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We had the intimate pleasure of sitting down with Laura Rubin, Founder of AllSwell Creative – AllSwell started as a passion project launched to encourage creativity in all its forms. It’s the brainchild of Laura Rubin, founder and creative director of the communications agency Left Left Right (LLR) Consulting.

Born from a morning surf check with uninspiring results, Laura decided to sit on the beach and journal instead. “Swell or no swell, all’s well.” As an inveterate scribbler and journal-keeper, she wanted to invite more people, like you, to reap its benefits. It’s known that creativity comes in all forms and we have learned about the incredible benefits of getting our creativity, thoughts, visions on paper as it acts as a powerful outlet – free form creativity at its finest.

We love Laura’s simple, yet powerful stance – Write it down, draw it out. Put pen to paper.

Purchase a notebook and put the words on the page or draw your vision in images. Need help leaping over the mental hurdle that you’re not creative or simply jump-starting the process? Attend one of her workshops and, trust us, that hurdle will fall away and you’ll be on your way to tapping into your innate voice. For the adventure seeker, join her on an AllSwell Excursion and see for yourself what a change of scenery can do for resetting your inspiration and mindset. Make sure follow Laura to stay up-to-date on all the incredible activations that she is spearheading – @lauralrubin.

How do you practice sustainability?

As a consumer I vote with my dollars. That extends to all aspects from clothing, to furniture to wine and food. I try to support small, local businesses and do a weekly shop at my greenmarket as my primary source of groceries. I eat as organically as I can and limit my animal protein intake to trustworthy sources, skipping meat at least 1 day a week. 

As an entrepreneur I chose to lower the carbon footprint of my brand by manufacturing domestically out of thoughtfully chosen materials. 

What are your favorite Eco-Friendly Products? 

I’m trying to take the non-toxic ethos I bring to my bodycare / skincare choices and apply it to my wardrobe. For instance, I usually buy a fresh pair of Vans sneakers each spring to wear with sundresses but this year I discovered Bangs Shoes through a friend and made a switch to a more environmentally friendly option. Similarly, Outerknown – a brand by pro surfer Kelly Slater – recently launched their women’s collection and I snagged a few cozy basics (that perfect cropped white sweatshirt, an oversize white button down to wear as a beach coverup) to brighten up my summer wardrobe. 

The fashion industry is such a massive source of global pollution so making choices that are savvy is important as a consumer. That said, repurposing, choosing vintage and repairing your own wardrobe favorites instead of replacing them is even better than buying more new stuff. 

What does wellness mean to you?

Wellness is balance. As careful as I am about living a supportive lifestyle, I don’t want to live in a bubble. If fall out of alignment, I have the tools to get back on track. I try to have some fun every day, enjoy my life, keep learning and give back.

Any advice for people wanting to make the switch towards a more mindful existence (increased wellness) but who are not sure where to start?

I’m a life-long journaler but it wasn’t until I started AllSwell that I dug into the substantial body of scientific research into the benefits of journaling. It turns out that this practice is mentally, emotionally and physiologically good for you. And it’s incredibly accessible. No mantras, mats or special outfit necessary. You just need a few minutes a day, paper and pen. For someone just starting out I suggest 4 x 4 x 4: try out 4 minutes of free-writing a day, do it 4 times a week and stick with it for 4 weeks straight. 

I also suggest becoming more mindful about your screen time. I don’t think it’s realistic to go full-luddite, but a simple commitment to an analog practice like putting pen to paper helps you unplug and reconnect with your own innate voice.   

What are your go-to daily beauty products and why?

I don’t wear much makeup but I’m a nut about my skincare. I’m prone to breakouts so I use EIR’s charcoal face wash morning and night. It deep cleans without stripping my skin. Before I apply a serum at night sometimes I like to do a deeper clean line Goldfaden’s Doctor’s Scrub. I feel like it helps all the good stuff in the serums penetrate more deeply. 

I just went on a motorcycle trip up the California coast to Carmel (and back). I had to travel extra-light, no space for my usual arsenal of skincare products. All I brought were Goldfaden’s Needle-less line smoothing concentrate, Dr. Barbara Sturm’s Glow Drops and Take Care’s Levity mist. Even after 5 long days on the road I still looked fresh, no small feat.   

Why is clean beauty important for you?

The concept of “toxic load” is one I became aware of as a young breast cancer survivor. I was diagnosed at 31 and in the process of going through treatment I began investigating the factors I had within my control to prevent a recurrence. We absorb everything we put on our skin, it passes directly into our bloodstream, so it’s a no-brainer to choose non-toxic skin, bath and beauty products. 

There have been thousands of new chemicals invented in the last 100 years. They’re tested singly by the FDA for safety but that’s not how we encounter them. We’re inundating our miraculous immune systems all day long with these new chemicals, taxing our immunity. But we’re not powerless and the more you educate yourself about easy switches you can make, the better you’re likely to feel. Check out Keep A Breast’s Non-Toxic Revolution program or the Environmental Working Group for more information. 

Happily, I’m cured of breast cancer but I’m still vigilant and committed to a healthy lifestyle so I get to fully enjoy my time here. 

How do you de-stress?

When I journal regularly I’m less anxious overall as well as being more creative and productive. So, I journal twice a day. At night in bed I tend to write whatever’s banging around in my head. I jot down whatever I need to remember for the next day and in doing so it helps me get more nourishing rest. In the morning I make myself a matcha latte and journal again, usually a gratitude list and a short free-write. 

My other de-stress go-to tool is time spent in nature. I moved to California from New York in order to spend more time outdoors. I love a good hike or a morning surf session. It completely rewires my mood. 

What is your daily mantra?

“Fear is the cheapest room in the house. I’d like to see you living in better conditions.” – Hafiz 

It runs in the family: A family-run skincare company, Goldfaden MD, utilizes innovative natural ingredients for unmatched performance. Goldfaden MD is unique compared to other in-home skincare brands. “I have honed in on what i feel are the most important and common skincare problems and have built the range to allow consumers to address from at home and improve skin health long-term.” Dermatologist, Dr. Gary Goldfaden MD

What inspired the to start Goldfaden MD and when was the company founded?

I have always been a creative yet clinical thinker when it comes to medical solutions, so problem-solving for my patients naturally steered me toward product development. I remember developing formulas for my wife and young children as they began to encounter various skin issues—it was a genuine and instinctive passion. When I began practicing in the late 60’s, the anti-aging movement hadn’t really begun on a medical level, and most patients sought in-office procedures as the first line of defense. As I gained experience in private practice, I realized just how significant preventative at home skin care could be for my patients and how it could hopefully reduce their need for more extreme corrective measures in-office. There was a void in the skincare marketplace of products that delivered visible anti-aging benefits but that could be tolerated by sensitive, post surgical, and allergic skin types. It was clear to me that the world needed a serious yet chemically clean line they could trust, and GOLDFADEN MD would be the answer.

What did the process look like to formulate non-prescription, medical-grade skincare products?

The process starts with identifying a problem I see in office, and from there develop at home solutions and preventative measures. If brightening is the goal, for example, we want to layer potent natural actives together without adding in silicones, fillers, and irritants. The challenge is keeping the formulas clean without compromising the stability.The first product I developed was Doctors Scrub, our hero product. I started mixing various ingredients together in my office until I perfected the formula through patient trials and lab testing, which took a couple of years.

Can you tell us how Goldfaden MD’s products target specific skin concerns? How are they unique compared to other products on the market?

I have honed in on what I feel are the most important and often common skincare problems and built the range in order to allow consumers to address them at home and improve skin health long term. Superior formulations featuring naturally-derived ingredients with effective delivery systems set the GOLDFADEN MD brand apart. We couple scientific, results driven products with globally-sourced natural ingredients, bridging the “natural” and “physician” product categories at the prestige level in a way no other brand has.

What exciting things are happening with Goldfaden MD in the near future?

On a product level we are expanding The Plant Profusion line and core collection this winter with additional skus. I can’t wait to unveil them. On the business side, our rate of rapid growth is extremely exciting, and I am very proud of our team.

What is your hope for the future of the business?

I’d like to see us continue to grow as a globally recognized brand and remain the leader and best in class range within the category that we have uniquely chartered: Prestige Natural skincare formulated by a dermatologist.  With the right retail partners who share our passion and modern vision of clean beauty, we can bring GOLDFADEN MD to many more individuals here in the US and abroad.

What is the biggest challenge facing the business?

Growth at a rate of control has been top-of-mind for us since inception. Our distribution model has been very calculated and strategic over the last three years, and now we have incredible momentum. With Lisa’s marketing leadership, and strategic investments in public relations and social media communications, we have had great success controlling our messaging, earning trust and praise from international beauty media and influencers, and exciting retail partners, new markets and ultimately consumers. The next chapter is about continuing this success but on a larger scale with the right support at retail, maximizing opportunities for greatest visibility and expansion here in the US and globally.

Where do you see growth opportunities with the brand?

We have had a 40% growth year-over-year since launch and we are working hard to continue to continue on that fast track for this fiscal year and into next. With a heavy focus on retail door expansion, new product launches, online and social media initiatives, and large sample marketing partnerships, we will likely surpass our year-over-year growth for this fiscal year, which is really exciting. Working with the right retail partners greatly impacts the success of the brand and we are certainly continuing to look at both the retail landscape and shifts in consumer behaviors—namely, leveraging social media engagement–in order to hone in on the brand’s expansion and growth opportunities to allow for us to continue building upon our strong footprint within the beauty category.

Dermatologist, Dr. Gary Goldfaden MD


Name:

Andrea Faulkner Williams co-founder and Head Mama of Tubby Todd Bath Co.

Why Tubby Todd?

My husband, Brian Todd, was the biggest baby ever born in the San Jose Hospital (11 pounds… ouch!) When he was born the nurses called him “The Moose” because he was so big. Years ago we had been working on formulas but weren’t sure if we really wanted to launch a bath soap company (mainly fear was holding us back!) and then one day he came home from work and said, “We are going to start a children’s bath soap company and we are going to call it Tubby Todd!” And I was like, “Yeah we are!” It was one of those pivotal moments we both remember.

How many baths per week?

I find the number of baths per week I take has significantly decreased as I have added more children into the equation. I still get to sneak one or two in a week. Because… priorities.

What does your typical Beauty Routine look like?

I try and wash my face both morning and night, moisturize and use the Goldfaden Elixir. Sometimes I fall asleep before I wash my face and so the next morning I use your exfoliater to make up for neglect. If I go two nights of falling asleep without washing my face I put on your mask.

How do you balance work, mom, wife, life (tips / rituals)?

What was the last book you read? I’m currently reading “The Magnolia Story” by Chip and Joanna Gaines. I know, I know… three years after everyone else. But I still cry every single time they talk about putting it all on the line and starting their business together. Shiplap and soap don’t have much in common, but our stories feel similar in so many ways about working together as a couple.

Perfect day…is?

Hmmm. Sleeping in. Hiking outside, getting a few hours of work done in the morning and then doing something with my kids we both enjoy (like going to the pool, or to the beach) and then at night we get a babysitter and we go out. Let’s just say I sneak a nap in there too.

When you need to destress what is your go to?

I have written in a journal since I was 12. I try to spend a few nights a week meditating and writing feelings and lessons learned down. I have always had a lot of feelings (maybe more than I’ve known what to do with, ha!) and my journal is a safe place to put them all and make sense of things.

What is your favorite room in your home?

My favorite room in my home is my kids room. We have a chair in there that we bought when I was pregnant with my first child. Every single night we all pile on it and read books together. The kids poke me in the ribs and beg for more books and I tell them to go to bed but, those are for sure my absolute fav mom moments.

Favorite Tubby Todd product?

Ummmmm it’s always changing but I’m currently so obsessed with our All Over Ointment. Every single day we receive hundreds of testimonials of how our Ointment has changed the lives of the families who use our products. It’s like the Windex of baby products–works on everything.

Where does your inspiration come from?

My babies. And that is the best part of my job. The best thing I can do for our company is spend time with my family. A lot of my inspiration also comes from other female business owners. I spend a lot of time talking to other women about their social strategy and creative process, I always come way so jazzed and full of ideas.

First thing you do when you wake up, is?

Ugh. These kinds of questions are so embarrassing because they highlight what a lug I am. I dream of being the type of mom who’s dressed before her kids get up, but every single day one of my 3 kids or our 2 month old puppy wakes us up. And it’s always like a screaming in my ear, or a jumping on my back, type of awakening. So, the first thing I do is probably tell them to be quiet, or roll out of bed and get them breakfast to get them to be quiet. And, if I wake up on my own the first thing I do is check Instagram and try to take of any emails I need to get out. Because, mama gotta take care of business.

Last thing you do before you go to sleep, is?

Say a prayer. My husband and I try to pray together and then I pray on my own. See, I HAVE ONE GOOD HABIT. Thank you for ending on this note.