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Charlotte Cho Goes Beyond ‘Skin Deep’ With Pop-Up Experience

Updated: Jul 25, 2019

Michelle Phan (left) and Charlotte Cho (right) at the blue themed Then I Met You pop-up store on Crosby.

Our favorite Korean skincare guru, Charlotte Cho, recently took the plunge with a new retail experience for her premium skincare line, Then I Met You (TIMY). Charlotte was a guest on Season 1 and an early supporter of Rock the Boat. While we may be slightly biased, we couldn’t be more excited for her latest creation.

I visited the pop-up shop on opening day: Friday, July 12th. The brightly blue store is located in SoHo. The store’s bright colors mimic the light, feather-blue color and the relaxing fun feel of the Then I Met You skincare set. Em Cosmetics Founder and CEO Michelle Phan (also a previous Rock the Boat guest) joined Charlotte as the first guest star to kick off the event. Energy was definitely in the air as fans eagerly waited in a long line, waiting to meet the duo.

While promoting the brand at TIMY’s pop-up, the staff served creamy mango sorbet that glided effortlessly with one smooth scoop of the spoon. The sorbet kept me and other pop-up goers cool. It also mimicked the smooth glide of the Then I Met You Living Cleansing Balm.

“I want to educate people about their skin with Then I Met You and how to go deeper with everything you do. It's a skincare line, but ultimately, I want this brand to represent something that goes deeper than just skincare. Then I Met You is about going deeper in how you live,” said Charlotte in an interview with Rock the Boat.

The Backstory

As detailed in Season 1, Charlotte was inspired to create the Then I Met You line during her travels to Korea. She traveled to Korea to learn more about Korean skincare for her company, Soko Glam, an e-commerce company that specializes in Korean Beauty products. It was in Korea that the entrepreneur felt the deep and emotional connection, a feeling that she thought was best described by the Korean word, ‘jeong’ (정).

The word ‘jeong’ embodies a wide range of feelings that usually has a relationship with affection, attachment, or love. For example, people may use the word ‘jeong’ when they pile on extra food onto a loved one’s plate or when they lower their guard with a friend. It is a culture-specific emotion that Charlotte felt strongly when she was in Korea. It was an emotion that she wanted to spread.

Coming from a Chinese family, hearing Charlotte explain ‘jeong’ was an interesting concept to me. For me, ‘jeong’ is about the nuanced, simple acts of love. After interviewing Charlotte, I thought a little bit about ‘jeong’ and how it affects my relationships. Later, when I caught up with an old friend, I decided to walk to Chinatown to buy a specific rice dish that we both like. To me, that is ‘jeong’ and how I choose to go deeper with my relationships.

Infusing the Concept of ‘Jeong’

Charlotte wanted to infuse the feeling of ‘jeong’ into the everyday skincare routine.

“The Korean double cleansing method is the gateway to Korean beauty,” said Charlotte, in an interview with Rock the Boat. “But most importantly, I want people to use this every day and remind themselves to go deeper in all their relationships. In the age of social media, it is important, more than ever, to take some time to invest in special unique relationships and experiences.”

In the age of social media, Charlotte believes that it can get harder to form offline relationships. There is so much clutter with what we consume, and relationships can take on a different meaning. The simplicity of the skincare routine and everyday use of the products are meant to remind users to connect with their loved ones and to go deeper beyond.

“I want people to have a quality product,” said Charlotte. “But I also want them to think ‘Oh, it’s been a while since I caught up with so-and-so.’ It’s the idea of ‘Then I Met You,’ what happens next?”

And that’s how Then I Met You was born.

Breaking Down the Two-Step Cleansing Process

At the event, Charlotte hosted a demo to break down the two-step cleansing process.

“Oil removes oil the best. That’s why we always start with oil,” said Charlotte. “You won’t need any makeup remover. The Living Cleansing Balm did not win as best cleanser, but it won an award for best makeup remover.”

I personally loved the buttery feel. The balm did not leave my skin too dry, which is a plus for someone who has combination skin.

“The second step is the cleansing gel. The Soothing Tea Cleansing Gel is water-based and it removes any water-based securities like sweat and dirt.” Charlotte demonstrated the soothing tea cleansing gel by sampling a bit on the back of her hand.

Contrast to the balm, the Soothing Tea cleansing gel felt more slippery. It left my skin feeling refreshed after the double cleanse. There is a light lingering green tea scent.

Connect with Charlotte

Overall, this experience was extremely positive and vibrant! It was fun being amongst other pop-up goers at the event and learning about their own personal journey with skincare and themselves. Of course, having Charlotte Cho and Michelle Phan there was a major plus.

If you missed the pop-up, don’t worry. You can still satisfy your skincare needs at Soko House, Charlotte’s first brick and mortar store for Soko Glam. Soko House will continue to host a wide range of events, master classes, and meet and greets through August 18. The store is open daily from 12 - 7pm. If you want to experience some of the Soko magic yourself, check out the list of upcoming events here.

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