EADEM, the skincare brand made for women of color by women of color, is among one of our favorite labels that combines both heritage and clean ingredients for effective skincare. Founded in 2020 by Alice Lin Glover and Marie Kouadio Amouzame, the label has cemented itself as one of Gen Z’s most admired breakout beauty brands of the pandemic.
EADEM’s current lineup consists of the Milk Marvel Dark Spot Serum and Cloud Coushon Airy Brightening Moisturizer. The serum, designed specifically for women of color, utilizes the brand’s Smart Melanin technology. The formula itself is filled with amber algae, ethyl ascorbic acid, niacinamide, and licorice root which combined, reduce dark spots, fight acne, and combat any discoloration. The moisturizer, on the other hand, restores and protects the skin barrier using ingredients like ceramides, tucuma extract, and glycerin. Elsewhere, EADEM’s Fufu Spoon, a slim gold metal tool named after the West African cuisine, can be used to scoop every last dollop of the brand’s moisturizing cream or any other heavy creams and conditioners—it’s versatile!
We had the pleasure of chatting with EADEM founders Alice and Marie in regards to redefining beauty standards, skinimalism, and advice to fellow indie beauty entrepreneurs to name a few topics. Read on for our conversation.
With the two of you being raised in different regions across the world, what were some of your definitions of skincare growing up? How do you view skincare now as an adult?
Alice Lin Glover: My mom is and always has been my skincare guru. I’m so grateful that many of her beauty rituals have been passed down to me. She was the first to educate me on the importance of caring for your body from the inside out, and was often brewing herbs and broths from her knowledge of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Her famous “beauty soup,” which features the hydrating and nourishing Snow Mushroom (400x more than hyaluronic acid!), was a big influence when we were formulating our new Cloud Cushion Airy Brightening Moisturizer, and is one of its key ingredients.
The experiences that Marie and I had growing up as children of immigrants have shaped EADEM and our approach to creating products specifically designed for the modern woman of color. We came to realize that there was a real lack of clean beauty products made for our melanin-rich skin, which became our impetus to build a brand defined by us and our heritage.
One of the label’s philosophies is redefining beauty standards and changing the way we look at melanin—what are your thoughts on the current state of the beauty industry? How do you see yourselves disrupting the current view of skincare?
Marie Kouadio Amouzame: We want the beauty industry to push for diversity beyond tokenism, starting with internal changes at some of the bigger name brands. Without a diverse representation in leadership, it is impossible to cater to minority groups who make up a majority of our current world.
The image of beauty portrayed in the media has been homogenous, and when a person of color is represented, the brand behind the image often doesn’t have products that cater to our skin’s needs. In 2014, a well-known brand had just released a new foundation, and at the time a very famous Black actress was their spokesperson. I went to a department store in France to purchase the foundation for myself and the salesperson informed me that they actually didn’t carry my shade. Shocked, I immediately turned around and just exited the store. From there I realized that more could be done for women of color in beauty, and always had that experience in the back of my head.
We are building EADEM for the full spectrum of women of color – inclusive of all cultures, ethnic backgrounds, and skin tones. With more brands like ours, women of color will finally be able to embrace themselves, exactly as they are.
The topic of “skinimalism” has been quite popular amongst Gen Z audiences for the past several years and in a previous interview, Alice mentioned shifting away from long skincare routines. Where does EADEM aim to fit in this topic of discussion, if at all?
Marie: When people think of a “results-driven” product, they’re often worried it’s going to be harsh and difficult to incorporate into their current skincare routine. Alice and I actually used the Milk Marvel Dark Spot Serum all throughout our pregnancies, as all our products are designed to be gentle enough to incorporate with your already existing skincare routine (and even work beautifully with retinol products), while still maintaining efficacy.
I believe there’s a lot that the next generation of skincare startups can pull from EADEM’s journey, whether it be formulating for skin of color or honing in on the aspect of community. What is a piece of advice you’d give to young entrepreneurs out there looking to venture into the skincare and beauty industry?
Alice: A mentor once told me, “There are too many lives worth living in the incredibly short span of one, so hopefully when you choose to go, you do it for something you love even more.” When I was young my life was dedicated to optimization — the best career at one of the top companies, etc, etc. But you can have multiple career paths and lives in the span of one, so keep pulling the thread of what interests you most. So just be sure to take that first step towards what you want, no matter how daunting it might feel!