Since the beginning of the pandemic, the rate of anti-Asian hate crimes and extremely ignorantly placed discrimination has risen alarmingly. In fact, a recent study shows that anti-Asian hate crimes have risen 169%, which is considered historic. May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month—though this doesn’t mean it’s time for a single shout-out. We’re highlighting incredible brands that we use, trust, and love, by experienced beauty professionals. Support the AAPI community in any way that you can, including where you spend your beauty and wellness dollars. Here are a handful of our favorites.
Glass Skin Refining Serum
Peach & Lily
Alicia Yoon founded Peach & Lily-the OG’s of the Korean beauty glass-skin hype, made possible by totally clean, totally juicy skincare. It’s spa-grade, toxin-free, and a favorite among our team, not just for the cute packaging, but for being a major performer with clean ingredients. It’s also an accessible price point, which gets major props from us.
While K beauty has been “trending,” it’s no new trend from which it hails. Korean skincare has been about 10 years ahead of the rest of the game for a while, and we’re just now catching up to the clean, non-toxic, ultra-hydrating, unique natural ingredients that are meant to heal, protect, and prevent.
Stainless Steel Roller
Sarah Cheung started out as a beauty influencer from Hong Kong and blew up into a global, trusted ambassador. Her heritage makes her no newbie to gua sha and rollers in the way that we are just now catching up to here in the U.S.
Traditionally, these unique and effective tools are made with beautiful yet porous natural stones like quartz or jade, and these tiny holes can harbor bacteria and cause breakouts. Cheung pulled some truly imaginative and technological strings to reimagine these tools in surgically clean, stunning stainless steel, made from recycled materials while also being 100% recyclable themselves.
Shine on Lip Jelly
This clean beauty brand is a delightfully playful, rainbow spectrum of color, founded by Amy Liu. Liu worked as a beauty executive for some renowned brands, but as a longtime eczema sufferer, she could never really test the products. She felt that clean alternatives were too clinical, or just outright too expensive. That’s why she founded Tower 28—to create accessible, gorgeous, fun, and professional skincare and cosmetic products that make getting ready fun and safe, all while being totally clean. In fact, they are the first beauty brand that’s 100% clean, vegan, and free of every known skin irritant.
Organic Matcha Bundle
Grown from a small family farm—“Cha” meaning tea, and “finity” meaning the finite, or definitive limits of nature—Chafinity is about super fine quality and tradition over mass production. This fine tea brand is a purveyor of our beloved matcha, and stunning ceremonial mixing bowls to boot. It’s harvested in Kagoshima, Japan, only once a year, using sustainable, all-natural farming techniques for their “beyond-organic” approach, making Chafinity our holy grail when it comes to truly and beautifully authentic Japanese matcha.
Lauren Jin is a lover of ritual and sound, stunning quality. To her, this is the groundwork for beauty—along with her belief that there is no baseline for what is considered beautiful, and all different ways to embody it.
All of her products are Korean beauty-centered, meaning clean, simple, natural, and effectively clinical. CLE embodies a minimalistic approach of the highest technology, which is truly a pillar of K beauty standards while encouraging loving ritual.
Tina Craig is the mastermind behind the genius that is U Beauty. Her expanding line of revolutionary products are all centered around her OG (and our favorite) Resurfacing Compound, and the SuperSmart Hydrator is a game-changer in the beauty industry.
A lover of stunning skin with an understanding of what goes into it, Tina wanted to create simplified products that have the same effect as a decadent 12-step K beauty routine, sans the steps. Both the compound (serum) and the hydrator are incredible multitaskers with super unique, patented tech that delivers insane results. It’s this kind of genius we need more of in the realm of skincare and beauty.
Founded by Angela Chau Grey and Dr. Ervina Wu, Yina is an incredibly pure line of skincare products that hinge on the rituals, unparalleled quality, and herbs of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Everything is fresh, seasonal, and extremely thoughtfully sourced and extracted, created with the seasons in mind for both the ingredients and our skin.
Ervina recovered from cancer alongside her treatments with Chinese Medicine herbs and methods. She received a scholarship from the Chinese government for her Ph.D. in TCM, and clinical training in autoimmune disease. She is also a registered TCM dermatologist.
Angela fell in love with Traditional Chinese Medicine while taking a Medical Ethnobotany class at UC Berkeley. Her newfound love of plant biology was a catalyst for understanding Chinese medicinal plants, and she now heads Yina’s product development locally in California.
Up next, shop the newest items from the Poosh Shop here.