About Nicole, CEO and Founder of La Luer
Before founding La Luer, Nicole Chau struggled to maintain healthy skin while working long hours. She searched the market for a solution that could tackle her skin concerns, including dullness, blemishes, and uneven skin tone, only to discover that an all-in-one solution didn’t exist. So, she took matters into her own hands.
Leveraging her science background, passion for beauty, and international and domestic merchandise planning experience at BCBGMAXAZRIA, Trina Turk, and Guess, Nicole founded La Luer in January 2019 to create a tool that allowed people to maintain their busy schedules, while preserving their skin's health and radiance. She took 6 of the most effective skincare technologies, developed 4 specific treatments designed to address a multitude of skin concerns, and integrated everything into one small, compact device.
In less than a year, La Luer gained national recognition among industry leaders such as Sephora and Cosmoprof, securing global distribution with partners including Neiman Marcus, Selfridges and Printemps, and was featured in Forbes, Vogue, Glamour, CNET, and WWD.
Wendy Wen, our co-founder and COO, had the chance to interview Nicole recently. Read on to learn more about her source of inspiration and the challenges that she faced along the way.
What inspired you to get started?
I had been doing merchandising planning for 7 years, starting at BCBG, then to Trina Turk where I first saw product development from the ground up. Afterwards, I moved to Guess, and that’s really when I began struggling with a lot of skin issues. I noticed my skin was super dry and it looked like it didn’t have any light to it. I started doing a lot of dermatology treatments that utilize different technologies. As time went on, I became so passionate that I was eventually able to narrow it down to 6 technologies that I wanted to integrate into a feasible device. When you become so passionate about something, you literally can’t think of doing anything else. That’s when I decided to leave my job in merchandising.
At what stage were you at when you left your full-time job?
When I left my full-time job, I had the device element planned out. All that was left was getting the mold produced, manufacturing partners, and packaging. I left my full-time job when I believed we were getting close to launching the MIRA Facial System. At that point, I had been working on it on and off for about a year.
We're so excited to highlight La Luer as part of our Selected by SENREVE series
Was it difficult to put all these technologies into one device?
Yes, it was super hard. It took us two years to integrate it all, and it was definitely a difficult journey. I had the science background and I knew all about the technologies, but I didn’t have the engineering background to put everything together. I relied on a group of software, hardware, and systems engineers to help me integrate the different technologies. I challenged them to brainstorm, innovate, and think outside of the box rather than doing the work that they were used to doing.
Finding a group of people who work well together, believe in you, and believe in the product was really important. As a founder, it was challenging at times because I look younger than most entrepreneurs and engineers. I had come up with the idea and needed other people to materialize it. I’m so lucky that I found 5 engineers who are amazing and have been with us from the start. As the team started seeing all of the positive feedback from CES and Sephora, they started believing in the MIRA Facial System too.
Nicole showcasing La Luer at the b8ta store and gathering customer feedback
Tell me about your product development journey.
We started out by making a countless 3D models and we certainly didn’t get it right the first time. For instance, there are so many different types of stainless steel. We went through a bunch of vendors before finding the right medical grade stainless steel we use now. Then, it’s the polishing of the device. In the earlier iterations, the stainless steel would be sharper around the edges making it less comfortable for the users––now it’s smooth, and gentle on the skin. Medical grade stainless steel is also hypoallergenic, durable, and completely safe for skin use. One of the other challenges we faced was sourcing the perfect LED lights with thousands to choose from. We utilize the newest and best LED RGB microchip technology on the market, and all our lights have undergone all available tests.
The product development journey was a lot of trial and error, but it was really fun because I had the opportunity to test everything on myself. It was also stressful though, because sometimes, it wouldn’t produce the effect I wanted. As part of our process, after all industry tests and trials, we also test everything on ourselves before releasing it into the public. All of our technologies are industry standard, including the micro-currents, LED lights, ultrasound, and radio frequency. Eventually, we brought the MIRA Facial System to a dermatologist and when she tried it, she was shocked when she saw her wrinkles literally disappear!
Before and after shots on Nicole after using the MIRA Facial System on herself
I have been using MIRA as part of my night-time skincare routine, and I’m amazed by how immediately I see results. Can you share more about what makes MIRA so special?
Our main point of differentiation is that the MIRA Facial System is everything you could ever want in an all-in-one skincare device. We’ve taken all these different technologies and integrated them into one device. This single tool counteracts all your major skincare concerns including fine lines and wrinkles, acne and blemishes, dryness, uneven skin tone, sagginess, the list goes on and on. When I did the patent research for a device like this, I was so surprised none existed. We’re the first company that holds a patent that integrates all the technologies into one device.
With La Luer, I also really want to educate our customers about the different technologies and how each technology tackles their biggest skin concerns. I offer 1:1 sessions with customers to show them how effective our products are. Many of our customers want to take care of their skin but they don’t know what’s good out there. So, I really try to educate and train our customers, and do so through these sessions and by empowering them with all the information I can share. Once people understand the technology — its impact and effectiveness — they know why it’s such an amazing product.
Before and after results showing Improved skin texture, reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and brightened skin tone
Why do you think other companies haven’t done it?
We’ve been using the same at-home skin tech devices for decades, and many of these existing devices feature 1-3 technologies max. For example, there are LED light devices that only feature LED light technology. Similarly, microcurrent devices only offer microcurrent and some have LED attachment heads. Likewise, product infusion devices only have galvanic currents. There wasn’t a truly comprehensive device on the market that had it all.
I saw a huge opportunity in the skin tech market. I bought ALL these devices and tried them. In order to get everything I wanted out of my skincare routine, I would need 6+ devices. With all these devices, my cosmetic counter looked like a lab experiment. With the MIRA Facial System, we put everything together with a treatment mode for every single problem. Whether your concerns are fine lines, skin dehydration, blemishes, or skin texture, there’s a mode for you!
Before and after results showing reduced appearance of fine lines under eye, improved skin texture, and increased moisture
Before and after results showing reduced appearance of fine lines under eye, improved skin texture, and increased moisture
How do you guarantee that it’s safe for everyone’s skin?
We partnered with engineers, physicians, and scientists during the development process. All the technologies are industry standard, and we have done all required tests before releasing it to the public. We have CE, UL, FCC certifications and all our products are manufactured in FDA, ISO, GMP certified facilities within the US.
With that said, you have to make sure the device is used correctly. Ensure you apply a thick layer of our Hyaluronic Conductive Treatment Gel. You must use gel because the device has electrical currents. Think of how doctors first apply an ultrasound gel before doing ultrasounds for pregnancies. The gel not only allows currents to travel deeper into the skin where it can work to stimulate muscles and tissues, but it also propels the good ingredients within the gel deeper into the dermal layer.
Using the Hyaluronic Conductive Treatment Gel will protect your skin during use
What are the different modes that are part of the device?
There are four different modes — Detox, Tone, Lift, and Infuse.
Users can focus more attention on specific modes, allowing them to adapt MIRA to their skin’s needs, environment, and condition at the time, or use all four modes for a comprehensive facial.
The first and second modes (Detox and Tone) help with acne, blemishes, large pores, and skin texture: “Detox” features blue LED light, ultrasound, and sonic vibrations. When combined, these functions promote lymphatic drainage (pushing out toxins), decrease sebum production, and fight acne-causing bacteria, giving pores a deep cleanse. Following “Detox,” “Tone” pumps it up a bit, and adds in Microcurrents. When combined, its function increases circulation, infuses oxygen into facial cells, combats puffiness, and calms skin, preparing skin for the next mode, “Lift.”
Nicole shares a demo of MIRA's Blue LED technology for a potential customer
“Lift” targets the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and can slim and sculpt the face: it features red LED light technology, Microcurrents, and Radio Frequency. Red LED light technology energizes cells, stimulating ATP production, while Microcurrents exercises the muscles on your face (think Pilates for your skin). Finally, Radio Frequency stimulates increased collagen and elastin production. We’ve created the ultimate lifting device, integrating three of the strongest lifting technologies to instantly reduce the appearance of wrinkles and sculpt.
The final mode is “Infuse” for skin hydration. Just as much as your skin works to keep bad stuff from coming in, it keeps good stuff (like serums and moisturizers) from penetrating as well, with a bilipid layer. “Infuse” mode utilizes Ion Technology (galvanic currents), Green LED Light Technology, Ultrasound, and Sonic Pulsations. Ion Technology charges the molecules in the gel and propels it deeper into your skin, Green LED Light Technology is perfect for brightening the skin, bringing back that natural glow and radiance, and Ultrasound refreshes the skin by increasing circulation.
Our Hyaluronic Conductive Treatment Gel is formulated to work synergistically with our device. It’s infused with Hyaluronic Acid, to moisturize the skin, antioxidants like Green Tea Extract to protect the skin, and soothing ingredients like Aloe and Azulene, to calm the skin. We also don’t use any perfumes or coloring, so it is clean, and gives a soothing effect.
Why these 4 particular modes?
The MIRA Facial System optimizes a skincare routine with technology, so we tried to mimic the standard facial process. Normally, a facialist would begin by washing and detoxing your face. You can do the same with our device on the Detox mode, utilizing little skin scrubbers to exfoliate. The ultrasound micro-currents of the Tone mode replicate what a facialist would do in prepping your skin for a treatment. The next thing a facialist does is massage your face to target lymphatic drainage, fine lines and wrinkles. With the Mira device, this is the Lift mode. You’re going to feel the most stimulation and the hottest stimulation at this point. Once the facialist is done exercising your face, they want to protect your face by infusing moisture into your skin. This is done with our Infuse mode.
There are twenty step Korean skincare routines and ten step dermatologist routines on the market. And although this is only four steps, you can already see the difference after one use. You don’t need a lot of products in your cabinet — what you really need is a good cleanser, gel and device, and good moisturizer. Your skin will be clean, exercised, stimulated, and hydrated. That’s the secret to good skin.
How often are you supposed to use it?
Our recommendation is that you use it 3-5 times a week for the first month, then maintenance treatments after that. Similar to exercise, once you have abs, you only need to maintain them — the foundation is already there. You should do maintenance 1-2 times a week to ensure continued results. I didn’t realize how much of a difference the device made until I stopped using it altogether. This just shows that your skin needs constant exercise. When you exercise your body, your skin feels better. When you exercise your face, it's the same result. It only takes 5 min each time you use the MIRA, and you will be able to see results instantly.
Now through SENREVE, you can purchase your own MIRA Facial System. All customers who purchase a MIRA are also eligible for a complementary one-on-one consultation with Nicole. What skincare woes are you currently dealing with? Do you have any other questions for Nicole? We'd love to hear from you in our comment section below.