Nadine Boyd, on Ritual & Ever Amid

Nadine Boyd, on Ritual & Ever Amid
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We're excited to introduce you to our friend, Nadine Boyd, founder of Ever Amid— a brand that designs quality goods to transform how you connect to your body, your habits, the land, and the maker. Her objects are designed and produced by hand, and intended to be experienced like interactive art- revealing something about you or showing something of the world. She has been an incredible source of inspiration, join us in revealing her creative thoughts, commitments and rituals.

You have a passion for thoughtful design and creative direction, tell us about Ever Amid, touching on the process of creating the offering and the values that brought it together.

Like most quality products, the brand was a solution to a gap in the market. I’m not interested in creating more of the same, or riffing on what someone else is already doing well. That doesn’t serve buyers, and it certainly doesn’t serve the planet.

Ever Amid began as the answer to searching for an effective organic product for my lips and has evolved a hundred times since. I had replaced all other skincare with quality natural products of high design, but my search for the right product for my lips came up empty.

I had an expansive and determined list: the product would show a practical respect for the planet, offer a luxury experience, include only organic active ingredients, be packaged in natural materials, offer a minimalist aesthetic, and provide results that were therapeutic grade. Some brands performed some of the above elements well, but no brand offered a product that encompassed them all. So began the journey of what that would look like. 

For years I focused on refining the formula itself, based on a family recipe from our nana, a holistic farmer and kitchen visionary. From this was born our Restorative Botanical Infusion, the base to each of our formulas. The definition of slow beauty, our 60-day cold-steep phase results in potent plant medicine.

From this base, I created our hero product, the Ceremonial Protection Treatment. An unparalleled healing formula for lips, it's a hybrid mask, balm, and oil. When used to the specifications of our Lip Reset Protocol, our customers notice a marked improvement to the quality of their lip health in three days. Where they were reaching for other lip balm 10+ times a day, they now require the Ceremonial Protection treatment only morning and night with no third party supplements.

I’m interested in being a graceful disruptor of traditional consumerist culture. I want our objects to speak potently on how choosing well matters.

I want our customers, and every consumer, to begin asking what their products are made of and where those materials come from and what happens to those materials at the end of their life.

The Ever Amid vision has grown significantly from making the most effective lip balm in the world to creating a brand that organically finds market gaps and creates innovative solutions to elevate everyday habits with quality, well designed objects that will last a lifetime.

Being an entrepreneur requires focus, perseverance and dedication. How has your journey with Ever Amid influenced your ability to cultivate mindfulness or greater awareness in your everyday life?

The brand lived four years in my head and kitchen, and two years in planning, research, design, and production.

The process ignites a curiosity and joy in me as well as extreme patience. It has brought me back to listening to my intuition.

I practice guiding myself forward to follow the joy, rather than to escape the fear. Such different tools of propulsion.

This has been the longest practice of manifestation. When I’m exhausted, I rest. When I’m on fire, I create. When I have a challenging day I cry and focus on my children. I didn’t used to listen to these cues when I worked for someone else’s dream. I’m often awake at 2AM, scribbling notes.

Tired from passion work wears differently than exhausted from imbalance. My daydreams for the future of this brand are huge and satisfying.

You are committed to being a conscious maker, explain how you hope to influence more thoughtful consumption through your offering at Ever Amid.

Meaningful sustainability is not just purchasing clean beauty or green products, it’s consuming less. I believe that less is more, and that choosing better is best.

From this ethos comes physical objects and products with inherent worth. They hold a different space in our lives, providing a longevity not present in lifeless objects.

Anything I put into the world has to meet a strict standard of sustainability ethics. Every material is from nature and can return to nature. Every object is made by hand. Every hand is paid a fair wage. No part of our shipping materials requires our customers to complete a recycling loop. Be aware of a brand’s practices beyond their marketing jargon.

Rather than a dozen mediocre to poor lip products, invest in one quality product. I used to have a lip balm in every purse, bag, jacket pocket, and bedside table, and a lip oil, mask, and glosses in my vanity. My lips were still dry. None of the products held much worth, so I was constantly losing and replacing them. These are small objects, but the philosophy of waste is prevalent across industries.

Watch how your relationship to an object changes when you invest in quality pieces that fulfill their intent better than any other on the market. I always know where my single jar of Ceremonial Protection Treatment is, and I haven’t lost it in five years. I leave the house without lip balm because my lips no longer need constant propping.

Objects of worth to pass down to the next generation creates a pattern of less. This is why I do what I do – make better things in hopes that less is required.

Tell us about your first experience with .eluo.

Admittedly, I was totally taken by the vintage apothecary jars when I was in my own brand development. This was before I had landed on creating porcelain vessels for the Ever Amid collection and I was deep-diving into what other wellness brands had accomplished to turn the toxic plastic-ridden beauty industry on its head.

The natural sound of the glass lid scraping the base is so satisfying. The ingredients fit perfectly into the type of skincare I use – wholesome and natural. The application was rewarding, providing a sensory experience and asking me to pause.

Eluo asks of its customers a parallel emotional breath that I seek to offer with my products – stealing a moment of calm within the tornado that is often our lives.

At this moment what inspires you?

Mushrooms. Microdosing has been a medicine for me, and has led me to places I don’t know if I would have gotten to otherwise.

It was almost as though I called their magic forth when I designed the porcelain vessel for the Nourishing Rouge Stain, which in retrospect is irrefutably (and unconsciously) shaped after the mushroom. Early feedback on that design was not entirely positive, but the bulbous lid, with squat figure, made me so happy. I kept it despite feedback. And a year later, I discovered psilocybin.

When I got to the packaging design, it was intuitive to work with mycelium, which is the root structure of the mushroom. It offered the highest level of nutritive compostability without losing the high-brow aesthetic I was after. It’s velvet to the touch and insulating – an incredible, sensorial material.

Nature is my forever inspiration. When I can get quiet in my body and mind outside, she is unique and imperfect and has endless love to bleed into all my senses.

My children are fascinating to witness and inspire me to connect more strongly to myself, so I can be my best self for them. When I am connected, I can be present and patient and be the platform from which they can explore their freedom. When I am disconnected I become tight and aim to control their experiences, which leads us all quickly south. Examining how I want to show up for them has shown me so much about what I value.

How do you reconnect when you’re feeling out of touch with yourself?

I pay attention to what I put in and on my body. I pay attention to where I’m feeling uncomfortable. Typically my mental and physical exhaustion is the last stage of ignoring something that is out of balance emotionally.

I’m learning that rather than to push through the discomfort with proactive action, stepping away to rest is the key to starting again. And when I do start again, I ignore the problem, and focus on something joyful, and that joy tends to eventually resolve it all.

My mental health is built on outdoor movement and quiet moments. I notice quickly when I have not paid enough attention to them. This happens often with three small children.

I wish I could say I spend the day in bed with a book, or do a juicy yoga class, or take a long quiet bath, but these are not luxuries I can reach easily in this phase of my life. Honestly, most days I just focus on breathing through the challenges and taking pains to empathize with the others in my home. I may not be able to connect to myself in a moment or a day, but practicing this simple act of empathy to the swells of others emotions at the very least leaves me without regret.

I used to go wild with dissatisfaction if I felt disconnected. I would madly look for action to take to regain balance. I have learned that tomorrow is a fresh day. I have learned that sleep can reset most moods and sadnesses. I have learned that feeling disconnected is okay.

Are there any daily rituals that you practice to take care of yourself?

There is no grand gesture. I practice a series of small habits that when compiled, create a routine I am proud of, that serves my mental, physical, and emotional health. Some days I can do one, some days I can do them all. The days I can do more tend to be better days.

Running outdoors is the hill I will die on to protect. In the winter, I use ice grips to run on ice and snow. In the summer I run to the lake and go for a dip before turning around to run home.

I hydrate. I read something inspiring. I write a letter to my children to read when they are adults. I mask with manuka honey. I oil cleanse. I organize one thing. I perform an act of service. I stretch between focused work sessions. I diffuse rose oil to connect with the heart. I massage my jaw and ears when I apply products to my face, the amount of tension held there is unreal. There are countless small kindnesses I practice showing myself.

The beautiful thing is that anything can become a ritual. The most mundane task can become an arena for connecting to self. All it takes is being present, patient, and soft.

Thank you so much to Nadine for sharing with us, for more-follow her journey on Instagram.

Celebrating the art and ritual of slow beauty.

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