I was born in Chicago, Illinois to a strong willed, independent mother. It only stands to reason that I developed these same qualities I admire in my mother. I was also blessed with a creative thirst that soaked in the beauty around me. I gravitated towards creating beautiful and colorful things. From painting to sculpting to decorating, I learned to express my passion in everything I created. I graduated from the University of Maryland with a degree in art. I struggled to put myself through college by bartending and on-campus work programs. It was hard, working until 3 am and then trying to get up for 7 am classes and then going straight from them to my other job, but somehow I did it.
I moved to NYC in August of 2001 with about $1000 and a dream of pursuing my art career. I wanted to make a difference! I had only been here a month when 9/11 devastated my new City and my Country. Like so many, I was in a daze to search for meaning in an inconceivable realty. During the process of our country’s collective healing, I couldn’t help to do what I was born to do...to find and express the beauty around me. I felt an overriding determination to build a career that would allow me to make a difference. My love for this city was forever ingrained.
Over the ensuing years, I worked for multiple advertising agencies and bartended at night to make ends meet (NYC is not cheap!). While trying to make my way in a new world, I met and made friends with some of the MOST incredible people. We were all wide-eyed kids that came to NYC with our own unique dreams of what the City would be for us. I felt an energy and connectedness that I hadn’t found before. While I obtained a level of success in the corporate world, I knew that I wasn’t finding satisfaction in my need to express myself with a meaningful purpose. My 20's were spent struggling to survive, rather than furthering my dreams. It was during this period that I understood that my path had to be one where I was in charge of my own life. When you finally understand that your time is limited your choices become more important. I started to really care what I said yes and what I said no to. I needed to work for myself, or at least, not be punching a time clock helping someone else build their dream when I had dreams of my own.
Just after my 30th birthday, I had saved enough money to buy an old bar and restaurant in Brooklyn, New York with a friend. I applied my creativity and business experience to find the beauty of an old and tired restaurant to create a neighborhood environment that was unique and satisfying. Owning and running a bar is an 8-day-a-week, 25-hour-a-day job. It was a tremendous undertaking and I loved it! As difficult as the work was, it was mine! I was determined to make it a success… and I did. I built a successful business and sold it after 4 years. And then I think I slept for a whole week straight. I didn’t make a fortune, I didn't make anything actually-but I made an impact using my blood, sweat, tears, and HEART. I now knew I could accomplish anything I felt passionate about.
The Moment: KVoss™ is Born
While contemplating my next venture, I scheduled a routine dermatology screening. My mother had successfully conquered skin cancer when I was younger, so I was always hyper-aware of skincare and healthy skin choices. My dermatologist advised that I have a couple things removed and the C-word was mentioned (thankfully, I did not have cancer). Jolted, I went straight home and looked at every single skin product I owned. I read the labels and ingredient lists for each. I was SHOCKED! Upon research, I couldn't believe all the toxic chemicals I was unknowingly putting on my skin. Even with my family history of skin cancer and my diligence in my skincare, I had been oblivious to how dangerous the products I was using were. I felt a mix of emotions that ranged from fear to betrayal to anger. I needed to learn EVERYTHING about what I was putting on my skin. I also knew that I couldn’t be the only one who was unknowingly harming their health.
The more I learned, the more determined I became. Knowing now what I didn’t know then, the following seems so simple-because it is! Our skin acts more as a sponge than a barrier. Whatever you put ON your skin actually goes INTO your bloodstream faster that if you ate it. (That's crazy!) With so many skincare products available hyped by overwhelming marketing and exaggerated ingredients, I was left wondering if any of them actually help one feel cared for or really worked.
It seemed to me a return to basics was in order. I spent most of my time learning, learning, and learning some more-about the science behind healthy skin care. I ordered some organic ingredients and mixed different lotions in my small NYC kitchen. After countless hours of trial and error, I perfected a sampling of different lotions. The results were amazing! They were the most nourishing and hydrating lotions I had ever used and my skin was glowing. More importantly, my creations were safe. I shared my knowledge and homemade products with friends, and immediately I knew that THIS was what I had to do with my life. In 2012, KVoss™ was formed.
But how? When I asked myself what contribution could possibly be made to an already overly saturated Health & Beauty market, the phrase “all you need is love" kept ringing in my ears. For me, love is tied very tightly to skincare. I grew up with a mom who told me every day that I was smart, wonderful and more loved than anything in the world. Diagnosed with skin cancer when I was a child, she made sure that I always protected and cared for my skin. I took comfort in that love and felt nurtured and special. I wanted to share that unique love and special comfort. I can’t “overthrow” the entire skincare industry-but I can make an impact.
My lifelong trait of finding beauty spoke loudest at this moment in my life. That beauty starts from within...literally. Our skin surrounds each of us. I consider what I think is most important in life: love yourself, trust what is simple, and respect the wholesomeness of nature and the world around you. My products reflect this mantra. They are made with pure love and passion, and everything that you see on this site is 100% certified vegan and made from only the finest organic ingredients.