Eva Gutowski on Sustainability, Skin Sensitivities and Acne Struggles

By ·
Eva Gutowski on Sustainability, Skin Sensitivities and Acne Struggles featured image

When social media superstar (she’s currently pushing 7-plus million followers on Instagram and more than 11 million subscribers on YouTube) Eva Gutowski launched her skin-care line Coastal Citizen earlier this fall, the goal was to keep things super sustainable, streamlined and rooted in her personal “heal-not-attack” philosophy that she credits for clearing up her stubborn, decade-long acne. “A product can be a great experience, a great scent, a beautifully vibrant color, but not so great for your skin or the planet. It was important for me to be extremely conscious in every decision that this brand makes.”

On creating the line:

“The most difficult part in creating any brand that I make is staying true to the sustainability aspect of it all. Going into a new project, you might say, ‘I want to do everything I can to make this brand have a minimal environmental impact.’ Then, as you go along, you start to say, ‘Oh, I want the packaging to have this really fancy, glossy look to it.’ Or ‘I want the packaging to have this beautiful purple ink.’ You soon realize that some of those things can’t be done in an environmentally friendly way. We really made sure to stay true to those decisions and always go the sustainable route. That’s something we’re proud of, because now we can say, ‘Our products don’t have artificial dyes or fragrances. They aren’t tested on animals, they’re cruelty-free, they’re vegan, and we use glass packaging—we have no single-use plastic.’”

On the fragrance factor:

“It’s also hard to find a scent you love and realize it’s not a natural scent and you have to throw that idea away! At the heart of it, we don’t want our customers to put stuff on their faces that they don’t feel good about and don’t feel true about. Even without the sustainability aspect, artificial dyes and fragrances upset my skin, personally. I realized that way too late in life; I was always asking, ‘Why is my skin red?’ Then, my next step was, ‘Oh, let me just smell everything in my skin care…’ I got rid of all those things and now my skin is great.”

On skin struggles:

“The best part about this journey was being able to give good skin care back to my community; I’ve been alongside them on this skin journey for almost a decade now. I started my YouTube channel when I was a freshman in college. I was really struggling with my skin. I was struggling with my diet. I was struggling with my lifestyle, and, through these last 10 years, my whole community has seen me grow, try so many new things, fail at new things, learn new things and improve my skin care and my skin so dramatically. I wasn’t born with perfect skin—I’ve truly struggled with getting my skin to the place that I love. Now that I have this skin that I’m so proud of, I’m able to give that back to my community and say, ‘Here are the tools that I created to make my skin this amazing. Here is the answer that worked for me, and let’s go through this together.’ It’s an amazing feeling.”

On the war on acne:

“I want to say I’ve tried literally thousands of products in my life, and I’ve struggled with acne since I was in junior high. It’s been a long decade of me trying all these different products to make a difference in my skin, and a lot of them just left my skin worse. They left my skin dry, they made my hyperpigmentation worse…they made my skin flaky and crusty and all sorts of things that I didn’t want. The ultimate goal for me was just: ‘Get this acne off my face. Whatever it takes to get this acne off, I will do it.’”

But I was going about my skin-care journey all wrong because, in the end, while I was maybe getting rid of a pimple, I was creating so much damage to my skin in the process. I feel like I can speak for a lot of acne-prone people in that the whole thing is just a battle. You don’t realize that you need to stop, take a big step back from what you’re doing and really analyze the products you’re using and what their intentions are for your skin.

My skin didn’t really heal itself until I took that big step back and started to heal my skin, moisturize it, clear it from within, clear it from without—it didn’t get better until I took on a healing mentality versus an attacking mentality. My skin literally turned around within a couple of months, and the whole time I was so scared, like I was just getting lucky and was going to wake up with even more acne in new places. I was literally so scared for so long to share my journey and my skin-care routine, mainly because I couldn’t believe how dramatically my skin had changed. But it’s not a miracle that my skin cleared after I made changes in my skin care and diet. It comes down to a science.”

On TikTok trends:

“Recently, I saw this girl on TikTok who does her eyeliner with a coal pencil and she just did it so messy and so quick. I was like, ‘One day, I’m going to try that when I have nowhere to go, no one’s going to see me. I’m just going to play with this eyeliner.’ I finally just tried it and I think I look the best I ever have with this eyeliner trick! I’m very much, ‘Wait, a dang minute, maybe this was what I was missing all along!’ My advice: Chisel out a couple hours of your day to try the thing you’ve always wanted to try, because who knows…it may be your new favorite thing.”

Related Posts

Find a Doctor

Find a NewBeauty "Top Beauty Doctor" Near you

Give the Gift of Luxury

NewBeauty uses cookies for various reasons, including to analyze and improve its content and advertising. Please review our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use for more about how we use this data. By continuing to use this site, you agree to these policies.