My Beauty File is an on-going series where we figure out what the most timeless, put-together and coolest ladies are doing—what their days look like, what they can’t live without—in hopes that we might learn a thing or two. Beauty Files are a quick and easy cheat-sheet on how these incredible ladies are becoming their best selves.
Jamie O’Banion is a successful model, but she added CEO to her title in 2008 when she launched her first company with her physician father. Since then, she’s learned an incredible amount from the successes and failures of real entrepreneurship—and being a mother on top of it all. Her company, Beauty Bioscience, which she also runs with her father, Dr. Terry James, has been a huge success on Home Shopping Network: they make specially-formulated retinol treatments, a great SPF, and most notably a $199 hand-held home microneedling device that’s become “Beauty’s New Cult Device,” according to WWD. And The New York Times recently discussed microneedling and the GloPro in-depth, saying it’s “the next best way to get rid of wrinkles without lasers or chemicals.”
A resident of Dallas, Jamie lives with her husband Melbourne (he’s climbed Mount Kilimanjaro!) and their three kids. Here, Jamie gives us some insight into her beauty secrets, including why she takes the stairs everyday—even in heels.
We should probably start first with my morning job… before my day at the office starts, the morning hustle begins, getting my three bambinos fed, lunches packed and off to school. I made sure our Dallas corporate office was placed within five minutes of my home and the children’s school to sustain the juggle.
My day job is Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder at Beauty Bioscience. We are a Dallas-based prestige skincare company with US distribution at Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, Nordstrom, and HSN. Internationally we can be found in Canada (TSC), UK (Harrod’s Spring 2017 and QVC UK), and Germany (Summer 2017).
When I’m not on a plane, I am usually in the office collaborating on strategy, growth, product development and new launch campaigns. I really believe that the sum of the whole can be greater than its parts. When you have a great team, anything is possible. I share a quote at the beginning of each of our Monday all-team meetings, and this week’s was: “Don’t worry about failures. Worry about the chances you missed if you don’t even try.”
People often skimp on a morning skincare routine, and while it’s true that our naturally renewing circadian rhythms are in peak function late evening, I believe 100% in establishing a simple but religious morning routine. I’m constantly asked what is my number one most important thing to wear on my skin daily, and the answer is simple: sunscreen. Even if you forget or can’t commit to a daytime serum do not forget your sunscreen. 365 days a year. I, of course, adore our Beauty Bioscience 4-in-1 Tinted Skin Perfector. It’s a multi-tasker providing your primer, hydrator, broad spectrum SPF 30—a true physical barriers using a zinc oxide/titanium dioxide formula—and has an amazing no-filter-needed perfecting property for self-adjusting sheer coverage. There is zero water in this anhydrous formula for lasting coverage. It’s amazing.
In the morning I cleanse my face with Beauty Bioscience Balancing Cleanser. It pH-balances skin and replaces cleanser, toner, and eye makeup remover. Then I use our DM Daily+ Serum, a rich vitamin cocktail to help provide a free-radical barrier, improve skin tone and brighten. And lastly, I protect with our 4-in-1 Tinted Skin Perfector.That’s it!
I usually add a swipe of mascara—I love L’Oreal Voluminous (yes, from the drugstore) in blackest black and a pop of color with YSL Fuschia Stilettos or Tom Ford Cherry Lush. I try to use my time efficiently while getting ready, so I will listen to a book. Right now I am reading Bold by Steven Kotler. I highly recommend it.
Your metabolism slows down after 5 PM, so I try to make my larger meals breakfast and lunch. This doesn’t work out as planned on days lunch doesn’t happen, but I feel best when intake tapers throughout the day. I also fast once a month for 18-24 hours. There are incredible proven health benefits to fasting intermittently, allowing the body to cleanse and reset.
For breakfast, I usually eat one egg, mixed berries and half a piece of a whole grain toast or greek yogurt. At some point during the day I try to take a teaspoon of local honey (the local part is critical) either over yogurt or in my tea, and I’m convinced it has helped me stave off allergies.
I cleanse with Beauty Bioscience Balancing Cleanser.Then I prep my skin with GloPRO Prep Pads. Ours contain our proprietary SteriGLO peptide. I’m actually a total germaphobe. So ours are clinically proven to remove harmful bacteria from skin while conditioning and prepping prior to treatment.
Then I use our GloPRO LED microneeedling facial tool. Basically it works by gently triggering your skin’s natural healing response. I use it for 1 minute each night. Then I apply our HydraGLO serum to maximize its effects.
And don’t forget SLEEP! Do not underestimate the importance of beauty rest. Your body repairs itself while you sleep and if you don’t allow enough time to do so, your skin, brain and body is starting on half-empty the next day. The sleep bank is real ladies!
I think taking supplements as a substitute for consuming a rainbow of nutrients is a mistake, but I do think using supplements as an additive to a healthy diet is effective. I take vitamin D, biotin, and magnesium regularly. I recommend doing a full blood panel to assess and highlight true deficiencies that need attention.
When I’m in town, I workout with my trainer Danny Connelly early in the morning. Zero cardio. All super focused strength training using mostly resistance bands, body weight, and stability balls. His concept is all about muscle engagement throughout the entire rep instead of merely using momentum to move weight. My tone has visibly improved. I travel with a set of resistance bands in my suitcase to workout in my hotel or greenroom. They take up no space and are highly effective. I also keep a set in my office and hook them onto the door handle to do core and shoulder exercises when I’m on a lengthy conference call. Thank goodness I don’t videoconference very often.
Lastly, I always take the stairs everyday, at least once. Our Dallas office is on the 7th floor and whether I’m in 4” in heels or flats, I take those stairs. My favorite French friend once told me when asked her secret for a healthy physique, “Never order dessert or take the elevator.” I’m not giving up dessert anytime soon, so the stairs it is!
Could not live without my large iPhone 7+. The amount of work I end up doing from my phone on the go is the only way I’ve been able to stay on top of everything. I have a huge Mac on my desktop at the office and then travel with my MacBook (rose gold, of course). Everything I use is loaded onto Dropbox, so as long as I have internet connection I can access every spreadsheet, data point, report or powerpoint deck I need within a few clicks.
I am also a new user of Asana and loving it! The entire Beauty Bioscience team uses this program now to help track, communicate and consolidate communiqué.
Obviously for beauty tech, I use the GloPro. To me, it’s become for anti-aging what the Clarisonic became for cleansing. Once you start using it, it’s impossible to go back. You realize that your skincare product is just sitting on the skin’s surface without it. It’s almost like trying to brush your teeth without using toothpaste.
The key to healthy hair starts with a healthy diet—your hair and nails in particular manifest vitamin and mineral intake. The trick to maintaining (or improving) lackluster or thin hair is damage control. Try to avoid repetitious heat application to your hair each day. I wash my hair every other night, and instead of a high-heat blowout after washing, I let it air dry while I catch up on emails. I then put it up in a loose knot on top of my head to go to sleep. This trick allows hair follicles to dry standing up instead of flat so when you take your hair down in the morning it already has volume. Then, try giving your hair a break from the straightener or high-temperature wand as often as you can. Nothing chicer for the office than a messy chignon or pony, no heat required.
Dermatologist Or Facialist:
Love my dermatologist, Dr. Flora Kim of NDD. She graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University and is an incredible physician and mother. We love talking new ingredients, innovations in the industry and clinical beauty trends. It’s important to see a proficient dermatologist annually to check any unusual skin spots and provide a benchmark for overall skin wellness.
My husband has been practicing a few minutes of daily mindfulness meditation, and I am trying to follow suit. It takes enormous effort to quiet your mind and train it to be fully present. This skill can be an incredible asset when needing to quickly channel and be hyper focused on a task. Striving for more mindfulness, living in the moment and being mentally present at all times in 2017! Definitely my stretch goal for this year!
My Best Piece of Beauty Advice:
If you were to ask my seven and four-year-old daughters “what’s the prettiest thing you can put on,” they would in tandem answer “a smile!” There is such a focus on outer perfection and while taking care of your self, your skin, and your body is important for health and quality of life, the most beautiful woman is a happy woman. To that end, I always tell my littles “a grateful heart is a happy heart.” I think the most beautiful woman is one who spends more time looking inward than out and strives to celebrate others before herself. True lasting beauty lies within—no serums or creams needed.
My Best Piece of Life Advice:
NEVER. GIVE. UP. It has been proven that the number one common denominator for successful individuals isn’t education, talent or even IQ (while those are all important undoubtedly). The most important attribute for success is GRIT (love Dr. Angela Duckworth’s work on this subject). Your ability to get back up, learn from your mistakes, be open to constructive criticism, and persevere will be a greater predictor of your success and in turn true happiness than anything else.
Biggest Beauty Myth:
Myth: sunscreen only needs to be worn when you are in the sun. Wrong! Dermatologists with the Skin Cancer Foundation estimate that 90 percent of visible aging isn’t determined by age but rather by the number of hours you have spent in the sun. Wearing sunscreen daily saves your skin from years of visible damage later and can be prevented by simply habitually adding sunscreen to your morning routine. I forgot to put sunscreen on my chest once on a trip and it fried! I applied our 4-in-1 and the sunburn actually healed underneath while I still had to be out in the sun. In addition to providing coverage, it contains the best-ever primer, hydrator and no-filter-needed perfecting effect to the skin. I wear this product without fail, everyday.
I’ve met a lot of amazing and widely acclaimed women in my life, but no one holds a candle to my mother. She raised six children, the oldest of which is severely handicapped with cerebral palsy and hydrocephalus, almost on her own as my father worked his way through medical school and the early years of his busy practice while getting her ASID certification and working on her own design projects in the wee hours. In all of those years, I never once heard her complain or even speak ill about another person. She is the most positive, encouraging woman I know and I’m grateful that through her example I am programmed to always see the good in those around me. I hope to one day emulate her magnificent example of grace, grit and love.
Every night she would whisper to me, “The one thing you can always count on is…your mother’s love.” I now whisper that same thing to my little ones and they finish it before I can. Never underestimate the power of your love or belief in someone. I wouldn’t be who I am today without that limitless gift extended to me.
Image: Jamie O’Banion Instagram
Read the next article in this series: Anit Hora of Brooklyn apothecary Mullein & Sparrow gives us all the secrets in her Beauty File, too.
Check out Kuen Rameson of GLOSS Moderne, too (she washes her hair every day!)
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