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Cook Islands natural skincare products a hit with customers

Thursday 3 August 2023 | Written by Melina Etches | Published in Business, Features, Go Local, National


Cook Islands natural  skincare products a hit with customers
Flora Pupuke-Robati’s Maruoi Natural Skincare & Cosmetics is made with locally made oil. MELINA ETCHES/23080237

Locally made oils featuring in the ‘Maruoi Natural Skincare & Cosmetics’ range is becoming increasingly popular among locals and visitors attending the annual trade show due to their natural ingredients.

Flora Pupuke-Robati is the creator and designer of the natural oil-based products using local akari pi and moringa from Mitiaro Nukuroa as the key ingredients.

Her business, now in its second year, is flourishing and gaining more exposure at the Bank of the Cook Islands (BCI) Trade Days at the Punanga Market this week.

The carefully selected business name “Maruoi” is a tribute to her great grandmother’s maiden name.

Pupuke-Robati started creating and formulating skincare products after the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I just started making products for myself, experimenting at home. It was all trial and error really, mixing oils with different products which I enjoyed.”

Realising her little experimental venture could become a good business investment, she began to read more about natural skincare products online and started taking short courses.

“I wanted to understand the properties and benefits of each product and what they can do for the consumers, so I was doing a lot of research.”

Much of her inspiration and motivation comes from influencers online.

“They share a lot of tips and advice, and I get excited.”

Pupuke-Robati sources her oil from Mitiaro which helps to provide an income for the women on the island.

The rest of the ingredients for her products are from overseas since resources on the island are limited.

Customers have been buying from her booth, and Pupuke-Robati said she was overwhelmed by the responses and excited to continue expanding her products.

“It’s been awesome, Maruoi has opened doors and opportunities and there is such a vast range of products that you can make. Its endless when it comes to natural skin care,” she said.

Some of the products she has available include body lotions, face moisturisers, body butter bars, lip balm, lip moisturiser, lash oil (which is very popular with young girls), and face masks.

Maruoi has three different types of natural handmade sugar scrubs: Oil: Natural local Akari Pi, moringa oils and essential oils, vitamin E; Emulsified: Lotion texture with coconut oil, sweet almond oil, emulsified wax, stearic acid natural preservative, mica, fragrance oils; and Whipped Foam Butter: Jojoba oil, soap frosting, glycerine, sorbitol, natural preservative, mica and fragrance oils.

Hand sewn purses and handbags made by her niece in Aitutaki also feature in her booth.

Visit her Facebook page “Maruoi Natural Skincare & Cosmetics” for more products or call her on phone78499.

The 2023 Te Maeva Nui BCI Trade Days will end today. Over 80 stalls will open from 9am this morning, so get in and support local business.


Cook Islands Investment Corporation on 03/08/2023

Awesome Flora, good seeing skincare products being made by our people! Support local made!