By Stephanie Jade Wong
Activist Collective is a skincare brand that provides healthy products for humans and the planet. All ingredients are 100% vegan and cruelty-free — no animal testing here. Activist Collective also donates 5% of revenue to ecological advocacy.
Brand founder Allison Callaway created this safe space for all those out there who strive to change the world. We were lucky enough to sit down with Allison to learn more about her brand and how she’s making an impact with her products.
LIB: Tell us about yourself and why you started your business.
AC: I struggled with acne a lot as a teen. It had a huge effect on my self-confidence.
Another thing that made me feel like a stranger was that I was very much driven by my values of animal rights and environmentalism, so living by my ethics and talking about my views was more important to me than fitting in. I was an activist looking for my tribe and not finding one. It was a rough time for me.
I believe that business can be a force for good, so I wanted to create a company that reflects my ethics, creates a community around activism and self-care, and also gives back more and more the bigger we grow.
5% of our revenue goes to the planet and our mission is to provide a vehicle for self-care and a community that welcomes aspiring activists to join the movement.
LIB: Describe Activist Collective in 3 words.
AC: Vibrant, radical, and optimistic.
LIB: Can you sum up the term “activist skincare” for us?
AC: I see skincare as a gateway to a larger self-care commitment, which includes care for our bodies, minds, and spirits. When you're happy and healthy you're able to focus on bigger things, like environmental justice for all our fellow earthlings. Our generation is facing an existential crisis, and Activist Collective is a platform to inspire every woman to nurture her inner activist and fight for our future in an emotionally and physically sustainable way.
LIB: What does “indie beauty” mean to you?
AC: We're independent and free to make decisions that reflect our vision for the world we want to live in, without having to answer to anyone else, like a corporate board, investors or parent companies.
LIB: What’s your favorite part of owning an indie beauty brand?
AC: Building my crazy dream, and being the change I wish to see in the world.
LIB: What’s the hardest part of starting and growing your business?
AC: Managing myself. Setting priorities can be really difficult when there's so much you want to do and you're the boss! You really have to have a strong vision and make sure that everything you do aligns to that, and drop anything that distracts or doesn't get you there.
AC: I use the full 4-step Activist Method daily:
LIB: What’s your daily beauty routine like?
AC: I am a really busy mom-preneur and I keep my routine very minimal.
I simply make sure I do the Activist Method at least once per day, and use tinted sunscreen every day to protect my skin from the Southern California sun.
If I want to step it up a notch, I'll add blush, lipstick, and occasionally mascara.
LIB: Tell us something about your business we can’t see via social media.
AC: Everything is made by me and my production assistant!
LIB: How big is your team?
AC: I'm the only full-time employee. I stay afloat with an awesome team of part-time freelancers and contractors!
LIB: What else do you want the Love, Indie B. community to know about you and Activist Collective?
AC: I'd like for Activist to be one way that you vote with your dollar to create the world that you want to live in. I hope you'll look at every dollar you spend as an investment in whatever business practices are behind that product or service — so choose wisely!
LIB: What’s your top self-care tip?
AC: Self-care is most important when you want to de-prioritize it, like during a hellish work week when you barely have time to go to the bathroom.
LIB: Do you believe in beauty from the inside out?
AC: Absolutely! I am a big believer in finding the right supplements for you, to help with skin health as well as things like mood, hormones, etc.
I'm a vegetarian and almost vegan, and I try to avoid inflammatory foods and drinks. I can really tell the morning after I have a glass of wine — my face gets red and inflamed.
LIB: Do you wash your face every night before bed?
AC: Usually! But I believe in not over-cleansing the skin, so if I haven't put any makeup or sunscreen on (which is rare), I'll skip washing my face. Your skin's own oils are healing.
LIB: What's your favorite beauty brand (aside from yours of course)?
AC: I'm definitely not a beauty junkie, but I've recently fallen in love with the Kosas lipstick called Rosewater. It helps me feel more put together when I'm running around.
LIB: When you're not working on Activist Collective what are you up to?
AC: Being a mom, exploring the coast with my husband and toddler son, doing beach cleanups, and learning to surf!
LIB: What inspires you?
AC: I’ve had a deep connection with nature my whole life and I love to be outdoors. An hour by the ocean works wonders to ground me and lift my spirits.
LIB: What’s next for Activist Collective?
AC: We're growing our Collective of brand ambassadors: Real-world eco-activists who are setting the new standard for an aspirational lifestyle by living in harmony with mother nature and showing how fun, exciting, and beautiful it can be!
It's critical that being an everyday activist is something that is magnetically attractive in order to grow the environmental movement and save our planet.
Whether you’ve found your life’s purpose or not, you can feel free to be yourself with Activist Collective.