Meet Oio Lab Founder and Self-Confessed Skincare nerd Joanna Ryglewicz
Dear Muses & Heroines, today we are so excited to introduce to you a new range of pure, fun, effective skincare, coming all the way from Poland: Oio Lab skincare! The result of a unique connection between plant extracts and active ingredients which offer clinically proven results.
MEET THE FOUNDER: This is the exclusive interview we had the pleasure of creating with Oio Lab founder, Joanna Ryglewicz.
Let’s start from the roots: what inspired you to launch your brand, Oio Lab?
I have always been fascinated with beauty. Even, when I used to work as lawyer (my formal education) I had an obsession about beauty. It was not only related to skincare, but also design, art and architecture. While working at a law office, I started to sell beauty products as a side project. I have been in the beauty industry for over 10 years! As I knew the industry quite well I started to analyse the possibility of creating my own brand. I shaped and precised my thoughts to make sure I will create a brand that reflects the values that are important to us. The whole process included making many mistakes and drawing a lot of conclusions (laughs). At first, I mixed oils for my friends. With time the idea and possibility of using science as the method of getting the most out of nature clarified. We really wanted to offer both natural and effective solutions. We teamed up with scientists from Medical and Life Science University in Poland as well as with independent Laboratories and specialists. The whole brand DNA spinning around SCIENCE, NATURE, TRANSPARENCY and EFFECTIVENESS clarified. It also became obvious that we will not only be producing oils, but also gels, creams and all different forms of products. The quality of our products has been quickly recognised by Joanna Czech – a skin care expert with clients like Anna Wintour, Cate Blanchet, Kim Kardashian and Uma Thurman. Being approved by world-renowned skin expert and her clients gave us a boost of confidence. In the future I see Oio Lab growing continuously towards sustainability and innovations. For me, the brand is a fluid concept that shall mature together with us and be receptive to changes.
In Oio Lab, clean science and natural ingredients play a fundamental role. What are your favourite ingredients to formulate with?
Our aim at Oio Lab is to use natural ingredients and get the most out of them through with innovative, clean science. To illustrate, we use enzymatic extraction and supercritical fluid extraction with natural carbon dioxide (CO2) to get the purest extracts possible - both methods are environmentally-friendly and enable the production of potent ingredients. At the moment, we are very much into mushrooms, adaptogens and ingredients that help to counteract the effects of stress hormones on the skin. I must admit we are constantly researching and my nose is stuck into books most of the time (laughs). We are also vigorously following and researching the impact of blue light on our skin and health and experiment in the lab with various ferments. Those are the most fascinating ingredients we formulate with right now.
Is there a “black list” in the Oio Lab creation process? Ingredients, preservatives, packaging techniques that you absolutely do not use?
There is so much we do not do that it takes time to find the right partners that meet our high, often subjective standards. We do not look at other brands standards, but create our own – which is usually way more selective. During the process of choosing the right technology and ingredients we check literally everything: from how plants are grown, whether preservatives are used in the extraction process, the temperature and method the raw materials are extracted, the organic standards met - each of these elements is important to us. In a way, the companies we work with undergo a natural selection – as after all the questions asked just a handful is left (laughs). Respecting our Planet is also very important to us. During production, we not only choose clean extraction methods, but also minimize the use of plastic and use patented biophotonic glass to preserve the precious ingredients.
We know it’s almost impossible to choose but… what is the holy grail product of your line?
It's a difficult question because I use everything at once (laughs). Our head of laboratory is always telling me off because of this. For the moment, I am deeply in love with our Calming Adaptogenic Facial Lotion THE FOREST RETREAT that helps the skin to manage stress hormones production, adds a healthy glow and reduces redness. It has been formulated using advanced extraction methods and 14 powerful natural extracts to holistically improve skin condition. It is is rich in Reishi, Maitake and Shiitake mushroom, Moss Tissue Culture Extract, Vosgian Fir Seed Oil and patented wild indigo seed extract that activates the release of a natural calming neuropeptide, helps to regulate cortisol production and stimulates skin's protective processes. We joined forces with Forest Forever Foundation, so every Treatment sold plants 1 m2 of biodiverse forest.
What would be your perfect Oio Lab skincare routine?
I am a huge advocate of a two-step skincare routine consisting of a gel-serum and an oil or moisturiser depending on what you prefer. A perfect skincare would include a Multi-Dimensional Hydrating Facial Serum AQUASPHERE with five forms of hyaluronic acid compounds, two hyaluronic acid and elastin precursors and active plant substances. We have confirmed that after 7 days of regular use, the level of skin hydration increases by 49.5%. As the second step of an evening skincare routine, I would recommend our Brightening Facial Treatment Oil With Vitamin C THE FUTURE IS BRIGHT due to the fact the we use an ultra-stable vitamin C derivative that stays extremely potent for the whole time the product is fresh to use. It absorbs quickly, brightens and unifies skin tone. During the day, I would substitute the Oil Treatment with our new cream – a Calming Treatment THE FOREST RETREAT.
What inspired you to create such beautiful, artistic designs and names for your products? And is this aesthetic experience part of the Oio Lab self-care ritual?
As there is so much we want to communicate with our products - using many colours in our packaging design seemed natural to us. Every product tells a story, adresses different skincare needs and as you righly spotted – can be a part of a beauty ritual. The names reflect how we feel about given products and the source of inspiration or environemental cause we support, while the affirmations are a part of a self-care ritual. To illustrate, ALGAEMANIA is all about the properties of algae, the fact that we became really obsessed with them and the need to support marine ecosystems (we donate a 1% of the sales for marine ecosystem protection), THE FUTURE IS BRIGHT is all about stable, brightening properties of our vitamin C and its long-term benefits and AQUASHPERE with its affirmation “There is so much more about you” refects both the complexity of the ingredients and the many lawyers of human being. We also wanted the packaging to be colourful and playful and reflect the amazing properties of the ingredients that we use.
And now, let’s be nosy together!
Dearest Joanna, what is your self-care approach?
I approach self-care very widely. I aim to do something for my skin, spirit and my mind daily.
My schedule can get very hectic at times so I do my best to introduce a small routine that is there most of the days. Being systematic is the key to effectiveness – no matter how advanced your skincare is - without daily routine you cannot expect to see results. My self-care starts with 20 minutes of Kundalini yoga, is followed with my skincare routine and ends with a hot bath and a good book in the evening. I also have a morning make-up tip - I add a drop of our Treatment oil to my foundation or tinted cream for an immediate fresh skin effect.
What do you do to relax?
I love a warm bath, listening to guided meditations and reading. I read many books at once - I'm currently reading almost 60 books! In the bedroom I have a separate small library for books I read, most in about scientific discoveries, traditions of different cultures, spirituality and quantum physics.
Name three beauty products that you always have in your handbag…
Mini size of THE FUTURE IS BRIGHT – our brightening facial treatment oil,
Healhy Glow Sheer Powder by CHANEL
…And on your bedside table!
Bach Flower Remedies to rewind,
Our Lunula Night Anti-Ageing Night Oil Treatment
and our not-yet-on-the-market sample formulations
Your bucket-list destination?
The small village of Coba, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico – a home to Coqui Coqui Cobá Papholchac Residence & Spa, which lies at the heart of one of the most important archaeological sites associated with ancient Mayan civilization.
Your brunch order?
Sauté mushrooms with a truffle and white bean spread served on sourdough toast and a double espresso.
What is the best thing about being a female entrepreneur?
In the beauty industry, I work mainly with other women. We create our rules – that are often different from a corporate business environment. I love getting the very best our of the amazing women that I am surrounded with daily, and watch them flourish, multi-task (we are mothers as well) and create their own day-to-day reality that works both for them personally and brings effects for the company. It is all about freedom, authenticity and creating our own standards.
What is one dream you have that you have yet to accomplish?
It is connected with the company. I look very idealistically at it. The dream is actually the whole process – a steady evolution into a brand that actively supports environmental and social problems through working with specifically raised charities that are very transparent when it comes to their actions. Further developing into a brand that produces its own compostable packaging and ingredients. This is all happening slowly. I don’t have to be perfect in the process, but keeping the goals in mind and being open about the journey with its ups and downs is very important to me.
And last but not least, an advice for anyone who’s looking to start over and invest in their dreams?
Never compromise on authenticity, do what you think is the best, even if this is against the market standards. If you feel you’re not heading in the right direction, don’t be afraid to take two steps back to see something in the right light and then move forward.