Twelve Beauty | An Interview With the Founder Dr. Pedro Catalá

Aurum Rose Beauty is thrilled to announce our new partnership with Twelve Beauty, a Spain-based natural skin care line that’s deeply rooted in science as well as plants. Behind this phenomenal brand is Dr. Pedro Catalá, a pharmacist and cosmetologist whose knowledge of product formulation as well as botanical ingredients has lead him to create uniquely effective and safe products that we are honored to share.

Today we are celebrating the launch of Twelve Beauty at Aurum Rose Beauty with an interview with Dr. Pedro, the brains (and beard) behind the brand.

Dr. Pedro of Twelve Beauty studying ingredients under his microscope.

ARB: What first drew you to study botany and the power of plants?

PC: Growing up in rural Spain, nature had a special meaning, my community relied on plants to treat minor ailments and to improve our wellbeing (although we did not use this term at that time). The power of plants always fascinated me, so a degree in pharmacy was the natural choice. I learned from plant anatomy, their hábitats, the relationships between them (yes, it is called phytosociology and its truly interesting) and specially their composition.

ARB: Can you explain the meaning behind Twelve Beauty?

PC: Having worked as a pharmacist for more than 15 years I always have in mind when I formulate, stressed and reactive skin, so during the five years of research

I identified 12 natural ingredients which I believe, help the skin to keep healthier for longer, hence the name.

I use these ingredients accross the range, depending on the product and which effects I want to achieve.

ARB: What has surprised you most about working in the natural beauty industry?

PC: The lack of a more strict legislation which unfortunately has a negative impact on consumers and they can be mislead. Also I think we need to focus more on our strengths as brands and not criticise each other, instead

we need to raise our standards and deliver the best product we can to our discerning customers, they deserve it.

I work on my own, I know it is not cool to admit it, but I do the invoices, reply all the enquiries, pack the orders and blend and bottle all the products by hand. However this is not an excuse not to work in the best conditions and as aseptic as posible. My weeks are pretty full but I always remember to enjoy this wonderful ride!

ARB: Most of the founders and formulators in this industry are women. Do you believe that being a man offers you a different perspective when creating your products?

PC: I do not see it as a man or women’s world, despite women are more forward-thinking than we actually are. Consumers and other colleagues see more my scientific background rather than my beard or deep voice. It is a very inclusive industry and there is space for everyone. Not sure about the whole beard!!

ARB: A main theme throughout your line is the concept of repairing the skin barrier. How do you know if your skin barrier is compromised?

PC: The more compromised the more vulnerable the skin becomes and easily succumbs to external factors. Also, a compromised skin barrier means higher water loss and the lack of some key lipids which translates in dehydration, redness and sensitivity.

ARB: What changes will you notice when you repair your skin barrier?

PC: The skin feels more comfortable, which means it is perfectly moisturized and elastic. Also, you will be less prone to redness and sensitivity. This is why I always say that the best product you can use, it is the one that suits your skin and makes it feel more cushy and glowy.

ARB: As the natural beauty industry continues to grow and attract new brands and formulators, are you concerned at all about what are you seeing in regards to product formulations, safety, and efficacy?

PC: As a formulator I respect every other brand as I know how hard is to formulate, however I tend to distrust from brands that launch quickly products if there is a trend out in the market and they want a slice of that.

It takes months, if not years of assessing the stability and verifying the efficacy and safety of the formulas.

ARB: I know that we’ve chatted about our mutual love for your super unique cleanser. Can you explain a bit about the formula and why it has such a unique (and fabulous) texture?

PC: For those who know me I always talk about the importance of the cleansing, I remember back in 2008 when I first showed the product to my profesor and other industry players they all said the same: why do you use such a high dose of precious squalane in a rinse off product?. Luckily I trusted my instinct, with this cleanser you are giving back to the skin some of its main components, in other words it minimises the damaging effects of cleansing. I see it more as a treatment than an actual cleanser. Despite I never believe in the claim “for all skin types”, from the customer’s feedback I get, it Works wonders on dry skin but also on combination and even sensitive souls.

ARB: I know that this is totally an unfair question, but what’s your favorite product from the line and why?

PC: It took me years to develop the range and working without any deadlines I ensured that I was more than happy with the final result. However the biggest challenge for me has been working on the Intelligent Frontier Facial Oil, I wanted to pay tribute to the unsaponifiable part of the plant oils, where the active ingredients lay. This special fraction of the oil is nothing new in the beauty industry but not many people uses them comercially as they are difficult to obtain and unstable in formulations, this is why it took me over two years after I decided on the final formula to make sure that everything was correct and delivered the right benefits to the skin.

ARB: What’s next for Twelve Beauty?

PC: I would like to see the Twelve beauty family growing so I am currently working in some new products that will keep bringing to the skin multiple benefits while strengthening the skin’s main function: the barrier. Twelve beauty is all about working with highly compatible ingredients that respect the epidermis. I would love to reveal some of them, but knowing how much time I take before I launch, I prefer to keep a low profile about them.

And now some fun questions:
– Favorite travel destination? It has to be India, it always surprises me in the nicest way.
– Favorite book? The story of the night by Colm Toibin.
– Favorite indulgence? I feel very spoilt by living in my town as people keep popping by and dropping me some of the fruits and vegetables they grow, so it’s easy to eat the recommended 5 pieces a day which I love. When it comes to clothes I tend to wear clothes from my nephew or friends, however once every two years there is a tiny shop in siena run by a lovely family and they craft the softest cashmere jumpers, they fit incredibly well and I feel very confident wearing them. I’m sure they are worth every cent but I blow my entire biannual budget for shopping anytime I step into their store.
– Favorite way to spend a day off? I love taking one of my favourite poetry books by Spanish poet, Miguel Hernandez and sit in one of the mountains nearby and read. I always tend to go to the same place, a big rock, which the locals called “penya plana”, it is super comfy.
– One word to describe your brand? healthy

Dr. Pedro Catalá, founder and formulator of Twelve Beauty


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