Okoko Cosmétiques is a Vancouver based, award-winning, high-performance luxury brand with results-driven natural products designed to make beautiful skin a reality. Founder Oyéta Kokoroko is well known for her ingredient knowledge, formulation expertise and commitment to research and development in the green beauty arena. Okoko has recently rebranded with sleek low-waste packaging, and upgraded its product formulation with the addition of wellness and mood-enhancing ingredients, the use of upcycled ingredients and blue light innovation. The re-brand comes on the heels of an exciting few years where this BIPOC-owned beauty brand experienced growth despite the pandemic, and landed retail partnerships with Goop, Indigo and Allure Shop. We spoke with Oyéta to learn more. —Vita Daily
Hello Oyéta! Please tell us about your original vision for Okoko and what the evolution has been like?
I started Okoko as a small hobby in 2016 and I have grown my brand to a place where we now have a global presence and international clientele. The new vision for Okoko 2.0 includes product reformulations with the inclusion of calming and mood enhancing ingredients, urban defence ingredients and the use of upcycled ingredients which are more sustainable and eco-friendlier. With this launch of Okoko 2.0, we are redefining who we are, adding value to the products our clients already love, and furthering our commitment to sustainability with a special focus on the well-being of the mind.
What makes Okoko different from other skincare lines?
Transparent labelling, ingredient purity and an environmentally conscious ethos are at the core of my brand. From sourcing to production, I have been committed to providing unparalleled skincare experiences and impressive results that address the needs of dehydrated, dull, uneven and stressed-looking skin. With our new Okoko 2.0 range, we are pioneering stress-relieving, urban defence and blue-light skincare designed to offer skin support from modern lifestyle damages.
What some people may not know is that you formulate the Okoko skincare line yourself. What sort of ingredients do you gravitate toward?
I enjoy formulating with potent, sustainable ingredients that are proven to deliver real results and that offer multiple skincare benefits. With the Okoko 2.0, I became interested in wellness and soothing ingredients, ingredients that help to calm and soothe the skin and improve our well-being. With stress being high these days and mental health becoming an important topic, I wanted to continue to provide value by enhancing our formulations with stress-relief ingredients that work to reduce the effect of stress on the skin. Our products are now enriched with a micro-algae that has powerful soothing benefits helping to uplift consumers’ emotions in a positive way … our formulas are also very relaxing, offering you a perfect spa-like experience in the comfort of your home. I also started incorporating upcycled ingredients in all our formulations to increase our sustainability efforts. Upcycled ingredients are made from byproducts or ingredients that would have otherwise gone to waste. They are “recycled” and therefore more sustainable and eco-friendlier. Some of my favourite upcycled ingredients include barley tonic, which helps to soothe the look of redness, gin tonic provides three times more hydration than glycerine and upcycled blueberry, a strong antioxidant. I also enjoy formulating with ingredients that are encapsulated, a method that boost the shelf-life of the ingredient itself and can increase its delivery and efficacy. I am truly passionate about R&D and the whole formulation process from start to finish. I aim for excellence in my work and want to offer the best that we can.
What inspired your rebrand and product reformulation?
The entire Okoko 2.0 product line (with the exception of Beauté Majestique Cleanser) has been reformulated with urban defence ingredients to prevent what is becoming known as modern day stressors and digital aging. It is an increasingly digitized world; people are spending more and more time in front of screens. With that in mind we have re-engineered our products with marine derived ingredients, anti-pollution ingredients and blue light rescue to provide a natural shield for the skin against modern day stressors. The world evolves and so is our vision. We were inspired to elevate once again and help customers tackle what’s important for them these days with modern skincare designed for the modern lifestyle.
Anything new for 2023 with Okoko?
Yes! We are planning some exciting new launches and innovation in 2023. Our focus is to offer wonderful products that promote relaxation, wellness and selfcare. I can’t wait to share more!
It is Black History month, what are your suggestions for those who want to honour this month?
Black History month is a chance to celebrate the achievements and contributions of Black Canadians, and to pay tribute to the struggles of black communities throughout Canada’s history. Unfortunately, even in Canada racism persists. This month, I will be contributing to Black Women in Motion a non-profit that supports the advancement of Black women and girls. It’s also a great time to pick up a book by a black author. One of my favourites is “Lead from the Outside” by Stacey Abrams. And of course, supporting Black-owned businesses is another great way to pay tribute! Here are some of my favourites:
- BEBC Society Organization that support Black entrepreneurs in Canada
- Maydnbeauty Luxury sleep wear made in Canada.
- Ellie Bianca Beauty Calgary based organic beauty brand founded by a black entrepreneur which aims to empowers women and creates resilient communities.
- Digitalement Elles Black-owned marketing agency for ambitious female entrepreneurs founded by an incredible mentor and woman of excellence.
- Riseupmarketplace Culturally based convenience store and grocery tin Vancouver hat support artisans.
- Vancouver Black-owned Businesses A non-profit that highlights, supports, and builds a community of entrepreneurs and their businesses.
- Amlea Legal Business law firm supporting entrepreneurs growing their business
- Kambiio Skincare Exceptional skincare for conscious beauty fueled by a rich African heritage
What is your own skincare routine like?
I start my routine with the Sérénité cream cleanser, it is a gentle cleanser with fruit enzymes that cleanses and exfoliates revealing radiant skin. Twice a week, I use Beauté Majestique for a deeper exfoliation, while I read a book and relax. After cleansing, I follow with l’Élixir de Pureté in the AM. It’s a soothing and clarifying serum that hydrates and clarifies. It is great for dry, dehydrated skin prone to redness, spots and breakouts. I like to alternate with l’Élixir de Clarté serum in the PM, it’s a radiance serum with AHA, cinnamon and brightening peptides that provides a luminous glow and well rested skin upon awakening. After applying my serum, I massage a small amount of our Diamant Bleu cream formulated with niacinamide and blue tansy, known for their calming effects. Finally, I seal in everything with 2-3 drops of l’Élixir de Manuka a true problem solver that keeps skin clear and gorgeous. I invite you to give Okoko a try, you will be amazed with the efficacy of the line, and you will see Okoko’s incredible results.
Photos by Eric Saide
Win! A $645 Okoko Prize Pack!
Congrats Katie C. of Vancouver, BC, who will receive a $645 Okoko prize pack including products from Oyéta’s own skin routine, including:
Elixir de Purete $150
16 Précieux $125
Sublime balm $100
Diamant bleu $170
Please note: if you are the winner, you will receive a DM (direct message) in Instagram directly from @vitadaily.ca. Please be wary of fake accounts, which often use similar handles with an extra or missing letter, number or symbol. We will never ask for a payment or for your credit card number, and we will never ask you to click through a link. If you are unsure whether you have been contacted, via Instagram, by us or a fake account, email us before responding.
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