The Sweet Scoop on Zen Beauty's Isenia Ramos-Carbajal
By Bridney C.
It is a pleasure to interview Isenia Ramos-Carbajal for the Sweet Scoop.
Isenia Ramos-Carbajal is a 21-year-old businesswoman from Groton, Connecticut. Inspired by her mother, who always tells her to follow her dreams and whom she considers being a "Go-Getter," Isenia says she does not come from a business or entrepreneur background.
After trying out popular beauty trends, Isenia noticed none worked on her face due to her skin condition, rosacea. Rosacea is a common condition that causes redness, textured bumps, and dry patches on the face.
Rosacea cannot disappear or be cured, although it could be treated. According to Isenia, most people believe that someone has to have clear skin to enjoy makeup, but she considers herself to be an example of the "complete opposite."
"My rosacea has been one of the inspirations for creating Zen Beauty as it allows me to show people that you can create beautiful, hydrated skin without using expensive chemical-filled products that may or may not work for everyone," says Isenia.
In this edition of Q&A, Isenia Ramos-Carbajal reveals how she came up with the name "Zen Beauty," how she came up with the ingredients for her products, and what are the benefits of using her products.
Bridney C: How did you come up with the name "Zen Beauty?" Have you always wanted to start your own beauty business? From the earliest you remember, when did makeup and beauty products come into your life?
IRC: Throughout my entire life, people have always had trouble pronouncing my name. People have always tried to come up with nicknames for me or tried to find ways to shorten my name. However, I ended up with the nickname “Zen Sen” after helping start the Yoga & Meditation Club in High School. At the time, I was heavily interested in Buddhism and nontraditional healing practices.
The word Zen has many different meanings but according to Merriam-Webster, it can be defined as, “a state of calm attentiveness in which one's actions are guided by intuition rather than by conscious effort.” To me, this sums up my entire goal in life. Therefore, I think the nickname not only fits my personality but it also represents my business well.
As a child, I remember watching my mother do her makeup and being so interested in it. I remember being so excited when she finally allowed me to use clear mascara when I was about eleven years old. Over the years, I found myself interested in different makeup techniques and products after watching many YouTube tutorials. I always wanted to create a YouTube Channel so that I could produce makeup related content in hopes of having my own beauty line or collaborating with big makeup companies, like most beauty gurus on YouTube have.
Prior to starting my beauty business in June, my mother and I launched a Virtual Assistant business together back in February. Goode Virtual Assisting, LLC focuses on helping other business owners with various tasks that include Scheduling, General Administrative tasks, Proofreading, Ghostwriting, Social Media and Email Management, Logo, and Flyer creation. Throughout the process of launching that business, we did a lot of research about how to promote ourselves as business owners so that we could help other businesses with promotional advice as well. With that being said, I learned how to create my own online business and run it remotely. I quickly realized that I could use the tools and knowledge I obtained from Virtual Assisting and create a business on my own, focusing on my love for beauty and natural products.
BC: Is your rose-infused lip oil handmade by you? If so, how did you come up with the ingredients to make such a unique product?
IRC: I can truly and honestly say that every single aspect of Zen Beauty has been handmade. I researched all of the ingredients, I created and tested all of my products to ensure that they work. I even created my own website, using pictures I took myself. I also made all of the labels that are currently on my products as well.
The rose-infused lip oil was inspired by other basic lip oils that I’ve seen from other companies. However, the majority of them usually contain preservatives that prevent the products from expiring. I’ve really vowed to only use organic and or natural ingredients that people can actually recognize. When most people read the ingredients list from their favorite products, they usually know or are familiar with the first couple of ingredients but have no idea what the rest are. My goal is to keep the ingredients simple but effective. The dried rosebuds add an aesthetic to the product and help provide extra hydration, naturally.
BC: What exactly are the Zen Beauty Lip scrubs?
IRC: The Zen Beauty Lip Scrubs come in three different flavors - Watermelon, Strawberry, and Mango. They contain 100% Organic Coconut Oil, Premium Granulated Cane Sugar, Vitamin E Oil, and one Fruity Flavoring Oil. I do recommend that you exfoliate for about 30 seconds to 1 minute and then rinse it off. If you do notice that your lips are more chapped than usual, I do recommend that you repeat again but it is otherwise not necessary. Similar to a typical body scrub, it is gentle on the skin as it removes the dead skin from the lips and hydrates the skin underneath.
BC: Which one of your products is your favorite you use on yourself? What are the benefits of using that product?
IRC: It is very hard to choose one because I genuinely use and love all of my products. I can say that I do love using the lip scrub and then applying one of my glosses. It helps trap that moisture from the scrub and truly keeps my lip hydrated. I have included vitamin E oil in both of these products to help promote healing of the skin. After one use, people always say they see a difference.
BC: Coconut oil seems to be the key ingredient for your products. Why is coconut oil essential for the skin?
IRC: Coconut oil is found in mature coconuts and is composed of several different natural fatty acids that are proven to have anti-aging effects. The fatty acids that are found in coconut oil contain anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that help fight against harmful bacteria. With that being said, it not only protects the skin, it also is incredibly hydrating. While it is extremely important that we exfoliate to remove dead skin cells, it is also important that we rehydrate the new layers of skin. Doing this will help create healthy and naturally glowy skin.
BC: Tell me which three makeup items no woman should leave home without.
IRC: Before leaving the house, I think it’s important to have your eyebrows done, and your favorite mascara and lip gloss. While I strongly believe that everyone is naturally beautiful, eyebrows truly elevate your face. I love the feeling of leaving the salon after getting my eyebrows done, makes me feel like a brand new person.
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