We're thrilled to introduce Dayna Marie Hood, the woman behind Glow Kind. She's a conscious makeup artist, beauty writer, and teacher.
We have been showing each other instagram love for a while now and we're always excited to see what she creates. She defines "GLOW KIND" as a verb-- to be radiant and beautiful while simultaneously having compassion for self and all living things.
We're so excited to share this Q + A! Get to know lady boss, Dayna Marie Hood, with us.
1. let’s start with a lady brag. tell us the 3 things you love to brag about the most.
2. we would love to hear more about you and your journey! tell us about the magic and some of the challenges.
Let me start by saying that when I started my graduate program in Counseling this year, I had no idea my classes would crack me open, revealing every painful memory I did my best to dismiss. I realized that for much of my life, I did things I felt I should be doing--I should be in a relationship, I should have kids, I should go to school, I should have a “good job” (whatever that means, right?). Over the past couple of years, I released the “shoulds” and embraced me as I am. Now, I am unapologetically myself, and it feels great. I find that allowing myself to be open and vulnerable attracts some pretty incredible people into my life--I literally glow kind now.
3. tell us about the glow kind- what’s your current focus + vision?
The summer of 2019, I was at a very low point in my life, and I felt that I should (hehe) be happier. I just graduated with my Journalism degree (to become a beauty writer) from Trinity Washington University in D.C., and I had a job waiting on me in New York. Instead of feeling joyful, I felt lost and unfulfilled. At the time, my hair was loc’d, and I felt so out of control that I decided to hit the reset button--starting with my hair. I stood in front of the mirror and cut all of my locs off, one by one, until all I was left with were curls just under one inch long.
I washed and styled my new tiny fro, and just sat down and wrote whatever came to mind. I asked myself, “What really makes you happy?” and I wrote all of those things down. I wrote down things like “self-care,” “community-care,” “clean beauty,” “hosting events,” “women-empowerment,” and eventually decided that I wanted to create a space for women to just BE. Initially, I wanted to host quarterly events in my favorite cities, but after COVID, I had to adapt to this new normal, and Instagram became our “space” instead. Now my focus is on uplifting and promoting clean beauty brands with kind founders, effective products, and sharing my faves with my audience. I love it!
4. we love that glow kind is a judgment-free zone when it comes to conventional beauty vs. clean beauty. Why is this important?
It’s so important to create a judgment-free zone because if people are afraid to ask questions about something for fear of being ridiculed, they’ll never learn! Also, making a full clean-swap for your current beauty routine is EXPENSIVE, you guys! We can gradually build our collection over time, that is realistic AND makes for a fun wishlist. My intention is never to make clean-beauty seem like the only way. Some people may love conventional beauty products for nostalgic reasons--who knows? My goal is just to share the benefits of clean beauty and leave space for others to make their own decisions. You are loved no matter what you choose, just take care of you!
5. what is your personal philosophy of wellness/life and how does it align with glow kind’s philosophy?
My personal philosophy is literally just to do my best. If i’m going to do something, I want someone to see it, feel warmth, and say, “This is Dayna.” It aligns with the Glow Kind initiative because that same warmth flows through my entire brand. You’ll never be judged, questioned, shamed or made to feel anything less than lovely. Glow Kind is that friend you hang out with when everyone else is doing too much! Haha! That friend is me.
6. you are a woman of many, many talents. tell us what this versatility means to you and how these wonderful elements have informed your current mission!
Oh my goodness thank you for this compliment! To me, versatility means falling on your ass, acknowledging it hurts, then popping right back up and trying things again a new way! I recently discovered how valuable each of my strengths are to my career. From working with toddlers (patience), to graphic design (creating my own branding), to working retail (problem-solving & flexibility), to journalism (writing & magazine design), to non-profit (multi-tasking & policy work), to freelance makeup artistry (resilience). *whew* My current role as a Brand Specialist for ILIA Beauty literally encompasses all of these things, and I knew one day it would all come together. For Glow Kind, all of these skills come in handy because I can wear each of these hats and get things done on my own--until I have the budget to hire some talented, kind souls and foster their growth!
7. what is your perspective on the current climate including the civil unrest + severe global pandemic. what energy do you think is needed at this time?
I believe in my heart that none of this is a coincidence. Our planet has been crying out to us for a very long time, and the pandemic (and quarantine that came along with it) forced us all to slow down and pay attention. We can no longer hide in our work, or claim to be “too busy” to see what’s happening around us. We have to pause and be mindful of the simplest tasks--like thoroughly washing our hands or wearing a mask in public--because these “simple” things protect us and the ones we love. My heart shatters every time I see that another one of my beautiful black brothers or sisters have been seriously injured or murdered senselessly by the police. My stomach sinks every time I’m reminded of these tragedies with a hashtag--as if that’s enough to honor the loss of a human life. We are so much more valuable than a hashtag, than a magazine cover, than a mural--we have given so much of ourselves to our families and our communities and we deserve better. During the pandemic, EVERYONE needs love. While I don’t blame anyone for being angry (I’m angry, too) I want everyone to remember that anger is a secondary emotion--to fear. People are afraid--for their lives and the lives of others--so of course, they’re pissed. I wish I could float around disabling hate and sprinkling love, but for now, I believe it is my purpose to just BE love. I hope to inspire others to do the same as we continue to fight for justice.
8. what do you do to de-stress and stay healthy physically and emotionally? do you see beauty and wellness as connected?
I LOVE walking. No seriously, sometimes I take 21,000 steps a day. Haha! It is so soothing and a great way to get familiar with the city I live in. I also love to write, and I have a notebook specifically for feelings and creative ideas. If I’m feeling down, I like to write down where those feelings stem from, and this always makes the issue more manageable. I most definitely see beauty and wellness as connected, which is why I love being in the clean beauty industry. My best friend Justin Thompson, a senior fashion designer based in New York, always says, “If you look good, you feel good--so why not look good all the time.” On tough days this echoes in my head, and I give myself a tiny spa treatment. Something as small as filing my nails and applying cuticle oil can boost my mood! It is so important to make time for ourselves because no matter how simple, beauty routines are a wonderful way to practice self-care.
9. what does your daily beauty ritual look like?
Well, I’m a Taurus so I’ve been doing literally the same routine everyday since I was 15 with a few additions as needed:: cough under eye treatments cough:: Obviously, I use Lady Suite for some lady garden love in the shower. After showering, I immediately spritz my bits & bootie with a little BARE by The Sacral House and layer with my Lady Suite oil. For my face, I always spray on a facial mist (Indie Lee CoQ-10 is that girl), apply an eye oil (Trees and Flowers “Roll It Away Eye Massage” makes me happiest), apply a face cream (right now, I’m using 2Renew AM Face Cream by Ressentir Cosmetics), and then seal everything in with a skin-brightening oil suited for face and body (NECTAR by The Sacral House). Over the past year, I’ve fallen in love with my hair in her natural state, and my kinky curls love a humid shower. The entire Hydrating collection from Innersense Organic Beauty makes my curls so soft and beautiful, and the Uncle Funky’s Daughter Curly Magic Curl Stimulator keeps them as controlled as this New Orleans humidity will allow!
10. thank you for all the love you give Lady Suite. you said you have "felt incredibly empowered to start a discussion about intimate care for women." Do tell! Why do you think this is important?
Thank you for all the love you give to ME! Well, the day I said I wanted to start a discussion about intimate care for women, it was because I overheard a conversation about intimate care products and it quite honestly broke my heart. I was in a beauty retailer and heard one of the team members raving about an intimate care oil to a customer. The customer said, “I don’t have a man, so I don’t need that.” I’m usually in my own world (especially around skincare and makeup, heaven!) but hearing that hurt my heart. I want all women/nonbinary to understand that the use of intimate care products has never been for our partners--they are for us--hence the word intimate. While having a loving, patient, and supportive partner is absolutely incredible, we do not need one to deepen the connection we have with our own bodies. Intimate care is a ritual--an extra step that brings you closer to all of the things that make you special. It is a ritual that is just for YOU, and if you choose to share, well...your partner is lucky af!
11. what is your relationship with your vulva/vulva health? have you needed to overcome insecurities in this space?
Thankfully, I have a Mom who got me the cutest books (does anyone remember The Period Book?) to teach me about my body. She was always very open and honest when I had questions, and one of the earliest lessons I remember about vulva health was that harsh soaps are not her friend. I do wish I’d discovered a brand like Lady Suite in my teens, because I would have been all about it! ::adds another fifteen minutes to an already lengthy morning routine:: While I have my own insecurities about things, I am grateful that my lady parts were never one of them. Now I’m just incredibly grateful to have good products made by good people.
12. what do you think the world would look like if women everywhere embraced their whole bodies including their lady parts?
I certainly think this would make some men very uncomfortable! If we all embraced our whole bodies (to include our lady parts) there would be more discussions about women’s health--above a whisper. Men would better understand our bodies because we wouldn’t be ashamed to educate them on every part of us. Advertisements would show real bodies, bleeding real blood, and using the real names for our lady parts without being taken off air for being “graphic.” Periods would be just as common to discuss as iced coffee, and there would be no marketing efforts to make our periods “discreet.” Everyone would know that the word “vagina” doesn’t define our entire reproductive system. The focus would no longer be on hiding, justifying, or improving our bodies, but rather on our immense contribution to society.
13. what piece of advice do you give to women/nonbinary looking to live healthy + happy lives?
Always start with YOU. No matter how full your calendar is, carve out time for yourself first. Love your body from the inside out with real food and non-toxic beauty products when you can. Do your best to be patient and compassionate with yourself, and remember no one has all the answers. Celebrate all your wins (big and small) and surround yourself with people who are kind, inspiring, and genuine.