Q+A with
Nicole Gustafsson
OrgaNic Obsessions

Meet ‘Nic’, a down-to-earth global citizen and green beauty blogger, as well as a long-time member of the Beauty Heroes community from Stockholm, Sweden. Ever since she first joined Beauty Heroes, she has been one of our strongest supporters by sharing her pure joy and passion for healthy beauty.  Nic’s beauty discoveries give light to the fact that clean beauty isn’t just good for you, it’s a journey that is fun and will change the way you look at the world.  As a highly engaged member of the online green beauty community, Nic shares her very personal experiences with the Hero products and brands she loves, encouraging us to enjoy the process of discovery and celebrate all that makes us feel and live beautifully.

Jeannie: What inspired you to begin writing about beauty AND launch your blog?

Nic: I can’t say that I had a defining moment when a light went off and made me go, blog time! But I think it slowly crept up on me when I started reading blogs about various products and wanting more information. As you may have noticed, my posts are not the shortest in history! I wanted to give in-depth reviews touching on as many different aspects as possible about a product and I hope that is what I have achieved with OrgaNic Obsessions to date.

JJ: What’s your beauty philosophy?

Nic: Be yourself. I know it’s not a new concept but I truly think it’s something that we don’t spend enough time being. Now that I’m in my early 30s I can say that I wished I were more myself sooner instead of trying to live up to other people’s expectations. When I’m with people who are being their true selves I’m always taken with the beauty they emit.

JJ: What is your prescription for health?

Nic: Good food, good wine, sleep, exercise and surrounding yourself with people and things that make you happy. I don’t believe in guilty pleasures, I believe in indulging with moderation (oxymoron perhaps!) and grabbing life with both hands. And don’t sweat the small stuff. Being a typical Capricorn this goes against my nature a bit (we love making detailed plans and thinking of worst-case scenarios!) so it’s a work in progress.

JJ: Do you have a favorite ingredient? What do you love about it?

Nic: I absolutely love neroli essential oil. Its scent is intoxicating and always transports me to childhood memories of holidays spent in Hawaii and the Far East. On top of that, it has healing, repairing, and anti-inflammatory properties to name a few of its superpowers.

JJ: What inspires you?

Nic: The sky, most definitely. It’s where I get my daily dose of inspiration. Something about its infinite beauty and vastness calms me and makes me feel positive and hopeful. Scatter in some pink clouds and I’m in bliss.

My other big source of inspiration is people. Especially when I see kindness and positivity extended by them to others. Connections are what make up the fabric of life and when people embrace others with open hearts and open minds there’s nothing more beautiful or inspiring.

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JJ: How do you power up in the morning? How do you get energized?

Nic: Oh dear…for me it’s more a matter of how do I just get through the actions of waking up, showering, getting dressed and catching the bus! But a cup of coffee definitely always helps and seeing a beautiful morning sky on my walk with Saskia.

JJ: Do you have a personal mantra?

Nic: This too shall pass. It’s a timely reminder that nothing lasts forever, neither the good times nor the bad ones and it helps me keep perspective.

JJ: Do you have a favorite spa treatment?

Nic: I love getting reflexology done but I don’t do it often enough. Then I’m not sure if it’s classified as a spa treatment per se but I absolutely adore onsens (Japanese hot springs). I always make sure to visit one when I’m back home visiting, be it summer or winter and I just soak up the beautiful setting, the different baths, the ritual of washing yourself and getting clean before dipping into the warm water. It’s truly magical and something I miss terribly when I’m away. There are places similar to onsens abroad as well but they can never compare to the real thing.

JJ: Can you share one thing we don’t know about you yet?

Nic: I feel I lay much of my life bare on Instagram for better or for worse so this was a tricky one! I’ve only mentioned it once before so chances are that most people don’t know but I started working from a young age. When I was 16 my parents separated, which led to us (me, my mother and my sister) moving to Japan. Things were hard to say the least and though I loved school, circumstances were such that there was no choice but for me to jump off my education and start working. My first job was at a small catering company where I worked part-time from 6am filling small obento boxes with various food. I stuck with it for almost a year until my family and I decided to open a bar…as you do! From there it has gone from bartending to radio talk show hosting to English teaching to bell-girling back to teaching and now to buying. Formal education was put on hold or rather I just made sure to take my GED when I could. It certainly wasn’t what I had in mind (I wanted to go to Oxford and study French) but in hindsight, it has shaped me in a way that school would neverhave been able to. I had to grow up fast and I wasn’t always met with understanding or respect when people realized that I never graduated with a fancy degree and that was hard. One is impressionable when young after all! But today I am proud of my not-so-typical background and like Dr. Seuss says, those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.

JJ: Zen Moment: How do you unwind at the end of the day? How do you relax?

Nic: Depending on the mood and day it could be with a 30-min intense exercise finished off with a hearty meal courtesy of my fiancé and a luxurious cleansing ritual. I take my skincare very seriously and like to spend my time working the products in and treating my skin to all the beautiful ingredients. A masking session always helps me relax as well, especially if I can enjoy it in the bath.

JJ: In addition to your successful blog, what else do you do for work, hobbies and fun?

Nic: During the week, you’ll find me working as a buyer in the industry segment (very glam!). In my free time and on weekends I like catching up on various reading (blogs and books), social media (I admit to living on Instagram a bit too much sometimes!), contributing to The Peridot, and hanging out with my friends and daydreaming in the sanctuary of my home. Since I’ve moved and traveled so much, creating a safe haven where I can just be totally myself is very important to me. When I’m out and about I think most would find me quite extroverted but in the comfort of my own home I’m very much the opposite. It’s where I like to fuel up and spend time contemplating life, playing Magic with my fiancé (I always beat him haha!) and cuddling with Princess Saskia, our 6-year-old Bichon-Yorkie. When she lets me. I am certain she is in actual fact a cat trapped in a dog’s body!image8

JJ: Where are we most likely to run into you on a Sunday?

Nic: At home, or in the countryside where we go on walks with Saskia or relax in front of a roaring fireplace with a glass of red wine, enjoying the company of people I love and hold dear.

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