Karuna Skin’s Maintain skincare line is now sold at Whole Foods. (© Karuna)
By Jennifer McKee
There are so many wonderful women-owned products out there that it’s hard to find the time to try them all. Don’t worry, we’ve selected a few for you. Here are a dozen of our favorite brands you’ll want to try for yourself on International Women’s Day, March 8.
Karuna Skin is the innovative brand created in 2009 by founder Linda Wang. After a visit to the doctor resulted in a traditional Chinese herbal skincare regimen, Wang became addicted to all things skincare. She first developed a line of paper face masks and was the first entrepreneur to bring them to the US market. Her latest collection, which just debuted in Whole Foods stores across the country, helps balance skin with gentle, effective products that are free of preservatives. You’ll shine and smell great doing it!
Danessa Myricks Beauty’s new serums also balance the skin by hydrating, smoothing and protecting it. The Yummy Skin Serum Foundation comes in 26 universal shades that work like magic to produce a natural glow, using hyaluronic acid and skin-loving oils. Yummy Skin Glow Serum can be worn alone or as a base for a luminous finish; it’s also made with hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, and vitamin C. Myricks is a cosmetic artist, photographer, and self-taught entrepreneur who worked on brand development before founding her own line; find it on Amazon, Sephora and its website.
Stay dewy and fabulous with True+Luscious, the clean, plant-derived skincare line from beauty industry veteran Mehir Sethi. Sethi’s 15 years in the industry and her own skincare battles have taught her which formulations not to use; its range is packed with plant-derived actives, fruit and flower extracts, and skin-soothing ingredients, all vegan and cruelty-free. And it’s also full of glamor – Sethi’s new Flora Furiosa Palette uses luxurious talc-free pigments inspired by fierce and resilient flowers. Available on Amazon.
Yentunde Alabi, a crystal enthusiast, harnesses the healing powers of crystals in her year-old brand Majenye, making gentle products to nourish the skin and the soul. The range combines botanicals, superfoods, essential oils and natural minerals to balance the skin, and the ingredients are sourced from fair trade suppliers. The products, which include bath salts, body puffs, solid shampoos and face mists, are all vegan and cruelty-free. Available on Amazon.
Solvasa Beauty uses crystals, oils and elixirs and the power of mindfulness to combat the havoc daily stressors wreak on our skin. Co-Founder and Executive Chairman Lori Bush has worked for some of the biggest names in the skincare industry and co-authored the book “Write Your Skin a Prescription for Change”; with Solvasa, she now focuses on integrative beauty and well-being. Those who want to meditate on it should download the Solvasa Life Mindfulness app.
When Ashlyn Rowland founded Bare Candle Co. in 2019, she was still in high school. Her goal was to create a candle that was safe to use around her and her family. After months of trial and error, she found the perfect combination of luxurious scents and 100% USA-grown soy wax. The materials used for the candles are sourced locally, helping to reduce the brand’s carbon footprint. Tantalizing scents include Teakwood + Spice, Lavender + Sandalwood, and Pear + Honey, Rowland’s favorite scent.
Vietnamese-American founder and designer Sandra Martinelli is the face behind Delicora Jewelry. The lightweight, high quality and delicate pieces contain semi-precious stones meant to capture a woman’s confidence, natural beauty and individual style. The Made for Jade collection, for example, draws inspiration from Martinelli’s Vietnamese heritage and her grandmother’s jewelry, but with a modern update. The beautiful pieces are perfect for layering or worn alone. For every item sold, Delicora contributes to a charitable donation.
Amy Chestnut’s passion for wool and her felting craft led her to found Sonoma Wool Company in 2013. She wanted to share her love of the natural properties and practical uses of wool, started experimenting and making the products. The brand’s 100% wool bedding collection breathes naturally, helping you fall asleep and stay asleep. Additional products include Wool Drying Mat, Wool Ironing Board Mat and Wool Cat Mat. Support from these products helps support family sheep ranches.
Longtime friends Jen Hinton and Thayer Sylvester came together to found Carve Designs in 2003 after a surfing trip where they couldn’t find women’s board shorts with real bodies. The company started out as a surf apparel business, but quickly grew into a full beach lifestyle brand, offering surf, swim, fitness and lifestyle apparel. Its creators test each piece before it is put on the market. This year, to embrace its legacy, Carve Designs launched its Women X Good campaign and film series to celebrate the power of Mother Nature and motherhood.
Bananas rise to superfood status thanks to Banana Samba, founded by two Brazilian sisters, Carla and Ruth Wahnon. Using a 400-year-old recipe, bananas are cooked until caramelized in their own natural sugars, then turned into soft, chewy snacks for before and after exercise, heart attack 3 p.m. or anytime if you want a healthy, gluten-free snack. . Choose from four delicious flavors; the flat $2.50 shipping rate can’t be beat!
The vision to get Haiti’s coffee industry back on track prompted Beverly Malbranche to create Carribrew. From its launch in 2018 until today, the brand has partnered with more than 100 coffee and cocoa farmers in Haiti to create economic opportunities. The company hires young people in Haiti to package and export the coffee to the US shipping facility in New Jersey, where they hire local residents. Its expedition facility employs 75% women.
Barbara Tamburini knew she wanted to be an oenologist (expert in wine science) from an early age. Her passion led her to the University of Pisa; her success in the industry led her to be named Italy’s Best Winemaker in 2019. Her winemaking philosophy focuses on the balanced combination of tradition and modernity; at Duca di Salaparuta in Sicily, she makes the most of the native Sicilian grape varieties to create truly tasty and unique flavors. Do yourself a favor and try the fruits of his labor, the Passo delle Mule, Lavico and Kados.