Simply Elegant, noted for the introduction of no-name polishes, non-formaldehyde polishes and a wide variety of nail care products at discount prices, is now producing a new skin and hair care line, also at affordable prices.

The Zhante' skin care line con­sists of a facial scrub, mask, cleaner, hand and body lotion, three types of moisturizers and a shower and bath shampoo. The hair care line consists of three shampoos, conditioners, mois­turizers and hair spray.

Rudy Lenzkes, owner of Simply Elegant, developed the Zhante' products because, he explains, "This is a good field that will soon be coming into its own. Many prod­ucts available on today's market are overpriced, over exaggerated, and do not live up to their promises." Lenzkes claims the Zhante' prod-ducts are well formulated, with the best possible ingredients. He em­phasizes that mineral oil, petro­latum, detergents, alcohols, lanolin and even coconut oil are not used in his line. As an example, Lenzkes explains that mineral oil is a sol­vent; it doesn't penetrate beyond the dead skin cells and just sits on the surface of the skin. It doesn't dissipate, but becomes an occlu­sive (blocking) agent, which inhibits the normal functioning of the skin. Skin needs to "breathe" and when these functions are inhibited, blemishes occur.

Lenzkes concurs that mineral oil itself does not irritate the skin, it mixes well in formulations and it feels good. But, he points out, it doesn't do anything beneficial.

In place of mineral oil, the Zhante' line uses aloe vera and a lot of jojoba oil, which he says is effective in dissolving sebum and removing dead skin cells and unnatural substances that clog pores.

Lenzkes compares his product with a major brand name of hand lotion in an eight-ounce container. The major brand costs approxi­mately $9 and its ingredients include: mineral oil, lanolin, parraffin, alcohol and beeswax. Eight ounces of the Zhante' hand and body lotion at a salon cost of $3 includes aloe vera, sesame oil, almond oil, leci­thin, vitamins A, E and D, chamo­mile, comfrey and bee pollen ex­tract. "My ingredients probably cost five times as much, yet I'm selling at one-third less and still making a profit," he says.

"I can buy a gallon of mineral oil for less than $1 if I buy in quantity. Jojoba oil runs between $85 and $125 per gallon. If the consumer cannot tell the immediate differ­ence between them, what product do you think the 'big' marketing people are going to use?" he asks rhetorically. "The money they save on ingredients is money they can use on fancy jars and advertising.

Advertising costs a fortune. They have to advertise because the products are very low in repeat sales. I'm looking for a 90 percent repeat business with low adver­tising. With my prices, that's the only way the Zhante' line can continue."

Lenzkes admits that some people may be allergic to his products. "It's a fact of life. I don't care how good any product is or who makes it; someone may be allergic to it. Purified water is the only thing that no one will have a reaction to."

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