Meet the Founder

Lisa McCormick, Golden Temple, Kyoto 1988 

Lisa McCormick with Jon Farriss MTV Music Awards, Los Angeles 1988 

Jon Farriss, Michael Hutchence, Lisa McCormick, Paris 1987 

Lori and Lisa McCormick, Cairo 1992

Lisa McCormick, Sinai Desert 1992

I've always had a bit of a wild streak. In my early twenties, I dated the drummer of INXS and spent 7 years travelling the world and living the typical rock-n-roll lifestyle. We went to parties and concerts all the time, so I was always looking for ways to improve my appearance, especially my skin. Everything changed for me when I met a beautiful young model with the most radiant complexion who was kind enough to share her beauty secret passed down by generations of French women. She said, “You must cleanse, tone and moisturize every morning and night, no exceptions.” I have lived by that mantra ever since.

The problem for me began when I wanted a facial toner that was more than just an astringent and started looking for one with rejuvenating benefits as well. The products I found were either over formulated with dozens of ingredients or made from extracts with little or no active constituents. Determined to find a solution, I immersed myself in the history of herbal medicine and set out on a journey that would take me back in time to the ancients.

In my research, I came across a 14th-century beauty elixir made with rosemary and renowned for its skin rejuvenating benefits. According to legend, the recipe was given to Queen Elizabeth of Hungary by a hermit who promised that it would restore her youth and beauty, and allegedly it did. I searched for the elixir’s origin and found that it was most likely the invention of 17th-century Montpellier perfumers who were the first purveyors of the popular beauty preparation. Convinced there must be some historical precedence, I began to dig deeper. What I found was astonishing.

Rosemary has been used in beauty preparations for more than 4,000 years. It was first used as a beauty elixir in ancient Egypt where it was known for its power to transform the old to the young, remove all signs of age and beautify the skin. The recipe was such a closely guarded secret it was unknown in the West until the late 13th century publication of a Latin manuscript on the virtues of herbal wine. According to the text, the recipe was passed down by Dioscorides, the father of herbal medicine, who learned the secret from a doctor in Cairo some time in the 1st century AD.

Over the millennia, the elixir has been known by many names – Queen of Hungary Water, Aqua Mirabile and Eau de la Reine – to name a few. Now over 2,000 years since it was first introduced to the West, I have re-envisioned the ancient formula as a next-generation beauty elixir powered by rosemary CO2 extract, made with 4 time-honored botanicals and suitable for all people – even those with sensitive skin. I couldn’t ask for more. What led me to Wild Mary was a vision of rosemary as a goddess of the sea and the idea that “all good things are wild and free,” just like our beauty elixirs.

I hope you love them as much as I do.

Lisa McCormick
Founder of Wild Mary

N.B. Mary comes from the Latin mari or ‘sea’ from the Latin for rosemary, rosmarinus, meaning 'dew of the sea.' The Latin word for rosemary is most likely derived from the Egyptian word for green, wʒḏ, signified by a papyrus hieroglyph and associated with sea, youth and beauty as well as the Mediterranean, which was known as the 'Great Green.'