For­est Child comes out of the woods

Olivia McMackin goes skin-deep and then some with her on­line shop for nat­u­ral beauty prod­ucts.

The Coast - - SHOP TALK - —AS

Olivia McMackin grew up in the mid­dle of nowhere, Nova Sco­tia. With no neigh­bours as far as her eyes could see, she spent most of her child­hood out­side with her sis­ter “hav­ing a sort of idyl­lic life run­ning around in the woods.” This con­nec­tion to the nat­u­ral world had a mas­sive im­pact on her life, but it wasn’t un­til her health started giv­ing her trou­ble that her mind re­ally re­turned to it. “It was a long process try­ing to find a di­ag­no­sis, so I was do­ing a lot of read­ing, try­ing to fig­ure out what was go­ing on,” says McMackin. “I found out what a heavy bur­den the chem­i­cals in some of the prod­ucts we use on our bod­ies, and it smacked me across the face. I had no idea.” That’s when she detoxed her own prod­uct regime, and got kind of ob­sessed with learn­ing more and help­ing oth­ers learn more, too. Af­ter spend­ing all of her spare time as a self-pro­claimed “re­search-aholic”, and mov­ing back to her home prov­ince, For­est Child Nat­u­ral Beauty— an on­line shop that cu­rates top qual­ity, high per­for­mance, clean skin­care and beauty prod­ucts— was born. “Once I found all the sup­pli­ers and ven­dors that met that strin­gent cri­te­ria, they were amaz­ing to take a chance on me,” says McMackin, of her busi­ness, which launched in the late fall. Aim­ing to be a one-stop shop, she keeps an in­ven­tory of hand-picked makeup, skin­care and cleans­ing prod­ucts and sells them via her web­site, but she also of­fers group con­sul­ta­tions and has been pop­ping up at var­i­ous Hal­i­fax shops with her prod­ucts in tow. (She’ll be at Bha­vana Yoga

Bou­tique— 3063 Got­tin­gen—from 3-6pm on April 6 and 20, May 4 and 18 and will host Green Your Beauty Rou­tine there April 22, 2-4pm.) “Most peo­ple know there’s some­thing bet­ter they can be us­ing, but it can be very over­whelm­ing to do the work,” McMackin says. “I wanted to take that bar­rier out of the way for peo­ple.”

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