She has taken sheet- masking to a whole new level with her ‘gemclinical’ hydrogel masks that are infused with healing reiki energy for maximum beneficial effects. Viki Shah meets Lejla Cas, founder of KNESKO to know more about her brand that blends science with spirituality.
HOW DID KNESKO HAPPEN?
I’ve been in the industry for 19 years and have been a Reiki master for 16 and have been doing energy work during most of my beauty career. My job involved a lot of travel, using aesthetics and make up on different clients. I grew up in Australia and then I moved to Los Angeles in 2007; during my career I was always working with women helping them to look good, feel good, most definitely feel good and I love that; I’m a healer at heart and when my clients feel good about themselves, it makes me happy and reiki has been a part of my life, always. I love chakra healing and meditation and believe in energy; energy is really important and so when I’m positive my life always flows better; when I am in a state of gratitude, life gets better, so that’s kind of how I always live my life.
There was a period of time when I kind of lost my balance, I was overworked, tired, stressed. In a single year I was in 40 states all over USA, literally living in hotels and that was the time where I could have crashed. I went deep and thought about what’s important to me and realized that no matter how hard I work, I always must take care of my health. I saw thousands of stressed-out clients who said the same thing- that they felt they had no time for themselves. I suddenly realized that I felt the same way! I knew then it was time to start following the advice I had been giving for years: I needed to find Balance to give my relationships, family and myself the same level of respect and care that I put into my professional life. So, I made a few simple lifestyle changes. I began masking and meditating in my hotel rooms after long flights. I delved deeper into my energy healing work using crystals and Reiki to align my Chakras. And it worked. With my heart open and my mind at rest, I realized that not only did I feel better, but I actually looked better. It was then that I discovered what would be KNESKO’s fundamental truth: beautiful skin starts from within.
I even do that till this day; when I travel in this crazy schedule in hotel rooms, I always buy masks and do like a bubble bath and meditation and do energy work. I would always buy different brands before I started mine, I mean I still do, because it’s an important path of an R&D aspect but I would always buy brands and try to find that serenity and inner balance in a hotel room. When I kind of crashed, it was like a tipping point in life and I decided I really want to work for myself! I wanted to create a brand that promotes self-love and self-care, I’m the best at making other people feel good, if other people are happy, I’m happy. When I decided to form KNESKO it was really from the premise that I wanted to create a niche brand that promotes that message and of course, is for someone who loves masking! So, we are a perfect blend of science and spirituality, all our products are clinically active, so we have a proprietary technology called GEMCLINICAL that is all about infusing gems and making them clinically active to help balance different chakras in the body.
SO, YOU INFUSE HEALING ENERGY IN THOSE GEMS?
The 24-karat gold mineral mask helps to balance the third eye chakra, which is the center of your intuition, trusting the gut feeling. We have mantras with each
Collection which also have step-by-step instructions; so, this is all about trusting your intuition so meditating on that when you mask with KNESKO is very effective. A lot of us are very intuitive like “oh, I wish I trust my gut” we always know the answer but we need the courage to still have faith and trust it to go ahead with it, so I have to say to people if you are trying to make up your mind just try the gold mask and meditate and let the answer come through! And then we have the diamond radiance, the brightening line, which is all about balancing the crown chakra which is the center of and connected with your higher self. With KNESKO all products are charged with Reiki energy, as a reiki master I make it very personal; each time the new batch comes to the warehouse from the lab, I shut the warehouse down for 2 days and do energy work on the products and this comes as a healing therapy to my clients.
SO, IS IT LIKE YOU DO REIKI WITH THE PRODUCTS?
Yeah, I charge all my products with reiki, even my packaging which I don’t really want to promote too much coz’ its more sacred, has the chakra symbol engraved at the bottom of the box which means place the power of the universe here, so we recharge my products with healing Reiki energy so the moment the
customer receives their package, their healing begins. As you embark on your journey of self-care with KNESKO’s products, you are immersed in nurturing energy, both physically and spiritually. We do the same thing with the jade rollers and if I have one person that’s open to receiving it, I feel that my job is done! If not, the products are anyways made using gemclinical technique, so you are anyway going to get the skincare results if that is all you want. So, we are just that perfect balance of science and spirituality.
WHAT ABOUT PEARLS? YOU HAVE USED DIAMOND AND GOLD, BUT YOU HAVEN’T USED PEARLS IN THE PRODUCTS?
We have 2 new collections, which are not available yet in UAE, but we have black pearl detox and rose quartz antioxidant masks. We have a radiance gold collection for brightening so this is going to be perfect for summer; it has brightening, hydrating, energizing properties and we have masks for eyes, lips, face, neck; something for everyone and people can buy individual lip or eye masks or the entire set. We usually advise the use of the entire pack as a ritual, so the best value is getting the full packs. I don’t see masking as a luxury, it’s part of my lifestyle. It’s taking my time out! I tell people, whenever you need to find that inner center, inner balance, inner peace to go within, whatever that looks like for you, masking is just a means to get there. Moreover, the mask is heavy, one of my masks has one bottle of serum in it so you cannot go and clean dishes while masking, it forces you to lie down and let it take effect, you feel its cooling therapeutic effect, allowing for that perfect me time to reflect and rejuvenate!
IN MOST OF THE MASKS, AFTER A COUPLE OF MINUTES OF USING THEM THE COOLNESS GOES OFF
The material we use, hydrogel is bio-degradable and has been used in medicine for the burn victims. It helps the skin heal and grow, so for us, it’s just very refreshing especially here in Dubai, the weather is dry and hot along with dehydration from the constant air-conditioning. So, this is really going to help hydrate your skin, its full of collagen and hyaluronic acid.
WHAT WOULD YOU CALL A PERFECT KNESKO SKIN?
First of all we are all about promoting youthfulness at all ages, we even have children using our masks to counter sunburn! For me a perfect KNESKO skin is a youthful skin with an inner confidence, when you are happy you look younger, so perfect KNESKO skin is reflected from the inside out. If you’re depressed and stressed, no matter how your complexion looks, it is going to show. It is not about wrinkles it is about wearing your skin with confidence and being comfortable in your own skin and you will radiate youthfulness no matter how old you are.
WHAT IS YOUR PERSONAL WELLNESS MANTRA?
Gratitude, Gratefulness, Health and Love. I really have a few, I guess! I think as women, we are very hard on ourselves and we give so much so it’s about taking back. I have a 2-year-old baby, so between KNESKO and her, I’m very concerned that I’m present for her like I’m not just going to work and have a nanny to take care of her. I have a nanny of course but I have these little rituals in the mornings with her before my nanny comes and when I miss that I’m not happy. I’ve been very busy on this trip so when I catch up tomorrow, I may have some guilt and I have noticed with moms and women in general that we have that guilt like, I have too many people to take care of ! But for me, it is like I must love myself so that I can love others. That’s a very important one and that’s where KNESKO comes in. As I mentioned earlier, this idea came to me when I kind of crashed and lost my balance in life and did not care for myself as much as I should have! We need to take care of ourselves first to be able to take care of others.
WHAT MESSAGE WOULD YOU GIVE TO THE PEOPLE HERE ABOUT HOW TO USE BEAUTY PRODUCTS AND HOW TO INTEGRATE THEM WITH MINDFULNESS AND WHY IS IT SO IMPORTANT IN MODERN TIMES?
By not looking at it with a fear factor, like gosh! everybody’s telling me I’m ageing I must use this and that; there is so much more to life than just ageing, it is more about graceful acceptance. No one is going to escape that. We are all going to age so might as well have a good time, nurture yourself, do the best you can to maintain your skin and then it’s going to become more like a ritual, your own little skin care ritual that will make you happy and you actually enjoy it! A lot of people think, how do you have the time to do this? And I’m like this is my time out, I love spreading serum down my body. It’s for ME.
WHAT IS YOUR BEAUTY RITUAL LIKE?
It’s pretty simple, I’m a masker so I mask twice a week because I’ve been on a trip and it gets very dry, but my beauty ritual is just gentle cleanse, exfoliate twice a week, I’m not a big fan of over stimulating my skin, so I don’t do a lot of peels and all of that, as close as to that natural state that it should be in. I love facial oil, serums, I’m a big serum fan and then just very simple creams. I always change, I don’t have favorite brands apart from KNESKO. I’m always researching, I’m a little different because for me putting on a cream is like going to work sometimes it is about knowing a product, like what’s the texture, what’s the smell like? I’m an Oil person and love oil, hair oil, face oils… Again, I do not use any chemical products and do not prefer heavy fragrances.
WHAT IS YOUR KNESKO FAVORITE PRODUCT?
I don’t like to limit myself, I don’t like to limit my customers, so the way I explain how my brand works is, think of KNESKO as a jewelry box. What happens when you look inside your jewelry box? What do you feel like today? I would look through inside and see how I feel and choose the therapy accordingly….
KNESKO masks were created by Lejla Cas, a celebrity skincare specialist. Fans of KNESKO include Chrissy Teigen, Madonna, Jessica Alba and Lady Gaga so you know they are going to be premium products that deliver results. The masks have natural collagen gel, and serum infused with precious gemstones and minerals (think diamonds and gold). They are a spa treatment on the go and the philosophy of the brand is to make time for you – to disconnect and use the time masking to recharge and rejuvenate. It›s all about self-care and masking as a ritual, not just a quick fix. Available at Bloomingdales, Ounass and select luxury spas. | www.knesko.com