Posts Written By Yvonne Kai

2016 Gift Guide for the Outdoor Guy

Christmas is less than 2 weeks away! It is really hard to find presents for people nowadays. Especially if the guy craves and experience more than ‘stuff’. With the convenience of Amazon and the ever changing trends, we found some ‘sure-win’ items that are timeless, useful and perfect for your ‘outdoorsy’ guy on your list!

  1. Canyon Tech Joggers:

Loaded with technical features but with style that takes the design to the streets, these joggers will be a pair to live in. With excellent stretch recovery, these quick dry, moisture wicking pants feature a drawstring waist and articulated knees to stay comfortable are resist slipping. Well-placed pockets and reflective tape make them a must for the commuter cyclist.

turbo2. ToughTested Charger:


The leader in mobile power and durable, rugged tech accessories, have applications for traveling, families, construction workers, truckers, teens, and college students. Anyone who is very rough on cables or other tech accessories will find comfort in the long-lasting benefits of ToughTested products. ToughTested Rugged battery pack – Thrown from a building and run over twice by an 18-wheeler, this battery pack will still work and can charge your device four to five times without charging the device itself. Also available in solar powered packs with 10,000 mAh and15,000 mAh. ToughTested Pro cables – Encased in a P.E.T polymer for abrasion and chemical resistance, ToughTested’s braided cables are strong enough to withstand nearly anything. Tested at 3-5 times the industry standard, these cables are long enough for an efficient charge and strong enough to last you a lifetime. All cables are MFI certified by Apple and the Micro-USB tips are reversible to prevent wear and tear between the device and the charging connection.

3. DerMend® Moisturizing Bruise Formula:

Tough guys get bruises! This is something they need to have in their bathroom. Even as much as they pretend that a fall didn’t hurt that much, the bruise will definitely need help helping. DerMend is a dermatologist recommended cream, helps restore and rejuvenate the skin’s natural barrier to improve the appearance of bruised skin through its set of ingredients. DerMend® Moisturizing Bruise Formula is filled with ceramides, retinol, arnica oil and glycolic acid to rejuvenate the skin’s barrier that may have been lost due to aging, sun exposure and certain medications.  Apply it onto the affected areas twice a day to improve the appearance of bruises and soften skin.


Outdoorsy guys definitely need to do their laundry after their adventures in the great outdoors. Understanding that the laundry and cleaning aisles were exclusively full of products fragranced, packaged and marketed to women, Hero™ Clean was born from that void in the marketplace for the more than 100 million men buying cleaning products. Hero™ Clean’s household items currently include laundry detergent, all-purpose spray cleaner, liquid dish soap, and odor eliminating spray. 


In the Biz: DABBA


I had a chance to interview Laura and Janis, founders of DABBA at Cosmoprof Asia to find out more about them and their brand’s inspiration. Millennial Entrepreneurs all have one thing in common, they really go for it! No excuses, no greediness, no shortcuts and 100% putting something into the universe that matters and has a message.

DABBA are fine, nuanced, genuine plant extracts – created for different people and different events. Souls of northern plants enticed out of their meadows at the perfect time, hour of the day and temperature and transformed into blossom water to enrich, satiate and harmonise your life and sing the beautiful and profound story of this land, Latvia.

DABBA floral waters are always made of fresh, certified organic, powerful plants, juicy fruit, colorful flowers and wild tree leaves according to the ECOCERT standard for organic cosmetics*. DABBA floral waters are made with 100% natural ingredients, 99% of which are from organic farming.

I have been using and loving my Apple Water from DABBA since we met a few weeks ago! Thank you for your time 🙂

Where are you from/where do you live?

After university years in Rīga and few more years traveling around the globe I have settled in Cēsis which is a small and charming historical town in Northern Latvia.

If there was a theme song in your life, what would it be?

Hard to pick one song and call it a theme. My playlist is changing constantly but if I have to choose one let it be Les Enfants du Paradis by World’s End Girlfriend.


What advice would you give to someone who wants to do what you do?

This is something that you may have heard many times before but you have to love what you do to be the best at it. This is how you judge each step you make, think of it in terms “I love it” or “Not”. If you don’t love your designs, your ideas, your products, blog posts.. no one will.


What is the key to being successful/to stand out in your industry?

I guess you have to start with some smaller things than the whole industry. For example I do feel that DABBA range of Floral Waters is successful and sets the standard to many other producers which is due to the uncompromising quality level and the story behind the concept. This is all about taking your own experience your own ideas and reflecting them on your brand and products.

What is your favorite quote?

I do believe that even the most unfortunate things (seemingly) are bringing you towards something better, something that you may not be able see from where you stand at that moment.

Where can people find you online?





Hands On Gloves & TruDog for Christmas

HandsOn Bathing and Grooming Gloves revolutionary product is the one of a kind glove that is improving the way caregivers and pet owners groom their pets!

Entrepreneur and founder, Jay Michaelson deserves a hand for inventing HandsOn Gloves!

 One of the most important ways to bond with your pet with through bath time! If your dog is a nervous nelly or just loves baths, they gloves could be a great addtion to your ritual. 

HandsOn Gloves has changed the way you bathe, shed and groom your beautiful pets and works wet or dry with the 5-fingered glove allowing for the perfect combination of scrubbing nodules on fingers and palms. Hands On Gloves stay on your hands throughout your care for your animals, and as the best shedder on the market, they easily accumulate hair.  HandsOn Gloves helps massage and stimulate circulation improving skin and coat, and they are gentle enough to the touch on sensitive contoured areas of the body. –


What an impact HandsOn Gloves is making!  Users will find your animals wanting to come closer at groom time and HandsOn Gloves can help you bond with your pets.  HandsOn Gloves are carefully designed with hypo-allergenic, bio-friendly components which are clinically proven to be safe for use with humans and animals.   HandsOn Gloves now come in small, medium and large.

The best way to love your dog is to feed it high nutritional value food that is REAL. Dogs need trace minerals, vitamins and stimulation. Eating is a huge part of their development and TruDog products will give you the ease of kibble with the benefits of raw.

Entrepreneur and founder, Lori Taylor deserves a pat on the back for her natural health and nutrition products at TruDog!

Give your dog a full treatment and pampering of good health products adding comfort and joy to their everyday and during the Holidays too with TruDog. TruDog’s Orapup Starter Kit will help get rid of stinky dog breath and promote a healthy mouth for your pet! The Starter Kit includes the Orapup tongue cleaning brushwith a 2 ounce bottle of Beef ’n’ Bacon Lickies fortified with all-natural enzymes and anti-plaque benefits for your dogs TLC against bad breath. Give the gift of the starter kit!

Help our four-legged friends live longer with products like TruDog’s FeedMe real meat freeze-dried raw superfood made using fresh, high quality, U.S.A. raised, raw meat, and NO ADDITIVES!  TruDog’s products lines optimize your dog’s life form head to tail: joints, teeth, digestive system, skin & coat care. Add in TruDog’s ProtectMe, an easy-to-use gravy that makes it simple and easy to give your dog the enzymes he needs. With a simple pump of the probiotic on your dog’s good, he will be better prepared to digest his meal he is about to enjoy lessening tummy troubles. Check out the benefits of a raw food diet recommended by TruDog on this diagram:


Best of Cosmoprof Asia: In’pressivenails

One of the best parts of my Cosmoprof experience was talking in depth with Centdegres. This design agency was in charge of creating a special edition product for Cosmoprof.

The product was designed from a 5 dimensional point of view. From bottle design, the weight, feel and texture of the packaging to the liquid inside, finish, texture, viscosity, opacity and even the scent.

Together with Fiabila (fill), Groupe Pochet (packaging), BeautyStreams (Insight), Centdegres (Design) created the in’pressivenails series, a pure object of desire.

It’s no surprise that the In’pressive Nails Event selected Pantone 206C for me. VITALITY inspired by Pomegranate Syrup💅🌡️🍎 created by Paris creative agency #Centdegres #cosmoprofasia#cosmoprofasia2016

This impressed me so much! The depth of thought given in creating these products is what sets the best apart from the rest. This outstanding project of innovation is exactly what I love about the beauty industry.

 It also reflects the pain of the industry, where products demand forces brands to churn out products and SKUs that never really make it. I hope In’pressivenails forces beauty innovators to stop and think and force themselves to go deep instead of just fast. It takes time to develop a product that becomes a ‘lovemark’ and not just another product.

The other thought I had after speaking with Sophie Robbe of Centdegres is the importance of collaboration. Collaborative effort brings the best experts together to create something that defies expectations. It is key for the beauty industry to look at other experts in their field to manifest something great. This project blew my mind!

Definitely one of the key highlights of Cosmoprof was the privilege to get a first hand look at In’pressivenails. Product development of this magnitude requires time (to ideate and produce), experts (to bring together industry know-how) and distribution (cosmoprof) and of course budget.  But in the ideal world, every product that is produced should come through this process. That way, there will be more key objects of desires created instead of my junkie things, copy cats and poor quality products.

Hope you get to check out this case study in depth by searching #inpressivenails and through centdegrés and Cosmoprof.



Pt. 2 Cosmosprof Asia 2016 Hong Kong Convention and Expo Centre


Arriving at the second venue, the buzz and swarms of people created a ton of excitement! The energy of the crowd was high and numerous languages can be heard as you go through the crowd.

20161116_134642This part of the convention was split into 3 large floors and was also divided in countries of origin and specific areas. I also had the opportunity to attend some seminars about K-Beauty trends as well! Some of the key points discussed the current growth sectors (Teens) and the importance of K-Pop and K-Drama’s role in catapulting brands into superstardom.  With an average of 800 SKUs per year, this Korean ‘pali pali’ system of fast turnaround jumps on trends and make them the leader in innovation in so many ways.


I also got to meet Van Lu, the head of BeautyStreams and Innovation Award winner, Kilala and Pinkan Tilaar of Indonesia beauty giant Martha Tilaar Group.


There were so many brands, innovators and products that it was truly overwhelming. Instead of buzzing around trying to cover all ground, I focused on booths that caught my eye and spent time learning about their brand story and products. So alas, here are some of the best innovation products and trends to highlight from this part of the show!


  1. From the Deep Sea (Trend) – A very strong pull towards the ocean’s mystic and powers. With a strong connection to Traditional Chinese Medicine, Asians believe there are many health benefits to ingesting these items raw, cooked, pulverized and now assimilated through the body’s largest organ skin. The cosmetics ingredients from the deep sea include Sea Horse, Jelly Fish, Abalone, Seaweed, Coral, Pearl, Sea Cucumber.


2. Organic baby products from Down Under (Product) – El8te – This is a brand new product line from Australia that has been featured all over glossy magazines and social media alike. With its irresistibly adorable packaging and affordable price, El8te is in a class of its own. Goat Milk being the main ingredient in the baby line, providing nourishing protection from head to toe.20161116_163141

3. Minimalist Design (Packaging) –  Instructive packaging is on the up and up. Minimal light and airy design with a focus on Ingredients and Function as the anchor. The feel of the packaging is unobstructed and floats, while there is a solid base design that promised high quality ingredients and solid efficacy. This new trend in packaging gives the consumer a good feeling about the honesty, integrity and quality of the product. There are no frills and distractions to ‘entice’ the customer but just a clear presentation of what it really is. 20161117_143056

This is refreshing, simple and the current trend for new brands as well as rebrand initiatives for existing brands for targeting MILLENNIAL consumers. 


4. Hyper Local (Product) – this emerging trend comes from geo-specific ingredients that may only be available at a short time each season. These products from Latvian brand Dabba is a clear example of this. Their ingredient story is not dependent on trend forecast reports but what is only found in Latvia and its cultural significance in culture and folklore. With a connection to both the natural world and human nature,  Dabba allows consumers to experience and explore Lativa through their range of hydrosols, hair products and infused oils.


Stay tuned for an in depth interview with Janis Kesa, the founder of Dabba!


Pt. 1 Cosmosprof Asia 2016 Asia World Expo


1 Event, 2 Venues! The first venue for Cosmoprof Asia this year was held at near the Hong Kong Airport at the Asia World Expo convention center. The venue featured Pack & OEM as well as Spotlight on Ingredients. Vendors were spread out across 10 Halls and it took over 2 days to walk to the entire area. Booths were divided by country of origin with the Korea Pavilion being the largest with 460 business. With K-Beauty as the hot topic in the industry, it is no wonder that so much innovation comes out of Seoul.


Here are some of the coolest products I found at the Asia World Expo side of CosmoprofAsia 2016.


  1. Pouch Designs – Mylar foil bags (With or without a spout) seems to be common and prefered in the Asian beauty industry. It is common to see this in the food industry stateside but here in Asia, this lightweight environmental option is gaining popularity in home goods and cosmetics as well.  With incredible capabilities to fill millions per day with state of the art machinery, we will be seeing mylar packaging in more products than ever in 2017. Currently used in liquid products like soaps and sheet masks, mylar is ideal for deluxe samples, multi product packaging with significantly lower cost per unit with vibrant packaging designs. We are seeing this type of mylar packaging for multi-step sheet mask products and also unique shapes that tell the ingredient story and increase sales from shelf appeal alone. The sky’s the limit with this technology because of the speed of production, ease for flat shipment and versatility in design.masks


2. Think Outside the Tube – OEM or Original Equipment Manufacturing involves creating a mold for a custom design. This is more expensive compared to using a stock or existing tube (where you are limited to printed designs, color and the tube texture). OEM allows a complete new shape in design and can spark imagination and creativity. Brands and product designers are often inspired by lifestyle sectors like food and drink, architecture, pop culture trends and travel. These unique sample packaging in a miniature wine bottle opens up a world of possibilities. I bet someone saw a lipstick stain on a champagne glass at a party and created this one! The doe-foot wand could be replaced by mascara wand, eye shadow sponge tip or fine eyeliner etc. Just think about what champagne and wine companies can do using these packaging designs for promotional giveaways, line extensions, collaboration and even the beginning of an entire new brand. Cheers to that!


3. Think Inside the Tube – The journey of the industrial production line and steps to create the lipstick was showcased during the Lipstick Factory live demonstration. The top of the line Italian technology creates laser precision designs to transform the traditional bullet shape into a work of art in a tube.cosmoprof_5

Korean OEM designs are using similar sentiment in the creation of character shapes (first seen in 2010 Paul & Joe’s cat lipstick) as well as multi-tonal lipsticks that paints the lips ombre with just one swipe. The rectangular shape lipstick bullets eliminate the need for a lip liner, perfectly suitable with the no-fuss Millennial consumers in mind.

4. Get Technical – Not to stereotype at all but we can all remember at least one nerdy Asian kid in school who loved Physics, Chemistry, Biology and was super passionate about math right? Well at Cosmoprof I realized that the Asian beauty scene is run by these left brain professionals.  The beauty tools and devices of the Asian Beauty Market is straight out from the Jetsons. Futuristic, beautiful, seamless and backed up by science. Down to the nano detail, these tools can supercharge your beauty regime and propel you into hyperspeed glam status. One of the stand out products is the Nion Beauty range with unique super charged negative ion silicone technology infused in multifunctional facial cleaning products. I can’t wait to try this out.

Stay tuned for more from the 2nd venue Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre tomorrow!

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