I moved to New York City to pursue my dream of becoming a jewelry designer. I was young, starry-eyed and ready for the world, but nothing could have prepared me for the city’s intense energy. It was a shock to the system after growing up on the west coast. Learning to ‘hustle and bustle’ came with its fair share of stress, anxiety and uncomfortable, rapid growth, and I believe these were some of the triggers that activated an aggressive acne break-out six months after settling in New York.
Acne made me want to avoid people. I felt ashamed of how I looked, especially since I had always enjoyed flawless skin, so I retreated into my yoga studies, health books and spiritual practice. These things helped and even became the cornerstones of my life, but the acne continued for two very long years.
Back then, we hardly had internet access. There was no Google, wellness blogs or social media, so aside from my healthy upbringing and understanding of organic food and herbs, I had limited resources to find a solution. I started seeing a highly recommended, “celebrity” medical esthetician. Her methods were brutal on my cystic, bleeding, acne and I always left her office looking much worse. She eventually refused to continue treating me unless I accepted a prescription for Accutane along with chemical peels and micro-dermabrasion, and this is where my good sense kicked in. I decided to take my health and beauty into my own hands.
Deep down I knew that conventional medical treatment wasn’t the way to go for me. The endless list of potential side effects was daunting, especially for me. I mean, I was that kid whose parents arranged for after-school lunches to be prepared for me by the best and only macrobiotic restaurant in Los Angeles at that time. I grew up eating figs, Myer lemons, oranges, corn, tomatoes and avocados straight from my family’s organic garden.
After I was ‘fired” by the esthetician, I finally called my father. At the time, my parents were living in Holland and my father had been formulating his products for six years. He sent me a bottle of what today is called the Soothing Gel and he told me two things: the first was to give him feedback, and the second was to consider doing a colon cleanse.
Now, if I had only listened to him about the colon cleanse, I probably would have healed my acne a heck of a lot faster, but that took another year. What I did do though was immediately apply the Soothing Gel all over my face, and from the first application I was spellbound by how soothing this really was. I decided from that moment on that I would be my father’s ‘guinea pig’ and vowed not to use any other products. After two weeks of using the soothing gel, my acne had significantly calmed down. I still had a long way go, but I can tell you that it was the first time I actually felt hopeful. I could FEEL that this product was “alive” with healing and therapeutic benefits.
Two weeks later I called my father, declared him a genius, and told him that he needed my help. At the time, I was the general manager of OM Yoga and had become entranced by marketing, branding and graphic arts (and yoga), It also helped that I am a “people person.” I started developing our spa and back bar protocols, working with a tight-knit group of estheticians and spa directors that continue to support and work with us today.
For 27 years, I have worked to promote the meaning of inner and outer beauty along with true health for mind, body and spirit. Supporting others to take their health back into their own hands is a powerful move.
Educating with compassion has always been my approach. Our product line has always been a natural extension of who we are, and the lifestyle we lead.
Aside from my healing practices and the art that I continue to create, whenever people ask me what I ‘do’, I often say with a twinkle in my eye that we sell ‘nature in a bottle.’ Working with and not against Mother Nature has been an absolute honor.
To your health & beauty,