Beauty Shopping In The Netherlands: Health Stores

This feature on health stores is the fifth instalment of my Beauty Shopping in the Netherlands series. Health stores admittedly don’t have the same glam factor as say, parfumerie stores or branded beauty stores, but there are beauty gems to be found here, alongside vitamins and food supplements. If you especially like organic and natural products, these are some of the stores to check out.

1. De Tuinen
Pronounced de tau-nen
The original store was called De Tuin van Babylon (translated: The Garden of Babylon) which started life in The Hague in 1981. Back then, De Tuin van Babylon was more a kind of herbalist that sold its own herbal cures and creams. They were all hand-made with natural ingredients.

Ten years later, De Tuin van Babylon became De Tuinen (that’s plural for ‘garden’) when it was taken over by Ahold, which also owns the Dutch supermarket chain, Albert Heijn. Unfortunately, its charming business model of selling hand-made natural products had to be eventually abandoned for better economies of scale. Its products are now mass-produced by specialist external producers.

Presently, De Tuinen is under the umbrella of Holland & Barrett of the UK. That might explain for De Tuinen’s rather similar (but not an exact copy) store ambience to that of Holland & Barrett’s.

There are now close to 100 De Tuinen stores in the Netherlands selling, besides vitamins and health food, face and body care products from brands like Weleda, Kneipp, Dr. Organic, Jacob Hooy, and a small selection of products from Holland & Barrett, Yes To Carrots, Burt’s Bees and Avalon Organics. This list is, of couse, not comprehensive. De Tuinen also has house-brand beauty products.

2. Gezond & Wel
Also known as G&W Gezondheidswinkel, it has a network of around 90 stores in the Netherlands. In fact, G&W isn’t a chain of stores but a kind of association of member health stores owned by different individuals.

Compared to De Tuinen, G&W stores are in general more utilitarian looking: smaller, basic and rather grey, but I'm not too bothered by that. G&W’s brand offering for beauty products includes Weleda, Kneipp, Annemarie Borlind, Jacob Hooy and Dr. Hauschka, just to name a few.

3. Vitamin Store
As the name suggests, Vitamin Store started out by selling food supplements. It was founded more than a decade ago by two partners who saw the growth potential in the market for food supplements and sports nutrition.

Today, Vitamin Store’s product offering has expanded to include some natural beauty products from brands like Annemarie Borlind, Bloem, Weleda, Dr. Hauschka, Skin Doctors and even a small selection from Himalaya. Their latest addition is the Latvian eco-cosmetics brand, Madara. Vitamin Store is a relatively small player on the market as there are to-date only nineteen Vitamin Store outlets in the country.

4. C. Cosmetics and Care
Nothing but natural ingredients” is this store’s tagline. Amsterdam-based C., not yet a year old, has an impressive range of brands offering natural and organic products. It is a store with a cosy ambience and is quite the epitome of an eco-beauty store-cum-salon. I had dedicated an entire post to C. Cosmetics and Care back in March. You can read it here.

The rest of the series: Beauty Shopping in the Netherlands


Shop N' Chomp said...

"Cosmetics and Care"...straight and to the point...I like. :) I'm really enjoying reading your Beauty Shopping in the Netherlands series posts.

Unknown said...

Yeh it looks similar to hollands and barratts in the U.k ^^

Anonymous said...

I adore natural and organic products. Love Weleda... oh my that lip balm is gorgeous. Would love to visit De Tuinen. That shop front is luring me right in! Great post!

albastrikmik said...

i love natural products,nice post

DinaXYYan said...

I hardly visit any health store here but it's great to know this! :)

Witoxicity said...

@Shop N' Chomp
I'm glad to hear that. :)

That's right! :)

@The Diva's Polish
Thank you! Oh, I love too many natural and organic brands, sometimes I feel overwhelmed! :D

Thanks, my dear! :)

Well, do consider checking out some health stores there. You never know what you might find. :)