Each spring, I enjoy watching the bare trees of winter sprouting with fresh foliage. This transformation never fails to inspire me, and seems like nature's reminder to spring-clean my own life and begin anew.

In that spirit, I spoke to the lovely Jenny Jin of Real Simple magazine about her aproach to all things beautiful and how she manages to keep everything so organized. Real Simple is one of my favorite resources for practical solutions to a busy life; the magazine’s simple but elegant approach truly resonates with me, echoing TATCHA’s skincare philosophy. I knew Jenny, one of the talented Beauty Assistants there, would have some perfect tips, and she did. They were so good, I simply had to share.

Q: What are some of the best tips you've discovered to keep your beauty products organized?

A: The first step is to be completely honest with yourself: Do you actually use the product? If the product isn't a part of your daily regimen, then you should probably toss it (if it's old) or donate it to a friend (if it's new or barely used). Beauty products can quickly become clutter so it's important to take inventory once in a while. Another genius tip I picked up recently was to use a roll of gauze to identify your lipsticks. Start by cutting off little squares of the gauze and laying them flat. Then, take your lipsticks and swatch each of them onto individual squares. Tape each colored piece onto the bottom of their respective cases; now you can see the shades accurately without having to open every tube!

Q: What do you use to keep your must-haves handy? (glass jars, trays, etc.)
A: I'm a big fan of makeup bags. I have one for color cosmetics and one for skincare products. They make my mornings a bit easier because I can just grab a bag and go—whether I'm getting ready at home, at the gym, or on vacation. Another great storage tip? Use empty shoe boxes to keep your nail polishes and/or hair products together.

Q: How do you simplify your beauty routine, given the array of products and steps out there?
A: There are creams and potions aplenty that promise you the world, but before you get overwhelmed by the choices remember this acronym: "K.I.S.S" or "Keep It Simple, Stupid." I don't know where I first heard this, but it makes me smile and more importantly, it keeps me in check whenever I want to empty the aisles at Sephora. That said, on a day-to-day basis, I just make sure to do the following: cleanse and moisturize (spf for day; richer formula for night).

Q: TATCHA is based on wisdom passed down and honed through generations of women. What is the best beauty advice you have received?
A: The best beauty advice I received was from my mom: Sun protection is paramount to aging gracefully. Growing up, I have vivid memories of her carrying a little parasol on the beach or seeking shade under the biggest tree she could find at the park. This was in addition to the copious amounts of sunscreen that she applied liberally—and often. She's now in her late 50s and looks at least a decade younger. So yes, I am certainly taking her words to heart—I just hope it's not too late!

Q: The best advice for staying organized?
A: That also comes from my wise mother: Write everything down. I have a day planner that I carry with me everywhere and it lists every meeting, appointment, and birthday. I make sure to purchase a planner that has wide margins and blank pages in the back so I can jot down quotes and inspiration for future stories, too.

Q: What items - beauty or otherwise - can't you live without?
A: My non-negotiable beauty products are cleansing oil and SPF. As someone who spent most of her adolescence in a constant state of breakouts (my dear brother referred to me as "pizza face") the concept of using oil seemed crazy—frightening even. I finally gave it a try last year and can't imagine washing my face without it now. It's incredibly satisfying to see all of the makeup come off of your face and go down the drain. As for SPF, need I really say more on that? I also can't live without my Fitbit. It's a nice way to track my steps for the day and so much sleeker than a clip-on pedometer!

Q: To perform a ritual is to pause time and find peace. What are some of your favorite rituals?
A: When we were freshmen in college and carting shower supplies down the dormitory halls in our Old Navy flip flops, my best friend told me that no matter how tired she was, she always washed her face and her feet. For some reason that stuck with me and to this day, if I can't muster up the energy to take a full shower, I will first wash my face. Then, I'll scrub my feet. It really does make a world of difference.

Victoria Tsai
Chief Treasure Hunter

published April 2014

Living, Beauty Secrets, Interviews
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Photo 1: Photography by Thor Swift

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