3 Minutes With Fellow Asian Mom and Founder of Yay Sunshine, Faith

Faith, Founder of Yay Sunshine

Faith is an Australian-Asian momma who started Yay Sunshine, an amazing company that specially designs Asian-fit sunglasses (or sunnies).

I've always had trouble finding the right sunglasses for my face and I just accepted it. Then one day, I started seeing Asian models with beautiful sunglasses in my Instagram feed. I was inspired by Faith's story and how she is doing what she loves so I decided to message her and ask a few questions.

What is the biggest motivation to start your own business?

My background is in marketing and advertising. Before becoming a mum, I worked for a big ad agency, which was definitely "work hard, play hard". 

When you’re young, the later nights and camaraderie are great. When you are a little older, the 10pm finishes feel less glamorous!

I started Yay Sunshine when I was on maternity leave, and I had a bit of spare time to think (in between keeping a small human being alive) - I wanted to see how I could create a better work-life balance.

I decided to launch Yay Sunshine as I feel that there is a real need for it - I was tired of wearing sunglasses that didn't fit me properly, and I realized that if I had a need for it, lots of other people like me do too!


What inspired you to create a product that is unique to Asians?

As mentioned before – because there is a need for it!

Asian people have different facial features to Caucasian people - namely a lower nose bridge and higher cheekbones. This means that most sunnies sit on our cheeks rather than our nose, so that mean ugly cheek marks and on a hot day and lenses that fog up as they touch your face. Growing up in Australia, I could never find sunglasses that fit me, I always just always put up with the discomfort, not realizing that there could be another way.

Ironically, my lightbulb moment was not when I was wearing sunnies, but when I was wearing ski goggles. The goggles I was wearing didn't fit me properly (because of my lower nose bridge), leaving a gap above my nose. When I snowboarded, the wind would rush through the gap and into the goggles and into my eyes, temporarily blinding me. Not ideal when hooning down a double black diamond! Only then did I realize the difference in the way eyewear fit Asian people compared to Caucasians, who the majority of eyewear available to buy in the west is designed for.

So, in a way, the first challenge I have is to educate Asian women that there is a better way than just putting up with ill-fitting sunglasses. An aunt told me that she thought sunglasses were supposed to sit on her face and it felt weird that if they didn't as she was so used to it!

On the Asian thing.... starting a business that speaks to Asian women has been quite interesting for me, as I've spent my whole life trying to hide my Asian-ness. I wasn’t ashamed of it, but it was just a non-factor for me when I was growing up. I’m just Australian. But, starting this bu
siness has meant that I have thought about my heritage much more and started to embrace it.


How has your family supported you in this "non-Asian stereotype" endeavour? 

My husband is incredibly supportive and he was the one who encouraged me to take the plunge. He's got a couple of his own businesses as well so he's very much on the same journey.

My mum and dad have also been very supportive of me, I guess they aren't your stereotypical Asian parents who might pressure their kids to be doctors or accountants (although my brother works in finance) I was encouraged to choose whatever career and industry I liked and had an aptitude for. Working in marketing and advertising has been really handy for the business.


What is the one thing that you've learned to embrace about your culture that you didn't before? Is there something you'd like to preserve your family?

I’ve learned to embrace language and the value of speaking a second language. I apparently refused to learn Chinese when I was little (despite having Chinese as a subject in high school and going to Chinese school on a Saturday for a short period of time in primary school), as I just wanted to fit in and I don’t have a knack for languages. 

My parents speak different dialects of Chinese so it was never spoken at home. But now as a grown-up, I realize the value of having a 2nd language.

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