How a doctor of Chinese medicine is bringing love and attention to an oft-overlooked area—our breasts.
Written By JANNA JOHNSON O’TOOLE
VIOLET GREY profiles female beauty entrepreneurs who are considered industry game changers because of their individual approach to business. Each one entered the conversation in her own manner and maintained a steady, if not unparalleled, trajectory with her indomitable spirit.
"As women, we don’t often acknowledge and give love to our breasts until we fear illness,” says Dr. Janine Mahon, the New Mexico-based doctor of Chinese medicine, who has amassed a following as a bonafide breast guru. “I created the Rejuvenating Breast Oil 18 years ago when I was a new mom experiencing mastitis,” she explains. “It has since been perfected and shared with many of my patients.”
The formula is rich in both powerful herbs (frankincense and myrrh) and moisturizing ingredients (jojoba oil, neroli, bergamot), and designed for any woman, as it promotes circulation and blood flow to the breast and lymph area while leaving skin soft and supple. But it gets especially high praise by those who suffer from tender or swollen breasts, particularly associated with menstruation.
“Chinese medicine gives me a 5,000 year-old framework with which to foster the awakening of the body’s innate ability to heal,” she says. “I’ve combined that with my own unique perspective from studying and working in Taiwan and distilled this knowledge into a bottle.”
And while we don’t think twice about affording our face a daily self-care ritual, it’s time we gave our breasts the same affection, too. “It’s honoring a part of our body that is essential to our emotional health and physical well-being,” says Mahon. “There is power in developing a relationship with our breasts.”
Here, she shares her love of acupuncture, gua sha, and red lipstick.
First thing you do when you wake up?
Before I open my eyes, I take a few minutes to set my intentions for the day, taking a few deep breaths and stretches before I get out of bed.
Eight hours total. I don’t use an alarm.
In a hurry? Seven minutes. For meetings? 30.
Typical skincare regimen?
I cleanse my face with a lukewarm wash cloth, use my homemade skin glow oil and gua sha for two minutes to decrease puffiness and get the blood flowing, and finish with sunscreen.
Hair situation in the a.m.?
I love wearing a loose and messy bun.
Your signature beauty look?
I’m all about radiance—but love a red lipstick.
Forty minutes of yoga and an early morning hike four times a week up Sandia Mountains in New Mexico.
Go-to breakfast and a.m. beverage?
Congee (rice porridge) with savory additions—either almonds, soft boiled eggs, or sprouts. It’s a very nourishing meal that helps me start my day feeling energized and hydrated.
Foolproof self-care move?
Water, water, water. Hydration is everything.
Drylands Wilds Rosehip + Thistle Perfume Oil
An expensive-but-worth-it product or treatment?
A series of facial acupuncture. Six sessions boost radiance, diminish fine lines, and moves Qi [energy].
Weleda Renewing Eye Cream Wild Rose
Bedside beauty essentials?
Last thing you do before bed?
Spray some rose water over my face and pillow, and let go of the day.
Natural beauties like Jane Birkin and Audrey Hepburn.
Being a Chinese medicine doctor and herbalist. I love empowering people to reconnect with their bodies.
Growing up in the Mendocino National Forest, I chopped and stacked wood for the winter. It was my treacherous chore as a teen.
How the idea for your current product came to you?
It’s rooted in my patients requesting the breast oil to share with other women.
Nothing’s impossible; if it feels good, go for it!
Highest point as an entrepreneur?
Seeing the relief and hope in the faces of my patients while hearing about their experiences with the breast oil. Knowing that it is fundamentally changing how they feel in their daily lives is what keeps me going.
Feeling daunted by the need to bring a new product and category to market with no experience or faintest idea how.
As a single mom, I moved to San Andrés de Cholula, Mexico with my daughter for two years.
When my daughter was little I sewed a lot of her clothes. I love being able to envision something and bring it to life.