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Greece Isn’t Just the Center of Blue-Zone Everything, It’s Now a Sustainable Beauty Hotspot

When it comes to longevity, daily movement and nutrient-rich meals are key. But the world’s longest-living people—particularly in Greece—have also fine-tuned yet another aspect of vitality, and this one is healthy, hydrated, and glowy all over... for you and the planet.

We're talking about sustainable beauty. "Despite its small size, our homeland hosts more than 6,000 plant species, 1,200 out of which are endemic—they cannot be found anywhere else in the world," says Lena Korres, co-founder, brand president, and chief innovation officer of the Greek beauty brand KORRES. "For us it was imperative to focus and protect the Greek flora and the local communities. We promote organic farming, conserving the biodiversity and endangered species." And its a niche the brand, which was founded 25 years ago out of the oldest Greek herbal apothecary, has perfected.

This commitment to caring for the earth makes KORRES a go-to in the sustainable-beauty space, but the attention to nourishing ingredients has also put Mediterranean beauty on the map for your skin-care goals, too. “Mediterranean beauty is all about that natural Greek glow,” says Korres. “Natural glowing skin is healthy looking skin.” The brand is dedicated to "serving kállos—the harmonious connection between inner and outer beauty," and harnessing the power of Greek superfoods to make the ultimate skin-care essentials.

So, how can you add blue-zone ingredients not just to your fridge, but to your skin-care shelf? Here's what to know about building your own glow-boosting sustainable-beauty collection.

Find out what to look for when curating your Mediterranean sustainable beauty routine below.

Make superfood ingredients the star of the show

Greece's blue-zone principles are all rooted in one thing: the Mediterranean diet. So it's no surprise that Mediterranean beauty focuses on the same longevity-linked ingredients. "We rely on Greek natural ingredients, on our traditions, on century old Greek superfoods that proved to be ultimate skin superfoods," says Korres. "We translate the above into science and deliver it back in formulas with specific benefits."

Top of that list are olive oil, yogurt, and grapes. "Greek olive oil—with over 200 different antioxidant and nourishing compounds—is one of nature’s greatest treasures," says Korres. “We transformed extra virgin olive oil, the essence of Mediterranean diet, into a skin-care collection delivering an instant vitality boost for healthier, more resilient skin." KORRES works with a head agriculturist—yes, that's a real role at the beauty brand—to source the purest ingredients from local farmers. Here's why that matters: "Our rare early harvest olive oil originates from a family-owned olive grove in the Cretan village of Zounaki," explains Korres. "Crete has the ideal combination of microclimate, moisture, and temperature conditions for superior olive oil production."

If you’re wondering how yogurt and grapes fit into the mix, Korres puts it into context: Greek yogurt is super concentrated—with double the protein content of other types of yogurt due to the specific straining process—to provide deep moisture. Meanwhile, grapes harvested off of the Aegean Sea are filled with polyphenols to further quench and nourish the skin. These ingredients weave into a silky blend that pepper KORRES products, such as Pure Greek Olive 3-In-1 Nourishing Oil, Seed-to-Skin Kit (available while supplies last), and Santorini Grape Poreless Skin Cream.

Look for full-circle sustainability practices

"Our purchases can have an impact," says Korres. "On us, on the communities, on nature." To that end, the brand employs the Full Circle™ process, which includes six steps: soil (how the ingredients are grown), extraction (how they are processed, including zero-waste methods), molecular (how the nutrients are cultivated and preserved), formulation (how the cruelty-free blends come together), design (how they're packaged), and recycle (how materials are reused—the brand has collected over 25,000 pieces of plastic since 2021 to do just that).

“We take full ownership for every product’s journey from seed to skin and back,” says Korres. “From partnering directly with farmers to source organic ingredients, to ensuring our formulations use the zero-waste extraction process—like returning unused plant materials to the soil for compost—and creating sustainable packaging.” For example, 100 percent of the Seed-to-Skin Kit (which is only available for a limited time) and Santorini Grape Poreless Skin Cream are recyclable (yep, really). Meanwhile, over a thousand Greek farming families produce all of the brand's plant-based, organic ingredients.

"To us, beauty has something of Ancient Greek wisdom in it," says Korres. "It’s all about loving yourself and the world around you." You (and the planet) are totally glowing.

Thinking of adding Mediterranean beauty to your regimen? Well+Good readers can score 20 percent off with the code WG20 (until 12/31).

Top photo: Getty Images/Brooke Pifer and Well+Good Creative

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