Beautiful Voices is our ongoing blog series that highlights inspiring, empowering women. Our most recent Beautiful Voice is Abby Jean. See what she says when Annmarie asks her some questions about her own personal beauty.
Abby Jean is an Annmarie Skin Care team member! She is our “in-house” licensed esthetician, and participates in writing for the active ASC blog. She's also working in customer support to create a personable experience with customers based on their skin’s needs. Her versatile background in a variety of plant-based practices has contributed to her success in the beauty industry.
As a graduate from the Cinta Aveda Institute in San Francisco and the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York, Abby believes that her purpose for practicing esthetics is to educate and encourage people to create wellness in their lives, both inside and out. She thoroughly enjoys being apart of this thriving industry.
Who do you feel you are today? What event has defined your life?
I guess I’ve never really thought about who I am today, but rather the journey it took to get here. I can say that I am happy with who I have become, and the events that have defined my life have continued to offer me the greatest reflections of the woman I am now.
A remarkable experience that has changed my life was going to Herb School during college. At the time, I discovered my new found love for plants and was majoring in botany, so I thought, “Why not go deeper into the plant kingdom?” I was so intrigued.
At 18, I attended Dandelion Herbal Center in Kneeland, CA, a beautiful forest town in Humboldt County, and studied under the renowned herbalist and sage, Jane Bothwell. Beyond a practicing herbalist, Jane is an educator, hypnotherapist, and flower essence practitioner who profoundly inspired me on my path. She has 25 years of experience in immersing herself in the plant realm, passing down intuitive plant wisdom to modern generations—myself included. I am unbelievably grateful for all that she shared with me.
During this journey of preserving herbal traditions—from wild-crafting to making medicinal tinctures and salves, to creating skin care products and foraging food for ‘forest to table’ meals and gatherings—it was all quite the humbling experience and definitely an unforgettable one. She evoked a sense of wildness inside of me. And even though I am a city girl at this moment in life, I still find ways to incorporate the practices I learned from her into my own environment. It’s all about getting back to your roots!
What's the best piece of advice you've ever received?
Anything from the brilliant Kahlil Gibran, particularly in his book The Prophet. His writing is so intuitive and potent. It really hits home for me.
Where and when do you feel most at peace?
I feel most at peace in nature, where my thoughts and breath are calm. Sometimes in the midst of city life, I forget to breathe deeply. My chest is tight and my mind flutters with distraction. I ride a Vespa scooter around San Francisco and I’ve been taking the long way home through the Presidio Eucalyptus forest. It’s such a lovely way to decompress from the day, riding through the trees, feeling free.
What does beauty mean to you?
Unfortunately, we live in a world where advertising and social media have skewed younger generations views on what beauty really is. So many young men and women claim they’re trying to achieve a certain beauty ideal in an attempt to become more “desirable” or “socially accepted”, and it just breaks my heart.
Recently, an amazing cycling instructor, Ian, shared a piece of wisdom with me in one of my evening Soul Cycle rides in San Francisco. He said, “Real beauty is felt and rarely seen.” This deeply resonated with me and I began to ask myself, “What is true beauty?”
Beauty, to me, starts inside. To be beautiful is to embody it in every form of your existence. This starts with loving yourself. Loving all the quirkiness, the imperfections…and embracing them! Having empathy and a kind heart radiates true beauty, as does a healthy mind and body.
I believe in eating for beauty with whole, organic and unprocessed foods, avoiding too much sugar, exercising and not forgetting to breathe deeply. Reciting positive daily affirmations are sweet reminders for the soul, and laughter makes you glow. I want to redefine beauty and be contagious in doing so!
What makes you feel beautiful?
Beauty rituals, of course!
Nourishing my temple daily with lots of purified water, healthy food, a daily green juice or superfood smoothie, adaptogens, yoga, cycling, pilates, being consistent with Annmarie Gianni Skin Care (it’s truly the best I’ve ever used), aromatherapy, playing in the kitchen, channeling the inner wild woman and employing a loving and conscious attitude within my community.
How does Annmarie's mission fit into your lifestyle?
I probably wouldn’t work for Annmarie Skin Care if I didn’t align with the mission. The philosophy and integrity of this company is unlike anything I’ve ever seen in the beauty industry. Wild, Beautiful in their mission are the three words that represent complete transparency, and that is so incredibly important to me. I love working for a skin care line that empowers people by sharing knowledge about wellness, nutrition and beauty industry updates. As a company, we love more than anything to see people being informed on making conscious efforts to change and spread the love!
What are your words of wisdom to other beauties out there?
Create to inspire, remember your worth and always speak your truth. You never know who’s listening, you never know who’s life your changing 🙂
Abby Stoecker is a Licensed Esthetician with 9 years of experience in the beauty industry. Her journey has led her to experience first hand the entire cycle of the esthetics industry—first working as a practitioner, then as an Account Manager/ Brand Evangelist at a skin care product company (ASC), and previously as an Educator at Cinta Aveda Institute where she originally studied for her Esthetics License almost 10 years ago. Currently, she is freelancing with start up skin care brands in the green beauty space. Her objective is simple—spread awareness, educate and make people feel their best when it comes to the decisions they make for their wellness and beauty. Abby finds immense joy in navigating clients through the world of skin, helping each person craft their own at-home rituals to achieve balance, inside and out. You can find her on most mornings with a face mask on, coffee in hand, listening to “The Daily” podcast.