Lynn Anna Lafreniere is a model famous on Instagram for her knowledge of the beauty industry. For her, modeling is only one aspect of her job, which requires her to have a vast knowledge of the beauty industry to stay on top of trends. We sat down with her to chat about the industry and how beauty influences her career.
Grit Daily: You had your own ventures before you started modeling. Share those.
Lynn Anna Lafreniere: I was very fascinated by fashion and beauty as a small child. I watched a fashion show on TV when I was very young and convinced myself that I was going to be a part of that world one day.
My modelling career began in Boston, Massachusetts. I was walking in runway shows for local designers and I realized how much I love the industry. From there, I decided that I was going to pursue modeling in LA first, then move to New York and then travel to China, Korea and Japan.
After high school I moved to LA to study fashion marketing and ended up signing with a modeling agency while I was in school there. After graduating, I modeled in Shanghai for three months then moved to New York shortly after. While living in New York, I often visit Japan, South Korea, and China. I feel very grateful that I was able to accomplish those goals.
GD: What defines an Asian beauty expert?
LA: My definition of an Asian beauty expert is someone that spends an unceasing amount of time learning about Asian skincare methods, brands and ingredients. For my first trip to Asia, I went to China. I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to model in Shanghai for a few months. During my flight I noticed a girl put something on her face that I have never seen before.
She told me it was a Dr Morita Hyaluronic Acid Face Mask and she shared about how important it is to keep your skin moisturized during long flights. She was so generous that she gave me one of her masks to try. That girl on that plane changed my life!
I became really immersed in the world of skincare. I loved the Japanese, Korean, and Taiwanese brands, ingredients and techniques. I made a lot of effort to learn about the ingredients and the many steps they used from the professional makeup artists and skincare experts that I would encounter whenever I was working in Asia. Nowadays masks are ubiquitous and the world has embraced Asian skincare principles especially the Japanese and Korean methods. I love sharing unique products and techniques with a receptive audience.
GD: Given your travel schedule, which of your own tips do you find yourself following the most?
LA: Definitely face masks on flights over 2 hours! Dr Morita is still one of my favorite brands. I also recommend the XOUL Solution Facial Mask.
I prefer to fly makeup free or remove my makeup when I get settled in. Leaving makeup on will dry out your skin and it can cause breakouts.
I pack about 5 or 6 face masks, (TSA approved) lotion, eye cream, face wipes, toner, hair oil, face mist, and sunblock. You should always look for products that have these ingredients: Hyaluronic acid, Snail Mucin, korean Ginseng (try Sulwhasoo products), and products with “fermented” ingredients ( try Missha Time Revolution The First Treatment Essence).
I’ll use my products before and during the flights to make sure my skin retains moisture. I will always do a face mask before bed after a day of flying and also the morning after.
Face mist is a definite must have. I currently use the Tony Moly Green Tea face mist. It’s the best way to stay moisturized without having to touch your face. You can use it when you have makeup on too!
Drinking water is very important! I try to drink a liter of water before my flights. I’ll bring a large empty water bottle through TSA and I make sure to fill it at the filtered water station before boarding starts. For really long flights I’ll purchase a few large bottles of Fiji water to make sure I have enough water during the flight because flying is so dehydrating. When you are dehydrated, you will think that you have more skin problems than you actually do. Staying hydrated also helps you get the maximum benefits from your beauty products. So I highly recommend drinking water in conjunction with using those products!
GD: What is a “rare exotic?” And what is your relationship to pandas?
LA: LOL! I see you read my Instagram bio.
I know that I could have made a more serious bio, but I’m not really a serious person. I can take things seriously and professionally when needed but sometimes I prefer to be silly. I also love pandas. If I could be any animal. I would be a panda!
GD: What should our readers know about your fight against human trafficking?
LA: I think a lot of people don’t understand that human trafficking happens locally not just someplace far away and that anyone can become a victim. I learned about some tips to help people stay safe. You have to be careful who you talk to and to never make it seem like you are an easy target. For example, if you live alone, don’t let strangers know that you live alone. People will be less likely to notice that you are missing. Some human traffickers will pretend to be model scouts, job recruiters, or pretend to be a friend. So never make it seem like you are an easy target and don’t give out too much information about yourself to random people.
You can help victims by paying attention and alerting authorities. Young traffic victims are often with an older person but might look malnourished, bruised, and scared. They might even try to stare at you in hopes that you can understand that they need help. If you have a gut feeling that something isn’t right you should alert someone immediately.
Rehabilitation of rescued survivors is really helpful for their recovery. Once a survivor is ready to socialize with others, you can help them with simple activities like communicating, art, simple education, having fun or by donating clothing and self care products to an organization. I’m not qualified to help with the therapy part of it, but I love being there as a supportive volunteer for their activities and I love donating necessities and comforts.
GD: Which brands are you working with next?
LA: Interesting that you asked this. Lately I have received many proposals from many wonderful brands, however the pandemic has inspired me to reevaluate things. I love skincare but I also love helping people. Even though I started out studying fashion marketing, I ended up preferring the beauty and skincare industry more. It seemed like it had more of a positive impact. I noticed that good skincare products help people feel confident and beautiful makeup helps people to be whatever they want to be.
But after having to quarantine for such a long time, I really thought about how important it is to not only focus on beauty but also how important it is to include wellness. Before the shutdown, I would attend Caravan Wellness events. Caravan Wellness really inspired me to want to connect everything together. I think good products are only one part of it. You need to eat healthy, drink healthy and take care of your mental health. Right now I want to take time to learn more about wellness and restructure my branding to include that as part of my Anna Lynn Lafreniere blog and social media accounts.