How did a health diagnosis inspire you to start Indie Lee?
In 2008, I was diagnosed with a rare brain tumor that doctors felt could be environmentally derived and attributed to something as simple as what I was putting on my skin. I was given six months to live, but luckily found a doctor who would give me a chance at surgery, and luckily the outcome was successful. This was my awakening. I decided to start a line that would educate and empower others to be mindful about their skincare choices.
What misconceptions do you think people have about their skincare routines as it relates to overall health?
I don’t know if they are so much misconceptions as a lack of awareness. Up to 60% of what you put on your skin can potentially be absorbed in as little as 26 seconds. On top of that, there is very little regulation of the personal care industry in the US, so you really have to be your own watchdog.
How do you think sun safety can play a role as an important part of health?
The skin is our largest organ. It’s a well established fact that prolonged and unprotected sun exposure is linked to skin cancer. There is no other way to see it other than it being a serious health concern.
How do you encourage your family to be sun safe and protect their skin?
My family is pretty aware of the dangers of sun damage and exposure. You will normally find us all under the umbrella if we are at a pool or beach. My son is an avid snow boarder so he always has sun protection for his face in his bag. Sun protection is always in our cars in case we are going for a hike and my kids know to have sunglasses and hats with them if they plan to be out and about.
As for me, you’ll very rarely find me in the sun, I’m always looking for the shade and have a huge hat on. I also make sure I’m wearing light layers with long sleeves. I love that clothing companies are now providing sun protection options. I also opt for physical sunblocks when I am in the sun. I love the brand Suntegrity.
What advice would you give to people who would like a new and healthy skincare routine? How should they start?
I always suggest to start slowly so the transition isn’t overwhelming. That way, you can make sure each product is working for you. If you try to transition all of your products to clean alternatives all at once, not only will you be overwhelmed, you won’t know what products work well with your skin versus maybe give you a negative reaction. An easy practice is to replace an existing product with a clean alternative as you are running out of it. If you’re low on your cleanser, start researching what clean alternatives are out there and interest you most. For people with sensitive skin, it may be best to request a sample from a local retailer to patch test before buying the full size. Then repeat this process when the next product in your routine is running low. Before you know it, you will have a new clean skin care routine.
What’s next for Indie Lee?
I’m dedicated to creating change and community while providing education and empowerment for customers. To do this, we are expanding internationally to really create a global movement. We’ve proven that clean skincare is not a fad or a trend – it’s the new standard.
To learn more about Indie, go here