While it may not be common knowledge that our skin absorbs about 60 per cent of the chemicals used in common skin-care products, the side-effects they produce are widely known. These side-effects have been a thorn in the side of beauty-product manufacturers; Providing an effective skincare product with minimal damage to skin has been a tough balancing act. Therefore, in a bid to provide a safer alternative, the duo of Rasna Shrestha and Suyash Shrestha founded Nuga: a Kathmandu-based company that produces natural, toxic chemical-free skincare products. ‘Nuga’, which is a Newari word meaning heart, is used to signify the company’s intention to put the ‘care’ back into skincare. It is their philosophy that beauty should be wholesome, and not detrimental to one’s health for the sake of mere looks. How safe?, as one might ask, “One could swallow them, and still be okay,” say the co-founders.