Recently, I’ve been conversing with a woman with a beautiful spirit—she is a 26-year-old mother of two who is serving a seven-year sentence in prison in Texas. We’ve been writing letters to each other and her words are a constant reminder of our shared humanity. At 26, she is my age, only distanced by circumstance. Often, I imagine if I had grown up as she did without a sense of community, belonging, or opportunity—would my life look like hers?
The other day, she wrote to me with a thoughtful question: “What do you think?” she wrote, “Extreme beauty, personality or intelligence, which one do you feel will get you the furthest in life?”
I wrote back,
“What a powerful question. For me, a beautiful person is someone who is authentic, who lives courageously as who they are. Who is honest, loving, and supportive. In that sense, a beautiful person will go far in fulfilling her potential in life. Intelligence is also very important and there are all types of intelligence, not just book smart. Intelligence also means trusting your gut, your intuition. It means a person who takes good care of themselves and their community. A person who leads with heart, not just head. We need beautiful, intelligent people in this world.”
Indeed, what I wanted her to know—and the reason I embarked on this quest to connect with her—was that we deserve to feel loved and accepted as we are. And the more we are ourselves, the more beautiful we are. Beauty does come from within.
The more I embrace this journey—the more I get to converse with women and men who are interested in compassionate skincare, healing, earth care, self care, and overcoming past pain—the more I want to share what I learn from them.
When I share my skincare line, I am inspired by so many people who bring new perspective to my work, who generously tell me how it feels to apply the oils and creams to their bodies, who open up about their stories of struggling against or embracing their bodies; of activism for the earth and what they’ve learned; of violence perpetrated against their sacred bodies and their journey to rediscover safety and peace. I created a compassionate (vegan) skincare line and have discovered, through my customers, why that really matters. I have learned about world peace and peace in our homes and our hearts. About pesticides on strawberries, about the sweetest spots for organic food and the best small farms and nature’s hideaways to visit. I’ve been blessed with community.
And it is this community that has taught me that beauty has nothing to do with the evenness of your skin tone, the shape or size of your body, the lines of wisdom that may grace your skin.
This cannot be overstated.
Because, through this community, I’ve also heard far too many stories that sound similar: en masse, we are experiencing a deep unease with our bodies, a sense of uncomfortableness and even shame about what our bodies look like, how they change, support life, grow wise. As the founder of a company in an industry that has, for so long, been troublingly intertwined with artifice and unrealistic, even false, images of beauty, it is my responsibility to listen to each of these stories, each of these journeys, and to support the speakers in being seen and heard.
I hear you.
I see you as you are.
And I accept you, totally. Unabashedly. You deserve to be loved as you are.
To honor the community that has created itself around me, offering me love and support, wisdom, and inspiration, I’ve changed the names of my face oils to reflect what I believe true beauty is: individuals who embody peace, wisdom, gentleness, and the fullness of pleasure.
The formulas remain the same, but their intentions shift. When you apply each oil, may you embody their new titles and much more. May you know that beauty is found in the way we live our lives.
Live courageously, peacefully, compassionately—beautifully.
With gratitude, always,
Name Change Key
Avocado Everything Oil is now Nourished Woman Face Oil
Blue Chamomile Everything Oil is now Peaceful Woman Face Oil
Neroli & Rose Everything Oil is now Wise Woman Face Oil
Men’s Ultimate Face Oil is now Gentle Man Face Oil
Note on GIVING BACK
I “adopted” my pen pal through an organization called Adopt an Inmate. Their mission is to change and heal the prison system, beginning with seeing prisoners as the human beings they are.
$1 of every sale of our face oils goes to them.