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Mother Essentials: Karen Young Of Oui The People

Written by Katie Hintz-Zambrano

If you’ve got a young baby at home or a bundle of joy on the way, today’s mama has just the suggestions for you! Karen Young is the Brooklyn-based mother of a 10-month-old son, Noa, and is also “mama” to the cult-followed body care brand OUI The People. Founded in 2015 by the former Estée Lauder executive, OUI The People is known for its innovative, thoughtfully-designed razors (its stainless-steel rose gold razor has won multiple awards) and body care collection. In January of this year, the company raised more than $3 million, putting Young in the history books as one of under 100 Black women to raise over $1M in venture funding. Obsessed with products that look good and work well (her own brand, included), Young’s Mother Essentials list is tried-and-true gold. Enjoy!

Lovevery Subscription. “The Lovevery Play Gym was a gift from one of my investors and I immediately signed up for the Play Kit subscription, too. It’s been great to have toys and suggestions that meet my son at each milestone without having to do research every month, and he loves them!” Play Kit Subscription, $80 to $120 per box, Lovevery. The Play Gym, $140, Lovevery.

BABYBJÖRN Carrier Mini. “My Design Director, Dana, gifted us the BJÖRN carrier mini and it was perfect for my little one, who was only 5 lbs 10 oz. at birth. It was the only carrier that fit and he still loves it!” BABYBJÖRN Carrier Mini, $99.99, BABYBJÖRN.

If You Give A Mouse A Cookie. “My CEO coach gifted us one of his favorite books, If You Give A Mouse A Cookie. She must have known I’m a kid at heart—I think Noa loves it because I laugh everytime. Spoiler alert, it’s tough to get rid of a mouse that you give a cookie to, but at least he’s helpful.” If You Give A Mouse A Cookie, written by Laura Numeroff and illustrated by Felicia Bond, $16.55, Bookshop and Amazon.

Gathre Play Mat. “Our friends Aaron and Dominique gifted us the Gathre play mat and we love it! So easy to use anywhere, especially outdoors, and easy to pack up.” Gathre Midi Play Mat, $85, Gathre.

Lansinoh Breastwarmers. “The Lansinoh breastwarmers were essential to helping letdown and frankly just a yummy feeling when your breasts are a source of food, batting practice, and chew toy all in one.” Lansinoh TheraPearl Breast Therapy 2-Pack, $9.84, Amazon.

CHEAT SHEET Body Serum. “I take what I’ve called the Luxury Short Shower. I use the most delightful hand-milled soaps from a trip to France, followed by CHEAT SHEET, and then slather myself in oil. My body has been carrying, nursing, and rocking for almost two years and it has been nice to pick up a ritual all for myself again.” CHEAT SHEET Resurfacing Body Serum, $38, OUI The People.

Tripp Trapp. “We love the Tripp Trapp high chair for its function and beauty. I take the tray off and just pull him up to whatever I’m doing and he gets such a thrill from being included.” Tripp Trapp, $249, Stokke.

Snuggle Me Lounger. “The Snuggle Me was a must-have during the early stages when you could put them anywhere and they couldn’t move. If I’d only known, I would have taken longer baths.” Snuggle Me Organic Infant Lounger, $109, Snuggle Me.

BABYBJÖRN Bouncer. “This bouncer got us through some tough times from birth to 9 months, right when he realized he didn’t need to be trapped and had options. I recall one particularly harrowing day when I bounced him with one foot til he fell asleep, while responding to emails. Fun times.” Bouncer Balance Soft, $199, BABYBJÖRN

Electric Nail Clipper. “An electric baby nail trimmer was almost laughable, until I learned my son was the equivalent of a tiger cub. Cute, sharp, and hard to pin down. Get it.” FANSIDI Electric Baby Nail File, $20.99, Amazon.

BEABA Baby Bath. “Every bathtub I tried was way too big to feel comfortable bathing Noa in when he was tiny. The Beaba Shnuggle was perfect to bathe him safely and being surrounded by the bathwater actually seems to make him feel very soothed—understandably. It’s a big win on thoughtful design for me.” BEABA x Shnuggle Newborn Baby Bath Tub, $49.95, Pottery Barn Kids.

My Mom Crew. “A community of moms has been essential to my sanity. What a gift to have a group of women who just get it, and on top of that are generous with their time and advice. I honestly couldn’t get by without them.”

For more Mother Essentials, peep our recent past columns with author-illustrator Grace Lin, the co-founders of ODDOBODY, Happy Family Organics’ CEO Anne Laraway, YA author J.Elle, kid-lit authors Karen Chan and Suzanne Greenlaw, the founders of EADEM, Minimalista author Shira Gill, Domino’s Chief Content Officer Kate Berry, the two-mom duo behind Morrow Soft Goods, mega-influencer Nabela NoorAngela O’Brien of Cleobella, Nikki Osei-Barrett of District Motherhued, Blair Paysinger of Post 21, Idia Lanlokun of Ola & Mide, Karam Kim of Bluecut aprons, children’s authors Evan Sargent and Joanna HoEli Yonas of Toki Mats, Shaina Kerrigan of Molly J., Jenna Levine of LINNÉ botanicals, Eunice Byun of Material, and Sandra Lin of Kiwi Co.

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