For some time now I have planned to write about brands and companies that have been around for while. Some of them are well-known and others are lesser known by the wider public. A new category ‘Evergreens’ is dedicated to these businesses and Ilcsi Organic Skin Care is the perfect company to launch our new series with.
Ilcsi® Organic Skin Care has been formulated and developed since 1958 to bring simple, natural yet effective problem-solving and beautifying skin solutions to many. Sown, grown, harvested and formulated in Hungary from herbs, vegetables and fruits, Ilcsi beauty products are literally tasty enough to eat. Immediately after harvest, all plant ingredients are formulated and processed under specially-controlled conditions and with best-in-class equipment that maintain the vitality of the natural key cosmetic ingredients while eliminating bacteria. The Ilcsi skin care range is completely without synthetic ingredients nor does it contain animal-based additives.
Thanks to the uniquely rich Hungarian soil and a climate perfectly suitable for agriculture, herbs, vegetables and fruits are very rich in important ingredients and aromatic agents. All botanical ingredients are organically grown in the gardens of Ilcsi, are hand harvested, hand selected and lovingly hand made in very small batches. Some of the Ilcsi skincare products are blended with the invigorating and revitalising thermal waters of Hungary’s Lake Hajduszoboszlo. This subterranean thermal lake is full of rare minerals with qualities which have proven to be excellent for dry skin. Some Ilcsi beauty products also contain the mud and algae from this unique and rich water source.
Ilcsi (pronounciation: Il-chi) or as some call her Ilcsi Néni – in English Aunt Ilcsi – is Mrs. Ilona Molnar and she was the brain behind the brand. Born in 1926 she was attracted to the natural strength and healing effects of herbs, flowers, fruits and vegetables from a very early age. Aunt Ilcsi was a practicing beautician and with the years besides developing her special beautifying techniques, she started to create her very own formulas and cremes – all based on natural ingredients. Aunt Ilcsi was soon a very well respected beautician in the industry, having given presentations and lectures at conferences worldwide as well as she was also dedicated to educate the next generation of Hungarian beauticians.
Throughout the years she accumulated a huge know-how and she has never stopped learning but toured the untouched regions of the Hungarian countryside to collect local plants with her son Ferenc Molnar, a former photographer. As a logical consequence of their trips and Aunt Ilcsi’s immense knowledge, they founded Ilcsi Beautifying Herbs Ltd in 1984, specializing in strictly organic skin care and were far ahead of their times. Since then their business has become a very reputable brand worldwide – with distributors, exclusive salons and spas in over 40 countries, standing out for their unique fusion of high herbal content, concentration of active agents and Hungarian specialty ingredients. Today the company is managed by Ferenc Molnar and it has about 30 permanent employees in Hungary.
In 2004, Ilcsi was chosen to be a member of the world renown ‘Superbrands’ organization – only 400 brands were selected out of 10,000 considered – and in seven consecutive years afterwards Ilcsi was awarded the title of Superbrand. Aunt Ilcsi was also honored in 1990 by the Hungarian Government with the Small Cross Order of Merit for her achievement in the usage of herbs in the cosmetic industry and for her work as one of the leading business women of Hungary. August 20, 1999, Aunt Ilcsi was again honored with the Small Cross Order of Merit of the Hungarian Republic for her attempts in disseminating and popularizing the use of herbs within cosmetics and for her achievements as a business woman. In November 2007 at Beauty Hair and Spa Exhibition, Aunt Ilcsi received the Beauty Forum Professional Award as recognition of her work in Hungary in the cosmetic profession.
Very sadly, Aunt Ilcsi passed away this year in January, but her legend and spirit lives on – hopefully for a very long time.
Ilcsi organic skincare is considered very unique and exotic thanks to its unusually high content of natural ingredients and high degree of efficacy. None of the products are tested on animals and all of the ingredients originate from the company’s own, certified organic sustainable production. According to company philosophy and given their very wide range of products, Ilcsi beauty products are only distributed via spas and beauty salons ensuring that clients purchase the best products that are really suitable to their skins – based on lifestyle consultation and a beauty treatment by a professional beautician.
For more information and to find a local salon near you please visit their website. To my North American readers: Please note that due to some trademark issues with the company’s former distributor in the US and Canada, Ilcsi organic skincare is marketed under Aunt Ilcsi’s other nickname: Ilike (pronouncation: Ea-lea-ke) and ‘Ilcsi’ brand name is being used by the former distributor. You will find more information here.
The main Facebook community page is unfortunately only in Hungarian, but as I saw there are several FB communities operated by the respective regional distributors.
Source of images: courtesy of Ilcsi Beautifying Herbs Hungary.
(An older movie about the brand – 1st part. Only in Hungarian.)
(An older movie about the brand – 2nd part. Only in Hungarian.)