By Johanna Ferreira
Frank Ocean’s mom, Katonya Breux is the secret behind the singer’s baby-clear complexion. In 2016, she launched UnSun Cosmetics, a collection of mineral tinted sunscreens for darker skin tones that leaves skin radiant and without the unflattering white cast most SPFs leave on melanated skin.
The brand originally launched with their Mineral Tinted Face Sunscreen and has since expanded to a Hand Cream SPF 15 and their Face and Body Highlighter SPF 15 available in Golden Angel and Bronze Goddess. The original Mineral Tinted Face Sunscreen is formulated with natural ingredients like shea butter and coconut oil that hydrates the skin as much as it protects.
“I started the brand because I needed a sunscreen that was clean, non-irritating and did not leave me looking like a friendly ghost,” Breux tells thirteen lune. “My philosophy is that we are confident enough to be our true selves without apology, beauty pushes through the thunder in the clouds. Beauty is so much more than a good eyeliner!”
The LA-based beauty founder admits to having always swore by sunscreen since her early twenties. It’s the very reason why she can very easily be confused for Ocean’s sister. But what began as a skincare step to protect against aging, eventually became a real health concern. Breux learned that even her brown skin could be prone to skin cancer if she didn’t take the proper precautions. As a result, Unsun isn’t just about leaving melanted complexions with a glow that’s free of chalky SPF residue, it’s also about protecting lives.
Get to Know – Katonya Breux
Where are you from originally?
I was born in New Orleans, grew up in Los Angeles, moved back to NOLA for college and stayed a long while. I’ve been back home in Los Angeles since 2013.
What were some of your first memories of beauty growing up? What are some early beauty influences?
My early memories are of course, of my mom. I remember my mother always having long eyelashes and looking gorgeous. Unfortunately, she passed away at 50 so I didn’t get to see her age into her beauty but I still remember eyelashes and face masks. I grew up in LA and will always be grateful for learning that beauty and comfort can indeed go hand-in-hand.
What does self-care look like in your life?
Self-care means everything to me. Before anything, the thing we must care for most is our mind and our bodies. I meditate daily and make sure to get body work monthly, be it reiki or a massage.
What inspires you most about the beauty landscape and industry today?
I am so inspired by the diversity that I’m seeing everywhere today! I’m also incredibly inspired by the movement towards clean beauty and responsible packaging.
What has been the biggest challenge in starting your business?
My biggest challenge was in meeting the growing demand and being self-funded.
What would you like to see more of in the beauty industry when it comes to diversity and inclusivity?
I’d like to see more representation in brick and mortars, but not in a separate area allocated for diversity, but right alongside the other brands that have been there for years.