Skin Tips from Angela Jia Kim
an author and founder of Savor Beauty +Spa in NYC
From a Korean breast facial and an “orgasm” for hair to a serious lineup of clean, skin-boosting rituals, author and spa owner Angela Jia Kim has some fantastic advice—for skin and for life—that anyone can use. “I used to make things happen by working myself to the bone,” says Kim, who was a concert pianist before she opened New York’s Savor Spa (it has locations in the West Village and on the Upper West Side) and created her own clean skin-care line based on the multistep Korean beauty rituals she grew up with. “Then I had a meltdown. I was like, There’s got to be a better way to manifest what I want than hustling all the time. I figured out that you can reach success in a completely different way—a gentler way that feels nourishing and doesn’t lead to burnout.”
She’s written it all down in her new book, Radical Radiance: 12 Weeks of Self-Love Rituals to Manifest Abundance, Beauty, and Joy. “I wrote it during COVID, but that book was 10 years in the making,” laughs Kim. “I went through a divorce during COVID, too, but we’re still really good friends—writing the book and practicing these rituals helped me manifest real love.”
6 a.m.: My internal clock wakes me up. I turn on classical music and drift outside to the pink and red rosebushes all over my balcony—I have a little rose garden in the middle of the city. I water them almost every morning and talk to them. I say things like, “Welcome to the world, gorgeous.”
|6:20 a.m.: In the bathroom, I spritz myself with Rose Toning Mist from Savor Beauty. My skin needs a drink first thing in the morning, and toner is like giving it a big glass of water. I say an affirmation as I’m spritzing: “I am glowing; I feel renewed.”
7 a.m.: My morning coffee is its own meditation. There’s something beautiful about no one else being there—my partner has gone to work by this time, and my daughter to school. The mug I’m drinking from is important; it has to be cute enough to be inspiring. I have the perfect spoon, too.
7:30 a.m.: Meditating is like taking vitamins: You can go without doing it for a week, but gradually you start noticing you’re not as resilient. After meditating, I find that I intuitively know what needs to be done with the business. (Spa work might sound like a quiet job, but it’s anything but.) My mantra is “Easy, breezy.” Afterward I do a little yoga with Adriene from YouTube.
8 a.m.: I get in the shower and smooth on my Manuka Honey and Chamomile Moisture Masks together—the best detox. Once a week, I use the pink salt scrub shampoo from goop—I’m kind of obsessed. It leaves my hair so shiny; my hairstylist recently asked me why my hair is so unusually soft. I don’t even follow the directions—I’m rebellious, and instead of just focusing on my scalp, I smooth it all over my head. My hair has an orgasm when I use it.
8:20 a.m.: Out of the shower, I spritz on more Rose Toner—I do it four times a day for instant radiance—and smooth on Hyaluronic Acid Serum. I can’t live without it; it holds moisture in your skin and leaves it super dewy.
I follow that with my Carrot Rose Serum, Truffle Face Cream, and depuffing Caviar Eye Cream. My skin routine is a marathon—I’m playing the long game. I try to treat my skin like a plant and feed it lots of water. Moisturizing is one of the best things you can do to get rid of lines and give yourself an instant glow.
Once a week, I do my Pumpkin Lactic Enzyme Peel to smooth off that top layer of sun damage.
8:40 a.m.: I love massage, and if I have time, I give myself a breast facial (there are directions in my book). The premise is treating your breasts the same way you treat your face, cleansing, massaging, and even smoothing them down with a clay mask. It feels so good after your breasts have been stuffed in a sweaty bra all day. It’s empowering to tell them, “Thank you for being healthy.” They do so much, they deserve some moments of glory during the day.
8:50 a.m.: I do some subtle makeup. I love the translucent color the tinted balms from goop give my lips. I’m giving one to my daughter because I love the ingredients: We typically swallow something like seven pounds of lipstick in our life. When I gave birth to her, she was seven pounds, and that fact is now trapped in my head.
I smooth on brow pencil for definition, a little blush, some ILIA on my lips when I have a meeting, foundation from Vapour, and sunscreen.I get lash extensions every two weeks because I just want to wake up looking more fabulous. They’re so fuss-free.
I dye my hair with henna once a month and get regular blowouts. I want to be able to throw my hair back and look good in a New York minute.
9 a.m.: I start work. I love these Perfect Attendance chews—the taste—and I just want to be a “perfect attendance” girl. I feel like they help me show up for work psychologically.