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With Valentine’s Day around the corner, it’s time to find creative ways to express your love—no matter whether it involves a friend, a family member, or your one true love.

Of course, a heartfelt card or thoughtful gesture can do the trick. But if you want to go the extra mile, consider taking inspiration from our founders’ Valentine’s Day gift guide below.

Lisa Goldfaden

I tailored my V-Day gift guide for the fashionable and wellness-minded ladies in your life. Shop for these goodies to help them look and feel like a million bucks.

For Mom

  • natureofthings: Help Mom deck out her shower with this clean, plant-powered body care line inspired by the elements (fire, air, water, and earth).
  • Goldfaden MD Needle-less: The ultimate non-invasive solution to stop signs of aging in their tracks.
  • Dorsey: You can’t go wrong by gifting jewelry—especially with this vintage revival brand.
  • Remedy Place (LA and NYC): Give the gift of high-end wellness treatments… but make it social.
  • The Sill: Lauren and I both love this shop to freshen up and greenify our homes.

For Your Bestie

 

Lauren Goldfaden

This Valentine’s Day, I’m taking extra care to show my love to my kids and husband. I hope that these thoughtful gift ideas—some fun, some functional—can help you do the same.

For Kiddos

For Your Boyfriend or Hubby

  • Goldfaden MD Doctor’s Scrub: When you gift our hero exfoliating product to your significant other, you’ll love looking at his face even more as the days go by. (Tip: Opt for the jumbo size!)
  • Ghia Ghianduja: Show how sweet you truly are by gifting this healthified hazelnut spread.
  • July Tech Kit: Say goodbye to wires and tangles with this sleek and compact travel tech kit.
  • ROE Caviar: Level up your at-home date night with sustainably farmed Sturgeon caviar.

To say that Tati Brailova went through the wringer while launching and scaling demi-fine jewelry brand POCHÉ with Co-founder Nadya Syomik would be an understatement. From COVID complications to fleeing war-torn Ukraine, she had to pivot more than most entrepreneurs—but kept her goals and values in mind to not only stay afloat, but grow and learn in the process. Learn more about her story, brand, and self-care tips below.

What makes POCHÉ appealing to people of all genders, cultures, and backgrounds?

We support all people in being themselves – whatever that looks like, whoever they are. POCHE is a judgement-free, diversity-forward, inclusive brand that is open to all. You do you, we are just along for the ride. I think people feel that.

What does POCHÉ do to stay vegan and sustainable, and why are these aspects so important to your brand identity?

POCHE believes jewellery should make a statement about your values. We want our products to have an impact on vibes, not our environment. That is why we are improving our sustainability across production, packaging and the pieces themselves. We are committed to being fully transparent in the interim.

Our packaging uses cardboard boxes that are recyclable, and we are transitioning towards FSC-certified paper to eliminate the deforestation of ancient and endangered forests as well as integrate more recycled content.

We are a vegan company, with our jewellery pouches made from a cruelty-free alternative to animal leather. This does not contribute to the 14.5% of greenhouse gas emissions associated with animal agriculture, as estimated by the FAO. We are exploring natural alternatives to our pouches to avoid using virgin plastics.

What was the biggest challenge getting your brand off the ground?

Well I think this is what we are going through now. As a brand we are on the journey to establish stronger brand identity and connect with an audience in meaningful ways in Europe, UK and US. It’s not easy to be an independent company without having huge capital and trying to grow in the most competitive cities in the world where modern consumers have access to an unprecedented amount of choices.

How did you pivot strategies once COVID hit, followed by the war in Ukraine?

We launched our brand almost at the beginning of Covid, things were pretty tricky, but we were so obsessed with what we were creating that even Covid wasn’t able to stop us. In fact we learned along the way.

Russian invasion in Ukraine was much more difficult as we had to run from bombing in Kyiv, leave everything we built, relocate to new places and start over not only our business but our lives from scratch.

Frankly speaking we were oriented towards Europe and the US from the beginning of our business, but doing it at your pace from a safe hometown and being thrown into a new reality feels very different. Despite the horrible obstacles and challenges that we are facing and embracing we feel very grateful to have an opportunity to grow the brand in a conscious and responsible environment.

To what do you credit POCHÉ’s successes in such a short amount of time?

I believe that our mutual devotion, clear vision, strong background, sensitive intuition, quick learning, deep inspiration by what we create and strong belief in our brand. We are driven, ambitious people inspired by creativity. We speak with purpose and passion about the things we feel strongly about, whether it be our designs, craftsmanship, community or sustainability.

What is your best piece of advice for budding female entrepreneurs who are nervous to take a big leap, or are facing major obstacles in their work?

I think one of the most important things is to be honest with yourself about what do you really enjoy doing or creating. To be driven to keep learning, to meet people and you should own your decision and own who you are but without apology. Being a leader takes a lot of strength and courage, things you choose to do have to be something extremely valuable and important to you.

What are your skincare and self-care non-negotiables?

Sleep is one thing I can’t deprive myself of. I need to sleep a certain amount of hours and walk a lot in the fresh air, even though I live in London and it rains a lot, I would still go for a walk as part of my mental self-care.

Doctor’s Scrub from Goldfaden MD became my absolute must exfoliator, I just love the feeling of fresh and radiant skin.

I use for ages P50 Lotion from Biologique Recherge, it includes a high concentration of acids, the chemical exfoliation works to regenerate and maintain skin pH.

I’m also absolutely in love with Lip Therapy from Goldfaden MD. It instantly hydrates and plump lips!

Skincare routine really helps me to reduce stress and feel more connected to myself.

POCHE STORY

POCHE was founded in Ukraine in 2019 by Tati Brailova and Nadya Syomik. Much like the confident pieces they create, they celebrate their story’s unconventionality — two friends turned forever soulmates from opposite professional backgrounds, who launched a luxury jewellery line months before a global pandemic. Then a war.

It wasn’t easy. It wasn’t supposed to work. But it did.

Tati studied luxury fashion branding in London, going on to work at industry leaders like VAARA sportswear brand, Roja Dove and David Morris Jewelry, while Nadya managed global teams in the worlds of business and data science. While successful in their ambitions, both knew they wanted to live their lives on their own terms. This passion and energy ignited a creative spark around their shared love for jewellery.

Tired of the millennial minimalism that has homogenised mainstream style, Tati and Nadya became obsessed with the powerful ways a small piece of metal can have a massive impact on a person’s mood. Realising their opposite skill sets in branding and business were actually complementary, they used the resources available and took action. POCHE was born.

By embracing their differences instead of apologising for them, Tati and Nadya have realised a brand that speaks to a global community of creators, change-makers and fellow action-takers who define themselves by their differences. And want to make a difference in this world. 

That is why POCHE is an entirely vegan brand, with sustainable and circular ambitions. Jewellery should impact style, not the planet. 

POCHE pieces are designed to provoke thought and attract attention. Each mindfully enhances the style, personality and vibe of their wearers through playful combinations of colour and shape. Never subtle, always with a strong point of view. Just like their wearers, they are not for everybody — and that is what makes them exceptional.

Today the POCHE community is growing, from Dua Lipa to Joey King & Jasmine Savoy Brown. Some live in the east, others in the west; many are women, others are men. All are driven. They are the visionaries, artists, thinkers, innovators and boundary-breakers who are not just part of the conversation, but are starting it. 

Join them. Join us. Be POCHE.

Molly Hart is the founder and CEO of HIGHR Collective, a certified B Corp beauty company reimagining the lip category. She and her team take the terms “clean” and “sustainable” to new heights, whether it comes to formulating products or supply chain considerations. See what the process entails and how HIGHR is reinventing what it means to be green in the beauty industry.

What inspired you to create HIGHR Collective?

While working in social media for all the big beauty brands, I had a direct line of communication to our customers on a daily basis.  Everyday, I was fielding questions from our customers about ingredient safety, environmental impact and shade frustrations.  When constant customer concerns went ignored by decision makers, I knew there was a gap in the cosmetics market for a cleaner, greener product line.

What do you think most clean and luxury lip companies lack, and how does HIGHR Collective bridge that gap?

HIGHR is different because our focus is lip products.  Our founding purpose was due to the lip category being the most invasive category in the beauty industry (the only category we directly ingest), thus giving us a clear mission to switch as many cosmetics consumers into cleaner lip options. 

We also started with one hero product (HIGHR Lipstick), and we gave ourselves the challenge of building the cleanest supply chain around this one product.  That led to solar powered formulation, wind powered packaging, removing all pervasive synthetic ingredients in lip formulation, and tracking and offsetting all remaining operational CO2 to produce the world’s first CO2 neutral lipstick.

By working this way, we also became the first certified B Corp™ in our competitive space, meaning that we have met the highest verified standard of social and environmental impact, transparency and accountability.

How is HIGHR Lipstick CO2 neutral—and the world’s first lipstick to be classified as such?

We use as much renewable energy throughout our supply chain as possible, and then offset the remaining footprint with our friends at Native Energy.  As I mentioned, we use solar and wind in our immediate supply chain.  The tricky part then is finding partners, representing our Scope 2 and 3 emissions, who have the same values as we do.  We vet our partners and their operational ways of working relating to energy consumption before bringing them onto team HIGHR.  

We’ve also found some great gold standard projects to support in North America that are working to expand the use of renewable energy.  Our most recent project, the Crow Lake Wind Project in North Dakota, keeps as much as 430,000 tons of CO2 out of the atmosphere annually!

Our total product footprint is calculated by tracking all CO2 emissions from the beginning of product development through to final product, negated by our renewable use, and then coming to a total footprint left to offset (all calculated by Native Energy).  Once the offset is complete the product is officially CO2 neutral – meaning that we saved as much CO2 as we created making the product.

What kinds of ingredients are on your “never” list and why?

I didn’t start formulating with a “never” list, per se.  I thought that lip product formulations were corporately irresponsible so I started by making a 100% organic product, and then working back from there to achieve a professional standard.  Our products are between 60 – 74% organic, with the remaining formula made of plant derived emollients and actives.  

We’re lucky in that there’s some great innovation happening in the creation of coconut derived silicone replacements, which give the silky texture of a traditional silicone lipstick.  In my view, there’s no excuse to put silicone, synthetic wax, mineral oil or polyethylene in a lip product.  Those ingredients also have no place near or on your mouth.

What’s your brand’s secret to balancing the beauty needs/goals of the consumer with sustainability and clean formulation considerations?

At HIGHR, we want to focus on a tight range of product that are as universally flattering as possible rather than create newness for the sake of it.  We’re finding balance by formulating different lip product formats so that we have a lip product for everyone.  

We start each product the same way – organic.  We then work back from there until we achieve a professional level product that customers will love.

What’s been your most rewarding moment with the brand to date, and what do you still hope to accomplish?

There are highs and lows with all startups. HIGHR has been worn by some very recognizable faces, and we’re starting to partner with retailers – these have all been great moments.  But the most rewarding moments hands down are the emails I get from customers with kind words on the business and product.  It always grounds me and reminds me why I started, and it’s so thrilling to know that people across the world have incorporated our products into their lives.  Our goal is to reach 1 million cosmetics customers with HIGHR lip products in the next 5 years.

What are your skincare and self-care non-negotiables?

Hyaluronic Acid is my number one.  During the pandemic, I royally messed up my skin barrier by using too many acids and HA was the only product that would help.  Since then, I’ve switched my chemical exfoliant to the physical Goldfaden MD Doctor’s Scrub.  It exfoliates and has the added benefit of retexturizing my skin.  

The biggest part of my self-care routine is family.  I walk my children to school every morning, which is the best start to the day.  Children are tremendous sources of joy, and I find it easiest to switch off from the ups and downs of business when I’m with them.