Out of the Clouds
October 18, 2022, Anne V Muhlethaler

S3:E01 Kim Walls

Clean beauty entrepreneur Kim Walls of Furtuna Skin

Kim Walls is a beauty industry innovator, fourth-generation entrepreneur and the CEO and co-founder of Furtuna Skin. Her work in luxury skincare has been featured across the media from Vogue, Allure to CBS and many more. She says that her favorite honour was being named one of the  “9 Wonder Women of the Natural Industry” by New Hope Media for leadership leveraging technology in early-stage brands to help them grow from concept past their first $1MM.

The charismatic executive shares her story with host Anne Muhlethaler, starting with how as a teenager she worked with her dad -— himself the man behind niche luxury skincare brand Epicuren — helping with packaging and logistics. Early on, the second-generation health & wellness expert realised that anything we put on our skin is going to be absorbed by our body, begging the question: what do we want in our body?

Kim goes on to explain how this empowered her to continue working in the natural beauty space, where she honed her skills as a brand strategist, product development innovator and retail and e-commerce expert. Though she also tells Anne how her career felt more like a jungle gym than a straightforward corporate ladder.

Kim also describes how she met her business partner, Agatha Luczo, and the touching, or even romantic, story behind their latest project, the natural beauty brand Furtuna Skin. Anne and Kim discuss its Sicilian roots, before talking about plant foraging, plant circadian rhythms, ultrasound technology and why we should trust the power of nature. 

Considered a clean beauty pioneer, Kim shares how much she cares about community, safe beauty, and the environment. With the work they are doing at Furtuna, Kim hopes to inspire many other entrepreneurs to embrace a holistic strategy that could take us towards a regenerative lifestyle. 

A joyful, in-depth and very inspiring interview. 

Selected links from episode

You can find Kim Walls on Instagram @KimWallsLA – https://www.instagram.com/kimwallsla/

On LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/kimwalls/

Discover Furtuna Skin at https://www.instagram.com/furtunaskin/ 

or on their website – https://www.furtunaskin.com/

The No Doubt Song ‘Just a girl’ – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PHzOOQfhPFg

Kim’s father’s brand, Epicuren – https://epicuren.com/

Steve Luczo – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_J._Luczo

Bona  Fortuna olive oil – https://bonafurtuna.com/

The James Baldwin quote – https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/512849-literature-is-indispensable-to-the-world-the-world-changes-according

The bi-phase moisturising oil Due Alberi by Furtuna Skin – https://www.furtunaskin.com/collections/best-sellers/products/due-alberi-biphase-moisturizing-oil?variant=32361045852195

Jane McGonigal’s book, Imaginable – https://janemcgonigal.com/



The song Talk Love by Sonya Spence – https://open.spotify.com/track/0fmzrJ1ibKngaxB5w0v75L

The book How I built This by Guy Raz – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48930275-how-i-built-this

Full episode transcript

Anne Muhlethaler (00:00:05):

Hi, hello, bonjour and Namaste. This is Outta The Cloud, a podcast at the crossroads between business and mindfulness. And I am your host Anne Muhlethaler today. My guest is Kim Walls. Kim is a beauty industry innovator and she works in the natural or clean beauty space. It so happens that Kim is a fourth generation entrepreneur and a second generation health and wellness expert.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:00:40):

I found Kim’s passion to be infectious and I really relished the stories that she told me. In particular how she started working with her dad after he founded his own niche luxury skincare brand when she was a teenager. Kim also tells me the wonderful story behind the brand that she co-founded and that she’s currently the CEO of called Fortuna Skin and has a really wonderful, even romantic origin story that go all the way to a beautiful space in the middle of nowhere in Sicily. So you really wanna hang around for that. Then we get into the thick of it and I ask her questions about what’s special, not just about the work that she’s doing at Furtuna Skin, but also what do we need to consider if we are interested in natural beauty and why that matters. We also talk about the key role of technology to help extract the best that nature has to offer. We talk about foraging and how important it is where possible for us to take what is in excess rather than depleting the environment. I greatly enjoyed my conversation with Kim and I’m really excited about bringing you this really fascinating, joyful, and I think really inspirational interview with a real expert and pioneer in her field. So here we go. Enjoy.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:02:05):

So Kim, thank you so much for being here. Yes, <laugh>, welcome to Out of the Clouds.

Kim Walls (00:02:13):

Well thank you. You’re most welcome. And I couldn’t be more delighted to be here.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:02:17):

Thank you. So, as you may have heard before and discovered for yourself, I love to start the podcast by asking my guests to tell their story. Instead of talking about what we do, I like to talk about who we are a little bit more and I love to find out where people are from. And I know already a little bit about <laugh>, where you’re from, but I would love for you to tell us that story. So Kim, who are you?

Kim Walls (00:02:46):

<laugh> literally probably the hardest question anybody could ever ask anyone. Let’s start, it’s a constant journey. Exactly. To solve that question. Well, I would start by saying I’m just a girl. When I first heard that question, I thought of the no doubt song. Like just a girl in the world. <laugh> Doing my best.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:03:06):

I appreciate that. So

Kim Walls (00:03:07):

I’ll start with that. I grew up in many, many places, moved a lot as as a child and had, I think my favorite part of sort of that growing up story was my parents were only together long enough to love me into an existence, I like to say. So they split up very early and my mom went and found and made a home on a 30 acre ranch in Idaho and my dad stayed in Hollywood. So I split time between like the lights and celebrities and the this and that of LA and the absolute country where I literally rode my horse to school as transportation. So

Anne Muhlethaler (00:03:43):

That was pretty, I heard that story. <laugh> <laugh>. So I heard you on another podcast and honestly I was actually walking the, the brand new puppy. I remember what street corner I was at. I laughed so hard. You rode your pony to school?

Kim Walls (00:04:01):

Yep, yep, yep. My mom and I would she’d she’d, we’d ride there together and then she’d lead the horse back and come back for me on the horse.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:04:09):


Kim Walls (00:04:10):

My best friends at the time, they didn’t have horses, they had lots of goats but no horses and her father built a little paddock for me so that when I could, when I went over to their house, which was about a mile away, I’d park the pony

Anne Muhlethaler (00:04:23):

<laugh>. It was funny cause during that interview, the girl, I can’t remember her name, she was like, Oh my god, I’m so jealous. And so was I. My mom was absolutely against me getting on a horse for many reasons. And some of my friends, cause I grew up in this Swiss countryside, they came to visit me on horseback. That was like, what? Well, we didn’t go to school on the horse, but I appreciate the lifestyle

Kim Walls (00:04:46):

<laugh>. Yeah, it was pretty cool. It was pretty cool. So that was all very formative that in the winters in Idaho or for the, in preparation for the winters, we would literally can fruit and you know, freeze things and kind of go through this ’cause the winters in Idaho are very, very rough. The weather’s extreme. I was up on the Canadian border, so super hot summers, super cold winters and LA was just completely different and I think they were both extremely formative probably and then lots of other moving lived in many other places. Oregon, Washington, Pennsylvania, New York and existing in sort of living in all those different places kind of gave me a chance to see how many people live, kind of incorporate things that I liked and admired into what I would call my aspirational self <laugh>. So it was pretty neat. And then on the skincare side or the work side, sort of the defining pieces there were, my father was an entrepreneur in skincare in the industry.

Kim Walls (00:05:42):

And so I grew up, you know, packing boxes in the garage, putting labels on the eye creams before there was enough scale to have machines do it. And kind of that progression of something into a global business and just living around it felt is the closest thing I could say to an apprenticeship. Just seeing it all. So that was very formative and I learned later I studied anthropology with a minor in art history and religious studies. So I, it didn’t go into the educational piece there that was really just kind of following my passions and interests. But I always had the, the skincare and the business and that sort of aspect. And I found it very useful when I started working and found that actually I did love that and I did wanna do that and I couldn’t help myself from starting businesses because I learned very early that that was a way toward a pathway to kind of doing the things I wanted to do. Like after college I wanted to move to San Francisco and I needed to find a way to have the money to be able to do that. So I was like, okay, well I’ll go start a business there. And it happened to be in the skin care industry. So it became like my tool to be able to follow dreams and passions and interests.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:06:51):

That’s magic. It’s so far from my lived experience because I think that there’s, people listening may be completely disagreeing with me, but I feel like there’s something very particular as well about the American entrepreneurship spirit. And I find that there’s a few friends of mine, whether in the east or the west coast who were already themselves, like you budding entrepreneurs at an age where I wouldn’t even known what it was like to build a business. So I read that you are a fourth generation entrepreneur, is that correct?

Kim Walls (00:07:34):

Is in the family? Oh my was different versions of it. I think much earlier and especially hundreds of years ago people didn’t use the term entrepreneur And in fact when I was young an entrepreneur was a dreamer and something to be looked down upon. So there’s definitely sort of a, a shift in kind of how people relate to words and aspirations. But so my father we already talked about and then my grandfather on my father’s side, uh, was a philatelist, which is <laugh> a word that most people don’t know. He was such an extraordinary philatelist that he was inducted into the Philately Hall of Fame. Wow. For philatelists I think it is a lot. It’s a stamp collector. Yeah, that’s what they do <laugh>. Wow. And so he started a business, he developed an incredible knowledge of global history and especially in relation to wars and significant moments in politics because that’s what’s commemorated on stamps.

Kim Walls (00:08:32):

And so as one of the world’s foremost authorities on stamps, he knew the stories behind all of them and started a shop where, you know, a classic shop with coins and stamps and all of these things. But then also a consultancy before Google you needed people who had historical knowledge and reference points and all of that. So he started working as a consultant for people like President Eisenhower to help them think through war strategies and that kind of thing. So that was his story. And then before him was a brewmaster, made great beer Germany <laugh>.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:09:08):


Kim Walls (00:09:09):

That Yeah. And ultimately sold that business when you know, you carried it over to the United States and sold it here.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:09:16):

Mm. I’d love to ask you now and what did you wanna be when you were a little girl?

Kim Walls (00:09:21):

I have no idea.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:09:23):

<laugh>. Okay.

Kim Walls (00:09:24):

I really, I mean I loved everything. I think it’s probably one of my faults and also one of my benefits. I just, I’m interested in everything <laugh>. There was a while I wanted to be an architect. There was a while I wanted to be professional singer, of course worst voice in history. But does that need to stop you? I know really just anything, everything.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:09:48):


Kim Walls (00:09:48):

to be in the world.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:09:52):

That sounds great. So at some point I’d love to find out from you, when did you make the, not say the turn, but where did you focus on clean beauty in your entrepreneurial

Kim Walls (00:10:07):

Journey? Yeah, it was always present from when I first started looking at formulas, which was for my dad’s company. I never didn’t look at them because I think it had to do with the way I was raised. My mother was a hardcore, call it a naturalist. She only believed in fresh food, like really fresh food and only believed in natural medicines unless it was an emergency and sort of she lived that way. And so it was, when it comes to sort of self care just integrated into my experience. And then I think when somebody knows what we’ll call it, I don’t know the freshest egg tastes like, and then taste something that’s not, you can’t not experience the difference in taste and flavor in pleasure and eating it kind of. So it started with food and kind of the difference between what people in LA were eating and what people in the country who were eating really beautiful, freshly grown food ate.

Kim Walls (00:11:05):

And then when I started understanding that I was always really interested in nutrition and looking at skincare and knowing, I guess my dad had a, he had a skin disease called vitiligo and that was his impetus for starting his company Epicuren. So his perspective, which I got to experience, was very medically oriented. It had a lot to do with how the body works and body chemistry and ingredients. And so when I started learning about that and how important the skin is in terms of what it takes in and what it gets out, it was just kind of obvious that anything you put on your skin is going to go into your body. And, and then begging the question, what do you want in your body, <laugh>. So from the beginning I is is the true answer from the very first time time I ever formulated anything. Mm. Which was about 30 years ago.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:11:56):

Yeah, that’s fascinating. Cause I feel like when I was listening to other interviews of you where you talked about again what you put on your skin and I remember several examples that you gave that were very interesting. <laugh>, I naturally went back in my own history to like the first time that I bought myself like a good cream and I was 20 something. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And I remember that it was est and I remember what it smelled like. And the first thing that the cream was fine, I did not respond well to this overwhelming scent cuz I, I think that perhaps is something that doesn’t suit me. And I never asked myself. My dad was a doctor, but then we never really thought about what went on our skin. However, being half French, my mother was always very concerned about what was coming in, what, what food we would be having and it’s quality as well. So I’m fascinated to realize that it took me many years before we started paying attention. Yeah. So would you give me like a little overview of how you went from that time 30 years ago until, uh, starting Fortuna Skin, um, the brands that wonderful company that you’re the CEO of?

Kim Walls (00:13:15):

Yeah, thank you. It is a beautiful brand for sure. It was, it was a jungle gym. I think one of my favorite descriptions of of a career is not the corporate ladder, but the jungle gym can go over here for a while, go over there, you see which bar you can reach, fall down, climb up the other side. That whole visual for me is really powerful when it comes to thinking about my own career and many others of people who really find the place that they love ultimately to work in. So all kinds of different things within health and wellness. Always health and wellness. One version or another. And the late nineties it was internet startups in the early two thousands it was baby skincare because I was just having my babies, my, they’re now 19 and 17, so long gone are those days.

Kim Walls (00:14:03):

But it, I always just followed what I was really interested in. I’m a research challenge but can absolute junkie for data and research. So when I get interested in something, I tend to just go deep, get my hands on anything I can, especially original research and read and read and read. End up translating that information into ideas that then I try to parlay into life. And since I, I do love working. I love working very much. I mean the better part of those Idaho days was growing up on a farm and you know, what people say about <laugh> work and farmers <laugh>.

Kim Walls (00:14:40):

I loved work. I work hard. That’s awesome. And so trying to <laugh> translate that information and that intellectual simulation into something I could do every day was kind of how, how all of it happened. How everything in my life has, has unfolded or pretty much everything. So different types of businesses but always in health and wellness until the last one that I founded myself was in the baby space. And then I went to help a another entrepreneur, a woman who, a young woman who founded a business in the early Instagram days. Really it was the MySpace days when she started and then did Facebook and then the Instagram. And she had all kinds, she had an incredible brand and incredible mission, huge drive, really just a, just an impressive person. But her business was kind of falling apart around her cuz she didn’t have any big experience. So we were, I guess you could call it, matched by somebody who’d been a mentor to me and on the board of, and an investor and a brand I had previously founded. Mm.

Kim Walls (00:15:42):

And so I spent three years with her helping to put a business infrastructure in to match the, you know, I try to match at least the beauty of the brand that she created so that it could go on and thrive. So that was, did that for three years. And then right when that was closing down, winding down, we, we were working on selling it. And as that was happening, I met Aha and <laugh> Spark flu you might say. So she had, you know, this incredible story and also passion and drive. I guess that’s consistent for me. I love to be around people with passion and drive around wanting to create a skincare oil out of the oil from she and her husband’s farm. And ly she had been telling her pediatrician, a man named Dr. Allen Green, who was again, uh, medical director on the previous brand I had founded. And we stayed close. She was telling him that she wanted to do this and he goes, You need to meet my friend Kim <laugh>. And he made that happen. And it was just really instant. The easiest way to put it is the a met is the day we started the brand.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:16:50):

That’s amazing.

Kim Walls (00:16:52):

Yeah. It’s a very special combination of factors and times in people’s lives and skills coming to the table. And you, that sort of magical thread of someone who knows two people who’s like, Yep. Those two,

Anne Muhlethaler (00:17:08):

I think that’s quite magic.

Kim Walls (00:17:12):


Anne Muhlethaler (00:17:13):

Amazing. Yeah. So I spent a little bit of time on your website. It’s very enjoyable. I actually went on Google maps <laugh> cause I wanted to know where was the farm. So I have a visual now, and for our listeners, it’s south of bmo. I wanted you to tell us the story behind the brand. So there’s you, there’s Agatha, but there’s something very romantic behind it. <laugh>.

Kim Walls (00:17:39):

Yeah. In many ways actually. Metaphorically, actually,

Kim Walls (00:17:44):

Did you want me to tell you the story? Oh yes. <laugh>, I can’t tell you how I, I never, I love this story so much. It’s, it’s like I’m the person who pretty much watches nothing but romcoms because I love romance. <laugh> is, this is the, I think of, of romance in so many ways. So, um, Steve Luso is Agatha’s husband, and Steve is, has Sicilian roots. His Nona, his grandmother was from LY and for economic reasons, she and her family had to leave Sicily when she was very young. But she had all of these wonderful memories of Sicily and she would share them with her family. She would regale Steve with tales of Sicily. And these stories included things like goats that had horns that were bigger than the goats themselves. And you could go out for miles and drink water anytime you lay thirsty from any stream as it fell from the rocks and the community, how they would sit at tables and laugh and spend hours.

Kim Walls (00:18:48):

And everybody loved everybody and everyone had purpose. And you know, there’s just this incredible stories. And her sadness came through to Steve and he has great empathy. And 10 year old boy someday, I’m, I get them, see when they decided to start their own family, they now have four beautiful children. Um, but as they went into that journey, they went to Sicily and went to go find that land. And they worked with the church and they worked with the government and they worked with the people and they ultimately found it record keepings and so robust, you might say in certain areas at certain times. But they did, they found it, it was a quarter acre parcel. And on that land they found the rubble of the foundation of her original home. And they rebuilt it. Yeah, they bought it and they rebuilt it At that time they also looked around and saw that it was still very poor.

Kim Walls (00:19:50):

People weren’t having access to education. They didn’t necessarily have cell phones, wifi and electricity in the way that you might, the um, industry that was once there hundreds of years ago was gone. Agricultural moved elsewhere. Tourism wasn’t a thing because it’s in the middle of the island with almost impossible access, which I can attest to because the last time I was there, I almost killed myself and four other people in a car trying to get there and pouring rain on a dirt road. Oh, to drive off a cliff. Oh, <laugh>. And so they made a commitment to the community, to each other, to themselves, to do what they could to rebuild this, this dream. They, which create an infrastructure and economic and uh, community infrastructure. And I think one of the cool things about it, and this is, you know, something I will admire forever and admire tremendously, is that Steve, I like to think of people as, and I say to my kids and to myself, like, use your power for good.

Kim Walls (00:20:48):

We all have powers, like in one way or another, use it for good. And Steve had been, uh, ranked one of the top five CEOs in the world by Harvard Business Review, an incredible businessman like extraordinary. And he knew when he looked at this community that he could create economic goodness, bounty because of his experience. And so they committed to do that. And what that looked like was an agreement to buy any land that was adjacent to his grandmothers, including as it grew for anybody who wanted to sell it and to provide employment to those people. And they would do that by building what’s now a 17,000 square foot olive milk state of the art and planting something like 12,000 trees <laugh>. And working with Dr. Marino Pasquale, who was there with them from the beginning. He’s, we, everybody calls him Mimo. He’s the world’s foremost authority in Sicilian botany and double PhD biology and botany.

Kim Walls (00:21:46):

He started understanding the land, looking at it, trying to identify what’s there, hadn’t been cultivated for over four 50 years. So I found all these incredible plants and essentially put together, call it a dossier, a bible, what have you, of what plants were there, what what were they used for, how were they food, how were they medicine, what was the oral history of them, the written history. Um, and it was, it was that compendium given, given the million different names that Agatha showed me when we met. And that was kind of, yeah, given my background and, and interest in food, nutrition, natural medicines, skincare formulation. I saw this list. Like, my goodness, this is incredible. Wow. So in any case, back to the story of the farm, they spent many years, I think we’re, we’re at 12 or 14 years now, building an olive oil brand with Steve.

Kim Walls (00:22:43):

Uh, it’s called Bonna Fortuna and it’s, they have all kinds of things at this point. Ancient grain, pastas, tomato sauces, antipasti, I mean like my cabinets are filled with this food. It’s incredible. Salts, fennel pollens, I mean, you name it, it, beautiful almonds, just glorious food. Uh, and so many years into that journey, they is when Agatha, who has Croatian roots with her family, they used olive oil for everything, for beauty, skincare, rashes, hair, you name it. And she just kind of got obsessed with this idea, like this olive oil so incredible, we need to use it to, for our skin <laugh>. And she

Anne Muhlethaler (00:23:23):

Pitched that to you when you were like, Yes.

Kim Walls (00:23:29):

So in truth, I didn’t know the true potency of olive oil. I don’t have Croatian roots, I have German roots

Anne Muhlethaler (00:23:36):

<laugh>. It’s funny. So I was recently in Italy and in Germany, so I appreciate the difference. Yeah,

Kim Walls (00:23:45):

Yeah. So it was the wild plants that got me. And it was the story as somebody who has built brands and helped other people build brands, there are sort of pillars that have to be present. There has to be something real and true. Differentiating. There has to be a story, there has to be like, you can have a great product and many brands don’t even have great products. So there <laugh>, there’s a soup that makes the opportunity to create a brand. And this was a soup unlike any I’d ever tasted.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:24:18):

I’m loving your metaphors. That’s lovely because you’re segueing into my next question, what is it? <laugh> <laugh>. Well I read a really great quote from the Forbes article that came out recently

Anne Muhlethaler (00:24:35):

And I think that it does encapsulate part of what you explained about the mission for, for the farm and the brand. So I’ll read it for the listeners because I think it’s interesting for them to understand the depth of care that I think I found particularly fascinating. You said our mission is to leave the people in places we touch better off than what, than when we found them. We advocate for the health of humans, animals, and the earth through our business practices, products and passion. The extent to which we seek to leave things better than we found them translates into more common industry practices like using glass bottles and organic farming methods to the extraordinary like participating in the creation of seed banks and reviving nearly extinct species of flora. We protect bird species and biodiversity. Yeah, I know I keep going with <laugh>. It’s big stuff by supporting none within a bio preserve and help provide financial stability and education to the local community where our ingredients are grown. Wow.

Kim Walls (00:25:46):

<laugh> big goals.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:25:49):

It’s great. Can you just do that with other businesses? Can you take over <laugh>? Can’t we do that everywhere? Can you imagine?

Kim Walls (00:25:57):

I can see, yeah, I can imagine it. I can, I can see it.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:26:03):


Kim Walls (00:26:03):

It’s, it’s possible. Oh,

Anne Muhlethaler (00:26:05):

It’s funny. Hold on a second. So I have a weekly newsletter and I was about to, I’m gonna read you this quote. It’s by James Baldwin. It resonates. He says, “the world changes according to the way people see it. And if you alter even by a millimeter the way that people look at reality, then you can change it.”

Kim Walls (00:26:25):

Ooh, that just gave me chills. Oh, I know. At, Please send that to me later. Love that.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:26:30):

Oh my. Uh, it’s just, it feels very powerful. And now you told me more about Steve. I feel like part of the question, you’ve answered it already, but how much did this vision evolve as you built a project? Or was it all there in Steve and Agatha’s minds as you set off on the, on this journey,

Kim Walls (00:26:48):

The vision for the brand wasn’t there at all. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> the vision for using your power for good. To go back to what I said before, that’s their in spades that thrives and flourishes for them and how they approach their lives at a magnitude I’ve never experienced firsthand. It’s huge. So it’s inspiring. It’s present in so many of the things they’ve done and how they live. I feel like a fan club right now. But it’s real <laugh> It’s true. Like to see people really, you know, give the way that makes the sense, I think is really powerful. I think it was just yesterday I saw a news article about the founder of Patagonia who donated his

Anne Muhlethaler (00:27:35):

I saw it.

Kim Walls (00:27:36):

Yeah. Yeah. So when you see there’s, there’s sort of been a accumulation of power and wealth that it can be very damaging and harmful. I mean really it is. It’s not can be. It is. And so when we get to see people, I mean, to go back to your quote, when you change reality just a little bit and you see people doing things like that, I think it’s, I mean, I’ll just go ahead and call it a bandwagon. I wanna be a part of <laugh>. Yeah. <laugh> like sign me up. Yeah, yeah. Let’s shift things.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:28:08):

I’m thinking the same.

Kim Walls (00:28:10):

Yeah. So when it came to the farm and the work that was happening there, you know, Furtuna Skin is a standalone brand. It’s not connected to the farm. And that work is happening at the farm. It’s, it’s our business practices going back to that, that allow us to help support these endeavors. And I, it’s, it’s like an Aspen grow where all the roots are connected underground. If we’re all working together in one way or another, putting positive action into the world, then it’s just gonna keep growing. And so on that farm, it’s, it’s the epitome to me of regenerative beauty, regenerative lifestyle. And that’s something I feel very connected to is how can we regenerate the things that are around us? How can we fix the things that are broken that are worth fixing and the work that’s being done. There is a microcosm of what I think is possible globally. So if we can showcase that, harness it, grow it, then we have an opportunity to really participate and then also show others what’s possible.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:29:15):

Thanks. I agree. I think that why the story I guess is so important as much as the product and the truth of the work that you do. It’s such a big deal to people to show people the possibilities that are out there. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and I was, um, earlier today I was listening to, uh, one of the, the TED podcasts with Jane McGonigal who wrote a book recently called Imagining. And she’s a, a futurist. So her, her job basically is to imagine the future. And oftentimes it’s difficult to project if we have no example or no idea what’s possible. And we’re not being taught how to dream outside of the reality that we see every day. So it resonates. I’m the one being a fan girl now. <laugh>, um, <laugh>

Kim Walls (00:30:05):

Hop on the bandwagon.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:30:06):

Absolutely <laugh>. So there’s a couple of things that I read about the practices and, and the techniques that you used that I felt very intrigued about. The first one was the foraging to find the plan. Could you please talk about this a little bit?

Kim Walls (00:30:21):

Absolutely. This comes back to MIMO and his skills and expertise, and that’s who I mentioned before, double PhD in botany biology. So he not only is able to identify and it’s kind of amazing to watch this guy walk through a field and be like, this is that, that’s that. Oh sure. Those two look exactly the same. But no, no, this is this and that’s that. It’s amazing. So he really has that knowledge. It’s, he’s, he’s been his whole life developing that knowledge base. And so what he’s doing now is, and this is part of the economic stimulation aspect, is he’s teaching others how to do it and overseeing them. So the teams of people who go and forage for us are growing as we as a business grow. And he’s educating and teaching and creating more space, uh, and scalability as we grow to do these things.

Kim Walls (00:31:08):

So the foraging, it’s an interesting concept to think about how that can scale because it’s really something that’s always been very niche, very small. And that’s kind of critical to, or historically critical to protect those species. Because if you take everything then nothing will grow. So there’s a balance to it. And there’s also an element of timing. So there’s a dyno biodynamic component where you’re looking at sort of different times of day, different seasons, different moon cycles, all of that. But then there’s also how much do you take what you know, sort of what’s the excess, what is the land’s excess so that you’re not hurting anything. And then when is the right time, you know, as the petals are just before they may fall or which is both an aspect of protecting these plants ability to keep growing and, and recurring, you know, recurring species. But then there’s also a potency aspect to that. So at certain times of day, certain plants have more nutrients in their pets or lesser or you know, they have their own circadian rhythm really is what it comes to, uh, in the same way that we do. And so when you pick them or, or reseed or any of those things, well, we’re not reseeding the foraged. We do also have cultivated olive of obviously

Anne Muhlethaler (00:32:27):

Yeah. Wow. Plants circadian rhythm.

Kim Walls (00:32:32):

Yeah. <laugh>

Anne Muhlethaler (00:32:34):

And someone knows about them. Yeah. That’s, yeah. Again, quite much like, um, thanks so much for indulging me. I, I, I feel like I better understand it. I like the way that you put it. Understand what the, what is the excess that you can take without de defeating the land. The other thing that I uh, was very curious about was your ultrasound technology. Yeah. For extracting active ingredients. Would you explain to us what it is?

Kim Walls (00:33:02):

Indeed. So the ultrasound is, it’s a technique that was developed within the pharmaceutical industry, started coming into practice around 2012. And so I guess going back to my history in this industry and always thinking about natural plants and organic practices and all of that, there are lots of challenges, inherent challenges in working with materials without creating them in a lab because you have the opportunity to be precise in a lab, whereas <laugh>, there’s a different kind of precision in nature. And so figuring out how to access that was our challenge. So historically we, for raw materials in the industry might have inconsistent extraction levels, inconsistent potency, um, inconsistent, essentially it all ends up being inconsistent performance. And so an expectation evolved within the consumer base of like, natural doesn’t necessarily work, clinical stuff’s gonna work better. The thing about that is that it’s, it’s fundamentally wrong because if you think about the origin of clinical, it’s plants, <laugh>, our medicines come from plants. Yeah. So something was getting lost in translation essentially. And we wanted to go back to, we’ll call it the divinity of nature and sort of the, the, the unknown of how potent and powerful that is. So starting with the fundamental belief that these plants are far better at perfection than humans could ever be when it comes to producing the chemicals they need. And surviving, they’ve been around a lot longer than us. And Magnolia, for example, is the one essential oil we use fossilized about a hundred million years. That’s a survivor

Anne Muhlethaler (00:34:46):

<laugh>. Right.

Kim Walls (00:34:48):

So perspectives what we’re talking Yeah. <laugh>. So our goal, our fundamental goal was how do we protect and preserve the potency of what the plants have and then get that all the way to the bottle. And none of the methods that I was aware of and you know, probably anybody was aware of in our industry could do that. So we went looking for other things and we stumbled across ultrasound in pharma and adapted it, made it ours. We gave it a name and our sound bath extraction method, because that’s what it’s sound, right? Sound waves, ultrasound. And the visualization of that is, if you can imagine a giant stainless steel that with either water or really hydro glycerin or olive oil and then add the wild foraged plants in very specific ratios. In combinations designed to create specific skin outcomes and seal it off, penetrating it with sound waves. A few minutes later you have separated essentially the cell walls, the fibers components burst open and the active ingredients come out into the solvent, which is either the olive oil or HG glycerin. And then that becomes a raw material we can use to formulate the skincare products with. So it’s protecting that potency.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:36:06):

Wow. I so wanna see how you make that <laugh>.

Kim Walls (00:36:12):

It’s really cool.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:36:13):

You painted a picture and I feel like I can see it. That’s very, very cool. I mean nerdy or cool.

Kim Walls (00:36:20):

Oh, I’m such a nerd.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:36:21):

I love it. Love it. It’s, it’s really wonderful. Hmm. Now outside of your own brand, cuz I, I heard you say, and I think this is very true for most people who work within a brand, you also love a lots of other products from other companies. But you were offering some thoughts to consumers out there who may not be able to get your product either because it’s not available or because of the price point, Let me say it right. I heard you say in an interview that because something’s natural doesn’t mean it’s good for you. <laugh>. And I thought there was a, something important to talk about. So you’ve mentioned not everything is effective, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, but one is something not good for your skin.

Kim Walls (00:37:12):

So I’ll go to extreme example mm-hmm <affirmative> first to just kind of, I guess explain a little further the idea of not everything that’s natural is good for you. I think sometimes it’s easy for people to hear something over and over again. And for it to become part of the zeitgeist, this idea of being like natural is good, natural is the best, natural’s the only way. And, and sometimes I think things get out of balance. You know, for example, if you’re having a heart attack, you need emergency care. <laugh>, there’s like all, we have lots of greatness that it’s fully synthetic and you know, thank goodness for those machines and what have you. And then there’s natural. But, so I think that we got a little carried away. We being sort of the zeitgeist with this idea that if it’s not natural, I don’t want it, or only natural is good and natural doesn’t mean anything. There’s no real definition for it that can be interpreted in so many different ways. And so I think I don’t want people to have the misconception that just because something is natural or maybe more importantly advertised as natural that it’s good or better. It’s not necessarily, there’s a lot more to it than that. You know, arsenic is natural <laugh>.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:38:26):

Thanks for that. Okay. <laugh>, I hear you. So going back to the olive oil and your exciting, let’s say technological setup, you have this amazing face oil. Would you tell us about that? Cause it’s really quite, I mean, I, I’ve had the chance to try a couple of your products and it’s really quite extraordinary. Can you tell us what’s special about it?

Kim Walls (00:38:54):

Everything <laugh>,

Anne Muhlethaler (00:38:57):

It’s the name.

Kim Walls (00:38:57):

Thank you for loving it.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:38:58):

The name is Due Alberi, no? It’s two trees.

Kim Walls (00:39:02):

That’s right. Yeah. For the two trees that were original to the farm, Uhhuh, all of the names, everything, everything about we do has instead of layer upon layer of nuance and story behind it. But most people can’t pronounce that word very well, including me because I’m not Italian. So really what we call it is our bi-phase moisturizing oil. And what’s important about the bi-phase aspect is that it’s made of olive leaf water and olive oil. And going back to that with the active ingredients added in, So going back to that potency concept and idea, the olive oil and olive leaf water that’s coming from the farm are massively and extraordinarily potent, far more than your typical commercially available ingredients. So for example, olive leaf, very popular, it’s the popular dietary supplement has all kinds of great studies around it, the double blinds, all kinds of things for, for both skin and, and nutritionally for all kinds of disease states.

Kim Walls (00:40:01):

So we wanted to test, so we used a third party to do so, the olive leaf water that we are able to make a farm against commercially sourced solid leaf water and found that it’s 300% more potent, more powerful than commercially sourced. Wow. So the, yeah, the level of potency that we’re talking about here is it’s not small <laugh> and the results that can come from that. Not small. So that’s the, the really, it’s back to this, you know, potency drives performance and these are wildly potent ingredients. That’s the heart of why it works. Yeah. And olive oil is, well as we talked about a little bit, Steve and Mimo and the people on the farm Agatha have been working to create extraordinary olive oil for over a decade now and have, have done so this, the olive oils that come from the farm are globally award-winning, Japan, France, United States, everywhere it goes, it’s winning awards.

Kim Walls (00:40:57):

And where I think that’s really interesting from a skincare perspective is that a big part of how these oils are judged is their flavor. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And there are three pillars of flavor that are evaluated, pun sea fruitiness and bitterness. Mm-hmm <affirmative>. And each of those flavors, we experience them in our pallet because of the key chemicals that that drive those flavors. So for example, oleuropein, oleocanthal, these are very powerful active skincare ingredients. And the level of flavor and brightness that this oil has that you can taste is a great way to understand the potency that’s in it and how that’s driving the skincare benefits. So things like oleocanthal are extremely highly anti-inflammatory. And when we can take inflammation out of the skin, reduce the redness, reduce the free radical damage, all of these aspects, the skin’s better set up to regenerate itself and to build collagen to prevent the breakdown of collagen, to use the nutrients that it’s getting from our blood. Use that oxygen to shine, to use your word.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:42:12):

Yeah. Um hmm. I’m so glad that you explained that because of course it’s, it stands to reason that, that there is something between the taste and the chemicals and, and that what’s very special is going to be very special in, in multiple ways. So I believe you’re also bringing your Fortuna olive oil out on the market soon. Am I correct?

Kim Walls (00:42:38):

Yes. It launched two days ago. <laugh>.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:42:41):


Kim Walls (00:42:44):

Thank you. This is Agatha’s brainchild and very much a dream for her to bring together all the aspects, um, of what olive oil can do to all the different ways and modalities to create health and to see that olive oil in our skincare as well. Like it’s back to make sure I answer your question about the bi-phase. Moisturizing oil. Oils on the market are insufficient to hydrate because they’re only oil. You can’t, you can’t create moisture without water. And so the way people were understanding oils was that they were kind of an end all, be all moisturizing product, but that would only be true if they were using hydrating products before or if they had just come out of the bath or shower where the skin was already plumed and filled with ample levels of hydration. So we, part of what we wanted to do with our skincare is create multi beneficial products and by combining the oil with the water, it becomes a, a deeply moisturizing and hydrating single product.

Kim Walls (00:43:47):

And then it also has stabilized vitamin C added to it, which helps to prevent the formation of dark spots, age spots, and to help deal with sun damage. And then also something called expo zone 360, which is the survivor plants on the farm. They’re really, you know, the ones that really, you kind of look at them and like, how are you alive? You’re like hanging off a cliff, you have no access to water or you know, you’re sitting at the top of the hill, you’re in a sparse environment getting beaten by the sun and whipped by the wind. Like how are you alive <laugh>? So those plants have some pretty amazing chemicals in them that we’re able to harness to create skin health and to help the skin defend itself against all the things it needs to where they’re called extrinsic factors. So maybe it’s air pollution or you know, car exhaust or what have you, sun damaged blue light, kind of all the things where the skin’s just being beaten up every day. These plants are sort of the first defense, the army there that kinda helps spend off all those awful things.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:44:53):

That sounds wonderful. And no wonder it feels so different than regular oils. Yeah, it feels like silky and, I dunno anyways, <laugh>.

Kim Walls (00:45:03):

Yeah. That’s amazing. So the bi-phase that you mentioned, that is our best seller and I think it, it helps win the celebrities fall in love. So there’s Hailey Bieber, Julianne Moore and that makes a big difference for us. And I think that’s probably one of the main reasons it’s the best seller. Um, my personal favorites, the replenishing balm, it’s the blue balm. I put it on every night before I go to sleep. And it’s one of the two products that has that magnolia in it that we mentioned earlier.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:45:29):

Oh, okay. <laugh> that magnolia.

Kim Walls (00:45:33):

Yeah. So that is, I wouldn’t even call it part of my skincare routine. I’d call it part of my bedtime routine. So I do my skincare every morning and every night in the bathroom, but the, the replenishing balmI keep on my bedside table and put it on as a thick mask before I go to sleep at night. And that’s, that’s sort of the symbol of anybody who’s around me. Like, no more talking. No, no, no questions, no ideas. It’s time

Anne Muhlethaler (00:45:59):

<laugh>. It’s very sweet. It’s making me want to segue. You are a wonderful entrepreneur and, and we’ll talk about some of your other ventures in a minute. You’ve got a busy household.

Kim Walls (00:46:13):

It’s true.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:46:14):

This is true <laugh>,

Kim Walls (00:46:16):

You do not tell a lie.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:46:19):

<laugh>. Right. I appreciate that. I will think about putting that on the nightstand as well. That makes sense. <laugh>, I was going to ask you or to ask Claire your pr when do you use the balm? So now I have my own start now. You know, <laugh>, <laugh>

Anne Muhlethaler (00:46:35):

Now one of the first experiences that we get with a brand apart from, you know, the, the usual suspect of Instagram and website, let’s say when you’re in a store is of course there’s the packaging and it’s, I mean I’ve worked in luxury for a long time, so I’ve seen my fair share of luxury, um, packaging in my life. But it feels very substantial. And one of the first things that I guess I felt before I even considered forming, formulating this in a question, it feels so substantial. Throwing it away feels almost disturbing because of the quality of the glass, it’s amazing. Like, I’d want to turn it into something else. So would you tell me the story of this beautiful, beautiful packaging and, and maybe what you’ve got in mind for the future?

Kim Walls (00:47:26):

You bet. Yeah, I feel the same way, by the way, about the bottles and the practicing. I haven’t

Anne Muhlethaler (00:47:31):

Finished the product, but I’m already thinking, but I can’t throw it away. So

Kim Walls (00:47:35):

<laugh>, So I have so many uses. I have those bottles under multiple purposes all over as to my friends and my children. Yeah, it, it is, They’re beautiful. I agree. This really comes from ahas, exquisite taste. She started modeling early and when she was 16 for Chanel, and Yves Saint-Laurent I’m sure you would say that better I say it. Go on, do it right. Save me.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:48:07):

You mean Yves Saint-Laurent?

Kim Walls (00:48:09):

Oh yes, thank you <laugh>. So she really has a deep understanding of what luxury looks like, feels like from that packaging perspective. And she, she’s our chief creative officer and drives that, that aspect when it comes to things like refills and how can we preserve this packaging and not have to throw it away. Well for one thing it’s recyclable and made of sustainable materials and we are, you know, always, always working to keep pushing that forward as options become available. But refills are a huge priority for us and this is where you get into this sort of business aspects and where it does business need mindfulness and there’s a certain scale that we have to have to be able to introduce those kinds of aspects. So it’s about the future and it’s about growing large enough to be able to do all the things we want to do because once there’s scale, there’s much more opportunity to keep driving forward in the, the vision, which is this regenerative beauty vision, which includes creating better and more packaging options, you know, as we go along with better or not better. Because I don’t, I truly don’t believe there’s a better product in the world, but more great products, <laugh>.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:49:28):

That sounds great. Did I also read the glass was formulated specially

Kim Walls (00:49:35):

The No, the cap,

Anne Muhlethaler (00:49:38):

Uh, the caps.

Kim Walls (00:49:39):

Yeah. One of the aspects that we, that we were paying attention to is how people use things and how to make this lifestyle. And these ideas really just easy and fall into our everyday choices without struggle. And sometimes it’s the little things. And Agatha came up with the idea of having magnetized caps for the spatula. So with the replenishing bomb, the eye cream, the day of night creams, they’re in jars and jars by the way, the alternate to that would be for those types of products is tubes and the glass jars are far, far better for the environment, of course than tubes. So just a point of like where these come in. So then you need a spatula, right? Keep your product clean, keep the <laugh>, keep things out from under your fingernails. And so having magnetized caps is something that we, um, we have included with the packaging.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:50:29):

That’s so cool.

Kim Walls (00:50:31):


Anne Muhlethaler (00:50:32):

I have a very selfish question. <laugh>. So I have sensitive skin, I need to protect it from the sun and I love the sun <laugh>. So I need a really good spf and I know that it’s very hard to formulate a natural spf. Is this something that you are considering doing in the future?

Kim Walls (00:50:55):

That’s a big yes. When is that? We’re not sure aspect, maybe already noticed, but most people don’t. Olive oil in and of itself has an SPF of about eight clinically tested. Oh

Anne Muhlethaler (00:51:07):

No, I do not know that.

Kim Walls (00:51:09):

Yeah. So anyone who’s using the bi-phase of their replenishment balm or any olive oil based product, if they’ve got enough of it on a full layer that is a low level spf, that is not something I’m claiming for the brand that would be against f FDA regulations. We do not call our products sunscreens, but uh, it’s just knowledge, right? That, that some of the things we put on our, our skin have the ability to do that on their own. So when it comes to svf, it’s actually another business question. So the regulatory bodies around it are very complex. The distribution is very complex. The, it varies significantly by country. One of our goals for for, um, is to be global. And we are currently in Europe and the United States and hopefully going into Canada and Australia in the not too distant future. So the compliance around sunscreens in the different regulations, very really dramatically country by country.

Kim Walls (00:52:10):

So you end up with a lot of business complexity, which can interfere with the true growth of the vision. So it just becomes something that makes sense to do later so that we can stay focused on the things we need to focus on now. But yes, I want one, I’ve formulated several natural sunscreens before, I wouldn’t actually say they’re hard to formulate, just it’s all the complexity outside of creating a beautiful formula. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> right down to things like, you know, in the US the FDA won’t recognize then the built in SPF like an olive SPF eight. So you have to use these certain approved ingredients. Many of them are harsh and harmful chemicals. <laugh> as we know, you know, not reef safe, not all these things. And so what we’ll ultimately need to do is a lot of our very, very expensive and very, very long time consuming, getting through from a regulatory perspective, our own formula. It’s not reliant on those. So it’s just in order for us to do it at the level we do things, we need to do it later <laugh>.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:53:20):

It makes sense. And I would say that your answer also explains why the few small brands that I’ve come across, for example, in Europe, are not sold outside of the country that they’re in <laugh>. Mm-hmm. You’d find a great one in, in the European Union and another one in the UK, but then they’re not available in Switzerland and blah, blah, blah, blah. Anyways. Mm-hmm. That makes a lot of sense. And the the beauty world is, is very complex. You must be very patient. It

Kim Walls (00:53:47):

Is <laugh>. Well, I’m driven by by loving it. So yeah, it works out <laugh>.

Anne Muhlethaler (00:53:54):

So you’ve built a few other brands and two of them were actually skincare for children. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you mentioned that very briefly. So yeah, two of them were for children and one in particular. I was very curious to, to hear you telling me how did Best Ever Baby come about? And because it’s, it sounds really very special.

Kim Walls (00:54:20):

Yeah, thank you. Well, so when I had those boys, I told you about the 19 and 17 year olds. I went looking for skincare for them. And given my experience with Epicuren and my need for natural <laugh>, organic, whatever we wanna call it, clean products, they really didn’t exist. There were a few natural brands out there, and I found their textures to be kind of gross. And then a couple, one in particular that was still using things like paras that I, you, I just don’t have a confidence level that they’re truly. So I decided to start making baby skincare and to my own needs and turned that into a brand. And alongside that brand, I started a non-profit endeavor called Best Ever Baby. So the brand sold, but they acquirers weren’t interested in the part where we worked with hospitals. So it was actually the first one was, was purchased by our Chinese distributor.

Kim Walls (00:55:23):

And the hospital work that was in the book of sales were in China. And the hospital sale, the hospital aspect was in the United States. And at the time there were some pretty harshly harmful chemicals being used on babies in as they came into the world. And it offended me, <laugh>, I sort of took that onto my shoulders as offensive. And I think the, and equally large offense was that I believe parents really want to do the best by their children. And so they’re in their thinking, they’re making the best decisions that they can and being told by that, we’ll call it the advertising or marketing machine, that they’re making good choices and getting their information through mechanisms that are not about health, but instead about profit and being misinformed. And then they were finding out later, Oh wow, I’ve been, you know, using these things that are getting into my baby flood and building up a body burden and all this other stuff.

Kim Walls (00:56:26):

And then it felt really bad for the parents who <laugh> were unconsciously doing this and then they’re guilty, right? It’s hard enough to be a parent or then they’re beating themselves up for not knowing. It’s like, hey, you know, we all do the best we can with the information we have at any given time. <laugh>, in any case, I, I really wanted to try to shift things in the hospital setting so that those first experiences that parents and babies would have would be healthier. And he, yeah, just healthier. So Best Ever Baby was about at the time, um, a collaboration of natural brands that wanted to get in front of parents and babies. So instead of using bleach cleansers, maybe it was some other form of cleanser, instead of using diapers that are filled with chlorine, maybe it’s, you know, some other forms. I pulled together maybe 15, 20 different brands who would put samples in little bags and then we would give them for free into the hospitals.

Kim Walls (00:57:28):

And from a business perspective was an opportunity to sample and get products in front of people’s hands. And then for the parents and children, it was a way to protect health. So it felt really good about that, but it wasn’t, um, a profit center, so that was going to be discontinued. And then the acquirer of that first brand decided to stop selling products into the hospitals because the margins weren’t good enough. And the distributor in several of the hospitals were like, Wait a second, we love these products. So they came back to me and asked me to make them more products, certain other brand <laugh>. I was like, No, I cannot do that. Oh my God, I didn’t do that. And so I partnered with the distributor and we created a joint venture and I did all the things, you know, did all the testing, did everything that was needed to give them what they had asked for.

Kim Walls (00:58:26):

And so now that that’s BEB Organic. BEB is an acronym that comes from Best Ever Baby. So it was sort of the next, the next generation of it. So it’s, it’s a beautiful little brand and it’s used primarily in EQ’s for premature babies. And you know, again, since you focus on business aspects, the reason that’s possible is because of the mess that is insurance and what, what budgets people have to support health. And there’s a larger budget for premature baby skincare. So they’re able to use better products and that’s where that brand thrives. So premees are, are brought into the world in a slightly safer way. I mean, you know, they’re struggling to survive, so it’s kind of hard to think, oh yeah, skincare is important, but actually it is, their skin thickens in the last couple weeks of gestation. And so when these babies come into the world, they have incredibly thin, fragile, delicate skin. And then on top of that it’s being poked and prodded and scraped and taped and so there, Right. Yeah. <laugh> not to bring us all down here. I

Anne Muhlethaler (00:59:37):

Know. It just, I can feel it almost as if it was happening to me.

Kim Walls (00:59:42):

Okay. Sorry, moving on. So that brand, it just exists and it exists by demand and, and that’s just that

Anne Muhlethaler (00:59:52):

<laugh> that’s really wonderful. A brand that exists by demand.

Kim Walls (00:59:57):


Anne Muhlethaler (00:59:57):

That’s very good. It’s small,

Kim Walls (00:59:58):

It’s a tiny little, The percentage of babies that are born prematurely is very small. The thing is it’s better skincare. It’s great for any baby, and it’s great for any sensitive skin, but that’s, but it’s, it’s origin is that super fragile or your point you mentioned you have sensitive skin, that super sensitive skin.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:00:17):

Yeah, that’s really, really wonderful. When I was going through the website and in the various interviews I’ve, I’ve read or listened to oftentimes you mentioned wellness rituals and of, of course, we often think of skincare when we think of wellness. And you know that the podcast is at the crossroads between business and mindfulness. <laugh>. I’m always curious to find out for all of the guests that I have, what are your own rituals? What are the things that keep you balanced, grounded? What works?

Kim Walls (01:00:58):

Walking <laugh>, that’s my number one. Walking, I think better when I’m moving and sometimes I, the form of thinking better is not thinking <laugh>. I can kind of take it either way when walking, that’s for sure. The most important thing for me. I also love water. So showers, baths, hot tubs, like any sort of being enveloped and that sort of womb-like state, uh, of water is really soothing and comforting to

Anne Muhlethaler (01:01:30):

Me. Mm, that’s lovely. And during the last couple of years, which I’m sure must have been super challenging, because your brand was launched in November, 2019. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, were there any new rituals, practices, or things you’ve added that have supported you or helped you be more resilient?

Kim Walls (01:01:50):

Music has come back into my life in a way. I sort of, I’ve always loved music. I took in high school, I found out that you can take music appreciation and get credit for it. Learned that my junior year and then proceeded to have a music appreciation class for every year of education after that, which was six more years. So I really, I love it. I love all almost all music, especially classical. And I’d kind of lost it. I sort of stopped listening and I think partially as technology moved into new apps and I was like, Oh, I don’t really wanna learn a new app right now. And, uh, I think there I had a little bit more time during Covid and so started, I think we all, you know, got more and more immersed in technology and music came back to my life. So I think that’s probably something that was really helpful.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:02:46):

It’s funny that resonates with me, even though I was an inspiring singer and I practiced and sang and was on stage many years, I feel like music is not so present in my life anymore. Yeah. That’s, uh, making me think on a completely different topic. I also heard that you have several beautiful dogs at home and that you <laugh> and that you grew up with boxes. Am I correct? Mm-hmm.

Kim Walls (01:03:12):

<affirmative>, I grew up with them since 17,

Anne Muhlethaler (01:03:15):


Kim Walls (01:03:15):

They were my childhood dogs, but they, I’ve had animals my whole life, lots of them. And I do love boxers. They have an exuberance that’s unlike any living things, exuberance I’ve ever experienced. It’s just, I mean, it’s something to wake up in the morning and be greeted by a boxer or to come home and be greeted by a boxer, it’s like so validating.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:03:39):

<laugh>. That’s amazing. So I just adopted my first puppy. I’m a cat person. This is a big step. I have a puppy and a kitten currently sleeping on either side of me. So my life is decent. Do you have any tips for a new dog, mom?

Kim Walls (01:03:57):

I do. I do. I don’t even, I don’t think this applies to you, but I think it applies to a lot of people. So <laugh>, I think there’s a lot of misinformation around the idea of discipline and animals. And I, I think the more people can recognize that animals sense your experience before you even know you’re having it. And if you’re unhappy or displeased with them or pleased with it, they know <laugh> and disciplining and training is, is not, it’s about just consistently sharing your experience with the animal <laugh>, like they want to please you. Maybe not cats, but we’re talking about dogs here. So they will do anything for the most part for the person or people they bond with. And so when it comes to training, it’s, there’s really no discipline necessary. It’s just about guiding them into what you want.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:04:54):

Thanks so much for saying that. Yeah. I did start reading and watching some, some training videos with some wonderful, uh, trainers who were saying very much the same thing. Like the way that I heard people talk about dog training when I was a a kid growing up is essentially the exact opposite of, of what we should be doing. So

Kim Walls (01:05:16):

Yeah. And people still speak that way, you know, there are still many, many people who will tell you to smash your dog’s nose into a pile of poop.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:05:22):

I know. Yeah.

Kim Walls (01:05:27):

Yeah. And, and so no judgment for people who are doing that. Just a request to maybe keep learning.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:05:34):

Yeah, I keep learning. That’s a good one. So before we move onto my closing questions, I was wondering, is there anything you’d like to add, perhaps about the brand or anything else that yeah we haven’t covered in this interview so far?

Kim Walls (01:05:54):

Just gratitude for you, appreciation for the stories you’re bringing to life and for thinking that mine is interesting enough that it’s worth sharing. <laugh>, thank you.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:06:04):

It’s wonderful. And I can’t wait for even right from the start, I mean, writing your pony to school, that just

Kim Walls (01:06:11):


Anne Muhlethaler (01:06:13):

Isn’t that just wonderful? Well, I’m gonna send it right back to you. I’m so grateful to have had the, the opportunity to go beyond the surface because I think that whenever we have a chance to be inspired by what others are doing, when we see pioneers in any industry, I think it’s just a, a rare privilege. Not just to get to know you and, and speak to you in person, but also in the small way that I can give more of a platform to the work that, that you guys are doing because it really does feel very special and, and something that I hope can touch others, um, in the nearest future possible. So with all that said, here are some of my favorite questions and I can’t wait to hear your answers, <laugh>. So Kim, what is your favorite word? One that you would, and I’m not saying you should, but that you would That’s a good word. And you said that you have a, you’ve recently acquired a tattoo.

Kim Walls (01:07:25):

Yes, I have. It’s a symbol. It’s not a word, although it does spell my name. It has a K and an i and an M in it. But you wouldn’t know that, just looking at it. Yeah.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:07:37):

Oh, that’s awesome. What does it represent?

Kim Walls (01:07:40):

I think I’ve spent a lot of my, um, life not being tuned into what I need. <laugh> trying to, uh, do a lot and say yes, a little too much and, and things like that. <laugh>.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:07:56):

Oh wow. Oh, these two things are related. That’s amazing.

Kim Walls (01:08:02):

And so it’s just a reminder to have a self-confidence and self-esteem and self worthiness and all those things that I, I truly believe everyone struggles with and I’m one of them.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:08:14):

That’s wonderful. Thanks so much for sharing that. That’s very special. Oh, I really, it’s real realize <laugh>. It is. It really, the struggle is real, that’s for sure. <laugh>, Um, what song best represents you?

Kim Walls (01:08:30):

So, I, this is obscure, but I was asked this by our CFO lately because we were doing a team building exercise. So Furtuna Skin is a globally remote business, we don’t have a central place. We have people in Paris and Dallas and New York and all over. So figuring out team building is, is a business challenge. But, so we actually did an internal game with this one. So I really, I went digging and I found it, I found my song, It’s by a woman named Sonya Spence, and it’s called Talk Love.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:09:01):

Oh, I can’t wait to listen to it. So we’ve got a Spotify playlist from Out of the Clouds. And the wonderful thing is how wildly eclectic it is. So

Kim Walls (01:09:13):

Wait to listen. I’ll

Anne Muhlethaler (01:09:14):

Send it to you. Um, what does connection mean to you?

Kim Walls (01:09:19):

Connection and intimacy are very much interwoven and I, I’m not to exclude romantic intimacy, but I, um, but not specific to that. And I, to feel connected, it’s my favorite thing to feel. For starters. I love feeling connected and it means feeling like I’m in an emotionally safe space surrounded by love and able to be vulnerable without feeling judged and able to return that and have that be a reciprocal space. That is what connectivity connection is to me.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:09:54):

Hmm. Thank you so much. What is the sweetest thing that’s ever happened to you?

Kim Walls (01:10:00):

It’s sort of the same. I mean, truly the sweetest thing was there was a time in my life when I completely gave into who I am and all the things that have made me who I am, including the things I wasn’t proud of. And I have a relationship where I’m fully present and a moment where I felt fully accepted for all of me. And I think that’s it.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:10:33):

That’s so fantastic. That’s a very, very special thing. I recognize that. Yeah, I know what you mean. Yeah. Or in my way I resonate. What is a secret superpower that you have?

Kim Walls (01:10:49):

Curiosity <laugh>.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:10:53):

Yeah. The researcher. Is that, is that what it is?

Kim Walls (01:10:56):

Yeah. Infinitely curious. And I think, I mean, this is another one I really had to think about, but the, I think the gift that the curiosity gives me is that it’s very, it’s a, it’s a leading trait in my personality and I get curious before I judge. So I, I’m able to, I I work to not have judgment in my life. I think, you know, we all do, and it’s an important part of life to be able to discern and judge what works for you and what doesn’t. And not to diminish the importance of judgment, but sometimes I think everybody can be a little too judgemental and limit their opportunities, limit their chance for connectivity, limit themselves. And I think I, I think it’s a real gift that I’m super, super, super curious because sometimes I don’t give myself time to judge until later. And then there’s less judgment <laugh>,

Anne Muhlethaler (01:11:47):

Uh, that’s so fantastic. I completely understand. I really do my best. I agree with you, of course, discernment’s important, but I really, I personally feel coordinated when I feel judged, and that’s one of the things that makes me recoil. And so I try not to as much as I can judge other people. But I also found when I was studying to become a mindfulness meditation teacher, that whenever we come across something difficult in particular, if we get curious and we start to decompose, let’s say the experience, whether it’s a feeling, an emotion, a thought, we can’t feel two things at the same time. And curiosity immediately takes over. Um, so that’s interesting. It just, it stayed as a, as a real, it stayed as a real secret superpower that we could all do with accessing more regularly. That’s funny. Uh, what is a favorite book that you could share with us?

Kim Walls (01:12:44):

‘How I built this’ by Guy Roz <laugh>. I listened to all the podcasts and I bought the book when it came out. I was so excited for him. And I think it’s so cool that, that these stories get told of how people build businesses, you know, very much in line with, with what you do, uh, and how you share stories. Think that book shares a lot of interesting stories.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:13:11):

Yeah. I’m a big fan of his, actually. He’s such a great interviewer and I haven’t listened to it very much recently, but he’s, um, incredible. I forgot about the book. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, thanks. Two more questions and I will let you go. <laugh>, where is somewhere you visited that you feel had a real impact on who you are today?

Kim Walls (01:13:34):

The bottom of the ocean.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:13:37):

Oh, <laugh> tell

Kim Walls (01:13:40):

Scuba diving. When I learned how to be at the bottom of the ocean and look around surrounded by water, thinking about breathing, unable to think about anything else really, but just filled with wonder. Uh, I carry that with me. That experience of feeling like I’m at the bottom of the ocean, looking up into infinite everything.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:14:06):

I’ve not done that yet, <laugh>,

Kim Walls (01:14:09):

But if you’re not claustrophobic, it’s really something. <laugh>

Anne Muhlethaler (01:14:16):

Imagining that you can step into a future version of yourself, what most important advice do you think that your future self would come and give you, present time you ?

Kim Walls (01:14:32):

Well, I wish I was a futurist, but I’m not <laugh> unlike Imagining. I’m very excited to read that book, but if you always know you did the best you could, then you’ll never have any regrets. So always do your best. Mm.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:14:49):

Well this is my final and favorite question of all. What brings you happiness,

Kim Walls (01:14:54):

Connectivity, <laugh>, Am I boring yet?

Anne Muhlethaler (01:15:09):

You did say that. You, the state that you love the most.

Kim Walls (01:15:13):


Anne Muhlethaler (01:15:14):

<affirmative>. It’s interesting. Yeah. Kim, thank you so much for giving me so much, uh, of your time today. It’s been a real pleasure and I wanna stress an opportunity for me to learn. I mean, we barely touched on all of the things that you know about the skincare industry and, and what you’re doing specifically around natural beauty. So I encourage everybody to go to the website for Una Skin. And of course all of the details will be in the show notes. But thank you for what you’re doing and I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen next. In case people want to get in touch with you, where can they find you if they’d like to connect?

Kim Walls (01:15:59):

Kim Wall’s la on Instagram @kimwallsla.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:16:04):

<affirmative>, thank you.

Kim Walls (01:16:05):

Again. Thank you, <laugh>. You’re welcome. Thank you so much for taking the time with me. I really appreciate it.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:16:12):

I hope we’ll get a chance to meet perhaps one in person. Let me know next time you’re coming to Europe.

Kim Walls (01:16:17):

Will do and vice versa for Los Angeles.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:16:19):

Absolutely. Thanks so much.

Kim Walls (01:16:22):

All right, you’re welcome. Thank you. Take care.

Anne Muhlethaler (01:16:24):

So friends and listeners, thanks again for joining me today. If you’d like to hear more, you can subscribe to the show on the platform of your choice. If you’d like to connect, you can get in touch with me @annvi on Twitter, Anne V Muhlethaler on LinkedIn, or on Instagram @_ OutoftheClouds, where I also share daily mus about mindfulness. You can also find all of the episodes of the podcast and much more on my website AnneVMuhlethaler.com. If you don’t know how to spell it, it’s also gonna be in the show notes. If you would like to get regular news directly delivered to your inbox, I invite you to sign up to my monthly newsletter. So that’s it for this episode. Thank you so much for listening to Out of the Clouds. I hope that you will join me again next time, and until then be well Be safe and take care.