*Motown legend Smokey Robinson has been singing his way into our hearts for over 50 years. With over 30 top hits in his career, he still performs over 100 shows per year around the world, and serves as a public speaker urging the return of music and arts programs in schools.
In addition to his public appearances, Robinson practices yoga and meditation, is dedicated to a healthy diet, and plays golf regularly.
With him constantly being on the road and having an active lifestyle, the Detroit native realized keeping his skin in tip-top shape all of the time would be quite the task. After using different products throughout the years, about three years ago the seemingly ageless singer and his wife Frances found the perfect products for their skin and decided to come out with their own line.
In this Q&A, the multi-Grammy winner tells the EURweb about his new products called Skinphonic and how well the market has received the line since hitting the streets just a few months ago. We also chat about his illustrious singing career and dedication to trying to get music and arts programs back in schools.
EUR: How did you come up with the idea for a skincare line?
Smokey Robinson (SR): It was like a mutual decision. My wife Frances is also a spokesperson for this. We did two different lines – two totally different products. There’s a product for women called “My Girl” and a product for men called “Get Ready.” We actually started out because of the fact that we both were having skin problems. My wife at one point had sun poisoning when she fell asleep in the sun for a couple of hours and it damaged her skin really badly.
I suffer from dry skin because I fly a lot, play golf, and do a lot of stuff that keeps me out in the weather and in the sun. I was looking for something to help me with that. So, a friend of ours turned us on to this dermatologist (Dr. Edward Dickerson, Skinphonic’s Chief Medical Director), who was really fantastic. He hooked us up with some scientists to formulate something for us. They started to work on it 2 ½ to 3 years ago and we finally found a formula that was really, really great. We said we should share this because it’s actually designed for people of color. When I say color, I just don’t mean black people, I mean people of color: Asian people, Hispanic people, dark white people–Italian people like that, black people – all people of color with color pigmentation in their skin. These formulas are designed specifically for that.
It’s especially great for guys because it’s simple. See guys don’t like to do regiments. This a three-step program for men and women. This is what you do. You get up in the morning, wash your face with the face wash, and put on the day cream. In the evening, you wash your face with the face wash and put on the night treatment and that’s it. It’s working on your skin all day and all night. It’s a wonderful product and that’s why we decided to share it and bring it out to the world. And here it is.
EUR: “Get Ready” and “My Girl”- who came up with those names for the products?
SR: The people that we were working with at Skinphonic came up with those names. They thought it would be great, something familiar for the public to see and associate them with me, and something they would recognize instantly.
EUR: When people see those names, they will say those are The Temptations’ songs, but many people may or may not know that you wrote them.
SR: Well, maybe not, but most people probably do. It’s been working out fine so far.
EUR: The products have only been out for a few months, what’s been the reaction?
SR: The reaction’s been incredible. Even before it came out, we of course had people test it and all tests were fantastic. In fact, some people who had really rough problems with their skin were reporting in three weeks vast improvement
EUR: Here we are in 2017 and still looking for products for people of color – why is that when there are more people of color around the world?
SR: We will be looking for stuff like that forever. No matter how great the product is, the world is advancing and people are looking to improve themselves in every area of their lives. Our skin product is great. It’s fantastic, but I’m sure in the future, we will have something that is even better. People are always looking to improve themselves. The industry has been run by Caucasian people and now it’s opening up.
EUR: What would you tell people who say, ‘ I’m tired of trying beauty products’ to get them to try yours?
SR: I would tell them that they haven’t tried ours. That’s exactly what I would say. If you want something that really works then you’ll try ours.
EUR: You are extremely busy – you do golf, yoga, still touring – doing over a 100 shows a year, and you’re a public speaker. What keeps you going?
SR: It’s what I love. That’s why I still do concerts. I cannot find a replacement for that in my life. I love going out and being with the people and having fun and doing the concerts. The concerts are 2 ½ hours of fun with people singing and having a good time and all of that. I’m one of the most blessed people in life. When you get a chance to live your life and earn your living doing what you absolutely love, that’s a blessing. You can’t beat that. So, I’m just going to do this until I say, ‘Okay, that’s enough.’
EUR: Tell me more about traveling around the country urging schools to bring back music and art programs?
SR: I am an advocate for trying to get the arts back in the schools because the arts are so important to our kids . When they can go to school and say, ‘I love playing this instrument. I love singing or dancing or acting or drawing or painting or whatever’ – it gives our kids something attached to the school that they love – that they want to go to school for. It may even be sports and a lot of the sports programs have been cut out especially for our inner-city schools, which are really suffering. So, while they’re in school doing those things they will get into doing the regular things – reading, writing, and arithmetic. I grew up in the hood in Detroit and I told (school children) the other day, ’You living in a Beverly Hills (type) neighborhood school compared to where I grew up but we still had the arts in school.’ Even though those schools were poor – we need those programs.
Smokey Robinson is not only speaking about the cause, earlier this year he donated new musical instruments and a $1 million dollars to a middle school in Los Angeles.
For detailed information on Smokey Robinson’s new skincare line Skinphonic, click here: http://www.skinphonic.com. For more information on the legend himself, click here: http://www.smokeyrobinson.com.