How did I find VitaLake?
Whatever you think of Twitter, it’s a definitely creates many contacts that you probably would never have found without it. Many of them are of no use to you at all, just accounts that are trying to get you to buy Twitter followers, but many of them are genuine and very interesting people who’s entrepreneurship have helped to evolve very inspiring businesses. One connection I recently made was VitaLake, their profile read –
Personal and Skincare products based on Authentic, Original and Natural Ingredients from Lake Garda
Of course you should all know by now that I have a passion for Lake Garda, that’s why I have this website and write my blog, and I have a particularly passion for the products of Lake Garda, such as the wine and the olive oil.
When I read VitaLake’s profile, I was very keen to
find out more so I visited their website.
I was further intrigued when I read that the natural ingredients that are used in their cosmetic products are olive oil, wine and lemons, which are all sourced from around the lake.
I was so impressed with the concept and it’s originality, that I contacted the owner of the company, Lucia Cussolotto, to ask if I could meet her, so that she could tell me more about VitaLake and it’s products. I was really pleased when Lucia invited me to her house in Peschiera to talk about her company.
Lucia Cussolotto on the conception of VitaLake
When I arrived at her house, I didn’t get a chance to ask any questions, Lucia couldn’t wait to tell me about her company.
VitaLake is the the union of my two passions; my territory, Lake Garda, where I was born, where I live and that I love (Lucia describes herself as a Lake Garda DOC girl); and cosmetic science, which I studied and worked in the industry in charge of cosmetic products. From these two passions was born VitaLake.
I told Lucia that I was really impressed with her story; she has the skills the passion and the dream and she put them all together to create the VitaLake. I was curious to know where the dream began, whether she studied chemistry because she had the dream or which point did the idea materialise.
No, I studied chemistry because I love chemistry, it’s the base of everything. I finished university, then I went into factories, cosmetic companies, in Milan and also in Salo and so I learned the skills (practical skills). It was during my time in these companies that the seed was
sown. In 2013 was the first product.
How long did it take from when the seed was planted to the first product?
It was about three or four years; I sowed the seed and watered the seed, but then I also needed to learn new skills, the skills for the business world. I started with two products; shampoo and shower gel from lemons and body cream from extra virgin olive oil, it was an experiment. Then I created all the ranges with lemons, olive oil and wine, now I’m studying with other raw materials.
Do VitaLake products have real health benefits?
I asked Lucia if ViataLake’s products had real health benefits or were aimed at the tourist industry.
It’s not a a product for supermarkets or a touristic product. I thought carefully about the positioning of the product and where I sell. It’s not a low cost product but the price is honest. The raw materials are recognised all over the world, high quality extra virgin olive oil, wine and lemons that grow in this specific area (Lake Garda), with it’s climate and so on. These products have cosmetic properties. Extra virgin olive oil for dry skin, wine for free radicals for anti ageing; lemons for physiological cell renewal and antibacterial agents. The construction of the formula is studied scientifically
Knowing that Lucia had studied pharmaceutical chemistry, I asked if the formula for the products was her own. She told me:
I work with other people. I thought about the kind of products,
shampoo, body cream. Face cream etc. I thought about the skeletal, the base of the formula, but then technically I work with my laboratory, with scientists, to optimise the cosmetic characteristics of the products
Do you use a local laboratory?
It’s in Trentino Alto Adige, two hours from here in the mountains where the air is pure and the water is pure. It’s the laboratory of my university classmate. Two or three years after we finished our degrees we met and we decided to work together
The VitaLake philosophy – ‘Respect of The Environment’!
Carrying on from telling me about the health qualities of the VitaLake products Lucia went on to tell me that she tries to be eco-freindly where ever possible.
The philosophy of the company which is respect to the environment, is important in every aspect of the product, from the raw materials, selection of suppliers, the production process all the way though to the final packaging and merchandising material. I choose the wine, the oil and the lemons personally, they have to be first from here in the lake, they must follow non-industrial logics of production, with attention to the
environment, and then they have to like me. It is important to have an affinity with the partners in every step. The product is the result of the people that work for it.The wine, oil and lemons are 100% guaranteed from Lake Garda. The olive oil is from the consortium at Malcesine Olio Garda DOC. The wine is from Zeni at Bardolino and the lemons are from the Lemonaie ‘La Malora’ in Gargnano.
Lucia chooses not to use external packaging because she knows that this just gets thrown away straight away. The product containers are manufactured from recyclable materials such as aluminium, the gift boxes for the hotel are sourced from an English company that follows ‘Fairtrade’ guidelines. The products are made from natural ingredients, no artificial colourants or perfumes, no petroleum products, parabens or silicones.
Where can you purchase VitaLake Products?
Lucia has thought carefully how to promote VitaLake’s products so that they reach the target market and are presented as products with real health benefits. She has been offered the opportunity to open a temporary shop but doesn’t believe that this would give the right image. She would rather build the business in the right way, quality over quantity. Quality of the idea, quality of the people involved, the quality of the product and quality of the way the product is distributed.
VitaLake products are currently being sold in selected pharmacies, shops, and also in a number of hotels around Lake Garda. The hotels sell the products in their shops and health spa’s. Hotel’s where Vitalake’s products are available include:
The Enjoy Garda Hotel and the Ziba Hotel in Peschiera.
The Hotel Villa Rom