps, which gives your skin a smooth and moisturised texture.
How difficult is it to maintain the high social and environmental standards since you’re a natural and organic brand?
There are challenges aplenty. For starters, the decision making process is longer because we always try to find the best possible solutions available in India. Furthermore, we have adopted a zero-waste policy, wherein we also help and encourage our customers to move towards zero waste.
How we do is? Well, for starters, we observed that while dealing with cosmetics, the plastic container is not reusable and just adds to environmental issues. Hence, we have glass container packaging which is reusable and recyclable, and we are aiming to come up with refill packs of body butters, face scrubs and other products in the near future as well. To sum it up, if the customer has brought our product once, you can be assured that there would not be multiple empty plastic tubes or bottles added to the environment.
Where do you draw inspiration from?
My inspiration comes from the feel of the soft skin of a child, which is pure and unadulterated. The truth is, we as adults can still have that skin if we choose to stick to our ancient knowledge. We understand our customer’s requirements and try and use our knowledge to fulfil the same, by creating our new products in a manner where it has an all-sensory appeal.
What’s your bestselling or most popular creation yet? Also, which one is your favourite?
The Lemongrass Soap and Blackcurrant Body Butter are our best selling products. My personal favourite, though, is the Oats Milk and Vanilla soap.
What’s the hardest bit about running a business like yours?
The most challenging part, without a doubt, is explaining the difference between the words ‘Natural’ and ‘Organic’ to a layman. Trouble is, people use these terms interchangeably, but we need to know that all organic products can be natural but not all natural products are organic. An organic product is one that’s created without any chemicals, but in the case of raw materials, not all products are grown organically. Also, when natural or organic certification is required, the limited choice of approved ingredients presents a new set of challenges for the formulator. Things like long-term stability, safety, aesthetics and user-experience all need to be taken into account when selecting raw materials, and that’s pretty demanding!
What can we expect in the near future from Mystic Ved?
We’d love to have a vast range of affordable products, especially those that are currently not available or are very expensive in the market. Further down the line, Mystic Ved would love to develop a community and ecosystem of body care and well-being. Who wouldn’t want a one stop solution for personal well-being, after all?
Visit the Mystic Ved Shop on Engrave.