sS’s founder kimberly tan in SELF magazine!


ICYDK, i was interviewed last year, to be a part of an article featured in SELF magazine’s march 2016 issue called “the clear skin diet”.  to be honest, i wasn’t quite sure what the work was going to lead to (if anything at all), so i didn’t make a big fuss out of it.  but now that we are officially published, we can now fuss a big fuss about it!


alexandra engler, the journalist who wrote the piece, was on a quest to find some ways to clear up by way of her diet.  through several hours of over the phone and in-person discussion (when i went to NY last fall?  yes, this is what that trip was for), i was able to share with her the tenets of sS living.  as all you sS’ers know, diet alone is just one component of the acne-safe lifestyle we strive to teach our clients.  there are so many factors involved: internal, systemic and topical..

at the end of the day, only just a couple of kim’s soundbites made it through to the actual printed article.  BUT, it’s still pretty cool to see our name in national magazine print.  🙂

find us in this issue right hereplease feel free to go to your local newsstands and get a copy of this issue, or keep scrolling to see the scanned copy of the article, and share with your friends and loved ones who may benefit from some acne-safe lifestyle knowledge!

self magazine march 2016 issue page 1

self magazine march 2016 issue page 2

self magazine march 2016 issue page 3

self magazine march 2016 issue page 4

sS is turning 8 + we’re having a party

sS birthday party

you guys!  it’s been 8 whole years since i started sS in the mission district’s activspace, on 18th and treat in the little itty bitty room painted blue.  we are having a party to celebrate all of you lovely folks that have supported sS since those early days all the way up until now!

we’ll have yummy acne-safe nibbles from birite grocery, my very good friend hung’s mau vietnamese restaurant, along a couple of punches mixed up by my beau, craig lane of bar agricole.  PLUS awesome raffle prizes and stuff!

SUNDAY MARCH 13, from 3-6PM

please RSVP here, as we want to make sure we have enough food + drink 🙂

meal prep monday: raw food!

hello beautiful people! i am super excited to share my weekly meal prep with you today. a lot of our clients think that they don’t have time to prepare their meals at home. all the cooking, cleaning, and scrubbing pots can add up if you don’t have a plan. so i decided to cut out the oven time and caked on pans this week and do a meal plan that’s 100% raw.

i ate raw for about a month a few years ago and felt really amazing. my energy was high, i was motivated and eager to work, and my skin was glowing. that was the clearest my skin has been in the last 10 years, until now 😉

kerry and i were chatting about raw food last week and i was inspired to give it another go and see what it does for my skin in conjunction with my sS regimen.

if you guys go for it please let me know how you feel mind, body, and SKIN!




  1. cauliflower pesto salad see the recipe below
  2. carrot and raisin salad we made this last week and it was so delicious that we included it again! substitute raisins and cold pressed organic sunflower oil in this recipe
  3. mango cucumber salad see recipe below
  4. collard wraps this recipe was the original inspiration but we are filling our collard wraps with whatever salad or veggies we want throughout the week.
  5. zucchini hummus with fresh tahini (weekly fav!) find the hummus recipe here and the tahini recipe here. *i added a handful of fresh chives to the hummus and it’s to die for. i used less than half of the tahini in the hummus and saved the rest to eat as a dip with veggies. you can even add a little honey to it and eat it with apples!
  6. overnight oats there are SO many delicious recipes on pinterest! see my simple recipe below.
  7. raw sunflower seed butter this taste like peanut butter… only better! get the recipe here
  8. i’ll probably try to go out for raw sashimi for dinner at least a few times this week just to pump up my protein intake. if you do indulge, remember to take your coconut aminos with you instead of using their cloggy soy sauce 😉



day one: marinate your cauliflower (pesto salad), soak your sesame seeds (tahini) and make your overnight oats.


day two: 

  1. make raw sunflower seed butter
  2. make tahini
  3. make zucchini hummus
  4. make pesto and finish the cauliflower pesto salad.
  5. make the carrot and raisin salad
  6. make the mango cucumber salad
  7. wash and cut any fresh veggies that you want to have on hand for the week.


  • breakfast: overnight oats
  • snack: celery sticks with zucchini hummus
  • lunch: collard wraps filled with tahini and carrot salad cauliflower pesto salad
  • snack 2 (if you’re hungry): cup of watermelon or 2 raw figs with sunflower seed butter
  • dinner: mango cucumber salad served with avocado, raw hemp seeds and raw sunflower seeds over arugula.
carrot and raisin salad with sunflower seeds, hemp seeds, and figs over greens.

carrot and raisin salad with sunflower seeds, hemp seeds, and figs over greens.



  • bob’s red mill gluten free oats


  • organic old pressed sunflower seed oil
  • green spanish olives (sun dried is preferred)
  • 1 bag organic avocados


  • organic raw hulled sesame seeds
  • raw hulled hemp seeds (i like the hemp hearts brand)
  • organic raw pumpkin seeds
  • organic raw hulled sunflower seeds


  • 1 head organic cauliflower
  • 1 organic red bell pepper
  • 1 box heirloom cherry tomatoes
  • 1 bunch organic carrots
  • 2 organic cucumbers
  • 2 organic zucchini
  • 1 bunch organic collard greens
  • 1 bag organic arugula
  • 1 bunch organic celery


  • 4 meyer lemons
  • 2 limes
  • 1 watermelon
  • 1 box organic strawberries
  • 1 box organic black mission figs
  • 2 organic mangos
  • 4 organic apples


  • celtic sea salt shaker
  • 1 bunch organic chives
  • 1 box organic basil

cauliflower pesto salad recipe

  • chop 1 head of cauliflower into florets and mix with 1 tbs sunflower oil, 3 tbs lemon juice, 1/2 tsp celtic sea salt, and fresh black pepper. toss to coat and let marinate in the fridge overnight.
  • the next day: add chopped green spanish olives, 1  finely chopped red bell pepper and 1 box of cherry tomatoes cut in quarters.
  • pesto: in a blender combine 1 box fresh organic basil, 1 handful fresh chives, 1/2 tsp celtic sea salt, 1 tbs organic no salt seasoning (we bought it at trader joe’s) and the juice of 1 lime.
  • toss the cauliflower salad in the pesto and enjoy!

mango cucumber salad recipe

  • peel 2 mangos and 2 cucumbers and cut in cubes
  • toss with the juice of 1 lemon, 1/2 tsp celtic sea salt, 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper and 1/2 tsp paprika
  • store in the fridge and serve with avocado and fresh arugula

overnight oats recipe

  • combine 1/2 cup gluten free oats, 1/2 grated apple, 2 tbs raisins, 1/2 tsp vanilla, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1 cup of water in a glass container with a lid.
  • soak overnight and enjoy cold in the morning!


my acne journey


i started experiencing acne as a pre-teen. my earliest memory of an “acne treatment” is of my mother applying a steaming hot washcloth to my face and then squeezing the black heads out of my nose and cheeks. it wasn’t too long after that she started bringing home creams, spot treatments and face cleansers from the drug store. nothing I tried ever made a dent in the acne breakouts. the blackheads turned into red swollen papules and pustules and eventually i went to see a dermatologist. he told me to wash my face with the same bar soap i washed my body with (dove/irish spring)! when that didn’t work it was on to the antibiotics, retin-a and other harsh prescription topicals. at one point i was even making a home brew of sugar and toothpaste and putting that on my face after my mom’s friend told her that it was a magical cure for acne. i couldn’t understand why none of these things fixed the problem. in the end, they just made matters worse. all the years of harsh creams and products left my skin sensitive and permanently pink and flushed.

during my teens and twenties the state of my skin was constantly on my mind. every morning i’d wake up and look in the mirror hoping that things had improved since the day before. i was usually disappointed. before acne came into the picture i was outgoing, i laughed a lot and was even considered to be a bit of a class clown. after i started breaking out i just felt like everyone was always looking at my acne and not me. i figured they must be thinking “her skin looks awful. why doesn’t she do something about it?”. in an effort to avoid attention i became introverted and self conscious. even after my skin finally improved i still remained somewhat shy and reserved. it’s a tendency that i still have to this day.

the breakouts persisted for many years with no apparent pattern except that all the little pimples on my chin and jawline got bigger and more inflamed about a week or two before my period. now at age 40 and i still have acne. the only difference is that today my acne is under control. a few years ago I read a book called “it starts with food”. the book talked a lot about systemic inflammation.  inflammation starts inside the cell producing chemicals that when released set processes in motion that, over time, have a detrimental effect on the entire body. this type of inflammatory cascade is believed to be the precursor to many diseases like cancer, diabetes, heart disease, obesity and, you guessed it, skin disorders. controlling systemic and localized inflammation is the first step in successfully managing acne.

the book inspired me embark upon a 30 day diet program called “the whole 30“. it’s a diet that is designed to calm systemic inflammation get the body back onto a path to health and wellness.  the diet wasn’t too hard for me because i was already eating a paleo-based diet to control blood sugar swings (i’m hypo-glycemic). i started eating this way about a year earlier and noticed improvements in my overall health and skin but it my acne never completely cleared up. to start the whole30 I needed to completely eliminate all dairy, soy and sugar.

after 3 weeks on the whole 30 the papules on my cheeks and chin and the nodular acne on my neck and jawline went away. my skin looked better than it has ever looked and the redness calmed down as well. the effects of the diet went beyond my skin, I lost 10 pounds, i looked younger, i had more energy, slept better and my outlook on life had greatly improved.

after the 30 days, it was time to start adding foods back into my diet and take note of how my body felt with the introduction of each food. dairy made me extremely tired and the inflamed acne came back after about a week. soy gave me terrible gas. sugar was ok in small amounts, but too much made my heart race and i started gaining weight again after a month or so of adding it back in.

today, I am soy free and almost 100% dairy free ( I do my best with this one) and monitoring my sugar intake is a daily battle. stevia has been a huge help. i bake with it and put in smoothies and teas for sweetness.

completing my whole30 was something that I had to do in order to see, first hand, how these foods were affecting my health and skin. i was able to do something in 30 days that I hadn’t been able to do in over 20 years, finally get control over my acne.

my own transformation was so life changing that I decided to find a way to help others through my experience. as an esthetician at skinSALVATION, i’m able to use cutting edge treatment modalities like expert extractions and chemical peels alongside customized home care regimens and nutritional and lifestyle counseling to help people clear their skin of acne in just a few short months. The feeling i get when a clients starts to see their skin turn the corner to clarity is indescribable. I am extremely blessed to be in a position to help empower other acne suffers to uncover their own beautiful skin.