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Bob People: Five Minutes with Sans [ceuticals] founder, Lucy Vincent

In a career spanning two decades, Lucy Vincent’s fresh, uncontrived approach to hair and beauty has made her an influential and pioneering innovator in her native New Zealand. A former hairstylist and salon owner, Lucy couldn’t find the type of products she wanted to use, so she set out to create her own.

Made fresh in small batches, sans [ceuticals] ingredients are pure, sustainable and nourishing for the hair, with no harmful additives.

Here, Lucy offers an insight into her life, in and out of the office.


Where do you live?

Central Auckland, in a sunny little spot nearby to the Sans [ceuticals] studio with my boys + our cat called Lyra.

What prompted you to shift toward a more natural lifestyle? When did it happen and what does it mean to you? 

I am very connected to nature and the land. For me, it has informed my upbringing, my interests, and how I spend my time, whether that's rejuvenating or getting inspiration. In 1995 I became very ill and started to research ways to heal and transform the body through natural and alternative methods. Methods that support the body and immune system long term, rather than singularly treat disease. This opened up a whole new pathway for me –– looking into what we eat, how we consume, purchase and what influence we can have through voting with our wallets. It’s been a long and interesting journey.

Favourite Sans product?

The Activator 7 Body + Hair + Face Oil is my forever favourite. It cuts down on clutter and waste and because it really works. I have kids and therefore live by the rule of quick, simple but effective. Our cult product Activator 7 Oil does everything! It’s a body oil that packs a punch with high concentrations of Vitamin A. I keep it in my shower and apply daily while my skin is still wet. I shave my legs with it. I press a few drops into my face as a night time serum, use it on the ends of my hair to smooth and nourish... I also use it to remove my eye make-up (when I remember).

Favourite cook book?

I have been inspired by temple cooking since watching Jeong Kwan’s episode of Chef’s Table. My current favourite is ‘Kansha: Celebrating Japan's Vegan and Vegetarian Traditions’ by Elizabeth Andoh. I’m not vegan or 100 percent vegetarian but like to eat this way. 

Favourite 'slow living' activity?

Heading out of the city, away from screens & city life. I just had the best holiday break at Bethells Beach Cottages with my kids. It is such a magical place and we are so lucky to have the wild west coast on our doorstep.

What's on your summer reading list?

I just read Alice Water’s, Coming to My Senses —what an incredible woman! I’m also reading Buddhism Is Not What You Think by Steve Hagen. And lots of Gourmet Traveller magazines. 

Favourite ethical and/or natural clothing brand(s)?

Jac + Jack, Studio Nicholson. I also love Lee Mathews.

Favourite local healthy and/or sustainability minded businesses, shops, cafes and restaurants?

Ceres Fresh Market in the middle of Ponsonby is a favourite. I also love The Dairy run by a great woman called Tara who specializes in local, artisan cheeses. 

If we were to do one thing only to start leading a more natural and sustainable lifestyle, where would you suggest we start? 

Simplify and pare back. Consume less. Life has become so busy –– being a working mother, my to-do list is endless. To stay on top of it all and keep my head clear, I try to reduce as much clutter and noise around me as possible. This approach influences everything that I do in life and has made way for a much more natural & sustainable lifestyle.