I've always taken care of my body. I have a nine-year yoga practice that I am committed to, and I used to be a self-care product junkie. However, over the past five years, I’ve begun leaning towards more natural products. I stopped using scented lotions on my body in favor of natural oils, as I began to acutely dislike any type of perfume or cologne. They all smell fake and too strong to me, like a cover-up for something rotten underneath.
I started using almond oil on my body but still wasn't satisfied with the smell or texture of it because it never seemed to fully absorb into my skin. One of my best friends had started making body oil and I smelled it and was instantly hooked. There was something nostalgic and familiar about the smell. The way it felt was so thick and perfect; I found out later that was Argan oil. I told her, “We must sell this stuff! People need it!”
We workshopped some of our favorite scents and quickly realized what worked and what didn't, and eventually came up with something that felt right. It was trial and error but mostly instinct. We wanted to cover our bodies with it and thought it was also delicious, so we decided to call our invention Butter Elixir because it reminded us of something rich and decadent.
The therapeutic-grade Sweet Almond, Argan, French Lavender and Chamomile oils are 100 percent natural and pure, and even the bottle is recycled plastic. Everything is sourced locally in New York City, which was very important to us. We try to be as green as possible and luckily the recycled bottle was quite beautiful, had the perfect dimensions and correlated exactly with the aesthetic of the brand we were creating. We wanted a refined, clean and modern look, and it was just as crucial for us to make something beautiful as it was for us to be green.
We wanted everything about Butter Elixir to be simple and uncomplicated to compliment our yoga practice. We nourish ourselves by showing up on the mat and paying attention to the details that come up, i.e. the emotions and thoughts that are uncovered throughout the day. It could be whatever is left over from our past, as well as our thoughts or plans for the future. The goal is to be present, to fully be in this moment. It is an inevitable fact that we mentally and emotionally vacillate between the past and future, but by showing up and acknowledging this process, the past and the future are allowed to fade away. We need to carry that acknowledgement into the rest of our lives, including the physical aspects, so we nourish our bodies with high quality, beautiful oil. These specific and yet simple rituals are how we take care of ourselves; it's all connected.
We love when other people love Butter as much as we do. Just as in yoga, it’s not about covering up what’s fake underneath, but about making sure we are genuine from the start. We must take the time to simplify our intention and nourish ourselves both inside and out. We have enough Butter to share, but in my heart I will always know that Butter is mine.
My ritual. My process.
--Jared McCann. Formerly an avid runner, Jared MacCann began practicing yoga in 2005 on the Lower East Side. Through his practice, he began to hear and decipher what his heart is saying, he began to see himself in all living beings, and his love of life increased exponentially. After eight years dedicated to the mat and with help from great teachers, he became the First Place Bishnu Charan Gosh Cup International Yoga Champion in 2013, and now teaches in New York City as well as hosts seminars and workshops all over the world.