Here at LIVELY, we’re constantly surrounded by swoon-worthy women that are killin’ it in their businesses. We're launching #WomenCrushWednesday to celebrate the boss babes who provide us with a constant flow of inspiration, support, and endless girl-crushes.
Up next: Liah Yoo, the founder of KraveBeauty, the new age beauty brand that is changing the conventional skincare routine, should do’s, supposed to do’s and all the skincare rules.
Where are you from?
I’m from Seoul, South Korea :)
What brought you here?
As a firm believer that we're a subject of our environment, I was thirsty to be surrounded by like-minded people, and that was tough in Seoul. Ever since I started my business, it became more difficult to find people whom I can share the ups and downs of running a business. Also the fact that NYC is the hub for every major beauty brand and publication weighed in heavily for my move. But, #NewYorkby30 was my personal life goal I had while growing up!
What is KraveBeauty and what do you love about it?
KraveBeauty is a skincare brand for people who are overwhelmed and lost with skincare. We guide people to #PressReset on everything the broken beauty industry has told that their skin needs and to teach people to listen to your skin’s true cravings.
I love how we're different from other brands in many ways. Our intentions are true and people love us for that. We believe everything we do can eventually turn the flawed beauty industry into a more transparent place. A place that really cares about our skin instead of just profits.
What was it like launching your own business?
It's the best thing I've ever experienced in my life. It taught me so many valuable life lessons that I wouldn't have known otherwise. Executing your idea is fun, but facing those moments when things don't go as expected and are out of your control, taught me how to surrender to the higher power. It's important to not let those moments knock you down, but to help you rise back up stronger. Resilience and perseverance are the traits that I wouldn't have learned easily if I didn't start KraveBeauty.
What advice would you give on finding healthy work-life balance?
Waking up early has changed my life and it can also change yours. During the day, everyone requires your time, your decisions, your attention, and it only becomes more challenging to make time for yourself. So making that morning (or evening) time non-negotiable and truly focusing on yourself and what nurtures you will help maintain a healthy work-life balance.
What’s the best advice you’ve received from a mentor?
Be unapologetically yourself. While crafting the brand's voice, I thought it had to be in a certain way so even though it didn't feel the most natural to me, I pursued a specific tone of voice we often see from brands. But then I felt like I was trying dress KraveBeauty with someone else's clothes, I found myself, who's a founder, trying to hide behind the brand. At that moment, my mentor reminded me that what separates KraveBeauty from others is my unique voice and there's an audience who's interested in hearing that. She was 200% right.
What is your process when approaching your next product or project?
We're really tuned into our community and we're always in the know of what they have to say about new product ideas. But we don't make every suggestion into a reality. We remind them that we’re passionate about skin, not skincare. This simple switch in perspective makes a pretty big difference as we focus on optimizing one's skin health. It does its job without much help from the products, which is why every product development process starts from questioning “How is this formula going to affect the skin in a long-term?”. And trust me there are loads of products that aren't necessary on this market when you throw that question.
What does the most intense part of your day look like?
Growing my own YouTube channel while being the CEO of the fast-growing company is definitely intense. My heart still lies in content creation, so I'm thinking of video ideas 24/7 while guiding the team in the office. Bringing out the best of their potential while talking to the manufacturers and suppliers in Korea (that time difference tho) while constantly communicating with our community is not something everyone can JUST do. So I'm learning bit by bit to delegate things and work more efficiently.
How would you describe a life well lived?
A life that is dedicated to serving others. I learned that the sense of fulfillment never comes from fueling my own passion, but from focusing on getting good at something that genuinely helps others and makes the world a better place.
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