we are truly delighted to bring you this week's kai conversation with dr. cary gannon, the ceo/founder of aila cosmetics, which is an amazing nail lacquer brand that we deeply respect and admire. we've had the great fortune of joining forces with aila cosmetics on a few collaborations, and as we've learned more about dr. cary and her company, we've become even bigger fans and supporters of the brand and offerings. similar to kai, their products are free of nasty chemicals and are vegan, cruelty-free and gluten-free. aila's nail lacquers provide beauty, function, and benefits for people who care about their nail polish not causing them harm while looking pretty, and their commitment to wellness and giving back is inspiring. they have a beautiful orchid-shade nail lacquer called "five senses" named for a neurological condition called sensory processing disorder (spd), which affects many children and prohibits the brain's ability to translate senses (sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch) into an appropriate behavioral response. kids with spd cannot process the sensation messages that their brains receive; the sensations essentially hit their young, undeveloped brains like an 18-wheeler, and they cannot produce appropriate behavioral responses. in an effort to bring awareness to spd and fund research, a percentage of proceeds from this "five senses" nail lacquer go to the spd foundation. let's raise a glass to aila for this incredible give back mission, and please enjoy this wonderful kai conversation with dr. cary! additionally, please stay tuned for a special giveaway collaboration with aila to be announced soon.
how are you taking care of yourself and your loved ones during this time? are there certain things that are proving to be sources of motivation/ inspiration? if so, please feel free to share.
for me, it's all about maintaining normalcy one day at a time. given the fact that i'm a doctor, i've never been an alarmist. it's my personality, and my professional training, to be calm even when everything around me is going berserk. that calm has definitely been tested in 2020! but, i firmly believe that if i keep my focus on how i can be of help to other people, there's no vacancy in my brain for fear. i very literally preoccupy myself with my family, my patients, my staff, my aila team and my friends. it is that preoccupation with purely, genuinely being of service that helps me take care of myself, motivates me and inspires me.
how do you embody kai's "breath*life*flow" lifestyle?
it's important for me to remember that there's someone bigger than myself. i mean, if my whole life is wrapped up in me, it's a very small package, right?! so, when i feel myself slipping into being an "over-functioner," i get still, breathe and know down deep that there's a God, and i'm definitely not Him! :) sometimes i have to remember what i know, you know? another thing i practice is paying attention to what i put in - and on - my body. that's why aila exists; like many health-conscious consumers, i wanted to hold the cosmetics industry accountable, and offer products that provide beauty, function and benefits for the people who care about their nail polish not causing them harm while looking pretty. so i eat as cleanly as possible, and i move my body. i was a competitive runner in college and, when i need to recalibrate, i get some miles in. there's nothing like being outside, and generating my own satisfaction after seeing how far i've gone. i know i've done something to bless my body, and there's great reward in it.
what's the best advice you've ever received?
set boundaries. you cannot do everything, so it's pointless to try. the end result is being overwhelmed and accomplishing nothing. i used to call myself an "over-functioner." that means i was able to do way too much really well until i inevitably snapped. i've come a long way in the last few years, but i really have to remember the boundary thing when i get tempted to take too much on.
what's your beauty secret? or must have beauty product?
supergoop! - glowscreen spf 40. this marvel has replaced my face makeup.
go-to lipstick color?
i'm obsessed with mizzi cosmetics lip balms. people always ask me if i have lip filler. i credit mizzi for my luscious lips (my hubs thanks them, too!).
what color nail polish are you wearing right now?
i'm currently wearing 'my 2 jeffs.' it's the perfect fall navy.
who is your role model?
i always struggle with this question. picking a role model can sometimes result in putting them on a pedestal and forget that they are human. then, if they have a fall from grace, i'm negatively affected by it. i prefer to say that i admire or respect people. it allows them to be flawed. i admire Condolezza Rice.
how would you describe your personal style?
hospital scrubs chic. kidding! my style is eclectic and casual. i like funky sneakers (golden goose) with fun dresses (i love Misa LA), tennis skirts with a cute sweatshirt and high tops. i also like rompers, and leggings with anything.
visiting our condo on 30A in florida with my family. it's so peaceful to go there. we walk everywhere and eat at LaCrema, we get donuts from Charlie's Donut Truck and shop at Willow. it's heaven.
warm chocolate chip cookies and milk... with no guilt. :)
tennis. i've recently discovered a love for this sport, and i have a whole tennis section in my closet. my tennis team has an instagram page, and we make ridiculous videos and just have fun. we look completely crazy, but i don't care. we have a blast. it's about the camaraderie.
oh, please... kai rose, and it's not even close! i get compliments every time i wear it!
thank you, dr. cary gannon!