Pretty When We Win is a series that seeks to reconceptualize pretty by draining it of its negative power. This first iteration highlights inspiring stories of entrepreneurs who identify as women; it hopes to encourage contemplation of the word pretty and explore how we use it in our daily lives.
I’m excited and humbled to share the story of Lin Chen, founder of Pink Moon, in this installment of Pretty When We Win. I’ve had the pleasure of hearing Lin’s journey and hope you’ll be as inspired reading it as I was hearing it.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
My name is Lin Chen and I am the founder and CEO of Pink Moon, a consultancy and digital retail + wellcare space. Both Pink Moons aspire to elevate women in different ways.
I opened the Pink Moon consultancy in 2017 and have worked with over 20 brands in different stages of growth. I very intentionally chose to work with women owned brands within the wellness space because I wanted to empower other female entrepreneurs who share my passion for conscious beauty.
The Pink Moon digital retail + wellcare space is a new venture for me, but it’s something I’ve been dreaming of creating for quite some time. My belief is that every woman should have the tools to pursue wellcare (wellness + self care), but this industry is notoriously exclusionary. Pink Moon is my attempt to open up the possibility of wellcare to all women by providing options that are considerate of different needs.
Please name a woman who inspires you and why.
I’d have to say that my biggest inspiration in life has to be my mother. Growing up, I saw my mother giving back constantly. Her career was centered around helping autistic children and she was always very involved in our home and community.
Throughout my childhood and adolescence, my mom was always making sure that I was giving back and I really believe that helped facilitate a strong sense of gratitude and compassion in me. A lot of Pink Moon is centered around giving back, and I owe all of that to her.
What served as the impetus to start your business? Was it a career switch for you?
Before creating Pink Moon I was the Global Marketing & Sales Director at Bottega Organica, so I would say my career switch was very much a pivot within the wellness industry.
The decision to actually make the leap and start the Pink Moon consultancy was founded on my passion for helping conscious beauty brands grow. My more recent venture, expanding Pink Moon into the retail space, was very much inspired by my desire to help other women experience transformative self-care.
What is the hardest part of doing something on your own?
The anxiety that accompanies everything you do.
What keeps you up at night?
Honestly, my work. While Pink Moon is a professional endeavor, it is also very much a passion project. I can get lost in all of my ideas sometimes, it’s both exciting and stressful.
What struggles have you encountered that you feel are unique to women entrepreneurs? What’s the toughest part of being a woman entrepreneur?
Because women are so consistently painted as being “weak,” I think many of us want to achieve our ambitions on our own. There is a slight fear that asking for help or support will be perceived as weakness and that we won’t be seen as competent entrepreneurs as a result.
My first year of running Pink Moon was incredibly difficult for that reason. I was trying to navigate all of the legalities of starting a new business and 10 clients all at the same time. Eventually I began to build out my team and I’m really grateful that I did, but I resisted the thought of doing it for a while.
What kind of weight does the word pretty have for you? What does pretty mean to you?
The word pretty feels so reductive. I’ve always felt that it was an empty word that doesn’t, in any way, capture or compliment the essence of beauty.
Where do you find strength?
My self-care rituals: stretching first thing in the morning, taking time to wash and massage my face, gua sha, and yoga.
What inspires you?
To put it simply, women inspire me. I have seen so much creativity, ingenuity, resilience, strength, and compassion from women. It amazes me how much we have been able to accomplish as a group.
What’s your favorite way to connect with your clients/partners/customers?
My favorite way to connect with the women I work with is through genuine and open conversation.
Can you offer some advice to other women who are looking to start their own business and/or make a career switch?
The best advice I can give to other women is to honor themselves. It’s a deceptively simple statement, because, at least I’ve found, that honoring myself can be very difficult to do. Being able to tune out the noise around you and listen to your own voice is so important and powerful. Only you know what you really want.
Photo credits: Pink Moon
For more from the Pretty When We Win series, visit the Entrepreneurship section of The Mocha Minimalist.