While working within her family’s personal care business, Orpheus founder and CEO Sara Kyurkchieva encountered the rare Orpheus flower, which sparked her mission to create a skincare line dedicated to this powerful botanical. The ancient resurrection flower—the star of the line—is an endemic and protected species (reportedly two million years old) to Kyurkchieva’s homeland of Bulgaria.
With this in mind, and sustainability at the brand’s core, they use biotechnology to activate the power of the flower “without harming your skin or causing damage to the environment,” says Kyurkchieva.
Orpheus claims to be the world’s first 100% clean, botanical stem cell skincare dedicated to the Resurrection flower, which holds “transformative powers.” The collection features the All-In-One Serum ($125) and the Bio-Luminous Dewy Essence ($65).
For years, Kyurkchieva says she and her team worked with leading experts in biotechnology and sustainability to develop a bioactive complex that would harness the benefits of the rare flower without ever having to harvest it, through green science and clean biotechnology. She says the biotechnology process stimulates the plant cells to produce more active ingredients than naturally found in the plant itself, resulting in a higher potency extract without ever harming the environment.
Packaging in Line with a Sustainable Philosophy
Kyurkchieva says it was essential to her that the packaging also aligned with their sustainable philosophy, “so glass was my first and only choice when I started looking for packaging.”
She explains: “Glass is 100% recyclable, diverted from the single-use waste stream and recycling it reduces its carbon footprint. Ideally glass packaging should never wind up in a landfill, although occasionally it does due to pieces of the pump mechanism that cannot be separated.”
Her search for the right package was lengthy, but fulfilled her goals.
“We take pride in using a patented airless glass technology for our Resurrection All-In-One Serum,” says Kyurkchieva. “This technology protects the integrity of the formula, ensures no oxidation or contamination, while also offering a responsible recycling option, allowing easy material separation."
"After many months researching the most sustainable vendor options, we chose to work with the highest quality glassmaker in the world—Lumson— who is based in Italy. It was a considerable expense for a start-up company, but with sustainability at the core of our brand, we knew it was important we invest in it.” (See: Lumson Offers Revolutionary Sustainable Airless Designs).
What’s more, Kyurkchieva says her background in design paired with the manufacturer’s expertise and resulted in “our perfect final product.”
The package’s design is inspired by art and science, reflecting the brand’s mission to pioneer a sustainable multi-task product leveraging advanced biotechnology to deliver proven results.
Overall the packaging is minimal, focusing on the logo (the flower) and the colors used. “We packaged in a semi-transparent purple glass (a nod to the purple leaves of the plant) to avoid direct sunlight exposure, while also allowing the green formula to come through subtly,” explains Kyurkchieva. She says the bold, typography and sharp edges of the flower symbol, speak to the how the plant is being activated by science.
The journey to produce a fully sustainable product is one that is both challenging and constant, says Kyurkchieva. The brand’s product bottles are currently packaged in boxes made from recyclable paper, “which has a digital press-print versus offset which helps to reduce overall make-ready paper waste.” She says they’ve already taken the next step and fully upgraded the packaging material so that all future batches will come in 100% recycled carton boxes with recyclable ink.
“The next area we are focusing on is our shipping methods, and its contribution to our carbon footprint. We currently use shipping envelopes instead of boxes to reduce waste, but are constantly ideating solutions that will lessen our environmental impact while ensuring products are protected while in transport.”
Airless Packaging Innovations for Skincare, Focus on Sustainability