Tammy Fender’s interest in aesthetics began at an early age.
“I remember as a little girl watching my grandmother apply her face cream, a ritual that felt sacred somehow,” she recounts, when asked what life events impacted her choice to create her namesake holistic skincare line. As a young adult, she moved from watching her grandmother, to experimenting on herself and her cousins by using mud from a nearby creek to create cooling skin treatments.
After beginning work as an esthetician, Fender found that she was hard put to find products that aligned with her values. Fender incorporates her passion for holistic healing into her work, a practice that aims to address skin issues by treating every client as a whole person: physically, emotionally and spiritually. Using her knowledge of botany, aromatherapy, medicine and chemistry, Fender began to create her own formulas in her kitchen. Her homegrown organic botanical products were a great success, leading to the growth of Tammy Fender Holistic Skincare.
Fender leads by example, not only preaching her beliefs but living the way she prescribes to her clients. Her lifestyle puts into practice both theories about how to achieve beautiful skin through living a more authentic life and learnings from actual life experiences.
In celebration of Earth Day, Fender has agreed to share some insight into her own evolution and the underlying philosophies that continue to drive her practice and holistic skincare business.
EXAMINER: What is your experience with holistic medicine and how did you connect with it?
TAMMY FENDER: When I was younger, I lived on a small outer island in the Bahamas. The island had no doctor and I found myself so enthralled studying about holistic medicine and traditional remedies. Plus, I had many opportunities to actually employ these treatments. Once, when a friend was bleeding, we applied geranium—an amazing coagulant—and it worked incredibly well. The power of holistic medicine became real for me while living in this isolated place.
EXAMINER: You speak often in your blog about connection—with others and also building a connection with yourself. Please share a few instances in your life where you made a connection either with another person or yourself and it truly influenced you to evolve in some way.
FENDER: From my perspective, every day offers us the chance to connect. When we really allow ourselves to engage with others, truly listening and responding from the heart, that builds connection. It feels good when we see ourselves reflected in someone else. We all crave connection on the deepest levels, and that forms the basis of a joy-filled life. This became most clear to me was visiting Fiji. People there live with such simplicity and such abundance. The Fijians hold a deep belief that they are all related in some way, so everyone is treated as a brother or sister. They demonstrate a level of care that inspires every detail of living, whether presenting a meal, greeting a friend or connecting to the land. It’s all encompassing.
EXAMINER: Who inspires you and how?
FENDER: I’ve felt really inspired by Gwyneth Paltrow. Goop is such an elegantly curated project. It makes such a wide impact by introducing the fundamentals of healthy living to an incredibly broad audience.
EXAMINER: If you could go back in time, what would you do differently?
FENDER: [I would] trust my intuition more and fear less.
EXAMINER: It’s the end of your life. Tell your life story in 6 words.
FENDER: Life’s a gift. Love every blessing.
Find Tammy Fender Holistic Skincare in New York City at Saks Fifth Avenue and Blue Mercury.