Getting to know Gloria : An Esthetician Who Connects Health, Wellness & Personal Development With Self-Care + Beauty To Help Others Feel Beautiful Inside And Out.
The first interview of 2019 is all about high vibrational beauty with the lovely Gloria from Ihloff Spa in Utica Square. And we have partnered with a great giveaway for one of lucky ducks too so be sure to catch the deets over on this Instagram post.
Gloria has always been propelled by whole body wellness. Years before health and wellness became the popular mainstay that it is today, Gloria understood what true health and beauty was about: balance, self-love and feeling connected to your own inner spiritual being. She is sharing one of her favorite vegan recipes, rituals, and magic with us today!!
Q and A with Gloria
– Born & raised?
Born in Maryland but my family moved to Tulsa before my first birthday.
-What inspired you to start in the skincare beauty industry?!
Struggling with my own painful acne took me down a path of health and self awareness. I hated my skin but as I learned to understand and respect that it was communicating with me, my skin cleared up. I'm so grateful for my journey and want to help other people discover what their skin ailments are trying to tell them.
-What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started?
I didn't realize how important SPF was to aging until I went to school to become an esthetician. I thought it was just to help prevent skin cancer. But it's actually the number one most effective thing you can do to stay youthful. Overtime accumulated sun exposure ages the skin by breaking down collagen, thickens and coarsens skin texture, causes wrinkles and brown age spots. It doesn't matter what age you are, start wearing SPF 30 or higher, everyday, reapplying several times, anywhere the sunlight hits!
-Food is medicine?! What does this mean to you?
With every meal or snack we are feeding our body with what can help it be healthy or with what will make us ill. A dairy free diet is great for me but might not work for the next person but I can 100% tell you nobody is benefitting from processed, fried or nutritionally deficient "food."
-Becoming your own healer?! Tell us all about this.
I came to this realization recently when people come in for a facial with something about their skin they want to heal. It's always connected with other parts of their life whether it's diet, lifestyle, or their mental health. People look for gurus that will give them to key to wellness, beauty and happiness but nobody, no matter how wise they are can give you that key. We always hold the truth within us. So relative to what I do, I can give people all the knowledge and tips but they know their skin better than I do. They know what feels good for them. It's up to them to see it through, I'm just the coach and the cheerleader.
-Connecting health, wellness, and personal development …how do we embrace this and get started?
I think it starts with just asking yourself what you want in life, getting a very clear picture of who you want to be. Then taking a look at the people you spend your time with, the thought patterns that curate how you perceive life, the activities you do and situations you find yourself in. Ask yourself if what you're doing and living now fits in with what you want. Sometimes all it takes is for one change to trickle down into other parts of your life. It could be changing your job, going back to school, starting a workout class, making a new friend. You just need to make a step towards what you want, and then your greatest version becomes more clear as you go. I believe a journey to a better self includes better physical health and better mental wellness. Our greatest tool as humans is our mind. Everything we've created and achieved was first conceptualized in the mind. Give yourself the permission to create yourself.
-Fave Aveda product and why?
I start every facial with the Beautifying Radiance Polish. I have my client massage it in their hands as we talk about their skin and I prepare the products for the treatment. It's the one product that works for everybody because everyone can use a body exfoliant and moisturizer that leaves their body feeling like silk. It's great to use before an event because your body will have that glow.
For the skin I think Aveda has done something great with the Hydrating Treatment Lotion. It's a liquid hydrator that you press into the skin with a cotton pad. It has sodium hylaluronate (a form of hyaluronic acid--a humectant) that easily penetrates the skin and holds on to water. Our skin requires a balance of oil for moisture and water for hydration. The Hydrating Treatment Lotion is great for all skin types and is applied before moisturizer. Extra tip* press it into your lips before lipstick to plump up the lines in your lips!
-Skin care routine???
Sometimes in the morning all I need is a cleansing micellar water, but if I need an actual cleanse I'll use a very gentle creamy one. A vitamin C serum, and layers of SPF.
I'm a big supporter of the double cleanse. First, an oil cleanser that breaks down makeup, spf and sebum. Then a gel cleanser for my combo-acne prone skin. Tone with salicylic acid. Eye Creme. And a light moisturizer.
-When you travel, what is in your beauty bag?!
SPF, Bb cream with SPF, concealer, liquid eyeliner, lipliner that I'll blend with my finger and then press onto my cheeks as a blush, mascara, a setting powder with additional SPF
-Your day off from work…what does that look like?! Take us with you!!
I haven't had to many of this past year! When I have a day off I enjoy the simple things. I think I got this from my mom but I really enjoy cleaning. There's a Pavlovian effect that takes place when I start a cycle of laundry, I get in detail clean mode and feel very productive.
– Cups of coffee or tea a day?
I love a nice soy lavender latte or green tea matcha latte equally.
– Currently reading?
A book from my grandparents collection called Quantum Touch by Richard Gordon.
– Currently listening to?
Jack White and Hanson, always.
– Favorite pizza place?
Roberta's in Bushwick Brooklyn! But locally, East Village Bohemian Pizza.
-Favorite thing in your closet?
A vintage velvet and fleece coat from Cheap Thrills in Tulsa, OK. It's so warm, has deep pockets, and reminiscent of Penny Lane from Almost Famous. I love that it's vegan fabrics and not leather and shearling.
– Hidden talent?
I play guessing games all the time and have freaked people out with being able to get the right answer on the first try. Noticing synchronicities and developing a good ear for hearing your intuition helps.
– If I didn’t do what I do, I would be a….
Travel agent or personal assistant
-Favorite Vegan Recipe that is easy enough for us to replicate?!
I make tofu scramble more than anything else. It's one of those recipes you can just use whatever you have on hand and it's so easy! But I just don't do well with measurements and just eyeball it.
1 block of Extra-Firm tofu (Trader Joe's is my favorite)
Vegan Butter or oil
Optional: Tomatoes, Bell Pepper, Mushrooms, Red Onion, Spinach or Baby Kale
Drain and press tofu. Crumble up in a bowl. Squeeze a lemon over it, sprinkle some turmeric and stir. Let it absorb the flavors while you prepare the vegetables. Sauté red onion, mushrooms, red bell pepper, whatever vegetables you have or sound good. Add the tomato. Then add the tofu. Sprinkle nutritional yeast over. Turn off the heat and add in handfuls of greens and toss so they are lightly wilted. Salt and Pepper. Serve with tortillas, toast or potato!
-What are you planning for the next few months?
Last year I was hustling, working too much and got burnt out. This year will be about balance for me. I want to travel more, move my body more, get better quality sleep. Basically just becoming a better human! Professionally, I have some content I want to share whether through Instagram, a newsletter or youtube. I've been teasing "10 Non-Negotiables for Skin Healing" for awhile so that will be first!
I am so fortunate to know Gloria! She has a way with words like no other and completely centers me. I love her facials and I love the recipes she shares on her Instagram.
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway and book a facial with Gloria ASAP. You will not regret it!