We met entrepreneur January Olds in NYC, and we’ve been slightly obsessed with her skin care line ever since. January worked at premier skin companies around the world, but wasn’t 100% satisfied with their products. After years of research and development, she decided to create her own line of all-natural skin care, and January Labs was born.
We could rave all day about her products (her “Glow and Go” mask is a game changer!) but we’d rather you experience them for yourself. That’s why we’re giving away January’s Complete Skin Essentials Kit to one lucky member of the barre3 community. To enter, just comment below and tell us how you define beauty. We’ll announce a winner on Tuesday, August 18th. Learn more about the kit here (valued at $265!).
Now, meet January. We recently chatted with her about her killer products, her approach to health, and her favorite tips for radiant skin. Read on and get to know the woman behind the brand.
barre3: What motivated you to start your own line of skin care products?
January: I’ve always loved everything beauty-related. Even as a child I was mixing concoctions and experimenting on my own troubled skin. This passion led me to work for two major skincare lines. I learned a lot, but what stuck out most was that the skincare world was missing something—pure ingredients.
It also seemed like all the serums, creams and lotions I was using worked against each other and not for one another. When I was treating my breakouts I was causing premature aging and when I was using anti-aging products I was encouraging hyperpigmentation. I wanted to create something with clean ingredients that had synergy with one another. That was when January Labs was born.
b3: So many skin care lines say they are “all natural.” We know to be wary of these types of labels at the grocery store. Do we need to be wary of beauty products labeled the same way?
January: The “all natural” tagline is so overused. There are certainly ingredients that are important to stay away from: Parabens, sulfates, fragrances, synthetic colors and as scary as it is… formaldehyde is found in many skincare products. Many of these ingredients have been associated with allergies, dermatitis, and even cancer.
I use a lot of active ingredients like hyaluronic acid, lactic acid, beta glucan and peptides in my products. These are safe, beneficial ingredients that you can feel good about putting on your skin.
b3: Do beauty products have a shelf life? Should we be tossing out products we haven’t used up after a certain period of time?
January: Because my products are active, it’s best to use the creams within six months after opening. The cleanser, tonic and mask last a bit longer (hence the larger sizes).
I am always wary of products that last years with no change in the scent or viscosity. If you notice a rancid scent or a separation of the product, it’s probably best to toss it. We would never treat food like that so I think the same rule applies to our largest organ….our precious skin!
b3: How has your own skin transformed since you started using January Labs?
January: I know I created the line so I should say I use it, but it’s 100% true. My products just work better and more efficiently than any other product I’ve tried. I have found that my skin glows now, I don’t need to wear foundation and I never break out. My skin literally craves it. Most people who use January Labs experience this as well.
b3: What’s your favorite product?
January: I LOVE them all, of course. I think I am most excited about my eye cream right now. You see results is only a few days. It’s addictive. The actives are a tri-peptide compound that helps promote firmness and a pro Collagen amplifier with Stem Cell Extract. My formulations are extremely concentrated so you not only see the change, but your skin also feels firmer and more hydrated.
b3: Are you working on anything right now that you can share with us?
January: I’ve been working on a sunscreen for a while. It won’t be available until it’s perfect. It is really difficult to make a chemical-free sunblock that is active…but we are in the process.
b3: Are there any other healthy lifestyle habits you think are important to have glowing skin?
January: Absolutely. Diet and lifestyle are everything! Tons of water is key. Sometimes this is hard, because plain water is pretty boring. I make citrus water with lemons, oranges, grapefruit and cucumber. It will make you drink double the amount of water because it’s so delicious. I know it has been said over and over, but you are what you eat. I am a huge proponent of LOTS of fruits and veggies.
Of course, exercise is also a huge part of health. It gets your heart pumping, and the more your blood circulates, the more your skin glows. I LOVE barre3; the classes are perfect for me and always leave me sore yet refreshed! I also like hiking and boxing.
b3: Who are your products right for? Can you use them if you have acne-prone or sensitive skin?
January: The beauty of my products is that they are really good for all skin types. Those who are prone to breakouts are usually very scared to try new products. I would recommend starting with my cleanser and tonic, then slowly integrating the others. The Glow & Go is not your typical mask, it’s a major game changer. I recommend it for all skin types and all ages because it’s a non-invasive way to get really active results.
b3: What’s your advice to people who are struggling with major skin issues?
January: Don’t get down on yourself. There is a solution and sometimes it may require a change in lifestyle. A lot of it is internal. Personally,when I struggled with acne things improved drastically when I started from within. I think a combination of good skincare, taking probiotics, eating clean and drinking a ton of water is the best way to go. Also, when you feel beautiful, you look beautiful!
b3: What’s your top beauty trick for glowing skin?
January: Definitely the Glow and Go Mask! Also, for quick inexpensive trick cut a lemon in half and glide it on your face. It’s an amazing natural exfoliant and brightens skin naturally!
b3: How do you define beauty?
January: To me, beauty is happiness, confidence and contentment with who you are. You can really see it in someone’s eyes and smile. When you feel beautiful, you are beautiful—that’s why I really love this simple quote from Audrey Hepburn: “Happy girls are the prettiest.”
We love the way January thinks about beauty—now we want to hear your thoughts as well. Tell us how you define beauty in the comments below, and you’ll be automatically entered in our giveaway. Good luck!
Photo by Kelly Fajack Photography
Congratulations to our winner Kristin James! And to thank all of you for your thoughtful responses, we’re giving you 15% off January’s skincare line. Just enter “barre3love” at checkout. Enjoy!