Get to know Terresa
Tell us about where you grew up and what was your family life like?
My name is Terresa Tan and I was born and raised in Penang Island. Well, my father is a businessman & my mother is a housewife. They are very encouraging and have been supportive of what I do in my life. Growing up with a sister who is a beautician has also partly inspired me to get to know more about the beauty industry.
Why skincare? What made you start Glow and Blush in 2019?
I’ve tried numerous products over the years. I can’t find any sunblock and makeup products that will never trigger breakouts after using it. It usually pores clogging lead to breakouts no matter how clean I tried to cleanse it.
I’m even sensitive to my own sweat, as much as I love swimming I’m sensitive to chlorine and all the OTC facial wash, body wash and shampoo. I even have keratosis pilaris. Calamine and steroids are my ex-best friend.
I stopped applying sunblock 4 years ago. It started with a chemical-free pretty gentle handmade soap and natural body scrub that a friend gave me. I was sceptical but I tried it at the end because it was pretty and smells amazing. It somehow surprised me the usual rashes that I have after I bath, it’s not completely zero rashes but it managed to calm and soothe my skin at least 70% of it which I couldn’t be happier enough.
So I decided to study more on chemical-free natural skin care products to help myself and started making it more as a hobby for friends and family. They all love it. Unknowingly it became my passion. I was happy that I could help friends and family with sensitive and allergic skin.
In 2019, I turned my passion into my career.
What are the most unforgettable memories and unspeakable challenges that you have faced in your life?
When I first started venturing into this industry it was the hardest. Having the thought of owning your own skincare is easy but the struggles of studying through ingredients and learning how to formulate were the hardest of all when we didn’t understand them at all from the beginning.
Also, setting up an online store is easy. However, to sustain and grow the business is a next-level issue.
Strong persistence and determination are needed to keep us going.
What are the biggest misconceptions people have about the work you do?
The main misconception I often heard from customers and friends is that natural products are pricey. It’s true, many customers pay a premium for natural products. Before we started working on the initial concept for Glow And Blush. Our mission is to make natural beauty accessible to everyone. As such, our products are affordable yet deliver optimum results.
The second misconception that I heard is that nature doesn’t work as effectively as synthetic brands.
The research of natural ingredients has been improving drastically. We’re constantly researching and studying the latest and best natural ingredients so we can include it in our upcoming products. We will always focus on creating products that deliver results while staying true to our all-natural roots. I hope I helped appease a few common misconceptions about natural beauty.
What’s integral to the work of a natural skincare formulator?
Understand the science of the skin. One of the first steps in building a competent product as a skincare formulator is to study the skin. Understanding the skin’s structure, physiology and needs are fundamental to develop a sound formulation. Having a deep knowledge of the skin’s layers and understanding skin absorbency will help us design more efficient products.
Next is, understanding the ingredients. We also need to have deep knowledge and understanding of each ingredient before we come up with a formula. We also need to be extremely aware of any incompatibilities among ingredients before we come up with a formula. We want our natural skin care products that are made with the best, most luscious ingredients and suitable for all skin types.
Could you walk us through the process of making each batch of products?
To ensure the freshness and quality of our product, we make small batches weekly and before we start anything, hygiene comes first! We disinfect with UV and micro ozone sterilizer all our tools and product packaging to ensure there are no microbes involved.
Where are your products sold? Where are you located?
We are currently only selling it through Facebook and Instagram. We are located on Penang Island.
Which product of yours are your bestsellers and why?
Our Lip Treatment is one of the most moisturising lip treatments according to our customer. The lip treatments are packed with top-grade essential oils, organic and unrefined ingredients that effectively heals dry and chapped lips by deeply moisturising it naturally as well as the lip will turn pink according to the temperature of our body. it’s preservatives and chemical-free.
Our gentle Body Polish is made up from therapeutic salts and organic skin loving beneficial oils that are chemical-free and preservatives free leading to healthy-looking glowing skin, silky smooth and work well with keratosis pilaris and eczema skin.
What makes your brand stand out more than the others?
We are more than just pretty packaging. We are results orientated. We made sure it’s certified natural, organic and therapeutic grade. As a handcrafted natural skincare formulator, we strive to formulate and provide the best quality with fewer chemical products for our customers. We support cruelty-free and eco friendly. All product’s ingredients are being checked and tested on volunteer friends and family. We tried to minimise on plastic packaging as much as possible.
How do you cope with rejection? Both professionally and personally.
Taking rejection positively and as a lesson is always easier said than done. We are all normal human beings with emotions because we live life with hope. However, knowing that bad experience will fade as time goes by. we need to try our level best to stay strong, know the reason why we got rejected, fix it and move on.
Share with us something that you’re working on improving about yourself and how will that help with your goals?
Self-development is not easy & it doesn’t happen overnight. I would say self-reflection is very important. You need to be constantly aware of how to improve yourself & then find a solution to work on it. To me, every day is a learning process and I learn as much as I could to be able to achieve my goals in this industry. It is crucial that we learn something new every day so we can keep up with the latest trend and the best ingredients to include in our formula. I’m the type of person who doesn’t give up easily and I’ve learned not to let negativity affect me. Behind every successful and effective product, involved numerous failed attempts. We just have to keep going and formulate till it’s successful. All I have to do is keep believing in myself.
What makes you excited when you get to work?
I get very excited each time when I’m about to experiment with what I’ve learnt in theory. I enjoyed the journey of making something from scratch into something that is able to help people.
Do you have any life-defining moments that have shaped you into the person you are today?
I used to own another business before this, previously I was all about business and revenues which I thought would make me happy but then after that, I realised life was a lot more than just money. I decided to follow a friend’s advice. She said to do something u love, follow your passion. I was already making skincare as a hobby for myself and friends. From there, I decided to learn more so I took up a natural skincare formulator course and pursued in this field.
How did your parents influence you to be the person that you are today and what lessons and values can you share with us?
My parents always taught me to be an honest and happy person. All they wanted was for me to be happy and healthy. In life, they always taught me to chase my dream and never give up on things you wanna do in life. If there’s a will, there’s a way. If I failed, I should reflect, fix it and move forward.
What advice would you give to those who have a passion in the same industry as you?
Tenacity, patience and persistence. Nothing beats it. People who are patient, persistent, tenacious, driven and have a really clear, defined goal of what they want, nothing compares to that. Not giving up is really huge. Nothing is ever easy. Good results don’t happen overnight. Behind every successful brand, there are massive unseen struggles and obstacles.
Out of 100 failures, all we need is that one time of success. It will all be worthwhile.
It’s no doubt that this stay at home period has been challenging, how has the business been for you?
It has been challenging for 1st week, but I got used to it and I actually enjoyed it. As a natural skincare formulator, it’s an endless journey to learn about ingredients. And I managed to spend so much quality time learning and catching up with my family.
During the MCO, did you still receive orders?
I thought it was going to be hard but surprisingly the results were better than expected. As a new brand, I can’t be thankful enough to have orders coming in every day.
What’s your definition of success?
I’m a simple person. My definition of success is as simple as so long my customers are happy with my products.