If it’s broke, fix it. That’s the guiding principle behind Marie Kouadio Amouzame’s beauty brand, EADEM. Marie was sick of half-baked solutions for fading dark spots and healing hyperpigmentation. As a Black woman, her search for products that worked with her skin pointed to a severe lack of effective, targeted solutions. But as the most innovative entrepreneurs know, when the world doesn’t give you what you want, you create it yourself.
Marie understood that she wasn’t the only one who was frustrated. And so, what began as a personal pursuit quickly grew in scope. She and her co-founder, Alice Lin, decided to start from scratch and shift the beauty industry from the inside out. EADEM (pronounced ee-dem) is “made for path-forging women of color,” and with a range of products formulated for melanin-rich skin, the brand is delivering on its promise.
As a Black woman, discovering EADEM made me feel seen. Immediately, the language about stubborn scarring from breakouts to bug bites made me think, finally, someone gets it. From even just that initial scroll through the site (and, of course, uncovered through every return visit since), it was clear that EADEM is changing the game for so many skincare lovers like me. Because as someone who was tired of wasting money on products that weren’t made for my skin, I knew I deserved something better.
Revolutionizing the beauty industry is no small feat. But according to Marie, “If something needs to happen, I will find a way to make it happen.” This clear-mindedness is something I aspire to, and for Marie, it begins in the small moments—like her morning routine.
From spending intentional time with her daughter to calling her mother, Marie has found ways to stay grounded while building a business from the ground up. Her days may be hectic, but her mornings are full of matcha, music, and laughter. Read on to discover the secrets to her success (could it be that skipping the morning face wash plays a role?). Find out more, below.
What led you to launch a purpose-driven brand?
My co-founder Alice and I met 10 years ago while working together at Google. We both struggled to find clean and effective products that worked on our melanin-rich skin. We knew we were on to something when we spoke with countless women who were also facing the same issues.
We were seeking products that were not only safe to use but also proven to work on skin of color. Especially the issue we struggle with the most: hyperpigmentation. So we started EADEM, a skincare brand designed for our melanin-rich skin and unique perspectives.
What has been your biggest lesson over the past year?
It’s been a huge learning curve for us as newcomers in the beauty industry building a line designed for women of color. The one thing that really surprised Alice and me was the clinical trial process.
A majority of the time, tests for “hyperpigmentation” actually focus on age spots on older white skin—which are completely different! Our goal is to help post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation in melanin-rich skin without changing the overall skin tone. But putting the work in and doing something to help women like us find skincare that actually works has been so rewarding.
Marie Kouadio Amouzame’s Morning Routine
What does a typical day look like for you?
Mornings are always a bit chaotic at our house with two kids running around! I wake up at the same time as my two daughters, and I prepare breakfast as well as everyone’s lunch before I pack up our eldest daughter for school. Once the kids are all prepped for the day, I have some time to myself before I dive into emails.
Then I usually make myself a cup of matcha, which helps me put my best foot forward and get started on working on EADEM. We are completely self-funded, and Alice and I are the only full-time employees, so we wear a bunch of different hats. No two days are the same!
What time is your wake-up call?
I wake up around 7:00 a.m. every day, and I usually get about six hours of sleep if I’m lucky! Moms just learn how to survive with less sleep. Plus I have a restless brain.
What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
Give my daughters a kiss and spend a little quality time with them, reading or playing games before it’s time for breakfast.
Describe your morning beauty routine:
I start my morning beauty routine in the shower while listening to some music—usually the Afro Beats Essentials on Spotify. Everything is better paired with a good song!
Terra Tory Avocado Maychang Cube
I’m really loving Terra Tory’s Fresh Avocado soap right now. You can tell all their products are made with love.
La Roche-Posay Lipikar Body Lotion
I like to moisturize with the Lipikar Body Lotion by La Roche-Posay. I was born in Côte d’Ivoire but raised in Paris, so I’m always drawn to classic French pharmacy products.
Dew Dream Hydrating Makeup Removing Cleansing Balm
I then splash my face with water, or I use the Dew Dream Hydrating Makeup Removing Cleansing Balm, but I try not to wash my face in the morning too often as it dries my skin out.
Milk Marvel Dark Spot Serum
I apply 3 drops of our Milk Marvel Dark Spot Serum to damp skin and massage it in. Our serum has really transformed my skin, and the texture is just perfect.
EADEM Cloud Cushion
I follow with our new light-as-air Cloud Cushion cream to lock in moisture.
Innisfree Daily UV Defense Sunscreen
For years, I’ve been devoted to the Innisfree Daily UV Defense Sunscreen.
Ami Colé Skin-Enhancing Tint
I finish with one of my favorite products right now, the Ami Colé Skin-Enhancing Tint to help camouflage my dark circles (I’m always a little sleep deprived).
I’m usually out of time at this point and need to jump on email, so I tie my hair up in a high ponytail and call it a day!
What do you eat for breakfast?
I either make matcha or a simple orange blossom tea, paired with my favorite croissants from La Bicyclette. They’re the best in town. When I have more time, I make avocado toast with fried eggs and this chili crunch from Momofuku on top. It’s quick but so flavorful.
What will we always find in your refrigerator?
Miso! It goes on everything.
What are your favorite books?
Right now I am reading La Plus Secrète Mémoire des hommes, by Mohamed Mbougar Sarr. He’s a writer from Senegal and, just like my family, a French immigrant. He’s the first African to win the Goncourt, France’s most prestigious prize in literature. I don’t know him, but I am immensely proud of him!
What’s always on your nightstand?
I try to take extra care of my legs and feet during the cold months. So I always have a jar of Cetaphil plus a tube of Kerasal in my nightstand drawer. Combining the two actually works! My skin gets very dry during the winter, so they’re a lifesaver.
Do you work out in the morning?
I try to go for a 30-minute walk. That really helps clear my head and get me ready for the day. Or I walk on the treadmill. I’m doing the 12/3/30 workout (12 inclination at 3 mph for 30 minutes). It’s good cardio without being too crazy.
What’s your daily uniform?
I always go for effortless but refined, sticking to my French style. I cherish good quality, high-end pieces that are staples.
I like an Acne Studios leather jacket, with an Anine Bing t-shirt, worn over H&M jeans. Then I add some lipstick to make it cohesive. If I go out for dinner, I’ll add a pair of statement earrings. I really like the brand Monica Sordo, or I opt for a red lipstick.
What do you do every day to live a more joyful life?
Playing with my daughters as if I am a 4-year-old myself! We do this every single day. We roll on the floor, we scream, we laugh. They both climb on my back, and I jump around while listening to some music. This happens either before or after dinner.
If you could pin your success down to one thing, what would that be?
There’s always a way. If something needs to happen, I will find a way to make it happen.
I never leave the house without: A snack! I always have something to eat in my bag. It’s a habit I got from childhood because when I was 3 years old, I decided that I couldn’t stand the idea of breakfast. My mom would always stuff my bag with things to eat around 10 a.m.
If there were more hours in the day, I would: Sleep 🙂
Healthiest morning habit: Calling my mom.
Worst morning habit: Skipping breakfast!
One thing I want to be known for is: Being here for my friends and my family.
The book I always recommend: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck. My old boss recommended it, and I learned a lot from it.
The top trait you need to succeed in life is: Being yourself.
Bath or shower? I love baths, but given the time I have, I have become a shower person. My go-to is The Bodywash by Necessaire. I am obsessed with the Sandalwood scent. It reminds me of candles my parents had growing up. Since I live on a different continent, it always gives me a sense of grounding.
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