We had the good fortune of connecting with Dana Dang and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Dana, where are your from? We’d love to hear about how your background has played a role in who you are today?
I was born and raised in Orange County, CA. When I was younger, my parents owned a sewing shop. After school, my mom would pick me up and take me to the shop. There, I watched television and played outside, while they would work long hours during the day and into the night. Most days, we would have to sleep there, and I would be dropped off at school the next morning. Growing up in the shop, I would ask my parents if I could help bag the clothes up or cut the stitching of clothes that were sewed improperly. I wanted to help! Due to the work ethic of my parents, I was shown what hard work really meant. I realized sometimes you don’t get to take a break or go home to relax – you have to do whatever it takes to provide for your family.
My upbringing has definitely had a huge impact on who I am today. My parents didn’t have the time to engage in self-care; they were constantly working, and as any child, I learned from them to work hard and keep going. I worked as a behavior analyst for individuals with autism, logging various hours throughout the day. If I wasn’t scheduled to work, I was available to all my clients and staff if they needed me, 24/7. Just like any job, when you are passionate about helping others, you put other people’s needs first before your own. I didn’t get to engage in any self-care routines, such as taking a bath or watching television – I was always onto the next thing.
I got really sick in 2020 for 3 weeks, and it gave me a new perspective on life. I decided to quit my job and start planning my own self-care company. Growing up, self-care was never a priority for myself or my family, but it’s never too late to start.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
SlowBound was created with the intention of promoting self-care. Our motto is as simple as our design – take the time to slow down… and take care of yourself. Our candles, bath tea soak bags, reed diffusers, and sugar scrubs may look simple, but the products are 100% thoughtful, containing ingredients like premium-grade fragrance oils while being phthalate-free. Our candles are made of 100% sustainable, eco-friendly natural soy beans, with a natural cotton wick.⠀
I created SlowBound because I got sick in 2020, and was ill for 3 weeks. Being this sick gave me a new perspective on life. I have a masters degree in education, and am a board certified behavior analyst, so owning my own business seemed completely out of my scope at first. I didn’t want to let my degree and board certification go to waste, but I also didn’t want to continue working in a field that no longer served my own needs. I overcame my own fears and self-doubt by constantly reminding myself that I am working towards a goal for my future family: to be a present mother, but also able to support my family financially.
One of the lessons I learned along the way was to pay too much attention to the analytics of social media. I was constantly analyzing the data from my Instagram account at the start of SlowBound and saw that I was often losing followers. It was very discouraging at first, but eventually became an eye opener for me. You will always attract the crowd that wants to follow you for who or what your brand stands for. It’s okay if some people unfollow or don’t like your stuff… you can’t please everyone.
I want the world to know that there is always time to take care of yourself, and SlowBound is here to help you remember to s l o w down.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
On Monday, we would go to Rosie’s dog beach in Long Beach to sun bathe and dog watch alongside the ocean breeze. Afterwards, we’d head to lunch at my favorite food hall, Rodeo 39 in Stanton. They have a variety of food choices such as Vietnamese crepes (my all time favorite), or if they’re vegan/vegetarian, we could grab a bite at Beleaf Burgers. Next, we would go shopping at Orng Cnty. This clothing store is unique in that it takes the average shopper and makes them feel like they are a part of a little community. On Tuesday, I would take my friend to Orange Circle for breakfast at Snooze Am Eatery. The atmosphere here takes you back in the 90s; servers are dressed in 90s attire and they play 90s music all day! At the Orange Circle, they are known to have a lot of antique shops – if you’re looking for a hidden gem, definitely keep this area in mind. Our next stop would be Golden Road Brewery in Anaheim. Golden Road has an outdoor space where you can play corn hole or watch live sports. You can bring your pets and children, and it has the feel as if you’re in someone’s backyard. On Wednesday, I would take my friends to SteelCraft in Long Beach. Inside, there are shipping containers that have been converted to kitchens. You order your food, then pick a seat outside to sit and play outdoor games like Jumbo Jenga or corn hole while you wait for them to call your name. On Thursday, we would go to 4th Street Market. It’s yet another food hall, but sometimes you can walk down 4th Street in Santa Ana where there’s various art exhibits, and if you’re lucky, Vegan Fest is being held! Friday would be the day we could explore the Anaheim Packing District. It’s also another food hall (I love food), but there’s a cool speakeasy called The Blind Rabbit unlike anywhere else in the area where we could grab drinks. Anaheim Packing Dirstrict also supports “Eco Now,” an initiative in which you can bring your own containers to refill them with necessities such as shampoo or soap – zero waste! On Saturday, I would take my friend to “The Lab” in Costa Mesa, where we would get brunch at a Cuban restaurant called Habana. They have some of the best authentic cuban food in the area, and it’s located inside a chic “anti-mall” which has lots of cool places to explore. These are all the spots I would take my friend that encapsulates my own personality! The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to dedicate my shoutout to my mother and my husband for giving me courage and believing in me. I would not have been able to create SlowBound without my mother; she instilled in me the confidence that a woman can do anything she wants if she believes in herself. Another shoutout goes to my husband, for supporting this dream of mine and especially believing in me.
Photographer: Carmelisse Photography Website: http://carmelisse.com/