There's no way you don't know today's feature, and if you don't....you need to. Apoterra Skincare (linked) has been featured in Vogue, Elle, Allure, NYLON...just to name a few. As a known brand in the natural skincare world, this is one of the first brands I was introduced to when I chose to go natural and cruelty free.
It goes without saying that having Dominique featured today, is a dream come true. Not only is her brand and her products amazing, she's beyond lovely and eloquent. I am so ecstatic to have her be a part of this series.
I'd like you to meet Dominique of Apoterra Skincare!
Let's start by discussing the name of the brand....you renamed it to Apoterra, which many people don't know means, 'derived from the earth'. How did you come up with this and what influenced it?
Our ingredients are grown in the earth and our products are produced with our health and our planet's in mind. I wanted to find a name that reflected our mission and our soul as a company. I originally launched the brand as Caru Skincare Co but had to rename my company because of trademark issues. A bigger company had gotten the trademark for Caru (the little guy can't always win!). Caru was the root of my last name and means "to love". The new name is more literal, but I think it really represents our mission!
Your brand is very natural and non toxic, looking back at your teenage years, what did you do wrong with your skincare?
When I was a teenager and started having breakouts, I thought the solution was to dry my skin out with harsh chemicals. All that did what actually aggravate the problem and also cause really dry, red, flaky skin. What I realize now is that the best way to heal break out prone skin is by nourishing it and applying skincare products that fight bad bacteria and inflammation, without stripping the skin of beneficial oils. Using a gentle cleanser, exfoliating on a weekly basis, hydrating my skin with a good toning mist and moisturizing with the right facial oil, is what I should have been doing!
Prior to creating your own products, and even now with your own brand, what companies did you/do you, support?
There are tons of amazing brands out there that do things really well. I love Under Luna's shampoo and conditioner, Meow Meow Tweet's deodorant, and Captain Blankenship's dry shampoo and sea salt hair spray.
What is your favorite skincare item, lipstick, and body product currently?
My favorite skincare item is my Neroli Clarifying Toner. It smells amazing and helps keep my skin clear and hydrated during hot summer months. My favorite lipstick is actually a tinted lip balm I got from Good4you Plant Makeup. It's sheer and I can use it as a cheek stain as well. I'm pretty simple when it comes to make up!. My favorite body product is my Tulsi Luminous Scrub. We make it with pink sea salt, coconut oil, and tulsi essential oil. It's my secret weapon to fight off dry skin on my legs and arms, plus it gets blood circulating in the shower, sort of like what dry brushing does.
If you could create the perfect perfume for yourself, what would it smell like?
I love different scents from almost every family, but the ones that make me feel the best are florals, woods, citrus and resins. The perfect perfume would have top notes of flowers like jasmin and rose with a little sweet orange. Grounding woods like cedar, and supportive resins like frankincense and opoponax. A blend that grounds me, supports me emotionally, gets my creative juices flowing and gives me a confidence boost! I think I might have to make this now. . . thanks for the inspiration! (Melissa freaking out here!!!)
If you could go back and change one thing prior to creating your company, what would you change?
I would spend more time getting to know my customers. This may sound counter intuitive since I didn't have customers before I launched the business, but I think if I had spent more time trying to figure out who they were and how I could help them before launching the business, I would have wasted less time and money making mistakes.
What do you eat and drink in a typical day?
It kind of changes on a daily basis, but a typical day goes like this:
Breakfast: Coffee! A must for me, lol. And usually eggs with veggies and toast. My favorite is frying onions and parsley with my eggs. So good!
Lunch: I try to keep lunch simple so I usually will eat leftovers from dinner the day before, or have a simple salad or sandwich. Sometimes I'll go out if I have a meeting.
Dinner: I usually make dinner a veggie with a protein. So either tofu, organic meat, fish or beans with whatever goodies my CSA delivered that week. For instance last night we had a summer squash salad with a tuna steak. I usually have a glass of wine with dinner too. Lately, I just love a good Rose!
I'm a sweet tooth so I usually have a little something sweet at the end of the day. I try to stick to some healthy dark chocolate like Antidote chocolate, but sometimes I'll treat myself to ice cream.
Throughout the day I will drink water. Water can be boring sometimes, so I infuse it with different herbs or put a dash of shrub in it to keep it interesting.
Let's say you're a mood ring, what color represents you and your mood the most? And why do you think that is?
I feel like my mood is probably blue most of the time. I'm usually pretty calm, relaxed and generally content. I approach things one step at a time and try to enjoy myself everyday. I don't see the point in being furious or bulldozing through life. I will say my mood ring would probably have little flashes of red and yellow once in a while too! When I get really stressed or really excited about something, sometimes I get a pretty fiery about my opinions!
What are the last 5 songs you listened to?
Can I list musicians instead? I like to choose an artist on iTunes and listen to all their work on shuffle, in the background! Lately I've listened to Yann Tiersen's soundtrack for the movie Amelie, Edith Piaf, The Beatles, Cat Power, and The Julie Ruin.
Who is your biggest supporter and how have they changed/affected your life?
My mom is by far my biggest supporter. She's always there for me no matter what. I think having her unconditional support helps give me confidence to try things out. Things that I know might fail. But I know that no matter what, she'll be there to support me through thick and thin.
Your products have been featured in a lot of magazines, but recently they were featured on the HBO show Girls, how did that make you feel?
Awesome! I'm a fan of the show so I was SO excited about it!! When the episode was playing and I saw the products on the TV, I screamed and had so much fun with it. I took a bunch of pictures of the TV and my husband and I had a good laugh about it. It's also pretty neat when people I know, recognize the products in the show and mention it to me.
What is one of your favorite memories as a kid?
My favorite memory is going to my Grandpa's summer cabin up in Quebec. It was right on this amazing lake surrounded by mountains. It was sort of my little paradise. There was an under water island in the center of the lake where the community installed a volleyball net and picnic table. The submerged island was about 2 feet under water. It always felt magical to me as a kid! Like a secret. The lake was also great for swimming. Clear water, soft earth to walk on (no rocks or algae!). I remember snorkeling with my dad and finding little fish, tadpoles and crayfish. There was also this cross at the top of one of the mountains. We always made a point to climb to the cross. It was sort of a challenge we put ourselves through every year. If we made it (which we didn't always make it because it required some rock climbing!), we felt pretty good about ourselves! Spending time there was also the only time, besides holidays, where the whole extended family would hang out and have fun. In retrospect, that was really important to me.
Do you think social media has ruined this generation, or do you believe it's a great way as a brand, to interact with consumers?
I think social media is great but you have to be mindful about it. I think it makes communicating as a brand a more personal experience, and gives me the ability to tell my story, share my knowledge, and be heard. Which I would never have been able to do 20 years ago without a lot of money. Social media also allows people to find a community to be a part of, which they might not have been able to find where they live. I think being part of a community is so important for our general happiness. But I also find that (and I'm guilty of this!), I sometimes get so involved with what is going on in social media, that I stop paying attention to my life outside of the digital world, which leads to me feeling disconnected, un-grounded and a little sad. So I try to make a point to disconnect from social media on a daily basis and be aware of a moment, my surroundings, myself and the people around me, that are actually there for me and that I care about.
What is your favorite quote/phrase?
"Do unto others as you would have them do to you". I find that this always helps me center myself. If I am not sure I made the right decision, or how to react to something, I try to put myself in the other person's shoes or think "what if everyone acted like me?". If I think I would want other people acting like me, then it was the right decision.
Wow! Don't you feel like you and Dominique are the best of friends now? No, just me? That's totally cool...I'm not a creep or anything.
But can we take a minute to go back to the moment she thanked me for inspiring her? Um, you're welcome, best friend. ;-) (OK, now I'm being a creep)
I'd like to thank Dominique once again for being a part of this series. It was so lovely getting to not only feature her, but have you guys get to know her on another level, outside of social media and the brand.
As always, let me know if you've tried any of the products out, or if you plan on buying anything from the brand.