Demee Koch is a serial entrepreneur with a solid experience of 21 years in the health and beauty industry. With DE MOI BY DEMEE KOCH, she launched a Switzerland-based, purpose-driven business for cosmeceutical products. The social and ecologically friendly beauty brand develops high quality and results driven cosmetic products with active ingredients, made with principles of honesty and fairness. Demee is an advocate for inclusivity and women empowerment, and is hands-on involved in charity works. Next to timely events based charities, she supports the Lumad tribe in her home country the Philippines with their scholarship program for education and level up needs, as well as local female business entrepreneurship programs.
Since 2005, Demee shares her knowledge in conscious entrepreneurship as a trusted business advisor and director with successful global brands in the fields of sports, fashion and beauty. Amongst others she is on the Board of Advisors for the no 1 boxing equipment SPARBAR. In 2019, Demee received the award as GLOBAL FWN100 2019 MOST INFLUENTIAL FILIPINA IN THE WORLD at the 16th Global Filipina Leadership Summit in in Paris.
Where did the idea for De Moi come from?
It came from my frustration to find ethical products, not all of them are working, you have to buy so many things when in fact there could be multi-functional products. People are busy, we want something that works, from a brand that we can trust.
I started my career in the beauty & luxury industry two decades ago in Dubai, and since finishing my MBA in Zurich, I run personal grooming concepts in Switzerland.
Grooming has always been a part of my life – I love taking care of my nails, hair, eyes & eyelashes and skin. When you look after yourself, that is a basic act of love. It is important to fill ourselves with self-love, in order to give back. I truly find joy in making people look good. To touch lives, to make people happy. I have one-on-one interaction with my clients, and gain insights through personal experience and real people. During my work I discovered that there is space in the beauty industry for products that truly deliver results, and are produced highly ethically. This drove me to start developing conscious beauty products.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I am blessed to live in a house at a lake, and I start my days with my gratitude practice on the dock overlooking nature. My mornings start early, since I have two little boys that need to be prepared to go to school, and even before that I want to manage my messages. After dropping them off, my work day starts in my office and salon in Switzerland, where I go through the schedule of drop-in clients with my beauty experts and manage the development and production process of the DE MOI products. I juggle between my own business, and my consultancy works. During the day I take at least 30 minutes consulting and mentoring entrepreneurs from my network. I keep in touch with friends in between – Me-time is important. In the evening when I come home I try to sit with my boys, to find out what happens to them, and start relaxing.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I have an international network of scientists, doctors and manufacturers which I get in contact with for developing either niche products in the beauty industry, or creating truly enriched products that are otherwise on the market only by brands that would hold back with ingredients, e.g. selling active ingredients in different products to make people have to buy more. I challenge my network, no compromises, “there has to be a way to create this one efficient, sustainable product”, but I feel they love it ^^ The world becomes so demanding. You want to make sure that if you can make it efficient, you make it efficient. We want to make the best out of our time. The manufacturers I work with align with my value of creating honest and cruelty-free products, which is at the top of my priority list.
What’s one trend that excites you?
I am excited to see that giving back and paying forward becomes a more natural choice for entrepreneurs. I am highly dedicated to my charity work, and more and more people from my business network reach out to me to find out how they can contribute to a cause that is close to them, and how to dedicate their time, money and knowledge to a mission long term.
I am also highly excited to see that consumer behaviour is changing dramatically. People are more conscious now, there is more transparency out there. We (finally) seem to truly understand that we hold real power – purchasing power. We decide which brands we support by buying their products. And people are starting to look closer. I support this trend by making consumers aware of the power they hold, which ultimately forces brands to think and act honest, ethical and sustainable.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
Rather than an habit it’s being a mompreneur really. Right after giving birth, my multitasking skills were dramatically enhanced. I believe women are best when they tap into their natural superpowers such as intuition and creativity.
Habit-wise, my passion and my love in connecting people enhances my network. When you do something with good intentions, it comes back around.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Don’t compete with your future self. There is no need to hurry – you give your best in everything that you do, but there’s always a right time for everything. Because when you truly go after what your heart desires, you will have it all – at some point.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I strongly believe that everything is possible. It is just a matter of time, cost and patience. But in principle, everything is indeed possible if you put your mind and heart in it, and you involve the right people.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Embracing the non-glamour part of the journey. Being an entrepreneur in the beauty industry and a mom is not always pretty. It gets messy. But because I love what I do, I always manage to make it fun and sometimes even fabulous even when I’m all drained and exhausted.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
I am a natural networker, and I always do things with sincerity and passion. I love meeting and connecting people for the sake of it. I don’t come with an agenda. This way, my network is constantly growing organically. And I’m blessed to have the right people in my network to pursue my business ideas and goals with.
In terms of business, I implement a focus strategy where I evaluate the beauty industry and develop for the niche of conscious beauty products.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
I have had countless failures. Anything that happens to us is either a lesson or a blessing. I am navigating challenges, and don’t see failures but experiences.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I would love to see a transparency platform for brands out there that provide consumers with detailed information of the sustainability and social activities of the brands they are consuming.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
For $100 you can feed a family in a 3rd world country for a month. I generally give more, and I consider it the best way to spend $100.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
I got quite a lot of energy, and I love things to move fast, and to communicate fast. Whatsapp is my go-to tool to stay in contact with everyone in my network, and to exchange ideas with my team right away.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“The things you can only see when you slow down” by Haemin Sunim, a Buddhist monk born in Korea and educated in the United States. It changes your perspective on life really. Everything that is happening right now is not permanent. And everything you do has an impact. It helps me to become more conscious in everything I do.
What is your favorite quote?
“If you foolishly ignore beauty, then you will soon find yourself without it.“ – Frank Lloyd Wright
Beauty might be an overused, often times demonised or misunderstood word. Yet, it is something we want, even need. For what is life without it?
· Giving back and paying forward needs to be a natural choice for entrepreneurs
· I believe women are best when they tap into their natural superpowers such as intuition and creativity.
· When you do something with good intentions, it comes back around.
· Everything you do has an impact
Carlyn runs the day-to-day publishing operation here at ideamensch and interacts with our awesome customers and entrepreneurs. She is likely editing this with a cat on her lap.