Nuga: is a brand that manufactures personal care products. Founded by Suyash Shrestha and Rasana Shrestha, Nuga: has been striving to make and sell natural, free of artificial chemicals as well as edible cosmetic products. These products are made using local materials found here in Nepal. Though Nuga: was conceptualized in 2016, the duo officially launched the company in 2018, after two years of thorough research on making all natural personal care products.
According to Suyash, he had personally always wanted to do something by merging agriculture and manufacture together, in hopes of boosting the agro based economy of our country. “In case of cosmetics and personal care products, we tend to buy things that are imported and the money doesn’t stay here in Nepal,” he says adding that as both a consumer and an entrepreneur, he felt and still feels there is a need of Nepal made products in the Nepali market.
And so, all doors seemed to open when he met Rasana Shrestha who is currently his business partner. For many years, Rasana had been making personal care products at home for her friends and family. She had grown up using traditional and all natural recipes, which had been handed down for generations, for her skin and hair. Also, during her stay in Kerala, she learnt a lot of similar natural recipes from the women there.
Taking all this into consideration, the duo decided to open Nuga: in order to manufacture and sell products using traditional skin care methods and recipes which have become almost obsolete, in order to reinvent them and introduce them in the modern market. Currently, Nuga: sells about nine different kinds of personal care products like lip scrubs, body scrubs, soaps, and face scrubs. They go through the extra trouble to ensure all the ingredients they use are bought from local farmers and that no synthetic chemicals and preservatives are added in their products. They have a factory in Chabahil, Kathmandu, and you can get their products via Facebook and Instagram as well as places like the Tranquility Spa.
Traditional Newari face scrub
Nuga:’s first ever product, the face scrub was inspired by Rasana’s own home and childhood. According to her, girls in most Newari houses use the scrub during “gufa”. And in Shrestha’s case, her family has often used it for soft and smooth skin. The scrub is made of mustard seeds, rice bran, rice powder, fenugreek powder, glycerol and honey. This is great for dry and flaky skin.
Nuga: offers lip scrubs in three flavors: mint chocolate, beetroot and honey and cinnamon. Their best seller among the lip scrubs as well as all their products is the beetroot lip scrub. “Many people believe beetroot naturally adds a good color to your lips so many of our customers gravitate towards beetroot,” explains Rasana. Moreover, Nuga: is also the first company of its kind to introduce lip scrubs in Nepal. The scrub has ingredients like sugar, sunflower oil, coconut oil, and beeswax that are all completely natural. As the scrubs are sugar based, after the sugar melts once you apply it, you can either wash or lick it off.
Moisturizing and exfoliating soaps
Nuga: offers two different types of soaps: green tea and mint and spicy coffee. According to the duo, the soaps moisturize your skin when bathing and there is no need for you to apply any moisturizing cream afterwards. The soaps come in chic little hemp pouches, making the entire product (both soap and packaging) biodegradable. Moreover, thanks to the coarseness of hemp, the pouch itself also works as a loofah, eliminating your need to buy a separate loofah for your bath. The soaps are made up of green tea extract (in case of the green tea and mint soap), coconut oil, rice bran oil, palm oil, moisturizing milk, and glycerol. “The mint in the green tea and mint soap has a cooling effect making it an ideal soap for the summer months,” adds Rasana.
The body scrubs are offered in three different varieties: energizing coffee, wine and roses and neem and mint. Except for neem and mint, the other two scrubs are sugar based. “In cases of other body scrubs in the market, they are mostly salt based and salt tends to draw the moisture out, leading to drier skin,” explains Rasana adding that sugar holds and locks the moisture in. Furthermore, she also adds that coffee helps reduce cellulite in the body. Along with making you feel fresh and smell delicious, the body scrubs are great for those with sensitive skin. Along with sugar and coconut oil, the scrubs also have other natural ingredients like sunflower oil, wheatgerm oil and Himalayan Arabica to keep your skin soft and smooth.