In this day and age, beauty and skincare has become a universal concern no longer defined by industry or gender. Living in an urban wonderland, we’re surrounded by options from all over that promise to help with our health, wellness, and beauty. But how do we know which works?
For Wynnie Tham, founder of Dr. Ora, she needed to find out just how to stand out from the crowd. Now boasting multiple awards under her belt, we caught up with her to find out more.
Dr. Ora has indeed come a long way. What was it at the beginning that inspired you to embark on this journey?
It was quite an unintentional journey at the start. I actually struggled with acne and skin problems all the way up till my mid 20s. Long story short, I went to a dermatologist to get it sorted, and was prescribed some strong medication. I started to explore supplements to complement my treatment and eventually found that the usual products didn’t work for me.
So I got rather frustrated and decided to tap into my own background in the Chemical Sciences, sourcing for my own ingredients and just started concocting! I later passed my own recipe to friends, targeted at lightening scars and reducing pigmentation. They really liked its effect and started encouraging me to make it into a product.
How did you manage to kickstart everything?
I started by going to trade shows, getting connected with more suppliers and manufacturers, especially with representatives from overseas, like Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan. It was quite a drawn out process because apart from sourcing the best prices and quality, I wanted to find the right manufacturer; one that has the same vision as myself so that my products will consistently be of the same standards.
What were your biggest challenges then?
Expansion. By nature of what we offer, the supplements industry is not as sexy as skincare per se. People are not as receptive and as easy to convince. However, the upside is that once they are convinced, they tend to stick with you through your journey.
Has entrepreneurship brought about changes in your personal views over the years?
Yes, it highlighted the importance, and strength, in consistency to me – showing me that when I embark on something, it takes time, dedication, and practice to reach closer to perfection.
It also taught me perseverance, to try and fail, and try again – to not give up and to believe in my product.
We know that beauty and skincare is a combination of many factors, but if you had to advise beginners, where would you say is the most important place to start?
I’d say the most important thing I want to share is to find something suitable. Start with basics like cleansing, moisturising, and sunblock.
For supplements, the basics to go for first are Vitamin C and fish oil products. Build up along the way as you experience and find out more. Many people tend to buy into trends, especially those they see on social media, but honestly, don’t do that. Stick to your basics first.
And sunblock is very important.
Common misconceptions about beauty and skincare from your experience?
When people try a new product for a couple weeks and then conclude that it doesn’t work. Many products, from skincare to supplements, need at least 2 to 3 months to see results. This even applies to sunscreen. Some products may feel good upon application, but they may not necessarily be working effectively. So always try a product over an extended period and have realistic expectations as results also vary according to an individual’s skin condition.
Would you say that you consciously maintain a wholesome diet?
I don’t. I love my laksa and char kway teow. So in order to eat that way, I needed to explore other ways to maintain my health and physique. I always try to balance my intake across different meals, get my exercises in, and diligently take my supplements. Amongst the most important of which, I always have Lactolean on me, Dr. Ora’s supplement to burn fat and increase metabolism with over 10 billion active digestive enzymes.
If you could only pick one, are you a fruits or vegetables person?
Fruits. Because they’re sweeter.
I’m going to go with red dragonfruit, blueberry, and guava.
On that note, which ingredients would you personally list as your top picks to keep looking young and radiant?
Blueberry, strawberry, raspberry, and basically all these antioxidant-rich fruits and berries.
What’s a simple daily beauty regime you swear by for busy metropolitans?
A glass of lemon water in the morning.
If all else fails, what would be your quickest go-to solution?
To this day, I still drink 2 sachets of Aura White every morning. Whenever my skin feels dull, I’ll take a sachet as well. If I start feeling pimples or pigmentation affecting my complexion, I’ll take it too. Primarily for skin brightening, it actually helps with a lot of generic day-to-day issues.
To check out Wynnie’s multi-award winning products or find out more about Dr. Ora, visit their website here.