Welcome to another edition of #cleanbeautyspotlight! Today we're chatting with Victoria, Founder of East 29th and creator of the ultimate Vital Serum featured in our Spring Box.
What values do you have that you believe you carried into your brand and company?
To ensure skincare goes hand in hand with self-care.
Lead with honesty and remain humble.
Celebrate intelligence, while remaining soft.
Listen to hear, not to respond.
To embody natural confidence and maintain integrity.
Evolve, always in all ways.
To inspire change that can be felt by more than just our hands.
What inspired East 29th?
When I had the vision for East 29th, I knew it needed to be dimensionally diverse, focusing on being empathy-forward and driven by purpose.
One of the main sources of inspiration was to create a world where we combine skincare with self-care, creating a movement that embodies being softer inside & out.
The meaning behind our name… East 29th was the four walls that housed my personal growth from young adulthood into who I am today. It’s where all of my son’s childhood memories are held and where I created my skincare.
It inherently named itself. I knew we’d eventually surpass that home’s physical form, but emotionally it can never be outgrown.
The Vital Serum has a duality in meaning. All of our products will start with the letter V (V is my nickname.) But the meaning behind ‘Vital’ is essential, which this serum definitely is, however, I’m from St. Vital in Winnipeg, Manitoba so I’m equally paying homage to my first home. Where my roots are, and same with my son’s.
Your packaging is absolutely gorgeous. What prompted this design and branding for you?
The consciousness (the state of being characterized by sensation, emotion, & volition) behind creating East 29th was based on the understanding that we feel with more than just our hands. Down to designing our branding, the two words I gave my design team were ‘Visual Velvet.’ I wanted to feel it with my eyes, so when someone tries our products, they feel it with more than just their physical touch.
I wanted the overall color tones to be timeless that if placed in any decade it fit effortlessly. Being vegan and clean beauty green, my favorite color, easily found its way to perfectly fit into being felt/understood by the eye.
The golden yellow was where I envisioned lemons meeting the sun, with a jewel tone. It felt right. The ‘2’ in 29th has a swoop of intimacy with it’s lemon form.
What’s your favorite part of creating your products?
Communication. The ability to connect through the mind and body.
I playfully call myself the ‘Director of First Impressions.’
Simplifying routines, knowing the intimacy of being the first and last part of the human connection with self for so many people, it’s humbling.
While other brands only see your skin, I see space to leave an impact. I’ve come to the understanding that being remembered for how I make someone feel is what’s important to me. The duality of making someone feel softer inside out with skincare & self-care is hands down, my favorite.
What has been your most exciting moment with East 29th so far?
Brand wise, seeing all of the beautiful souls share their photos, hearing their stories, and finding out the new ways the product is being used! I’ve always loved what I’ve done, working in film, but I finally feel exactly where I’m meant to be as East 29th is flourishing.
On a personal note, seeing my son’s eyes light up when he sees my movement, the brand’s growth. He tells anyone, and everyone about me, about East 29th, and he’s the first to say how proud he is. I don’t have to tell him about my life, he’s been right by my side since I was 15 and he’s consistently showing up for me in ways I never imagined possible. It’s empowering, as a single teen mom for 13 years, to have found a balance of work and home. And to have them work harmoniously together.
We’re very excited to have partnered with The Trevor Project, the world's largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ young people, and SafeBAE, a survivor-founded, student-led national organization whose mission is to end sexual assault among middle and high school students. Both of these organizations hit home for me, and I’m looking forward to building how we can work together to help those in need.
What was your biggest hurdle in creating your self care line?
I was juggling working overtime in the film industry and a full-time single mom. That being said, the main challenge I faced was finding the time to make what I had personally made for myself into larger quantities.
I have very sensitive skin, which is a large part of why I started this journey, so testing on myself and my eczema patches (head to toe) and watching my skin transform made this challenge worthwhile, knowing I’d be able to help so many others in similar situations. The Vital Serum is not just for your face, it’s for any area of skin.
What advice would you give people interested in starting their own skincare or beauty business?
Have purpose beyond skin, focus more on the ‘care’ aspect of it.
Ask yourself ‘What’s out of alignment in the world?’ and ‘How can my brand help put it back into alignment?’ The answers will write themselves, and they won’t always be the answers you want but we can’t hold attachments to ideas… reality doesn’t always fit our ideals.
What is your favorite beauty ritual that leaves you looking and feeling naturally beautiful?
I’m a creature of habit. I’ve used my products for years now and I always start my morning and night routine with a hot cloth to help open up my pores while I find fragrance with my diffuser and essential oils since my products are fragrance-free, light exfoliation, cleanse, dry my skin and apply The Vital Serum (even under my eyes these days) and then I lock it in with my moisturizer. The absorption rate has quickly become my most sought out detail when it comes to skincare, which is articulated effortlessly with the Vital Serum.
What’s coming up next for East 29th?
We have two new products in R&D, one is a cleanser and the second one we haven’t announced yet but it’ll create 3 parts of our essential 5.
You’ll also be able to find the addition of ‘Words Have Weight’ where you’ll be able to keep up to date on our newest products, announcements, partnerships, and discussions from skin to self. And ‘Empathy Everywhere’ will house our transcribed podcast episodes.
We’re featuring East 29th’s Vital Serum in the Spring box. What prompted the creation of this product?
I wanted to celebrate lemon rind extract and simplifying routines. Hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, lemon rind extract, vitamins C and E are an essential combination for delivering a high concentration of all-natural ingredients directly into the skin after cleansing to improve hydration, texture, and tone while also firming, promoting elasticity, and smoothing wrinkles. Replacing multiple products by housing all of them in the Vital Serum helps smoothing our skin, but simplifying our routines while providing knowledge behind the Clean Beauty Movement at the same time. You can find out about the Clean Beauty Movement more in depth on our website.