Arriving in NYC three decades ago with just $400 in my pocket and a belief in the American Dream, I witnessed the incredible support and solidarity among hardworking people, regardless of their backgrounds. My journey to where I am today wasn't defined by wealth, higher education, or my heritage. It was the kindness, compassion, and love of those who knew how to uplift and share that propelled me forward. And even in the face of the challenges brought on by the pandemic, my hope in humanity remains unwavering. I firmly believe that kindness, respect, and honesty towards one another have the power to transform the world, while hatred only inflicts further pain.
Previously, I hadn't given much thought to my role within the AAPI community, as I considered myself primarily an American who is Asian, having lived in New York for so long. However, the pandemic shed a harsh light on the deep-seated hostility some hold against Asians. This revelation left me both fearful and saddened, yet it also heightened my sense of identity and belonging and I am grateful that the majority of my daily interactions continue to be positive and supportive.
My background has profoundly influenced my brand, permeating it with diverse inspirations and the essence of Korea. From my very first nail salon in the East Village, where I drew inspiration from my Korean ancestry, to services like the Summer Oasis and Milk & Honey pedicure, reminiscent of Korean bathhouses and incorporating traditional tools like natural foot stone pumice, my childhood memories come alive.
Drawing on my heritage, I infuse our products with the spirit of Asian wellness, prioritizing their healthfulness while maintaining exceptional performance. Our range of 21-free polishes and 100% chemical-free care products, including the nourishing Honeysuckle + Primrose Cuticle Oil and Hand Cream, embodies this ideology. Moreover, I take pride in our Mamagami collection, which pays homage to my mother's origami artwork and carries its creative energy.
While I personally may not have a strong affinity for makeup, my passion lies in skincare, particularly K-Skincare, which has been an integral part of my upbringing. Over the years, K-Skincare has gained immense popularity for its dedication to achieving healthy, radiant skin through a meticulous multi-step routine that emphasizes hydration, gentle exfoliation, and the use of premium ingredients.
As we celebrate AAPI Heritage Month, let us embrace and honor the rich tapestry of cultures, contributions, and experiences within the AAPI community. Together, let us foster understanding, respect, and unity, creating a world where diversity is celebrated and cherished.
I would like to share my beloved K-Beauty skincare products that have become staples in my regimen:
- Glow Recipe Plum Plum Hyaluronic Gloss Lip Balm: This delightful lip balm was a lucky find for me before its official launch. The heavenly scent and luxurious texture make it perfect for daily lip care, even for someone like me who typically avoids lip gloss.
- Super Egg Sound Renewal Moisturizer: Lightweight and incredibly effective, this moisturizer is a game-changer. Just a small amount spreads easily and provides long-lasting hydration, leaving my skin feeling nourished and refreshed.
- Double Dare OMG! EYE 360 LIFTING SERUM: I've been devoted to using eye cream since I turned 18, and this serum takes it to the next level. The added roller feature provides a soothing massage while capably applying the material, and over time, I've noticed a reduction in the appearance of fine lines around my eyes.
- Huxley Secret of Sahara Oil Essence: As a woman in her 40s, I know the importance of facial oils for combating dryness. This oil essence, inspired by the essence of the desert, has a luxurious texture that leaves my skin feeling deeply nourished and revitalized.
- Sulwhasoo Concentrated Ginseng Renewing Cream Classic: Indulge in the richness of this cream, which feels like a nutrient-packed feast for the skin. With each use, my face feels rejuvenated and pampered, thanks to the powerful benefits of concentrated ginseng.
- British M Kombucha Hair Mask: This hair mask has transformed my dry and lackluster locks. Not only does it add volume to my hair, but it also provides much-needed moisture to my scalp, leaving it feeling nourished and healthy.
- Xuyoni Five-in-One Organic Rejuvenating Wrapping Care: When my skin needs an instant pick-me-up, this face mask comes to the rescue. Packed with a plethora of nutrients, it instantly revitalizes and enhances the overall appearance of my skin, making it glow with radiance.
- JINsoon Argan + Primrose Hand Cream: Award-winning and indulgent, this hand cream is a luxurious treat for my hands. Its buttery texture and super moisturizing formula leave my hands feeling soft, hydrated, and well-cared for.