Degrowth and Self Care with Pinar Akiskalioglu | EnvironMental with Dandelion

EnvironMental with Dandelion - podcast interview with the Founder of Takk

Not having the full picture of what you are going to put inside of the [new] structure is not a good reason to not to disrupt a system that is not working.

Pinar Akiskalioglu on creating a brand under a new paradigm of degrowth

In this episode of EnvironMental with Dandelion, we welcomed Pinar Akiskalioglu, the Founder of Takk Skincare. We talked about about consumerism, degrowth and the role commerce brands have in the sustainable transition. Takk is on a mission to make self care simple with their singular line of products. No frills, no fluff – just the good stuff!

Pinar is building a self-identified, “punk company” with Takk, meaning that they’re anti- the current establishment and they’re working towards creating more personal freedom within the skincare industry. They want people to define their own wellness with their one-size fits all line of products. Pinar had an interesting take on degrowth while operating a consumer business.

What is Degrowth?

While the word “degrowth” seems dramatic, and for some folks it sounds like we’re asking the world to stop spinning, the real goal is to place emphasis on non-material aspects of life. People have been conditioned to think of ‘growth’ as a good thing, and it makes degrowth feel scary. And maybe it’s a bit of a misnomer. This shift aims to foster a more sustainable and fulfilling existence while reducing the ecological footprint of human activities.

At its core, degrowth advocates for a reconfiguration of the value we place on money above everything else in our society. For people this could mean shifting to a less materialistic lifestyle and grow our own food, for businesses it means prohibiting planned obsolescence and paying a living wage, and for governments it means abandoning economic growth as a policy objective.

The Problem with ‘the Way Things Are’

Currently, our society is built around consumption. The value of a country is defined by GDP, businesses are beholden to the bottom line, and our expectations as citizens stop at voting and shopping. The relentless pursuit of economic growth has come at the expense of natural ecosystems. Human greed has led to mass biodiversity loss, global pollution, and climate change. The ‘benefits’ of unchecked, unbounded growth are unevenly distributed, exacerbating disparities in healthcare, income, and access to essential resources.

This problem isn’t just conceptual or something to bandy about over dinner and cocktails with friends. We talked with Pinar about how the skincare industry is a perfect example of an industry that is focused on continual growth. They invent different “necessary” products and 11 step routines and blather on about skin types. But is that even necessary? Pinar says no.

The personal care industry has been growing by differentiating hair types and skin types of men and women. And, you know, this ultra classification specification has been used as a way to grow this industry for very long. So what we aim is to do to avoid this paradox of choice for our customers, because good products are essentially the same.

There’s a certain limitation that products can offer your face – not any magical solution to your skincare problems. That’s not going to happen. So we don’t want to be part of this tricky marketing trick to sell more products. So what’s the reason why we sell only one product in each category? So people have the freedom to choose the products they want to add to their consumption habits, rather than trying to decide “which is the best product to me?”

Pinar Akiskalioglu on their solution

Takk is Using a Consumer Brand to Promote Degrowth

Takk believes that consumers are often tricked into buying unnecessary products, leading to over-consumption and a lack of clarity in what they truly need. They aim to help people find what they need by offering only the essential personal care products. They are also focused on creating a peaceful shopping environment where customers can choose their products without any pushy promotions or recommendations.

This is what degrowth looks like from a consumer brand. Not playing into industry growth norms, helping people focus on what they need, and not trying to sell them unnecessary products. We’re proud to include Pinar on our podcast. We think Takk is a fantastic example of a brand focused on scaling back to the essentials so people can focus on what truly matters.

How you can connect with Takk and find your skincare products:

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