After a lot of thought about how to introduce our skincare line that we've been working on quietly for the last two years, what felt the most right was launching one of our most passionate endeavors the same way we launched our company now almost seven years ago. We launched without fanfare, without media attention, and without a big launch party. Instead, we focused completely on you. In 2012, we launched by first listening to you discuss what you love about Korean beauty, and then spoke directly to you on launch day sharing about what we did to deliver on what we heard from you.
Through the years, you've always remained the most important person in the room, so we wanted to launch in a way that celebrated our roots and our journey with you. So, as our first item is revealed today, we hope you sense our earnest and deep commitment to you.
How it all got started
I got a call from my sister, "I'm pregnant." I only have one sister and she's my best friend and this was her first baby. When she called me with the news, I literally cut dinner short with a friend to rush home and talk to her about everything, "how was she feeling? when was she due? did she know boy/girl yet?" Over the next couple months, she started asking me about how to prevent pregnancy-induced melasma and care for skin that began to react to hormonal changes. She also wanted to know which products she could use that were totally safe, still felt delightful since she didn't want products that smelled "rancid or overwhelming" as her sense of smell was heightened nor did she want self-care to feel like she was rubbing "something heavy like oatmeal or slick like silicones" onto her face, and she also didn't want to compromise on results. "Give me something with totally clinical results that I know is safe and that smells and feels amazing." I scoured our site and Korea to curate something that would fit the bill for her. I got close, there are of course brands that have clean formulas and also smell and feel great (including a lot of the brands on our site). But she wanted more. "You know, something that has ingredients that are clinical-level because my melasma is getting out of control."
I enlisted the help of my team, and we couldn't find brands that would meet all of my sister's expectations. So, I starting consulting labs in Korea and asked them if they knew of any brands that were safe for pregnant women, would produce clinical-strength results, and would also be a joy to use.
I finally got some explanations as to why my search proved to be unfruitful. Clinical-strength formulas often smell unpleasant and are often formulated with things like PEGs, polysorbates, phthalates, MEA/DEA/TEA/EDTAs, the list goes on ...basically all the chemicals that my sister simply didn't want to use. Moreover, clinical-strength can often be too aggressive and so the results might come at the cost of temporarily flaky skin, which could actually worsen pregnancy-induced melasma.
I don't believe that all ingredients flagged by various organizations as "not clean" are unsafe (there are a lot of controversial studies on so many ingredients). Nor do I personally only use organic products or EWG verified products. However, I do believe in having choices and real options. For my K-beauty-loving sister, the option she wanted was hard to find. At the same time, I was hearing similar requests from many of you.
I decided to create this line for my sister and for all of you who are quite simply looking for results without tradeoffs. No tradeoffs on sumptuous textures or pristine ingredient lists. I spoke to a cosmetic chemist about the viability of this kind of skincare line early on, and I recall her saying "isn't that the gold standard that every product starts off with? But then compromises are made because the results don't happen, or the textures feel heavy, or it smells bad."
With where science is at now and all the incredible research available, why do we need to compromise at all when it comes to skincare? We should and can have it all. I wanted us to have it all.
So the journey began to create a line where we could have it all. No disclaimers. This became our mantra:
Why compromise? Have it all. Results-first. Clean. Delightful. Clinically proven. Safe.
The process to develop this line was an adventure - it was filled with a lot of challenges and moments where compromise seemed like the only option. There were even a few moments where we almost decided we shouldn't move forward with this line after over a year and a half of work on it. There were also many exhilarating moments when breakthroughs happened in the labs.
I wanted to share this journey with you so that you could be a part of it all, since I had you in mind throughout the development process. Starting today, I'll be sharing the behind-the-scenes process with you each day until we launch our very first collection! Follow along here. xx
I wanted to spend a little time taking you through the development journey because we heard you all: you like knowing more than less.
In the meantime, we don't want to keep you hanging, so we're thrilled to share about our very first product. The product will ship out in June when the packaging is revealed...and there will be a lot more that's revealed in the weeks to come...but for now, we leave the spotlight on the most important part, the formula.
Introducing our Glass Skin Refining Serum
We're thrilled to share about a dream serum that took the better part of last year to formulate. We have a lot more coming your way, but here's a sneak-peek into this serum.
Here's what we heard from you: "Is there one product that can do a lot of legwork, I don't have a lot of time," "I haven't found a product yet that really refines texture and makes it super smooth and illuminated," "no, it's not just about lifting and brightening, I feel like my skin is kind of rough and maybe even leathery," "basically, how do I get that glass skin?"
I went back to Skincare 101 and literally took out all my skincare textbooks to go back to the fundamentals. Being an esthetician and keeping up with all the latest developments in skincare as a part of my job, I often find that going back to the foundation is a good place to start with tough skincare questions. Ultimately, a pretty nuanced and lofty skin goal doesn't come from hydration alone or peptides that help firm skin. Glass skin is a concise way of saying totally healthy skin that's really well balanced, well hydrated, well nourished, and fueled with active ingredients that bring about an inner glow. Not an easy job for one product to accomplish.
Regardless, that was the challenge we presented to our partner lab. The Chief R&D Officer chuckled, and commented along the lines of yup, if it were that easy, we'd all be skincare models by tomorrow. I loved that no one on our team broke a sweat, but earnestly explained that while a tall order, this is, in fact, the formula we'd like to develop together. The Chief R&D Officer realized we wouldn't settle for less and after much thought, decided that he would uniquely enlist all forty chemists in his lab to conduct extensive face-tests throughout the development process.
I'll share more about this on my Instagram as you follow along, but here's the short of what our Glass Skin Refining Serum delivers.
It's a lightweight, refreshing, fast-absorbing clear gel that has a soothing, hydrating, and plumping effect upon use. Essential vitamins, minerals and fatty acids, thanks to peach extract and East Asian mountain yam extract, are also delivered so that skin has the right tools it needs to become healthier. After one application, there's a noticeable inner beam from the deep hydration as skin thirst is quenched thanks to a considered complex of short, medium and long-chain hyaluronic acid molecules. On day one, some testers noticed reduced redness, others noticed less puffiness and even breakouts being curbed back because of all the powerful ingredients that help smack down inflammation. After a few days of use, some began to see a plumping effect from the deep hydration being packed in, soothed skin, and from a balanced nourishment being delivered to skin. We're excited because the results only compound with this serum, and after a few weeks of use, the hard stuff started to happen. Testers saw that skin texture became somehow more refined, more translucent and glass-like like that of a young child's before damage sets in. People said that they kept touching their skin to see if it were still soft and silky later on in the day (it was), and kept looking in the mirror to see if it was just a lighting trick (it wasn't). We knew we would call the serum "Glass Skin", but we added the "Refining Serum" part after all the results came in. We added this part to the name as refining skin texture is something that's one of the hardest things to achieve, as this really comes from skin truly transforming from within and we proudly heard people raving about the refining element of this formula, which is the finishing touch to getting that elusive glass skin that's now within reach.
After using this serum daily and falling in love with the results, I can't wait for this to finally be in your hands come June.
Our Peach & Lily skincare line is here for your skin to truly have it all. I hope you love this mindfully crafted serum as much as we do.
Thank you for letting us be a part of your skin journey - this line is a creation from all that we've heard from you.
As always, cheers to radiance!