- Who are you, Dr. Helene Chammas?
I am a pharmacist, founder of Glow H2o, social activist, and mother of 3 children. I like to serve my community, work for a continuous development goal and achieve balance in social, economic, and environmental sustainability.
- What’s your purpose as a pharmacist?
As pharmacists, our grassroots movements were the only ones to raise our voices to international organizations about our collapsing health system that doesn’t have solutions to act on our concerns.
- Why did you choose to embark on the journey of beauty healthcare?
Because the best day of my life was when I entered the pharmacy to buy my skincare routine products. I have a lot to say about beauty and health that go hand in hand.
- How did you start?
I started creating homemade products, I gave them to friends and my daughter’s friends to enjoy their benefits then I noticed that the circle is growing bigger and bigger, so I decided that we should bring out a product that takes care of women and men as well, especially through these tough days.
- The market is already overstocked with skincare products. What differentiates your product?
There are lots of products in the market and usually, consumers develop loyalty to their favorite cosmetics brands but there is still a niche for products that are made with extreme care like clean products with simple and natural ingredients destined for people with a busy lifestyle who need to glow their skin without putting layer over layer. All that, in one step. They will look radiant while preserving their skin barrier and most importantly without breaking their pockets.
- Why is your first product micellar water?
My first product is micellar water since it is the first thing to use in the morning and the last thing to use in the evening before applying your cosmetics and skincare routine products. It removes dirt, makeup, and cleans out your pores. Furthermore, with glow H2O, you will tone your skin and lift it while reducing irritation and inflammation.
So, you don’t recommend using tap water on your face?
The greatest difference between glow h2o and tap water, is that glow h2o is specially designed for healthy, balanced, and radiant skin while our tap water is not the cleanest and most regulated water system in the world, after using it, you can feel its dryness on your face and it always reminds me of what remains in the kettle in the kitchen after drying and using it several times, the same chemicals will remain on your face.
Finally, you are not the only person suffering from this. In Korea, they use Sam Pell Grino to wash their faces.
- We heard that it is not a business but a community social entrepreneurship, how can you explain that?
My purpose was to serve the new pharmacist cosmeto or freshly graduated cosmeto pharmacist and dermatologist and develop their ideas and compositions. Anyone that has a specific formulation like Tatiana, cosmeto pharmacist who gave me a hand to grow H2O. We are ready to produce, develop and market their products. Glow H2o will not grow alone, but it will grow alongside other cosmeto Lebanese products.
- How do you balance your duties as a mom and your career?
Everyone knows that moms are heroes, and it’s harder than a full-time job. I think we should definitely add “Mother” on our resume since it’s a training ground for leadership in all its forms, we gain numerous skills in time management, communication, people management, and problem-solving. I admit that it affected my career when my kids were still young, I couldn’t climb up the career ladder and create a secure future financially. We should use that break wisely, like working on ourselves. When I did that, I improved myself during this time despite the challenges, and I was still able to find ways to get back into the market and have a clear vision to get there.
- What do you think about women in health care?
Diversity and inclusivity amongst the healthcare professionals, Pharma and biotech industries can help ease patients’ anxiety, increase compliance and improve outcomes as well.
Women inclusivity is important in composing the development and marketing teams for therapies, enabling companies to reach an authentic and responsible market for female patients which reached more than 50% of the market over the years.
Revenue growth in 2020 tended to be higher in the healthcare technology companies that have at least 30% of seats on board held by women, compared to (-1.3%) for companies with less than 30% seats on board held by women.
Female board members in healthcare organizations can accelerate innovations, improve greater revenue, and enhance corporate governance and crisis management.
For example, organizations held by women during covid-19 crisis outperformed their peers. The healthcare industry has an opportunity to lead in the next phase of establishing gender equity.
- Which advice would you give to all the freshly graduated female pharmacists?
I really admire the young ladies, fresh grad pharmacists, and the new generation, and I really want to help them achieve their goals.
First, it’s very important to make it clear that we are not competing, we are one and we need to lift each other. Second, I would share my own experience and failures to inspire them, show them that anything is possible and let them know they are inspiring me as well. Currently, I am encouraging and helping new cosmetic pharmacists to develop their outlines, and I believe that every woman should always pursue her dreams even if she doesn’t know where they might lead her, and never fear to push herself more and break through barriers.
- Which piece of legislation would you introduce for a better health system in Lebanon?
Personally, I think we should make changes in policies to improve the health system in Lebanon and be able to reach a point where all citizens have equal healthcare access and services.
Such an approach involves multiple laws reform. Therefore, we need to take part in the political process. As well, we should work on some legislation that makes work-life and personal-life balance a priority.
- What do you think about the integration of technology and AI?
The integration of technology can be of great help by creating more interaction with the end user, which means the patient.
It can also empower the sales team; value them and make them more efficient.
The future is for the use of artificial intelligence in Pharma, and using algorithms instead of human intelligence in Pharma and biotech industries can develop new drugs, tackle diseases, and more.
Moreover, If AI was applied before the pandemic, we could’ve predicted the spread of covid-19 and been more prepared, especially in supplying hospitals with ventilations since the treatment would have been easier to find based on science and new technologies.
In the pandemic case, we can’t rely on treating and having errors, while the number of death are increasing. Time is precious.
- What’s your achievement in the technology field?
I invented a robot with engineers, but what lead us to think about innovating it? During the pandemic, we wanted to reduce the direct contact between nurses and infected patients. Our first goal was to deliver food, and medicines to the patients and take their vital signs. The second goal was to fill the gap in the quality of primary healthcare providers between the private and public sectors. Moreover, the robot is programmed on a telemedicine platform that connects the primary healthcare centers with healthcare professionals in the hospitals for better follow-up, and consultancies and it empowers nurses at PHC. At the same time, patients will get better care and fewer health incidents. It can also be linked to MOH for data management and RandD.
- What’s your last message?
Lastly, I spent my whole life searching for products that would take care of my skin without being hash. Keep your skin healthy so it won’t break out and lead you to a more complicated skincare routine. To everyone, be like a butterfly. Just when you thought that your skin could never glow enough, Glow H2o came to glow you up more.