My own experience with stress has taken me on a journey to find the right balance of inner and outer beauty, a path I am still traveling today.
In 2003, I became critically ill as a result of chronic stress. When I heard my doctor say, “If you don’t learn to manage your stress, you won’t live to see forty,” it was a huge wake up call. I then realized I needed to make a life change and take a proactive role in my own health and wellness.
I was forced to re-evaluate my lifestyle, taking a three-month leave of absence from work to heal physically and emotionally from the effects of job-related, chronic stress. Stress had weakened my immune system to such an extent that I landed in the hospital, unable to move.
As part of my healing process I traveled to Iceland, where I discovered a natural oasis of pure, unspoiled waters, air, and plants – the epitome of a calm, clean, low stress environment. I was struck not only by the peaceful and pristine environment, but how Icelanders experience incredible longevity and vibrant, healthy skin. It was there that I drew inspiration for what would later become skyn Iceland.
After twenty years in the beauty industry developing skincare products for some of the leading beauty companies, and my own experience with stress, I became increasingly intrigued by the connection between stress and skin. I recognized that if stress could have such tremendous impact on internal health, it also had to be impacting skin. I put together an advisory board of health and wellness experts in the areas of nutrition, dermatology, psychology, cardiology and holistic medicine to truly understand stress' far-reaching effects. Then, after tapping some of the industry's finest chemists, skyn ICELAND was born, the first skincare brand specifically formulated to address the effects of stress on skin.
Knowing that stress was such an epidemic, I hoped to also use my findings to teach people about stress reduction and good health, while helping them address and treat what was happening on the outside.
When I began to develop the brand, I called on my experience in Iceland. I wanted to capture that purity and serenity, along with the healing properties of Iceland’s natural resources to help combat the effects of stress on the skin.
I formulated skyn ICELAND using the therapeutic glacial waters sourced directly from Iceland, full of nurturing minerals and trace elements from the country’s volcanic rock, proven to treat a multitude of skin ailments from psoriasis, eczema, and rashes to tired skin and irritation. Additionally, I incorporated super potent Icelandic and arctic botanicals (a result of the short growing season)—including angelica archangelica, Arctic cranberry and cloudberry seed oils, as well as thyme extract and butterfly bush—from Iceland and the Arctic region, ingredients that have incredible antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and healing properties, perfect for protecting, treating and replenishing stressed skin.
While I know it’s impossible to make stress go away, I now know how to identify it and start addressing it. Through skyn Iceland I have been able to share my knowledge with others to help them manage and alleviate stress as well. It’s hearing each person’s story, sharing my experiences and being able to help that gets me up in the morning and makes what I do everyday so worthwhile and fulfilling.
Skyn ICELAND: Behind the Brand
Watch founder, Sarah Kugelman, tell her story and be transported to Iceland, the source for our pure ingredients. WATCH VIDEO »