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Subikksha Balaje Goldstories
Mother Essentials

Mother Essentials: Subikksha Balaje of Goldstories

Written by Katie Hintz-Zambrano

Inspired by her strong maternal lineage, Subikksha Balaje traded a 13-year-career in tech to start the jewelry brand, Goldstories, in 2021. “My mother has an eye for design and was always sketching, and I like to think I inherited a bit of her talent,” she explains. “My grandmothers were both fine jewelry collectors. They called every new necklace or bracelet they bought ‘savings,’ which I loved. Each piece they owned told a story of a different time and place in their lives.” Now the San Francisco-based mom of two (Ranav, 3, and Veera, 2) is focused on crafting her own stories through heirloom-worthy, globally-inspired, solid-gold baubles. Below, she shares some of her favorites from the collection, alongside her other current toddler mom MOTHER ESSENTIALS.

Jhumka Hoops. “I’m a hoops girl through and through. Our new jhumka hoops are my new favorite, transitioning seamlessly between dressy and everyday wear. I keep alternating between this and our Mandala Hoops.” Jhumka Hoops, $1,400, Gold Stories. Mandala Hoops, $950, Gold Stories

Boob Pendant. “I encountered difficulties during both of my childbirths, and one of them even brought me to the brink of death. To hold onto the memory of my birthing stories and the strength of us as mothers, I created The Boob Pendant. I wear it every day alongside my evil eye pendant to keep me safe and grounded.” The Boob Pendant, $375, Gold Stories. Diamond and Gold Evil Eye Pendant, $450, Gold Stories.

Audiobooks. “During breastfeeding, I discovered the joy of multitasking with audiobooks and podcasts. I’m currently engrossed in First Lie Wins by Ashley Elston.” First Lie Wins via Audible.

Everyday Sunscreen. “I did not use sunscreen growing up. The beauty industry in the ’90s did not emphasize my skin color or tell us the importance of sunscreen for all skin tones/types. But I have been attached to Supergoop since their launch because it never left that weird blue tint most sunscreens do on brown skin. And now, my recent favorite is Golden Hour.” Glowscreen SPF 40, $38, Supergoop.

Olivia Rubin Jacket. “This has become my go-to jacket—perfect for adding color on gloomy days while staying warm.” Reversible Rainbow Quilted Coat, $482, Olivia Rubin.

Magna-Tiles. “A favorite for my 3-year-old. Now that he’s dropped his nap, this is his quiet time activity.” Magna-Tiles Deluxe 48-Piece Set, $63.71, Amazon.

Home Organization. “I’m embracing the ‘find a home for all the toys’ era with solutions that bring a splash of color and blend seamlessly into our living room. These Hay crates and LEGO boxes are my current favorites.” Hay Recycled Colour Crate, $6.40, Design Within Reach. LEGO X-Large Storage Drawer, $39.99, The Container Store.

K18 Detox Shampoo. “I don’t get to wash my hair as often as I would like, so this one’s perfect for me. It leaves my hair feeling impeccably clean.” K18 Peptide Prep Clarifying Detox Shampoo, $38, Sephora.

Wishful Scrub. “I prefer scrubs with particles or texture for a good exfoliating experience, and this one is my newfound love.” Yo Glow AHA & BHA Facial Enzyme Scrub, $21, Huda Beauty and Sephora.

Kala Ring. “My go-to Kala ring is always stealing the show on my fingers. I’m currently rocking the lapis stone, setting the tone for my ‘blue” mood.” Kala Ring, $900, Gold Stories.

Everyday Face Wash. “I switched to Tata Harper recently and I have been loving how gentle it is on my skin.” Tata Harper
Superkind Brightening Refining Cleanser for Skin Barrier Support, $88, Sephora.

Augustinus Bader. “The Body Cream is a year-round favorite of mine. It’s a lifesaver for my super dry skin, and it has also proven effective for stretch marks on my postpartum belly.” Augustinus Bader The Body Cream, $190, Sephora.

Sunglasses. “Sunglasses are my weakness. My new favorite is Jacques Marie Mage Vasco. I get them from my optometrist (OPT San Francisco—they carry all the amazing sunglasses) with a prescription added for driving convenience. I don’t like contacts.” VASCO Sunnies, $950, Jacques Marie Mage.

Hunter Boots. “A family staple, given the weather conditions.” Hunter Kids First Cameleo Boots, $60, Amazon.

Mustela. “I discovered this brand when my firstborn had cradle cap. I love all their products, my favorite being their body lotion. The kids adore the smell and it’s perfect for the dry weather here.” Hydra Bebe Body Lotion, $18, Mustela.

Coconut Oil. “Our go-to for ouchies, dry skin, or pre-washing. I grew up in Southern India, and we used coconut oil for everything. I swear by its benefits.” Nutiva Organic Coconut Oil (2-Pack), $15.48, Amazon.

WhatsApp Video Call with My Parents. “Post-holidays, the kids genuinely miss them. Despite the time difference with India, we manage a daily video call, even if it’s just for a quick 2 minutes, ensuring they stay connected and get a glimpse of the kids.”

Mom Friends. “Gratefully, I have friends who truly understand the challenges of my mompreneur life. While we navigate this delicate balance, some friends go the extra mile—joining our walks or park outings with the kids, and others even participate in the night routine. Once the little ones are asleep, we then get to catch up and have dinner.”

For more MOTHER ESSENTIALS, peep our recent features on comedian JENNY SLATE, poet MAGGIE SMITH, Van Leeuwen Ice Cream co-founder LAURA O’NEILL, author and doula BRANDI SELLERZ-JACKSON, designer CLARE VIVIER, Miles & Milan founder SHENNEL FULLERGRACE NA of Pistola, the designers behind MILK TEETH, photographer NICKI SEBASTIAN, Duster co-founder MELISSA MAGSAYSAY, Herman Miller creative director KELSEY KEITH, chef VALERIE GORDON, artist ERIN JANG, Chicago party mom KRISTEN KAZA, Hedley & Bennett founder ELLEN MARIE BENNETT, Mochi Kids founder AMANDA STEWART, chef CRISTINA KISNER, chef CAMILLA MARCUS, artist CAROLINE Z HURLEY, Just Date founder SYLVIE CHARLES, food icon AMANDA HESSER, Prickly Pear founder MONA BAHRAINI, Solace Summer founder MEGAN BRE CAMP, Wonder Valley co-founder ALISON CARROLL, OZMA designer HEIDI BAKER, author TIFFANY ROSE SMITH, and PHOEBE SUNG of Cold Picnic.

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