A Conversation With…

Goldfaden MD

Bridging a gap between natural luxury and dermatologist formulated skincare, Goldfaden MD’s plant based products are revolutionising the way we think about ‘green’ beauty. Fabled meets its founders, Lisa Goldfaden and Lauren Wolk.

Lisa Goldfaden: 'I wake up between 6am and 7am depending on the season; I hate to wake up in the dark. I practice intermittent fasting, so I don’t eat breakfast or anything other than coffee or tea until around 1pm. I try to fit in a workout in the morning but if that doesn't happen I’ll go for a run after work in the park. Since Lauren and I live in different cities, we’re not in the same office, but we do talk and email all day long. My day is never the same. Some days are in front of my computer writing blog posts and answering emails, while other days I may be in a store training or travelling to visit accounts.’

Lauren Wolk: ‘I wake up at 5:30am daily and head downstairs (I stretch and do a few breathing exercises) to make coffee and prepare breakfast for my kids. I scan emails to ensure nothing needs an immediate reply and catch up on daily news on CNN. I eat half of an avocado in the morning with a few almonds; it fills me up and gives me just enough energy until I eat lunch at around noon. I head to the office by 7:15 but I’m rarely there all day, as I’m often in meetings around town. Lunch is always something quick and light – either salmon with veggies or a salad with fish. I’m also pretty diligent about getting in a workout three or four times per week in the late afternoon before I head home.’

Lisa: ‘I’ve been working with my family for twelve years. I grew up watching my father treat people, research ingredients and formulate products so I feel as if I was born to do this. The brand was inspired by my father’s dermatology practice and the in-office procedures he offers his patients. He had been formulating products for patients for years and we of course used them growing up. The first product ever created and the one that ‘started it all’, is the Doctor’s Scrub or (the magic scrub). By the time my brother had graduated college and we were both working in other careers in New York, he started to get calls from his fraternity brothers asking where they could get more of the ‘magic scrub.’ It was a light bulb moment as it wasn’t for sale anywhere and there were no other brands (high performance or natural) that offered anything like it. We went to my dad and we proposed we build a retail brand and the rest is history!’

Lauren: ‘I’ve always felt that beauty - specifically products - is really an extension of our overall lifestyle in terms of what we are gravitate to, and I’m focused on being what I call ‘naturally conscious’ in every aspect of my life. This includes beauty products, household cleaning products, diet and exercise. When I first met my husband, Rob, (Lisa’s brother) he handed me this exfoliator in a lab sample jar and said ‘would you try this, I’m thinking about starting a skincare brand, and this would be our lead product.' I of course instantly fell in love (first with the scrub, and later with him) and I saw the potential for an entire dermatologist-developed natural skincare brand, since this simply did not exist in the marketplace. After a handful of years in advertising, working with global brands like Coca Cola, Volkswagon, and Method “non-toxic” personal care products, I wanted to follow something that I was deeply passionate about. I joined Goldfaden MD over eight years ago and it has been the most exciting and rewarding journey.’

Lisa: ‘We’re the first dermatologist developed, naturally inspired skincare brand Since inception of the original product over 25 years ago, my father has always looked to plant based ingredients to mimic traditional and chemically created ingredients. He’s a true pioneer in green/natural ingredients and has travelled the world and written numerous scientific studies on effective plant based alternative ingredients. We continue to lead the way by incorporating naturally inspired ingredients that deliver physician strength results.’

Lauren: ‘We wanted modern, approachable, serious and safe to be top-of-mind when looking at the brand and packaging. I think we nailed it in the end, but it was nerve wracking even after it launched! The hardest part, and still is in some ways, is making sure that we stay true to our DNA – our standards, our brand positioning and communication. Trends are built every day and sometimes it’s hard not to ‘follow’ a trend that is booming, but ultimately what matters is staying true to the brands values.’

Lisa: ‘There are so many wonderful and effective plant and botanically derived ingredients available today which not only do a better job at addressing skin and ageing issues but are healthier as well. Our skin is the largest organ of our body and studies have found it can absorb up to about 60% of what we put on to it so it’s important to stay away from harsh, toxic chemicals, colours, and fragrances. The integrity and purity in plant and botanically-derived ingredients, plus the high level of vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, amino acids, antioxidants, enzymes, natural sugars, and more, provide a vital spectrum of benefits for the skin without being compromised by fillers and inactive ingredients.’

Lauren: ‘We’ve witnessed a massive shift in the beauty industry toward a demand for ‘cleaner' products. It seems that new natural active ingredients with unique treatment benefits are being introduced almost daily, so we are constantly working to stay at the forefront of discovery and sourcing the best possible ingredients for our formulas. We’re constantly fascinated to find natural actives that are scientifically proven to deliver an equal or greater treatment benefit to a chemically-based alternative.’

Lisa: ‘I try and live a healthy lifestyle and I’m conscientious about where my food is grown and what I put in my body. I recently adapted a Ketogenic lifestyle, which includes intermittent fasting for health and longevity purposes. I’m very physically active too. As far as beauty is concerned my skincare regimen is natural, but I haven’t got there with my hair or makeup yet. I think with anything in life there has to be a balance.’

Lauren: ‘There are so many different vertices that are working towards a cleaner existence – beauty, food, fashion, wellness – which is so exciting, but everyone is defining what their own ‘clean/natural’ standards. For me, it’s really a lifestyle choice to live more ‘thoughtfully and mindfully’ in all aspects.’

Lisa: ‘My favourite Goldfaden MD product is Bright Eyes: our triple action eye concentrate It makes the eye area look and feel more hydrated and soy and rice bran peptides increase blood supply to the superficial tissue of the eyelids. This means they help with circulation and distribution of blood flow, avoiding clotting and dark circles. Moreover, these two peptides have been shown to inhibit elastase and collagenase, which degrade collagen and elastin in the skin, (the things that help the skin retain its natural firmness.) Keep this in the refrigerator for an extra cool sensation!’

Lauren: ‘Doctor’s Scrub is literally a skin-changer. It contains perfectly round ruby crystals that polish away dead surface skin, leaving skin brighter, appearing clearer and younger-looking. Daily use will make skin feel firmer, smoother and appear stronger, radiant and hydrated.’

Fabled Picks
“Our skin is the largest organ of our body and studies have found it can absorb up to about 60% of what we put on to it...”