Kapua Browning started exploring skincare in her early 20s. She grew up in Hawai'i as an avid surfer and never (!!!!!) wore sunscreen. Not too surprisingly, she started to notice skin damage in at an early age so she set out to figure out what she could do about it. She became so enthralled with caring for skin that she enrolled in esthetics school. Many people just read a few articles and consider themselves "armchair experts" but she actually took the plunge and decided to commit her career and life to skin.
Early in her career as an esthetician, she began exploring alternative treatments for skin issues. Alternative to the mainstream chemicals, that is. Growing up in Hawai'i, Kapua avidly used local ingredients for remedies. Immersing in sea salt was her family's go-to remedy for ailments ranging from colds or sinus infections to heartache. Turmeric root, found in the backyards of many Hawaiians, can be made into a poultice to address inflammation, cuts, scrapes and even dark spots on skin. Hibiscus can be used as a beautiful antioxidant because of the natural AHAs in it.
However, Kapua didn't see these remedies used in skincare, especially in professional-grade skincare that she used as a practitioner for skin. Most of the professional products had chemicals that seemed too harsh for skin. After use, a patient's skin would need extreme hydration and creams to heal. That seemed....like an unhealthy cycle to her. There were a few emerging natural lines, but they weren't that effective, in her professional view.
As a practitioner, she began creating custom products based on each specific client's needs. Clients would arrive at her apothecary facial room, located on the island of O'ahu. After a brief consultation, she used her collection of herbs, oils and creams to make a custom treatment. After the session, she provided a 1-2 week supply of the creation to keep skin looking its best. Word of her services and custom products grew, and so did her reputation as a top esthetician in Hawai'i.
Years later, she's still practicing skincare, but focuses most of her time on new product creation with Honua. Blending her experience with skincare and the native Hawaiian practice of lā'au lapa'au, she creates transformative products that marry the best of modern skincare technology and potent Hawaiian botanicals. Her hands-on experience is instrumental to the skincare success of every single product we make for both consumers and professionals. Honua is a professional line found at many luxury spas, facial treatment centers and wellness retreats. As a result, it is critical to have products created by a skincare expert.
Estheticians are truly hands-on experts. They are part therapist, part technician in the way they diagnose and remedy minor and major skin problems. They see skin on a daily basis so they know what it really needs. Dermatologists play a part as well, but often they see the more major issues, like skin cancer and they aren't as involved in the day to day treatment and best practices of skincare. They truly understand skin and can be creative with treatments, without invoking medication.
Very few beauty brands are led by skin experts like estheticians, who truly care for the skin day in and day out. Honua is part of this rare category with Kapua as our Chief Product Creator, Chief Ambassador, Chief Expert on all things Hawaiian.