In a new special monthly column in collaboration with Byrdie Boy, grooming and beauty site Very Good Light’s editor David Yi writes about beauty from the inside out. Each month, he'll touch on topics that celebrate inner and outer light through the lens of beauty. In his second column, he shares a new anxiety-reducing discovery called Dewdrop.
Like many entrepreneurs in the world, I had a clear vision for 2020.
For me, it was finally getting back into shape, revamping Very Good Light, and becoming a little more fiscally responsible—a.k.a quitting all beauty boxes and daily iced lattes. But a certain coronavirus named COVID-19 threw a wrench into every single one of my plans and forced me to realize that life isn’t mine to control. This has been extremely troublesome for a Taurus like me, whose obstinance is difficult to steer in any other direction. When my mind is set on something, I do everything I can to get what I want. But this obstacle has no resolution. There’s no clear end in sight. It’s put so much in perspective—how I’m not only helpless to the universe, but that I can’t do anything but wait.
Being indoors has had a real psychological effect for most around the world. One study has shown how quarantine is associated with post-traumatic stress symptoms, anger and isolation. Frustration also amounts and in turn, this can lead to self-harm or harm to others. I’ve definitely felt some of these. Isolation turns to loneliness, and I’ve retreated to self-care more than ever to combat these effects.
Among my day-to-day tools: anything CBD, lavender fragrances, and adaptogens—lots and lots of adaptogens. For those who’ve never heard of the ingredient, it’s a super potent mix of herbs, mushrooms and botanicals that help the body regulate its response to stress. It's been studied to show a drastic reduction in stress hormone levels, while also building immunity—I’ve also seen studies that show better sleep and improved mood.
While I’ve been obsessed with adaptogens—like the The Nue Co’s supplements, or even topically, like in Youth To The People’s cream – I’ve yet to come across anything really tasty. That is, until last month when I heard about the beverage brand called Dewdrop. Chic packaging side, it’s also based on making you feel your best with each, well, drop.
Co-founded by two women of color, this dew-good (sorry for the pun!) brand is all about putting a pep in your step starting from your very mood. Not only is the brand bursting with good vibes, but it actually tastes really delicious. Coming in three flavors—Pretty Happy, Pretty Balanced, Pretty Bright—it’s an entire Ryan Heffington dance party in your mouth. The flavor profiles tap into the sweet, salty, sour, tart, and umami—and are sparkling, for all your La Croix lovers. All of the flavors blend fruit flavors with the powerful adaptogens. For example, Pretty Happy has passionfruit, cacao, vanilla bean, and the adaptogen rhodiola, while Pretty Bright has yuzu, ginger and the adaptogen reishi mushroom. My favorite is Pretty Balanced, a drink composed of white peach, lemon verbena, moringa and the adaptogen ashwagandha. Not only did I feel instantly mellowed, the drink lasted me from morning into the afternoon—the can is the size of an Arizona Iced Tea. But was this a placebo effect?
I tried the two other cans and took them at my peak time of stress—an hour or two before sleeping. To my surprise, not only did I fall asleep in minutes, I woke up eight hours (eight hours, y'all!) without interruption. According to Celeste Perez, co-founder of Dewdrop, the effects are very real. She started the company because adaptogens were the only product that worked to manage her own frenzy.
“When I started taking adaptogens, I was pretty skeptical,” she admits. A product of two Filipino-American doctors, Perez felt that she couldn’t even talk about ingredients unless she saw scientific research. “I couldn't just go around trying woo-woo supplements. I did my research. But when I started seeing results, I was amazed.” Perez hopes the brand helps others, especially in times of heightened anxiety like these. At a time when I’m trying to survive my day-to-day, it’s almost as if Dewdrop came in the knick of time.