LittlePod’s Cosmetics for the Kitchen – beauty begins on the inside

The phrase was first coined at a food event several years ago, but it has stuck with LittlePod’s founder and Managing Director Janet Sawyer MBE BEM ever since. Cosmetics for the kitchen, was how one appreciative visitor described the innovative product upon which the company’s Campaign for Real Vanilla has been built. There is no question that the stylish aluminium tube containing LittlePod’s natural vanilla paste would look at home on the shelves of a chic London salon or Parisian parfumerie.

Behind the style there is substance, for vanilla is more than just a flavour for ice cream, boasting properties that give it a value that goes beyond baking. It is the health of the planet that has led to royal approval – the company’s environmental credentials ensured LittlePod received one of the first King’s Awards for Enterprise (Sustainable Development), the UK’s most prestigious business accolade, this April – but the benefits to our bodies that vanilla can bring enthral Janet just as much.

She moves in exclusive circles these days, having become accustomed to visiting Buckingham Palace, but Janet still recalls a childhood when poorliness was often treated not using traditional means, but with her mother’s panna cotta. The inclusion of vanilla – harvested from a precious orchid, painstakingly grown in the tropical rainforests of the world’s Equatorial regions – could be relied upon to improve her condition. She didn’t realise it then, but she was following in the footsteps of Mexico’s indigenous Totonac people, who had utilised vanilla’s medicinal properties for centuries.

Laced with natural calmatives and uplifters, antacids and anti-inflammatories, vanilla has been used as a tonic through the ages, calming stomachs, relieving aches and pains, and improving moods long before it was served to Janet in that first restorative dessert. It has been used to treat conditions from asthma to congestion and coughs, to soothe burns and to sedate, whilst scientists still believe that the magical plant contains a compound that, if isolated, could be prescribed to stave off sugar cravings. Given obesity’s threat to modern life, it could be vanilla’s greatest gift yet.

Not bad for a delicate orchid that too few in the West even know exists. It is this that LittlePod has campaigned for over a decade to change in a culture where 97% of all the vanilla sold is synthetic, a concoction of petrochemicals that cannot boast the benefits of that which it seeks to imitate. There is, of course, no substitute for the real thing and be it health and wellness or beauty – a quality that an exquisite orchid boasts in an abundance – vanilla’s allure is undeniable, this an on-trend fragrance in the perfume world, where it is outselling traditional florals, its familiar scent as appealing as the antioxidants that can reduce skin damage and slow the signs of ageing.

The age-old saying might claim that it is skin deep; yet as Janet and LittlePod have discovered with their cosmetics for the kitchen, when it comes to vanilla, beauty – like health – begins on the inside.

To find out more and explore the world of LittlePod visit, follow @little_pod on Instagram or give the team a call on 01395 232022.

June 29, 2023

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