In fall 2021, I had the opportunity to visit the headquarters of renowned luxury brand Valmont Cosmetics in Switzerland, which is the source of pure ingredients like Swiss glacial waters, plant extracts and fresh honey found in the brand’s lines.
Press was invited to go behind-the-scenes and learn about the ingredients sourced in the products. The L’Elixir brand has had a successful growth that led to the launch of three exceptional collections: The Precious, Majestics and the Marvellous Collections.
We visited the Valmont Headquarters in Morges on the banks of Lake Geneva to meet with CEO Sophie Guillon and were briefed on the 20 years of L’Elixir des Glaciers and how the brand continues to grow strong with its clientele. L’Elixir des Glaciers has reached the pinnacle of skincare with Essence of Gold Sturgeon. The Marvellous Collection included two new products: Fluide Merveilleux, the ultimate regenerating essence that’s light and comfortable to remineralize your skin, smooth its texture and brighten the complexion; and Crème Merveilleuse, the regenerating cream that’s highly concentrated in sturgeon DNA, a prodigious anti-age booster that immediately smooths, plumps the skin and evens its tone.
The reason the products come with a higher price tag (Fluide Merveilleux , $470CAD, Crème Merveilleuse, $1300) is because of the rare sturgeon DNA. The sturgeon is one of the longest-living animals whose cell-repairing and rejuvenating properties help preserve the skin’s natural elasticity and suppleness. This is an incredibly important property when it comes to anti-aging.
As a result, the skin is radiant, refined, tightened and regenerated and the complexion is visibly clearer. As someone who has been using the product daily, I have noticed how my skin is more hydrated and supple, and no longer flaky.
The Majestic Collection – Bee Farm at Satigny
The Majestic Collection – which is known for restoring and nourishing – brings together the best of natural bee products in a unique and high-performance combination of honey, propolis and royal jelly. For this, we visited the beekeeping farm in Satigny. We were given a tour of how the honey (moisturizing and reparative properties), propolis (purifying) and royal jelly (regenerative qualities ) are produced and extracted.
The Precious Collection – Phyto-Alpine Garden in the Swiss Alps
The efficacy of the Precious Collection comes from the ingredients sourced and extracted. The natural Sea Buckthorn, Echinacea and Rosa Moschata plant extracts are grown with the utmost care in Valmont’s own Phyto-Alpine Garden in the heart of the Swiss Alps. We visited the garden for a quick glimpse at how and where these were growing.
While in the Swiss Alps, we also visited the Arolla glacier, which acts as a fountain of youth for the skincare brand. The 2,000-metres tall glacier provides pure glacial water filled with minerals that are directly sourced to Valmont without any preservatives.
Valmont Spa at Le Meurice, Paris
We were also treated to a stay at the Le Meurice Hotel in Paris. This allowed us the opportunity to try the luxurious facial at the Valmont Spa situated in Le Meurice. The facialists have all been trained in the same techniques so that no matter where in the world you experience the first-class spa service, you will notice the care and details that goes into every step of the facial experience.
I sat down with Sophie to discuss her skincare secrets, the power of such strong clientele and how she kept the brand thriving for 20 years.
What makes the L’Elixir brand so strong and thriving even 20 years later?
That’s a very good question. It was first a concept 20 years ago. Today, it’s a product and it’s aligned, and it’s even a brand. We started with a concept of the fresh product to be individually manufactured upon demand, you come you order your product, it’s going to be freshly developed and produced in Switzerland and shipped it over you with DHL. That was the very first Votre Visage from the precious line. So we did that, and people liked the product. But above all, they like the idea of individually producing the product for them, having it delivered to them one month after they ordered it. So you’re waiting for your product, you’re waiting for the Swiss to produce it. So there is a link. And this is the story of today. I mean, it’s all about life. It’s about links. It’s about interactions, it’s about relationships, it’s not only a product.
So that’s how it started. From a concept, I would say, leading to a product that was obviously efficient in the way that you could see the results because it was easy in terms of developing it mentally, because we put five times more ingredients than in the Valmont line. Valmont line has a reputation of being visibly efficient, after one month, Elixir was overnight. So that was my challenge.
It does have $1,000 price tag. What sets the product apart?
You have several sizes of sturgeon DNA, the highest molecular weight is about 10,000 a kilo. So that explains the price. Yes, I have put the two sizes to cover all the layers of the skin and also we put some other things which provide immediate glow radiance from inside to make your skin look so bright, you know? Healthy. That’s the thing.
Elixir turned 20 this year and you said Valmont is going to turn 40 in four years. The brand have such a strong clientele and you’ve been having a good fan base for years now and it’s growing. What makes it so strong?
I think the link that we all have on Earth is our condition and our condition is based on the skin biology and everybody wants to see their skin in good shape. It’s like everybody wants to be healthy. That’s what we do with your skin. I know a lot of people say one cosmetics is worth another cosmetic brand. They don’t do nothing. I know I’ve heard that. I don’t reply because I don’t want to convince people because it’s only possible when you have the experience. When somebody discovers the product, they apply it, you can see the difference between yesterday and the next day, they stay true, they stay faithful.
How would you describe the ideal Elixir woman?
She’s super demanding so beware (laughs) but she knows that she can have visible results very quickly, with Elixir. So therefore, she’s like a cosmetic addict. She’s not a control freak, but not far. Meaning she wants to control her look, she wants to control the glow of her skin, she wants to control the perfection, she radiates. And this is why she goes to Elixir because she knows, she knows it will keep the promises. The people who buy Elixir are people who are very demanding on a conjunction of prestige but efficacy, sometimes you have prestige, but you don’t have efficacy, it’s meaningless. We give a little bit of our Swiss environment to the whole world; it makes them feel good because the travel without traveling is real piece of Switzerland in their bathroom. And the people who enjoy that are the idealistic people who want the best skin in the best condition in the best packaging in the best prestige, so they are people who are longing for excellence in all departments.
What is your daily routine skincare routine consists of?
Prime Renewing Pack is compulsory. Really, at the end of the day when your skin feels tight, because it’s been dried off by the wind or by the sun or whatever, but most of the time I use it in the morning. Time Master is one of my favorites. Now the Marvelous is definitely my baby darling. In terms of serum, I am an extreme person. The more I move on, the more my skin is demanding because it’s getting drier and drier and more dehydrated. So I never give up on the hydration. It’s very, very important. So I use at night I use the h2o Spa Boost, which is a Hydration Boost. And in the morning I use the moisturizing booster, which is light with three different sizes of hylaronic acid. And in terms of creams, I always use the moisturizing with the cream which holds the hydration very, very well.