All that glow: How singer Chinmayi got into skincare

Playback singer Chinmayi swears by Pyunkang Yul Essence Toner and Leegeehaam Grow Tea Tree Essence. And kunkumadi tailam. The three skin products rub shoulders on the ‘Chinmayi Picks’ section of her Isle of Skin, which hopes to be a platform that curates the best of skincare products for Indian customers.

Skincare isn’t a new subject for the singer behind recent hit number ‘Oohale’ from Telugu flick Jaanu (‘Kaathale’ from Tamil film 96). It has been her passion for many years, when her skincare remedies and reviews have appealed to her followers in the online world.

However, K-beauty (an umbrella term for skin-care products from South Korea), was something she chanced upon when she was browsing a blog five years ago. “I was intrigued,” says Chinmayi, who went on to order a few shipments from online platforms.

Soon, she realised that she was getting charged more as customs duty than for the product itself. “It was getting counter-productive with respect to costing.” At the same time, whenever someone commented on how good her skin was, she would direct them to the respective websites she shopped from.

All that glow: How singer Chinmayi got into skincare

Back then, she did not see it as a business opportunity.

All that changed when she went to KOTRA, a trade investment promotion agency, and subsequently, armed with Government aid, went to Korea a couple of years ago to speak to a few companies here.

“Importing skincare products to India involves a long process, which took at least six months per brand.” Once she started working with three mid-level brands, she conceptualised Isle of Skin, which she hopes will be a platform for reliable brands that understands Indian skin and offer products that suit the challenging weather conditions here.

So, what is her goal in the long run? “To start a line that will make skincare normal for any gender. There is some amount of guilt associated with taking care of yourself — my mother asks me not to spend too much money on skincare,” she says, “I was not able to shake off my very middle-class upbringing... so the cost of the product is a major factor. When someone says I’m on a budget, I guess I identify with that.”

Isle of Skin is currently associated with four Korean brands — Pyunkang Yul, Leegeehaam, Cosrx and I’m Sorry For My Skin — with two more in the works. The kunkumadi thailam on the site, on the other hand, is by Vaidyaratnam Oushadhashala.

Chinmayi signs off saying, “It gladdens me when people say that they had skin issues before and had spent thousands, when the issue got sorted due to something I had posted.”

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Printable version | Apr 12, 2021 7:14:45 AM |

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