One of the first details we learned about Trinity Mouzon Wofford is that she is a morning person. It was early in upstate New York, where she resides with her Golde co-founder and highschool sweetheart Issey Kobori, when we met up with her. She had completed her daily morning routines, which included drinking big glasses of water, reading physical books, and tending to plants.
Self-care acts such as these allow entrepreneurs like Trinity to evolve and scale their businesses. From the founding of their Original Turmeric Latte Blend, the company’s line has grown to include a plethora of wellness and skincare offerings. From their two-person Brooklyn apartment operation, they’ve expanded to include a team of eight.
Trinity’s attention to routine has helped form the foundation for Golde to flourish. We were lucky enough to interview her about the inspiration behind her business and how she runs things without sacrificing her wellness.
What is a self-care routine you won’t do without?
I set guidelines for myself around my phone. When I wind down the workday at around 6:30, I’ll make dinner with my partner, and then I don’t have my phone on me. Even if you’re a friend texting me at 8 PM, I won’t see it until the next morning.
How do you avoid the temptation to look at your phone?
I don’t beat myself up and that’s really important. That’s why I set guidelines that aren’t hard rules.
I also just find other stuff to do. Looking at your phone is a habit. But if you’re also in the habit of reading a good book or going for a walk then you have other things your brain will automatically reach for aside from your phone. The early days are hard because it’s so much about muscle memory, but after that’s it’s not that bad.
What are you reading right now?
I’m reading a book by Jane Goodall called Seeds of Hope. She walks through the history of human interactions with plants and things that we can all do to bring back the level of biodiversity that we need to support our entire ecosystem.
It’s not too heavy and carries a hopeful tone. It’s getting me excited to think about what I can do to benefit the environment and how we can incorporate these actions into what we do at Golde.
What inspired you to launch your brand?
I had full intentions to go to med school with a focus on holistic medicine. Following college, however, I fell into a marketing career and loved it, but I was that co-worker recommending herbal remedies to everyone in the office, so I knew at some point I would have to go back to working in health and wellness.
As a consumer, the wellness space felt really prestigious and out of reach. A lot of people shy away from the industry because of these barriers to entry. It’s hard to explore products when they cost $65. When my mom, who has autoimmune disease, could no longer afford to see her holistic doctor, I had to pause and consider what I wanted to do and how accessibility played into that. Issey and I were 23 when we launched our first product.
Why Turmeric? Why start with the Original Turmeric Latte Blend?
My mom found that turmeric was one of the best things that helped her with inflammation. So I started putting it in my smoothies and noticed that it helped incredibly with my skin, gut health, and immune system. I also really loved that it was an affordable superfood. We’ve since expanded to include other superfoods like cacao and matcha.
How did the events of 2020 impact your business?
2020 was an explosive year for Golde. First, with the pandemic, we saw an uptick in business as customers started to bring their wellness practices home. Then in June following the murder of George Floyd, we saw nothing short of an explosion in business. We were flooded, at the time a teensy business suddenly seeing 10x the amount of business we were used to. In the month of June alone we brought in more revenue than we did in all of 2019.
There were definitely growing pains alongside that. It was uniquely challenging for Black entrepreneurs during that time because we were all also processing the circumstances that led to that growth. I am extremely grateful for the support and we are so glad that that business hasn’t tapered off or been merely a trend, which was a concern.
What are you most proud of about your business?
I’m proud to have created a lot with very little. We were entirely self-funded for the first three and a half years, taking only enough money to pay our rent and spend $50 in groceries at the farmers market.
Even as we’ve grown and started to pay ourselves, that energy has not shifted. We are always thinking about how we can be creative with the resources we have. Leading with that attitude has been what has helped us to innovate and differentiate ourselves from others in the industry.
Have you seen your brand in any dream retail outlets?
We just launched in Target in January! Seeing the products on Target shelves across the country has truly been a dream come true, and continues our mission of making wellness accessible and truly available to everyone.