Sassy Mamas Tuyen & Constance, formerly of Clarins, are the brains behind local skincare brand Alcheme – developed specially for customers in Southeast Asia’s hot and humid weather
We’re still riding on the high of International Women’s Day, and celebrating awesome go-getting women and mamas right here in Singapore and around the world – otherwise known as just a regular Monday here at Sassy Mama!
Today’s spotlight is on Tuyen Lamy and Constance Mandefield, two Singapore-based mamas who started Alcheme, a new bespoke skincare brand that analyses your skin condition online before recommending the best one-of-a-kind blend for you. Tuyen is from Vietnam, and has spent half her life in Asia – specifically in Malaysia and Singapore, which she has called home for the last 13 years. Constance is French, and has also lived in the UK. She spent years travelling the world as a consultant between Asia and the US before moving to Singapore seven years ago.
Having both been in the skincare industry for years before venturing out to start their own brand, we were interested to know how they’re managing their new business in our Little Red Dot. We sat down to chat with them about how they started their business with little ones in tow, their take on skincare and tips for mamas in a time crunch!
Tell us all about how you started Alcheme!
After years in the skincare industry, talking with women and understanding their needs, we wanted to create a different skincare brand in tune with today womens’ aspirations and lifestyle.
We wanted to create personalised high performance skincare, accessible for us all, and thought that developments in technology could be harnessed to achieve it.
What makes Alcheme different from other bespoke skincare brands in the market?
Alcheme is leading the way with Intentional Skincare. We are here to make a difference. We believe that being conscious of what you put on your skin, and how those ingredients are derived, leads to smarter and more sustainable decisions. That is why every aspect of the Alcheme journey has been thoughtfully planned to bring you the very best of what you actually need.
We use the extracts that address your specific skin needs; nothing more, nothing less. By designing innovative processes capable of creating fresh and on-demand solutions, we only produce in the quantities you require, cutting down on wastage. By investing in accurate digital analysis and a cutting edge online service to deliver to your door, we are reducing our footprint.
With our personalised high performance skincare, we believe we are making a difference that goes beyond skin deep. We believe we are building the future of skincare.
What are the main ingredients in your line and where are they sourced?
Everything in your personalised Alcheme skincare begins with carefully selected botanical extracts and vitamins. We source the finest ingredients that nature has to offer, so we can create for you the perfect high performance skincare solution. With a focus on quality over quantity, Alcheme gives you higher concentrations of the actives you need. Not only will your personalised treatment feel good, it is good for you.
Our products do not contain PEG, parabens, sulfates, phenoxyethanol, silicon or animal derived ingredients.
There is a list of 24 active ingredients (the 25th is currently under testing) that we select from to customise formulation for each customer. We have put in some key benefits notes for each ingredient – should you want to deep dive on any of them, please don’t hesitate to get back to us, we would be happy to share more in terms of mechanisms, tests etc.
What’s the best way to take a selfie for the online skincare consultation? And how accurate have the assessments been so far?
For an accurate assessment, you should take a close up selfie of your face in even lighting. Just be you. It’s only between you and Alcheme, to best assess your skin and select the best ingredients for your skin. So, please remove make up and glasses, pin your hair away from the face and take your picture and relax!
We check each and every consultation to ensure customer’s skin concerns have been well captured and make sure each customer gets the right formulation for her. In doubt, we correspond with the customer to confirm and formulate accordingly. Our approach is to combine cutting edge technology x Personal touch with Strong Skincare expertise.
If you would like a skincare consultation in person, you can head down to our booth at Boutique Fairs Singapore this weekend.
A little birdie told us you both used to work with skincare and makeup mega-brand Clarins. What did you learn working at one of the world’s leading cosmetics brands to inform your own line?
Yes, you are right: We have a combined expertise of 20 years in Beauty and Skincare, working for major Beauty groups in Asia-Pacific and Europe. Along those years, we have captured the needs and desires of women across cultures and ethnicities, uncovering individual beauty regimes.
- Women often have multiple skin concerns, especially in Asia, and personalised formulation helps them address all their concerns effortlessly.
- Purchasing patterns are also changing in skincare, with people moving out of department stores or retail shops. So many women have turned to online reviews and peer recommendations online. But there is a lot of information to sift through and it is not always relevant to each customer.
- Women we have spoken to are also increasingly looking for environmentally friendly products. Everyone wants to play a part in driving sustainable change.
All these observations – which we feel strongly about as customers, too, brought us to take the leap and launch Alcheme to drive change and shape the future of skincare.
Coming from the skincare industry, we also felt very strongly about making serious skincare, up to the highest industry standards. We collaborated with key industry experts to develop products and manufacturing processes, pushing the boundaries of the skincare production, while ensuring our products are crafted to the highest R&D and manufacturing standards. Our products have been tested by 4 laboratories in Europe and Asia.
What’s a good skincare routine for mamas in a rush?
Not everyone has the time or the desire for a 12-step beauty regimen. However, there are a few steps that shouldn’t be missed:
– A good cleanser morning and evening to clean your skin from any toxins and particles
– A serum or moisturizer to nourish and protect your skin. It will help keep your skin supple and firm over time
– A UV product, especially when living in Singapore. Sun damage is one of the key accelerating factors of skin ageing.
– Try to find the time for a weekly gentle exfoliator – by removing dead cells, it will help your skin remain more radiant as well as stimulate skin renewal.
How are you juggling this new venture with motherhood?
We both have three young kids, juggling the joys (and demands) of meaningful careers, raucous young children, active friends and families. Entrepreneurship is demanding but full of big and smaller joys and successes. We love sharing our challenges with our kids, getting their feedback on packaging and scent and showing them how a serum is produced. They are our biggest fans and promote Alcheme to their teachers and friends.
There’s not a single day where we regret our former life!
What’s the #1 skincare trick mamas should know?
When applying your skincare, pat it gently on your skin and don’t tug or pull at your skin, which will contribute to more fine lines over time! Start from the jawline and smooth the products up and out. Applying products in a downward motion pulls and stretches the skin in the wrong direction, contributing to wrinkles and sagginess. You don’t want to do this to your skin!