Pevonia Botanica

Though founded on high-end technology, the American label’s products remain odes to nature throughout its 25-year-old history

Portrait of Tammy Strobel
Though founded on high-end technology, the American label’s products remain odes to nature throughout its 25-year-old history
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As one of the first skincare labels to tap into the spa business, Pevonia is all about technology, a feat evident through its dedication to marine biology to search for the finest bioactive ingredients, its in-house R&D labs fitted with medical professionals as well as its obsession with the newest and latest recipes. 

“We’re not a cultural company, we’re a scientific company,” says Pevonia Director of International Business Development Ronald Jean, adding that they never use an ingredient for its hype but always work bottom-up from the source of the skin condition.  

 “Honestly, our biggest competitor is ourselves: it’s not easy to continually produce good product after good product. We are limited by science, yet we are incessantly discovering new functions of the skin and different tools to achieve those results – which stem cells work for which part of the skin at what concentrations, for example.” 

With the tagline “Natural Ingredients, Professional Results”, Pevonia advocates against umbrella remedies. For instance, expression lines on a 20-year-old shouldn’t undergo the same treatment as someone in their mid-50s battling wrinkles. Likewise, a person with the occasional pimple should stay away from products used by another suffering full-blown acne, even though the causes may appear similar. 

Likewise, Jean highlights the distinction between face and body treatments: “I have products for the things above my chin, but what about the rest? The biological make up is different, and the skin on the body is not exposed to the same elements as our faces.” 

He also frowns upon treatments that only skim the surface, such as glycolic peels. 

“If you want your skin to look lighter, wash it with some lemon juice and water and you’ll save loads of money on products, but we all know that doesn’t address the cause. We need to look at whether the dark spots are coming from the melatonin level or if other triggers are responsible,” he says, adding that Pevonia’s take on peels works on a deeper level to remove dead skin cells, toxins, and – on the surface – blackheads. 

So it’s not surprising that to date, Pevonia has launched more than 80 face and body treatments: 16 in 2006, 33 in 2010, 12 in 2011 and five sub-products under its Lumafirm line in 2012 – an anti-ageing line that serves to erase dark spots, even skin tones, lighten pigmentation and reduce appearance of dark spots for the face, and interestingly, for the body as well. 

Now contrast it against bestseller Stem Cells Phyto-Elite Intensive Cream: though formulated with similar goals of rejuvenation, brightening, protecting and hydration, the latter is designed for mature skin with severe signs of ageing, such as deep lines and wrinkles. The cream should be complemented with the Intensive Serum and the Multi-Active Foaming Cleanser. 

“We look at what’s important to the customer: communication becomes a problem when somebody is not listening to their customers. For us, it’s about encapsulating active ingredients and taking it all the way down to the skin. We already have the technology and know-how to get the best ingredients, but even if I put the ocean’s most nourishing piece of algae on your hand right now, there’s no way the nutrients will go into your skin. So our job is to address customers’ concerns and find a way to help their skin absorb the products in what we call ‘smart technology’.” 

Boasting discovery and research that is second to none, Jean proudly says Pevonia is far from brands that slap labels on products whose production process is unknown to them. 

“We own all our patents and propriety developments. We don’t do any OEMs and we do a lot of research. That’s where we’re different.”