Photos by Sasha Israel

Below we caught up with the owner of nail empire Ten Over Ten on her favorite natural beauty products, how she approaches raising her kids healthy and the one nail no-no.

What are some of your favorite things to cook at home?
My dad is Uruguayan so I make a lot of chicken Milanesa. There is a lot of asado, which is basically barbecue style and hearts of palm salads. We always have a good bolognese in the fridge. My mom is an amazing cook, she went to the Cordon Bleu. Her trick is blanching the tomatoes.

How would you describe your philosophy when it comes to raising your kids in a healthy balanced way?
I try to lead by example with my kids. They always say, “Mom’s favorite food is salad!” And often climb up on my lap to give my food choices a try. I don’t want to be forceful around their eating choices because I would hate to create anxiety around eating so I am pretty mellow about things in general. We try to stay active by being outside as much as possible on the weekends. My kids see me going to exercise so I build in things into their schedule to ensure they have movement for their bodies as well as I believe it is healing.

What is your approach to birthday parties and play dates? Do you have any rules when it comes to treats?
My rules around those moments are that the kids eat good foods before the bad ones. I find when their bellies are full, they go for the sweets afterward with enthusiasm but don’t end up having that much because they are satisfied with a few bites and we don’t have that argument about how much is too much. this philosophy however bombed on Halloween!

What is your kids’ favorite healthy meal that you cook for them?
They like really simple tastes so their favorite is a breaded chicken cutlet with steamed broccoli and sliced orange peppers. It makes my life easy because it takes two minutes to put together. When we have more time we make veggie sushi together, which is fun.

Where do you shop for groceries?
I love to shop at the farmer’s market so I try to buy whatever is in season. I also really like my kids to understand where their food comes from so we are part of the school CSA program and I take them to pick up the food so they can see how different the produce looks and tastes from the farm compared to the grocery store.

You really pioneered the natural beauty product space in the city. What are your top five favorite natural beauty products right now?

1) tenoverten 100% Natural Rose Cuticle Oil

2) Josh Rosebrook Complete Moisture Cleanse

3) Olio e Osso Balm #3

4) Weleda Skin Food

5) Agent Nateur Deodorant

When you want to detox, what are some tricks or tips that you have?
I try to practice self-care on a daily basis as I find that is more rewarding for me rather than undergoing a two or five day detox of some sort. I do that by incorporating things into my daily routine that are quick so I have less reason to skip them on a busy day. Some of the things I do regularly are tongue brushing, taking a daily probiotic, starting everyday with a warm glass of water with lemon, taking a prenatal vitamin daily for my nail strength, dry brushing twice a week before getting in the shower and taking a Pursoma mineral bath once every couple of weeks. These things are detoxiyfing from the inside out.

What five products do you always have in your pantry?
Frankie’s Olive Oil
Ginger Peach Tea

What kitchen appliance do you rely on the most?
My rice cooker. 

What is the trick to making a manicure last?
Cleaning the nail bed properly right before applying the base coat by soaking a small square of paper towel in non-acetone remover and wiping across the top of each nail. Also paint the free edge of the nail to seal in the color so that you are less likely to chip.

What ingredients should people look out for in their nail polish if they are trying to avoid toxicity?
We focus on extracting 8 ingredients from tenoverten’s namesake polishes to make them non-toxic. Those ingredients are dibutyl phthalate (dbp), toluene, formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, camphor, ethyl tosylamide, xylene, triphenyl phosphate (tphp)

What is the secret to good nail health?
Keeping your nails hydrated from the inside by drinking loads of water and from the outside with a cuticle oil. And avoiding the chemicals that can strip and tear your nails such as acrylics and gels.

What is your favorite thing to cook over Thanksgiving?
My mission for Thanksgiving is to make a cranberry sauce that my husband would prefer over the gross canned jelly kind.