To kick off Black History Month, New York City singer-songwriter Katini Yamaoka has launched Katini Skin, a vegan skincare line. Inspired by her African, Asian, and Australian roots, the line pays homage to ancient wellness traditions and uses only consciously sourced and organic ingredients. The brand launched in partnership with Black Progress Matters, a platform dedicated to advancing Black leadership at the executive level. Here, EBONY chats with Yamaoka, who gives us the deets on her line of nourishing and luxurious skincare products.
EBONY: What made you want to launch a skincare line?
Katini Yamaoka: I was raised in a family where self-care and wellness were always at the forefront. I have been a vegetarian since birth and attended a neo-humanist school where I learned about the interconnectedness between plants, animals, and people. From an early age, my mother, an artist from Japan, and my father, a human rights leader from Ghana, taught me the importance of being conscious about our planet’s well-being. Learning about the native secrets from both of my cultural backgrounds has always been fascinating. I wanted to create a skincare line that used natural flora from around the globe. Katini Skin is a collection of high-quality facial oils [made up of ingredients from places] where ancient wisdom is the source for beauty and truth. With the brand, I hope that I can help other people feel their own grace and beauty so that we can give our kindest selves to one another.
How did the partnership with Black Progress Matters come about?
We at Katini Skin are deeply committed to positively impacting the natural world and take into consideration that every step must be carefully placed—from sourcing, production, and packaging—to ensure that we have a sustainable strategy. We have used flora from around the globe, highlighting specific ingredients from Africa, Japan, and Australia, [and we’ve] respectfully introduced indigenous plants [from these areas] to the collection.
I love all the oils, but one of my favorites will have to be the Celestial Night Serum. I live in New York, and during the winter my skin gets extremely dry. This serum is the ultimate skin food that deeply replenishes moisture and improves the skin’s microbiome for a healthy and radiant complexion. The serum also contains Kakadu plum, a nutrient-rich superfruit from Australia, as well as baobab from South Africa.
How should we implement the line into our daily skincare routine?
When we were formulating and developing the oils for Katini Skin, I wanted to make sure we had an oil that worked for every skin type and season. The Soleil Day Serum and Celestial Night Serum ensure that your skin has the perfect start and end to each day. The Clarity Facial Oil is great for those with sensitive skin. The product also works beautifully for anyone with hyperpigmentation, blemishes, and acne scarring. Our Collagen Oil will help with your skin’s elasticity and will give you a plump and beautiful glow year-round.
Where can we find the brand?
We are available on katiniskin.com. We will be available at Saks Fifth Avenue in late February and plan to take Katini Skin global this summer. In our innovation pipeline, we have some incredible new products coming soon, and I can’t wait to share!