Retail in Asia


Everyday Humans founder Charlotte Chen on building a top-of-mind skincare brand for ‘zillennials’

Created for ‘zillennials’ by one millennial, it’s no surprise that skincare brand Everyday Humans has exploded on social media, where its campaigns on TikTok and Instagram feature a carefully curated range of organic content and diverse influencer partnerships. 

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Though its founder, Charlotte Chen, is from Hong Kong, Everyday Humans’ first successes happened overseas, specifically in the United States, where Chen launched the brand. After Chen joined the accelerator programme Target Takeoff, supported by American retailer Target, Everyday Humans relaunched in 2021 with five products that included sunscreen lotion, serum, lip balm, and face mist. As of 2022, the brand was stocked at over 700 retailers, and today the number has grown to more than 1,000 stockists. 

Source: Everyday Humans

Available across Southeast Asia through Sephora, and at Kurio by Pure Apparel, Everyday Humans has ambitions to expand its presence closer to home in Hong Kong and Singapore, both online and through partnerships with stockists such as I.T. Group.

Retail in Asia speaks with Charlotte Chen on building her skincare brand and cultivating rapport with Everyday Humans’ ‘zillennial’ audience. 

RiA: Please tell us about how you established Everyday Humans. Can you share a bit on your background, and why you decided to create your own sunscreen brand?

Chen: Interestingly, my background was in investment banking, until I decided to take the plunge and move away from corporate life at age 27. From there, I joined a start-up, and my non-traditional journey eventually took me from building social communities within an app, creating a magazine, selling digital billboard ad spaces, to working in operations, marketing and distribution for indie fashion and beauty start-ups. 

I got into the sunscreen industry because I used to tan a lot in my teens. Now that I’m in my 30s and seeing the first signs of aging, I wish someone had told me earlier about the importance of taking care of my skin by using the most vital weapon against wrinkles – SPF. The education around preventive care and using sunscreen has exploded in the past few years, but at the same time, young people are concerned about what’s actually in the formula, the related environmental impact and more importantly, authentic representation. 

Source: Everyday Humans

This ultimately led me to start Everyday Humans — a conscious and inclusive sun-led skincare brand that helps inspire zillennials of all skin tones and types to wear SPF everyday. The brand takes inspiration from the creative energy and intersection of street fashion, urban culture, nature conservation and experimental art — interests and topics that excite, inspire and resonate with myself and many humans in the zillennial sub-set. 

RiA: What have been some key milestones in building and expanding the business? 

Chen: The first big box retailer who has supported us from the very beginning was Target. After graduating from its accelerator program Target Takeoff in 2019 and re-launching the brand in 2020, our hero products debuted on in 2021 and expanded to 700+ physical outlets in 2022. In 2023, we introduced two new products, which include tanning oil – Sun Glazed SPF30 Sunscreen Glow Oil and face & body mist, Good Times SPF50 Sunscreen Spray. This has helped create more visibility and attractiveness to our assortment and we’ve been receiving in-bounds for distribution opportunities in Europe and Asia. 

RiA: Everyday Humans has become a huge hit on social media. To what do you attribute that success, and how do you approach marketing the products?
Source: Everyday Humans

Chen: We have focused our marketing efforts in organic content and micro-influencers to spread the word of sun protection as a ‘Human Outside’, building a strong and loyal community of brand fans on both Instagram and TikTok. To date, we have a network of 1,000+ ‘Humans Outside’, 20K+ followers on Instagram and more than 3.5M impressions on TikTok.  

RiA: What’s next for Everyday Humans?

Chen: We are currently available at more than 1,000 outlets, including Target, CVS, J.C. Penney, Revolve, Shopbop, Beauty Bay, and will be looking at expansion into European and Asian retailers in the next 12 months. 

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RiA: What’s your vision for Everyday Humans’ brand trajectory?

Chen: In five years, I want Everyday Humans to be the top-of-mind inclusive SPF brand for zillennials by having a strong and differentiated assortment strategy, a sizable community of loyal customers who believe in our vision and mission, which can allow us to be creative and innovative within our category and beyond. We have an exciting pipeline of suncare products coming up that we don’t want to unveil too much, but our team is continually innovating in the space, formulating best-in-class formulas that’s affordable, inclusive, and eco-conscious.