Meet Daniel Kaplan and Robbie Miller, founders of ZitSticka. Read on to find out what inspired them to start their company, how they practice self care, and more!
What inspired you to create ZitSticka?
Daniel Kaplan: Not such an elegant story, but I got a massive boil on my butt that was extremely painful. A year later, I felt it coming back and the person at the pharmacy gave me a substance called Ichthammol which is a drawing salve which works great, but stains everything it touches. It’s extremely black and tarry, so he advised me to place a plaster on top so it wouldn’t stain anything.
What followed next was quite literally a lightbulb moment—“Whenever I have a spot (or indeed a boil; but spots are more common!) in my life, I am going to put a plaster over it.” ZitSticka’s co-founder, Robbie, is my brother-in-law, and the only other person I made a sticker for. Robbie has a background in pharmaceuticals and when he saw my idea he was like, “Let’s just do this.”
Robbie Miller: We did a deep-dive into pimple patches and found there were no other stickers that actually impregnate a zit with exfoliating, bacteria-quelling ingredients. Rather, they sit on the surface of the skin without penetrating into the core of the zit—we wanted to be able to impede the progression of pimples before they become that throbbing, full-grown mess we know all too well. A couple of years of research and development then saw us give birth to our debut product: the KILLA patch.
What's your favorite part of your job?
DK: Working with dermatologists to develop and produce innovative and efficacious products for our customers. To be able to offer people a suite of products that addresses the full spectrum of breakouts—from up-and-coming, to out-and-proud, through to the post-zit aftermath is so important to us. We’re so excited about two imminent product releases before the year is through, so keep your eyes peeled!
What does your average day look like?
DK: Around 7am, it's cereal time whilst feeding my two kids. ZitSticka work till 12pm and then gym time. Lunch right after, and then back to ZS work till 5pm. Dinner, play and bathtime with kids/family before getting back to the laptop at 8pm. Shut off work around midnight with a relaxing shower, my skincare regime and then I'll head to bed. Quick browse of Flipboard and IG to sync with the world before shut eye. *Dreams of ZS*
How do you practice self care?
DK: A full body scrub in the shower every 3 days. SKIN DISCIPLINE every morning. KILLA when zituations arise. Gym 5 days per week. Healthy, and high protein meals and snacks throughout the day and night—I’m never not eating. A sheet mask every Sunday night to close out the week.
RM: Not far off the mark for me either! Healthy, plant-forward meals, SKIN DISCIPLINE each morning, saunas and cold plunge pools to reinvigorate muscles, and winding down with a book, or being outdoors in nature. I cleanse with CeraVe—I love their fuss-free, clinically proven products—and it's warming up now in Sydney so I've just switched to a more lightweight moisturizer. A hot bath never lets me down, either!
What's your number one beauty or skincare tip?
DK: Please never leave the house (or even sit indoors near a sunny window! without wearing a broad-spectrum SPF on your face!
RM: Chemical exfoliation is a non-negotiable for preventing clogged pores and the formation of breakouts. Salicylic (which features in the KILLA patch) is my favorite acid as it actually exfoliates inside the pore.
What's your personal motto?
DK: Can this be someone else's quote? "The only person you should try to be better than is the person you were yesterday."
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