Indie Beauty Profile

Katherine Tomasso, YON-KA Paris

By Deanna Utroske

- Last updated on GMT

Indie Beauty Profile Katherine Tomasso, YON-KA Paris

Related tags Indie beauty profile France Skin care brand Indie beauty

In her Indie Beauty Profile, Katherine Tomasso, national director of education at YON-KA Paris, describes a business with decades of market experience, generations of passionate brand leaders, and all the attributes of an on-trend contemporary indie skin care brand. YON-KA Paris is an aromatic plant-based skin care brand, its women-led, and it’s engaged (the brand has nearly 40 thousand Instagram followers).

French skin care, color cosmetics, and fragrance have a long-standing reputation in the global beauty marketplace. But that certainly doesn’t mean that any and every indie brand founded in France will be a success, let alone successful for over 50 years.

In her Indie Beauty Profile, Katherine Tomasso, who leads education for the brand, shares insight into the brand’s approach to leadership, formulation, and consumer engagement. And of course, she picks a favorite product from the YON-KA Paris portfolio.  Here, is Tomasso’s profile of herself and the brand.

Name: ​Katherine Tomasso, National Director of Education

Indie Beauty Company: ​YON-KA Paris

Launched: ​Created in 1954 by a trio of visionaries, the Multaler Brothers Charles, Ernst and his wife Cecile launch YON-KA based on the power and healing properties of plants.

Headquarters: ​YON-KA Paris US headquarters is in Rockaway, New Jersey. The parent company and laboratory are in Argenteuil, France, near Paris. All products are conceived, fabricated, and filled at our labs. 

Cash flow: ​YON-KA Paris and Laboratories Multaler is 100% family owned and operated. 

Indie how? ​Like Leonardo Davinci, a successful indie brand should have a balanced mind-set that showcases artistry plus logic and precision. It’s leader(s) must be fierce and willing to make mistakes, but to ultimately learn from them. 

I want to mention that since the 1960’s YON-KA has been led by the founder’s daughters, Francoise and Catherine Multaler a biochemist and aesthetician respectively. On a personal note I enjoy it when they reminisce about the male bankers of the 1960’s which cast doubt on their ability to succeed as female business owners. Like their parents before them Francoise and Catherine were ahead of their time, remain fine role models for women in business today and have just enough healthy defiance to succeed in today’s business landscape.

Team work: ​The US subsidiary employs a small, yet mighty team of just 32 full-time employees.

Distribution: ​For most of its existence YON-KA products and treatments were available exclusively through beauty institutes, spas and resorts.  In addition to partnerships with well-known beauty sites such as Dermstore, Beauty Habit, and Skin Store, beauty enthusiasts can also purchase products through our e-commerce site.  n the coming weeks our site will emulate the live prescriptive selling experience buyers have come to enjoy at spas due to the addition of skin analysis via AI.  

Years in beauty: ​It’s been 25 years!  Really? 

Years at YON-KA Paris: ​20+ years

The business: ​YON-KA Paris is best described as a phyto-aromatic brand committed to optimum skin health, radiance and longevity.  We offer French-made plant-cell active regimens; and the brand was first introduced to the world through a proprietary complex of aromatic essential oils which we lovingly refer to as “Quintessence.” With Quintessence YON-KA showcases the solar-charged energy of five dermatologically active plants i.e. rosemary, lavender, thyme, cypress and geranium that work synergistically. As a result of their olfactive benefits, consumers look to their daily skin care practice with pleasure, not drudgery. 

The customer: ​The YON-KA Paris collection is expansive and designed to meet the skin health needs of women at any age. We aim to treat and educate women about skin care from a very young age and guide them to adapt and add products as they mature. For skin longevity we offer three categories of anti-aging regimes: Age Defense for ages 25 – 35, Age Correction for ages 35 – 45, and Age Exception for the demanding needs of mature skin.

Milestone moment: ​As we celebrate YON-KA’s 65-year anniversary, it’s comforting and exhilarating to realize the number of authentic and successful partnerships that we’ve built over the years and continue to build. These partnerships speak to both the steady financial and brand-awareness milestones which we’ve surpassed.     

Just one: ​Asked about her go-to product, Tomasso says it’s the iconic YON-KA Lotion​, a spray on toning lotion that tones the tissues, hydrates and enlivens the complexion. Its enriched with the YON-KA Quintessence and is alcohol-free! 



Deanna Utroske, Editor, covers beauty business news in the Americas region and publishes the weekly Indie Beauty Profile column, showcasing the inspiring work of entrepreneurs and innovative brands.

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