Impact Interviews with Amber Stryker: Tiila Abbitt from Āthr Beauty
This month I interviewed Tiila Abbitt, inspirational founder and CEO of Āthr Beauty. A pioneer of zero-waste packaging in the beauty industry, Tiila brings sustainability into every decision at Āthr Beauty, donating a portion of sales to environmental charities because she believes that giving back and being sustainable is the only way to ensure we leave this planet better than we found it.
Tiila and Āthr Beauty are leaders in the beauty industry making clean and sustainable beauty products, and we’re proud to partner with the brand at BoxyCharm and IPSY. Learn more below!
Amber: You founded Āthr Beauty, an innovative clean beauty brand. What is your personal inspiration for the brand?
Tiila: I wanted to create something where my children wouldn’t be responsible for cleaning up my mess later. So I visited recycling facilities and interviewed packaging suppliers to learn the ins and outs of packaging. I really wanted to make an impact, so I launched one product at a time. We make sure that our packaging is and will always be 100% recyclable and use recycled materials, and we wanted to vet each ingredient to ensure it’s clean and nontoxic.
Amber: I love the look and feel of Āthr’s products. How do you balance a sustainable and luxurious brand?
Tiila: I’ve always been obsessed with the design of products, and I love, love, love packaging design! Obviously, making sure it’s functional is number one, but also making sure that it is elevated is really important to me.
People have this misconception that paperboard is cheap, which is actually not necessarily correct. Many people love these elaborately heavy products, and we’ve been taught that luxury is heavy in the beauty industry. But to rationalize that something is expensive when you’re paying for the same formulation is really the issue here. At Āthr, we made those decisions to elevate the paperwork in our pallets to be sustainable and luxurious. Our zero-waste eyeshadow palette is the perfect example of this combination.
Amber: At BoxyCharm, we are loving the eco-design of the biodegradable wand in The Big Bang Mascara. Can you tell us how you developed it?
Tiila: I worked on this mascara for three years before we launched it to ensure the formula and the packaging were in the best space. We use a whole castor plant in the formula, and this product is vegan, cruelty-free, gluten-free, and formulated without talc, parabens, nanoparticles, and fragrance. The packaging component is made with recycled ocean plastic, and the biodegradable wand is made of castor plant fibers.
Amber: And it’s an incredible mascara!
When it comes to making an impact for sustainability, are there any other efforts you want to share?
Tiila: When using plastic for specific formulas, we use 80–100% recycled ocean plastic. We are also proud to offer carbon-neutral shipping and have partnered with Boox to create reusable shipping boxes. Boox helps us reduce environmental impact by 75% compared with single-use packaging.
Amber: That’s all amazing! Can you give us a preview of what’s next?
Tiila: We are releasing innovative products in the latter half of 2022! This includes some never-before-seen refillable products. We love being the first to market with everything — including a Radiant Ruby Lip Crème made with 100% recycled PET, which is the most recycled and easiest-to-recycle plastic.
Amber: I’ll be on the lookout for those products! Thank you for joining us for Impact Interviews. We love having Āthr Beauty as a brand partner at BFA!
Tiila Abbitt is a passionate, highly creative product development professional with 11+ years’ experience. Tiila has a BFA in sculpture and an MFA in fashion design. She worked in the fashion industry for over five years before transitioning to beauty.
About Āthr Beauty
Āthr Beauty creates beauty products that are vegan, cruelty-free, clean formulas with organic and fair-trade ingredients, and completely zero-waste packaging. Āthr Beauty is formulated with expertise, pushing boundaries to get true efficacy in clean beauty. The brand’s products are Leaping Bunny- and PETA-certified, and part of the 1% for the Planet Initiative.