Most small businesses have a unique creation story, and MUN is no different. MUN was conceptualized by international makeup artist Munemi Imai, but it took a serendipitous encounter with her eventual co-founder, Anas Saidi, to kickstart the brand’s inception.
While trying to recover from a brief illness, Munemi discovered the powerful benefits of natural ingredients. She developed a deep passion for green living and embarked on a journey to unite the worlds of fashion and sustainability. In 2010, Munemi traveled to Morocco, a country where herbal remedies are still widely used, in search of interesting raw ingredients to formulate. On her return flight from Casablanca to New York, she happened to be seated next to Anas. They hit it off, chatted for the entire flight and shared contact information before departing.
Munemi experimented with the oils she had secured. One in particular, a gift from a homeopathic pharmacist, really stood out. After just a few days of use, Munemi saw immediate brightening of the dark circles under her eyes and fading of fine lines on her face. This amazing oil was only identified as ‘figue oil’, and the pharmacist’s English wasn’t strong enough to help Munemi understand better. Munemi remembered Anas and wrote him an email in case he could help .
‘Figue’, it turned out, was short for ‘figue de barbarie’ or the prickly pear. Together they reached out to and sampled oils from many suppliers before finding the perfect one. Not only was their favorite superior in smell, texture and effectiveness, but it was also produced by a local cooperative run by women. For Munemi and Anas this was a dream come true. Munemi had found an ethical and sustainable way to deliver natural beauty to her community; Anas had found a way to make a positive impact on the economy in Morocco.
And thus, MUN was born. MUN, pronounced moon, was chosen as the company's name. In addition to being Munemi’s nickname, it’s also representative of the inspiring deserts of Morocco where the moon takes up so much of the night sky that it looks as if it is about to fall on your head. The creation of MUN and the formation of the Munemi and Anas team was about bringing together their perspectives, skills, and aspirations to contribute to the world in different ways. What came out of that synthesis developed into MUN’s philosophy to make a company that would do good from end to end – from the customer who uses the product and experiences better skin to the producer who uses ethical practices to protect our environment and bring sustainable growth where it’s needed.
Though adhering to this philosophy has presented its own unique set of challenges, it is also what has made this process rewarding for Munemi, Anas and the rest of the small MUN team. The green beauty sector is experiencing amazing growth driven by increased education about the ingredients in the products we use and the ethical and sustainable practices behind them. As MUN continues to develop new products, we are dedicated to standing by this philosophy and committed to delivering powerful natural beauty solutions to all of you!