Glass meets ECooking founder Tina Søgaard and spotlights our Top 5 ECooking products

GLASS IS expecting Scandinavian skincare brands to increase their profile in the UK, partly because of our fascination with the Nordic countries’ ability to maximise happiness and contentment for their citizens, and partly because once you experience Scandinavian skincare expertise, you realise that the bar is set high for ethical,  effacious and safe products that make a visible and tangible difference to the skin.

Ecooking is a Danish skincare brand that is young but growing fast. Glass met with Tina Søgaard, the founder and owner of Ecooking, to discover more about what has enabled her to take the brand from products developed in her own kitchen to the dressing tables and bathroom cabinets of beauty lovers across Scandinavia and Europe ….

Tina Søgaard, founder and owner of ECookingTina Søgaard, founder and owner of ECooking

Tina, your skin is amazing. You’re a very good ambassador for your brand.
I have to show you the before and after photos … The reason why I actually decided to start making Ecooking is because I was in a divorce and I lost many pounds and my skin was falling totally apart. As you can see, (Tina shows me photos on her phone) it switches between this (very recognisably Tina, but not the healthy, glowing Tina sitting beside me) and this (a Tina who has demonstrably recovered her vitality and joie de vivre).

Wow. Most people in that situation get a haircut, you created an incredible skincare line.
I was really sad at the time and not eating, not sleeping … crying. I took some raw materials from the lab – I had a company where I had made private label products for many years, which is also where I have the knowledge for the raw materials from. And then, I was standing in the kitchen at night, making the products. 

Once you get to a certain age,almost everyone has gone through such an experience and it’s really inspiring to think a new life can come from it.
It really is. So, we tell the story.

What is your relationship with the customer like?
Almost, every night, aside from when I’m travelling, I am meeting with the customers. Sometimes we make an ECooking party where the customer comes. At the last one, there were almost 700 people.

That’s a rally!
Yes, that’s a lot of people (laughs). They came, had some bubbles and some snacks, then I told them about ECooking and so on. We had different types of workshops where they could try the masks and I was there with 20 girls from the office and afterwards, they could buy the products and they got a goody bag. When we have the interaction with the customers, we also learn a lot. We learn what is missing on the market, and because I’m doing all the products myself, and I meet people, we can immediately change and follow-up.

You’re quite manoeuvrable.
Yeah, I really like that because I’m not that kind of person where I have to fill in seven different papers and wait; I like to do things fast.

Your range has grown a lot in the last years. What’s your newest product?
The anti-redness cream is the newest, and I think it’s the fastest growing product I have ever made. Last year, the scrub mask won AllergyAward18. We launched without perfume ranges last year, also.

How much of the E-Cooking message is actually the skin safety element of the product?
Of course, there are a group of people that look into every detail on the label. But I think we need to educate our customers and we need to tell them what [labelling] actually means. A lot of people don’t know the word allergy, or, for example, the swan in the Nordic Swan Ecolabel … that it has something to do with the environment. So, we have a lot of get-togethers, where we invite our customers to join us, [to learn] a lot about the raw materials, the stamps: like AllergyCertified, the Vegan and so on. So we have a transparency in the brand. 

Choosing to go with a label as stringent as Allergy-Certified, it’s a big challenge, it must be another layer of work.
Yep, it is, but I think the way the world is changing all the time, it is very important to be ahead. Everyone could do a skincare brand. That’s not the difficult part. The  difficult part is to make sure that it works, tthat it’s safe, and together with that you always look into giving the customer what they need. So that’s also why we try to make products with fragrance in, and products without fragrance in, so they can choose. The Day Cream without fragrance has the AllergyCertified stamp; the one with the fragrance is the same, except for the fragrance. And so the customer chooses, we don’t choose for them. And if I should go and buy skincare products, I would really love that I could choose, instead of the brand choosing for me. 

Do you find that within your different international territories, different things perform better?
Yes, last year we launched the Day Cream and that one is the best selling product of ECooking in Germany. In Denmark, it’s the Day Cream and over here it’s the Peel Mask. 

In the UK, it’s the peel mask? I haven’t actually seen the peel mask, can I take a look?
It turns you bright red. But it works, it really works. And I think that’s also why people trust in the brand they start using, and they can see a result very fast. It’s our highest performer on Look Fantastic. 

How do you approach a super-saturated market like the UK?
When I make products I never think in money. I never think this will be this big, or now everybody would like this or things like that. I only think about if it could help someone. Of course I have people around me that think differently. But I never think how can we get the most from this market … I know the product works. I know there’s a high percentage of ingredients in it that work; people will either like it or not and if they like it and think it’s a reasonable price, they will buy it.  

I hope and I think that instead of telling people that they should use this product and that it is so good, we will go a little bit deeper. If we help educate people, then we do it differently from other brands. If we can [teach] people how to take care of their skin, the world, themselves, the environment, then I think we won anyway.

Glass was inspired by Tina’s brand story, her energy, grit, and ethical values, and very excited to explore the ECooking product range. After trialling for a month, these are currently our five favourite Ecooking products …

ECooking Peeling MaskECooking Peeling Mask

Peeling Mask

I am very cautious about what I put on my skin, and despite friends and colleagues raving about the benefits of retinol and AHAs, if a skincare product comes hedged about with warnings about usage, I tend to avoid it. However, knowing the eCooking brand to be an ethical one, serious in its desire to offer customers skin-friendly solutions, I was happy to try the Peeling Mask, which contains AHA and Lactic Acid. Ecooking recommend using this product weekly, beginning by leaving on the skin for four to six minutes, and gradually extending the wear time to 10-12 minutes. On my first application I could feel the stinging sensation I’d been warned to expect, and my skin was red after use, also as expected. What I hadn’t anticipated was that my skin would feel so soft and look so refreshed. This is the perfect product for bad girls like me to pretend that they do get eight hours sleep every night and routinely drink water …

Priced at £37

ECooking Vitamin E SerumECooking Vitamin E Serum

Vitamin E Serum

This serum is designed to heal, and it is the product I reach for after using the Peeling Mask. It absorbs beautifully, feels soothing and nourishing, and gently massaging it into my face allows me to luxuriate in the velevety softness of my skin. I think it helps to take down the redness that comes with using the Peel Mask more quickly, useful if you decide you need to take your newly beautiful visage out to a nighclub to celebrate. A very useful product to have on hand in the summer months too, should one have caught a little too much sun.

Priced at £43

ECooking Firming Serum CapsulesECooking Firming Serum Capsules

Firming Serum Capsules

A Beauty Bible 2019 award winner, the Firming Serum Capsules contain Hexapeptide. Used day and night use for at least 60 days, these should offer a natural “Botox” effect, tightening the skin. I haven’t been using these for two months yet, but I love the immediate lift they give to my skin and my mood. The serum glides on and absorbs brilliantly, leaving my face feeling super-smooth and make-up ready,  so I like to use these as a primer. For this reason, I’m not using them at night – I want to reserve all of them for daytime use. I also love that the serum is contained in individual capsules, making them an excellent option for travelling.

Priced at £43

ECooking Clay MaskECooking Clay Mask

Clay Mask

I’m quite sceptical about clay masks because I think it’s all too easy to overdo them – you intend to rebalance the skin but end up over-drying it instead. No worries of that kind with the Ecooking Clay Mask. Iris extract, zinc salt, and Vitamin A, along with a peptide (Pseudoalteromonas Ferment Extratct) extracted from Antarctic mud and known as Antarcticine (much easier to remember) combine to create a clay that leaves skin rebalanced and refreshed, with no dry patches or post-use breakouts. Super effective, yet gentle, I use this on my neck and décolletage as well as my face.

Priced at £26

ECooking Anti-Redness CreamECooking Anti-Redness Cream

Anti-Redness Cream

This product has fixed an issue I wasn’t even aware I had. Although my naked face has some redness around the cheeks and chin, it isn’t severe enough to show through any skin tint. I began using this cream just to get an idea of texture and smell, thinking that I would pass it on to a friend, and realised after a few days of use that by the time I came to apply make-up, the redness I was used to covering up was barely visible at all. It makes a great day cream, easy to apply, comfortable to wear, leaving skin feeling nourished and hydrated and receptive to cosmetics. My friend’s loss is my gain – this cream is a keeper. I’m using a fragrance free formulation that carries the AllergyCertified mark, which pleases me as I am trying to be more mindful about avoiding fragrance in my skincare and cosmetics, unless a heady scent actively contributes to my enjoyment of the product.

Priced at £32

by Rachel McCormack

ECooking is available atLook Fantastic and Feel Unique in the UK