5 activists who will inspire you this Earth Day - 22.04.17

At Dr Jackson’s, every day of the year is Earth Day.

From selecting only non-endangered, natural ingredients that are never tested on animals, to using recyclable packaging and consulting green suppliers at every stage of the production chain, we strive for zero waste and are committed to promoting sustainability in all that we do.

However, in the business of our everyday lives, it’s easy for our perspective to shrink. We get so caught up in ourselves, that we forget the World around us.

That’s why we always look forward to taking part in this global event: Earth Day is a chance for us to take a step back and evaluate our relationship with nature, and perhaps think about what we can do to make a difference - no matter how big, or how small that change may be. 

To give you a little motivation, this Earth Day we’re looking at the individuals whom inspire us to make that change. By following their example, we can work together to build a greener, healthier and happier planet.  

Rajendra Singh

darpan magazine

USP: Known as ‘The Water Man’, Rajendra Singh is an award-winning water conservationist from Rajasthan, India.

The problem: 75,777,997 people in India (that’s 6% of the country’s population) do not have access to clean drinking water.

The solution: In 1975, Singh founded the pioneering NGO, Tarun Bharat Sangh. The organisation works directly with communities in some of India’s most destitute areas, empowering villages to take charge of their own water management through sustainable development measures.
Providing access to safe drinking water through the use of rainwater storage tanks and checking dams is just the first step; Tarun Bharat Sangh’s wider vision is to bring dignity and prosperity to these areas with a comprehensive welfare programme that includes better health facilities, an improved education system, equality for women, and more.

Notable achievements: Rajendra Singh was awarded the Stockholm Water Prize, known as “the Nobel prize for water”, in 2015, having brought clean drinking water to over 1,000 villages in India. His techniques have inspired water conservation initiatives all over the world, including anti-flooding schemes in the UK.

Quote: "When we started our work, we were only looking at the drinking water crisis and how to solve that. Today our aim is higher. This is the century of exploitation, pollution and encroachment. To stop all this, to convert the war on water into peace, that is my life's goal."
BBC News

René Ngongo

USP: René Ngongo is a Congolese biologist, environmentalist and political activist, whose work centres around the conservation of Congo’s rainforests.

The problem: The world’s second most important rainforest after the Amazon, the Congo rainforest has been seriously damaged by the aftermath of war, population growth and corporate exploitation. This poses huge climate threats that put the livelihood of future generations at risk.

The solution: Ngongo aims to build popular and political support for the conservation of the Congo rainforest. He has carried out essential, and often dangerous, research on illegal mining operations to help monitor the pillaging of the rainforest’s valuable raw materials. He also encourages local communities to use sustainable land models that satisfy their need for food and fuelwood, and increase their income, without destroying this precious natural habitat.

Notable achievements: In 1994, Ngongo founded OCEAN, an environmental NGO based in Kisangani that uses the collective force of volunteers to promote agroforestry, plant trees in urban spaces, create reforestation nurseries for threatened species, and lobby for action against rainforest destruction around the world. He has also worked for the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), Greenpeace and the WWF.

Quote: Those forests should not be considered merely as raw material to be exported and should neither only be seen as a carbon reservoir. Before anything else, it is a living environment, a grocery store, a pharmacy…” - rightlivelihoodaward.org

Leonardo Di Caprio

USP: As well as being an Oscar-winning Hollywood actor, Leonardo Di Caprio is a renowned environmental activist.

The problem: Di Caprio sees climate change as “the most urgent threat facing our entire species”, highlighting global warming, the destruction of the Earth’s biodiversity and the use of fossil fuels as the most pressing issues.

The solution: Di Caprio uses his celebrity status as a platform to educate people about climate change, as well as raising considerable sums for numerous environmental foundations. He has also produced and starred in several documentaries about climate change, including The 11th Hour, Cowspiracy and Before the Flood.

Notable achievements: At just 24, Di Caprio established the Leonardo Di Caprio Foundation in 1998, which works to raise environmental awareness. It has launched projects in over 40 countries and won various major awards. In a charity auction for The 11th Hour, Di Caprio raised nearly $40 million for his foundation, making it the highest-grossing environmental charity event ever held.

Quote: “We only get one planet.” - UN Climate Summit speech

Julia Butterfly Hill

julia butterfly

USP: Julia Butterfly Hill is an American environmental activist and motivational speaker, best known for her famous 2-year “tree sit” protest, which saw her live in a 180-foot tree from 1997 to 1999.

The problem: Environmentally destructive logging actions are a major threat to ecologically significant forests.

The solution: Hill believes that the solution to the world’s problems lies in action.In 1997, she took a stand against the cutting down of an old-growth redwood tree in North California, which she nicknamed Luna. In what has become a historical act of civil disobedience, she chose to live in the tree for 738 days until the Pacific Lumber Company agreed to preserve it, resulting in huge international awareness of the importance of sustainable forest management techniques.

Notable achievements: Following her tree sit, Hill founded the Circle of Life Foundation, which aims to build better relationships between humans and the natural world. She has written a book, The Legacy of Luna: The Story of a Tree, a Woman, and the Struggle to Save the Redwoods, about her experience and continues to participate in tree sits to this day.

Quote: The question we need to ask ourselves is not, “Can one person make a difference?”  Each and every one of us does make a difference.  It is actually impossible to not make a difference. So the question we need to ask ourselves is, “What kind of a difference do I want to make?”

We are the ancestors of the future.  What do you want your legacy to be?”
Sylvia Alice Earle

USP: Sylvia Alice Earle is an American marine biologist, explorer, author and lecturer. She has been a National Geographic explorer-in-residence since 1998. 

The Problem: Sea life is being destroyed from every direction, between over-fishing, pollution and rising temperatures. Reef paradises that she used to love now dead and rotting.

The Solution: Her special focus is on developing a global network of areas on the land and in the ocean to safeguard the living systems that provide the underpinnings of global processes, from maintaining biodiversity and yielding basic life support services to providing stability and resiliency in response to accelerating climate change.-national geographic

Notable Achievements: Sylvia Alice Earle has led more than 400 undersea research expeditions and was named Time Magazine’s very first ‘hero for the planet’ in 1998. Author of a cornucopia of books on the sea, Earle is also executive director for a number of environmental organisations including The Conservation Fund and Ocean Conservancy.-

Quote: "My wish is a big wish, but if we can make it happen, it can truly change the world, and help ensure the survival of what actually — as it turns out — is my favourite species; that would be us. For the children of today, for tomorrow's child: as never again, now is the time" - www.ted.com

Prepare For a Green Party With Chef Peter Gordon - 21.04.17

In Celebration of Earth Day April 22nd

for 4 as a starter

Asparagus, almonds,
spiced quail eggs and shiitake
with miso dressing

slightly chilled or at room temperature

A beautiful, elegant salad full of vibrant flavours and contrasting textures. Quail eggs are tricky to peel: use your fingernails and a small sharp knife. If you're unable to source them, then hen's eggs work as a good substitute. 


1 tsp coriander seeds
½ tsp nigella seeds
¼ tsp cumin seeds
¼ tsp fennel seeds
12 quail eggs
1 tbsp white vinegar
300g (10½oz.) fresh shiitake mushrooms, stalks removed and discarded
800g (1lb. 12oz.) asparagus
1 handful salad leaves (I used pea shoots)
1 tbsp lemon juice
100g (3½oz./3 cup) almonds, toasted and roughly chopped (I used delicious marcona almonds from Spain)
for the miso dressing
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp mirin
1 tbsp miso paste (I used shiromiso)
2 tsp finely chopped or grated ginger
Lightly toast the coriander, nigella, cumin and fennel seeds in a dry frying pan (skillet) over a medium heat until they become aromatic. Leave to cool. Add ½ teaspoon of flaky salt and grind the spices in a spice grinder or using a mortar and pestle.

Place the quail eggs in a pan large enough to hold them in a single layer. Pour in enough water to cover by 3cm (1¼in.), add the vinegar, bring to the boil and cook for 3 minutes.

Drain into a sieve or colander, then place in a bowl of iced water and leave for 5 minutes. 

Peel the eggs and roll them in the ground spices.

To make the dressing, mix the soy, mirin, miso paste and ginger until the miso has ‘dissolved’, then stir in 2 tablespoons of warm water.

Bring 200ml (¾ cup) of water to the boil in a medium pan. Slice half the shiitake mushrooms and dice the other half. Add to the boiling water, give a good stir for 20 seconds, then drain into a colander. Leave for 30 seconds, then tip into a bowl and mix in the miso dressing. 

Cover with cling film (plastic wrap) and leave to marinate, stirring again after 10 minutes.

Snap the ends from the asparagus and peel the lower 3cm (1¼in.). Blanch in salted boiling water, or steam, for 1½ minutes, then refresh in iced water. Drain..

To serve, toss the asparagus and salad leaves with the lemon juice and lay them on your plates. Spoon on the mushrooms and marinating juices, then tuck in the quail eggs and scatter with the almonds.

Savour by Peter Gordon. Published by Jacqui Small, an imprint of The Quarto Group (£25). Out now.  Photography by Lisa Linder. 

Peter Talks

As a chef and restaurateur, I am constantly sourcing, buying, cooking, serving and then often eating hundreds of ingredients every week. The style of food I’m known for is Fusion Cuisine and this means I like to source ingredients that can come from any part of the world.  

Whilst I am all about buying local ingredients in season and supporting local jobs, it is worth noting that many imported ingredients are also sustainable, sometimes with surprisingly low carbon footprints. Not everything can be grown in our British climate - hence gorgeous organic pineapples from Ghana are as appealing to me as Scottish raspberries and a Dover Sole - freshly caught by a day boat off the Southern Coast.  At the moment British asparagus is in season and that’s what we should all be buying (cf asparagus from further away) as it is spankingly fresh and a truly remarkable ingredient that is with us for such a short time. It provides local employment and the commerce and trade it generates helps our local economy.  

I’ve included a recipe that really makes the most of its texture and flavour - but teamed it with some imported ingredients - although British grown shiitake mushrooms are becoming easier to source and they taste terrific. 

I’ve also included a recipe for a baobab smoothie.  Baobab cannot be grown in Britain (just like tea, coffee, cacao, vanilla, most spices and many other things we have to import) and many people in Africa rely on the harvesting and processing of this fabulous fruit for their livelihoods. You can easily buy it over the internet or in some forward think health-food stores as a powder which you can sprinkle on your cereal or mix into drinks.  We also use baobab oil in some of our products at Dr Jackson's such as our 01 Day Cream, 02 Night Cream, 03 Face Oil, 05 Face & Eye Essence, 06 Body Perfecting Gel and our Baobab & Rose Oil.

Baobab Smoothie
with Blueberry, Mint, Basil & Spinach


300ml plain yoghurt
300ml milk/fruit juice
3 tbsp baobab powder
4 tbsp honey
120g blueberries
handful mint & basil leaves
handful baby spinach leaves (stalks removed)
handful ice cubes (optional)

Place everything in the blender and whizz for a minute. Consume immediately. Serves 2.

At home I grow many herbs in my London Fields garden and in pots on the kitchen windowsill. There really is no excuse to buy plastic-wrapped herbs from the shops, as a tub of herbs will keep growing and are low maintenance (don’t over water as they’ll drown and don’t underwater or they’ll dry out) Plus, they give your kitchen a lovely aroma. 

I've also planted many medium sized trees and shrubs that fill the space with greenery, provide nectar and seeds for bees and birds. Right now, I’m picking tulips and daffodils to fill my vases instead of having to buy flowers from the shops.  My tea leaves always end up on the garden (they make good mulch), and when I have to use my clothes dryer (which drains into a condenser tub rather than out into the drain) I use this water on the garden. Both the tea water and dryer water help a little to reduce my water consumption.  

At home I never buy bottled water. Instead I use a water filter for all of my drinking water; the thought of buying, carrying, and recycling endless plastic water bottles fills me with dread - it seems so pointless. I have a Sodastream which I carbonate the water with. Again, this saves both plastic and energy. If we all keep doing the little things that count this planet will live on for many years to come. If we don’t, I hate to think what might happen.

Peter Gordon

More Coconut Melt, More Ways to Make You Beautiful - 1.02.17

Back To Beauty School - Liberty London 1st Anniversary - 8.09.16

5 Unexpected Ways To Use 03 Face Oil - 14.05.15

Buy 03 Face Oil, here.

Give Me Five | 5-A-Day Your Skin Needs - 7.05.15

Live Below The Line - 5.05.15

Donate to 'Live Below The Line, here.

An Appointment With | Shaari Ergas - 28.04.15

From Hong Kong to Seoul & Singapore - 27.03.15

6 Ways to Use Coconut Melt - 8.03.15


Buy 04 Coconut Melt, here.

A is for Arnica - 26.02.15

Buy 03 Face Oil, here.

Dr Jackson's at The Mondrian London - 24.11.14

Discover the full spa menu, here.

NET-A-PORTER - 16.10.13

We are delighted to announce we are now available online at NET-A-PORTER.
02 Skin Cream
04 Coconut Melt

Milan Fashion Week - 16.10.13

This September we were honoured to collaborate with RedMilk Magazine, featured at Milan Fashion Week.

Copenhagen International Fashion Fair - 16.08.13