Written by Grove Collaborative

Behind the Brand: Thrive Natural Care

Last Updated: September 20, 2022

Ensuring that a brand is not just sustainable, but actually regenerative is no small task. Alex McIntosh set out to do all this and more with skincare that brings out the highest caliber of health and wellness to his loyal fanbase.


By Angelina Singer

Who Owns Thrive Natural Care?

Alex McIntosh is the founder and CEO of this rapidly-growing skincare company, and it all started with his own struggles with sensitive skin. Disenchanted with what was currently available to relieve the discomfort, he found himself thrown into the middle of an accidental, but effective, skincare revolution.


From there, McIntosh started seeing the bigger picture of skincare, and the massive potential regenerative brands held to not only help their clients feel their best, but also improve their quality of life on the planet as a whole.

“Old-school business was extractive: take resources from ground/ocean/communities, make things into products, sell products, products become waste,” he says. “That has been a disaster for our planet and nearly every living thing. Newer thinking, ‘sustainable’, means that companies try not to make things worse, leave things as they are. But given the impact we’ve already had as a species, ’sustainability’ just promises our kids and grandkids the same mess we’re in today. Instead, we need to make the planet and our communities healthier. Regenerative business models can lead the way.”


With this deeper understanding of our world and the potential it has to be better than before, Thrive Natural Care is leading other brands into a more restorative outlook. McIntosh really views restorative business as simple as his email signature, which is aptly put, “Leave it better.”

3 Core Ingredients that Help You Thrive

With the choice to set up the bulk of the restorative action in the rich, tropical climate of Costa Rica, Thrive Natural Care has taken many hints from the local flavor of the indigenous peoples living there. That’s why they’ve chosen to incorporate Juanilama, Fierillo, and Coralillo into their products. These ingredients set the brand apart from other skincare companies, as others know neither the best practices for harvesting these ingredients, nor the incredible benefits they can provide when used to their fullest potential.


“All three have been used by indigenous people in Costa Rica for centuries for their soothing, anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, healing, and antioxidant properties,” McIntosh explains.

Juanilama

A popular choice for tea when you’re not feeling well, this potent herb is supercharged with the ability to lower cholesterol, heal bruises, relax muscles, and stop migraines — just to name a few of the benefits.


Fierillo

An antioxidant, wound-healing superstar! You’ll see this included in Thrive products because sometimes skin needs a little extra TLC, and Fierillo delivers all of that and more quickly and accurately.


Coralillo

For sensitive skin, this plant is the one you’ll want to run to. It’s got antioxidant powers, as well as healing abilities that will leave your skin better than ever before — a lot like Thrive Natural Care does for the planet.

Quality and Mission in Equal Doses

If you’re newer to the idea of sustainable or restorative efforts, you might wonder if these products actually work as well as the brands you may be used to. Maybe you’ve never heard of these plants before, and you’re left wondering how real the results are. All of these are valid concerns, but rest assured that Thrive Natural Care places emphasis on the quality and efficacy of their products equally.


Short answer? “Regenerative skincare isn’t just a deeper shade of green/sustainable. Or just a more fair form of farmer trade. It’s actually better skincare! Each customer’s purchase drives an inspiring positive impact by restoring degraded lands and boosting the earnings of hard-working rural farmers.”

McIntosh further explains: “The quality of the product is what allows the brand to drive the mission. And it does. The product is so effective that it is helping us grow and therefore restore more farmland.” From there, it’s easy to see how restorative brands not only treat their fans like royalty, but the planet as well. This allows the next generation to feel as good about the things they put on their bodies, if not better, than the generations before. This is the secret sauce that makes Thrive the restorative juggernaut that it is today.

Favorite Must-Try Products from the CEO

Our conversation with Alex McIntosh suggested that he’s really into sunscreen and loving your skin enough to protect it from those damaging UV rays. Here at Grove, we wholeheartedly second that motion!


“Our Daily Defense Sunscreen Balm is our best selling product,” McIntosh mentions. “It is a breakthrough product: 100% safe mineral sunscreen protection, 0% white skin. It’s also packed with Thrive’s superplants to help restore and protect skin on a daily basis. Customers love it. It’s an award-winner with leading media like Vogue. And our whole team (and our families) love it.”


He goes on to share more about the products consumers can rely on if they’re like us and sometimes under-estimate the amount of sun damage that can happen on any given day. “We are also really excited about our newer after-sun products, both the Skin Recovery Serum and the After Sun Recovery Lotion. The recovery of your skin after spending time outdoors is really important and nourishing it after exposure can make all the difference.”


We’ve Got a (Clean) Little Secret

With all the exciting new innovations happening at Thrive Natural Care, we managed to squeeze out a sneak peek at what’s coming next from this brand.


“We have an amazing (we’re in love) new line of Skin Vitality (our replacement for the annoying and dated ‘anti-aging’ term) products later this year,” McIntosh gushes. “Cutting edge formulas that use our superplant extracts for targeted skin benefits, and zero plastic.” Sounds fabulous to us, and it’s safe to say here at Grove, we can’t wait.

Which Brands Get Applause from Thrive Natural Care?

“We are 'thumbs up' to Dr. Bronners for their work to support regenerative agriculture and sourcing. We admire the social impact of Alaffia. We love the "let’s get out of plastic” of Blue Heron Botanicals.”

Real Tips for Making the Switch

We asked Alex McIntosh what he would tell consumers that may be interested in shopping more intentionally, but are initially feeling overwhelmed by the process. He has some great advice on the subject that will help if you find yourself in the same boat.


“Go to trusted sources like Grove who have already done the homework for you. Understand what ingredients are and be aware that buzzwords like “clean” and “green” don’t really mean anything. Think about how your decisions as a consumer can make a difference, and let’s get everyone onboard with choosing better brands that care about our collective future. Support brands that make great products and that are aiming high with their mission.”


Well said! And we couldn’t agree more. When you choose to shop with Grove, we recognize that you are putting your full confidence in our shared vision to make this world better for both your family, and the ecosystem at large. That’s why we couldn’t be more proud of Thrive Natural Care for their innovative restorative mission and all the powerful nutrients they use to help you be your best.

About the author: Angelina Singer

Angelina Singer has been writing for Grove Collaborative since 2021. She loves all things luxury and fun, with an emphasis on whimsical pop punk style and being your best self. Here at Grove, she thrives doing all of this and more as a content editor and writer alongside her gigs as a published author and freelancer.

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