Filipina businesswoman breaks the bias, introduces revolutionary health and wellness brands | Inquirer Business

Filipina businesswoman breaks the bias, introduces revolutionary health and wellness brands

/ 10:51 PM March 24, 2023

The business landscape continues to evolve as women who build their own thriving businesses are currently on the incline. A quick scan of nascent businesses, particularly in the fields of beauty, health, and wellness, shows that the majority of businesses that came about over the past decade were built up and continue to be operated by women.

March is International Women’s Month, and while the state of women in businesses continue to be inundated with challenges, some Filipina entrepreneurs have persisted to enact significant changes in the industry, as they strive for greater inclusivity and diversity. A perfect example is businesswoman Katherine Alejar, i3 Incorporated’s CEO and chief innovator, who is relentlessly supercharging her career to help shape the future of business by delivering better health to Filipinos through innovative brands for the modern market.

The rest is ‘her’-story

Alejar did not initially plan on being an entrepreneur as she admitted that her dream was to climb up the corporate ladder. “However, I couldn’t find a job that would be able to pay my asking salary; so, I decided to start my own business,” she confessed.


Female founders like her are somehow resolving problems that no one else was paying attention to, especially in the health and wellness industry. These entrepreneurs have realized there was something unique to women’s experience in life that the patriarchy had yet to improve upon, fix or solve. Thus, when she established her company, i3 Inc., in 2014 it has since expanded its scope of services, not only as a marketing communications agency in-charge of Visa’s point of sale marketing requirements since 2014 but has introduced and popularized the Vital Dome in 2019, a France-made advanced infra-therapy ecosystem machine that uses pure far infrared rays to regenerate the body from inside and out.

“It’s the best gift you can give to yourself and your loved ones,” Alejar said of the Vital Dome. “You can relax in it after a hard day, and it’s very useful for detox. That’s important as we are exposed to oxidative stress every 15 minutes, that may cause numerous diseases. The Vital Dome helps flush these out from our systems, making us healthier.”

New-age brands for the new-age market

A self-proclaimed fitness and wellness buff herself, Alejar sought out solutions that would improve her appearance and keep her body toned and strong. However, she acknowledges that external beauty fades if internal health is relegated on the backburner, so she began to seek solutions that would help boost one’s energy in a healthy and non-toxic manner while improving one’s productivity and vitality. This fueled her to become the exclusive distributor of the ground-breaking Vital Dome in the Philippines in 2014. Vital Dome enhances one’s overall health and well-being, rids the body of toxins for ultimate detoxification, boosts the immune system against bacteria and viruses, aids in weight loss, and repairs cells for a fresh youthful glow.

Alejar also noted that even before the global health scare, people have become health conscious and are willing to invest on keeping a healthy mind and body. And when Covid-19 hit, health and wellness suddenly became top priority. Given the unprecedented impact of the pandemic, inquiries for the Vital Dome went down to absolute zero. “No one would dare to go out to experience its benefits. Plus, all my clients decided to drastically cut back on their budget, citing that to continue to do conventional marketing during a pandemic was highly insensitive,” she recalled. But where some saw a setback, Alejar—who considers her mother and her colleagues at BNI (an international business organization) as her icons—took this as a challenge and a way to temporarily switch up her tactics to stay afloat. She decided to start selling testing kits and also partnered with a doctor and a team of nurses to perform on-site tests. Likewise, she found temporary occupations for her own team of drivers in food delivery to help them support their families.

And while Alejar’s initial target market for Vital Dome were spas, hotels, resorts, hospitals with rehabilitation facilities, and gyms, she started introducing the “Bring Home a Dome” campaign during the global health crisis that would allow clients to install Vital Dome in their homes so that they could share its benefits with family and friends. “This campaign earned me my first client who bought a Vital Dome for personal use,” she smiled.

The Vital Dome is currently available at the Aivee Clinic, the Avignon Clinic, The Farm at San Benito, Peak Form, at the Well-Balanced Chiropractic Wellness Center and in Mindanao, at the CDO Pearl Body Touch Facial Center.

Dr. Z Teo and Dr. Aivee Teo of The Aivee - 1

Photo shows Dr. Z. Teo and Dr. Aivee Teo of The Aivee Group with Katherine Alejar, CEO and Chief Innovator of i3, Inc at the Vital Dome showroom in Paris, France

Factory of Vital Dome in the historical place of Normandy, France

A visit at the Vital Dome factory in France

Beyond the Dome, Alejar also recently introduced Oligocheck, a non-invasive diagnostic device that does real-time analysis if one has been exposed to heavy metals and other environmental contaminants that are detrimental to one’s health. Likewise, the device uses algorithms to check for any deficiencies or systemic excesses in terms of minerals and trace elements, as well as any adverse aspects in one’s physiology. As a diagnostic device for medical professionals, it delivers valuable information regarding the causes of aging and chronic illness.

Alejar’s company is also the exclusive distributor of Rejucream, a solution that will relieve perimenopausal and menopausal women from the discomfort of vaginal atrophy, a key source of stress and physical pain for women in their 40s and 50s. The Oligocheck is available at The Farm at San Benito and JLopez Medical Clinic. Rejucream, on the other hand, may be purchased sans prescription at the Vital Dome website, as well as the partner gynecological and dermatological clinics of i3, Inc.

“My vision is to have satellite offices in other countries and cutting-edge products and solutions in the beauty and wellness industry. I also hope to be able to help others by generating valuable employment,” Alejar enumerated. This intrepid entrepreneur also revealed that i3 Inc. is also now the exclusive distributor of Vital Dome in Singapore, Maldives, and South Korea and she is set to launch new health and beauty products to the Philippine market soon.

The women-tality

As for those aspiring business (women) entrepreneurs, Alejar suggested that they should go for it, especially now that the gender barriers that have kept women on the sidelines of progress have begun to disappear. But, of course, one has to be ready, financially, physically, and mentally. She also recommends reading about women entrepreneurs, and attending workshops, seminars, and trainings connected to the field of business one is venturing into. In fact, Alejar recently attended IMCAS Paris, the world’s largest congress for dermatologists, plastic surgeons, and aesthetic and derma suppliers. While there, she and her team also visited Vital Dome’s headquarters in France to update their technical knowledge of the dome especially of the new model that will soon be introduced.

Alejar also recommended getting a good business coach or mentor who will set any hopeful entrepreneur on the right path and suggested that it is best to be surrounded with like-minded friends who have the same business mindset and goals. “I’ve had many challenges just like any aspiring business owner and helping them by sharing what I’ve learned is both rewarding and humbling. There are no limits to what you can do if you put your heart and mind into it. So, believe in yourself and what you can do,” Alejar concluded.

Filipinas like Alejar are the ideal epitome of women who challenge assumptions and pre-conceived notions by slowly becoming one of emerging forces to be reckoned with in the health and wellness industry. Despite today’s health and economic crisis, she has successfully broken stereotypes and biases about women’s capability to build and lead a business. Alejar continues to break the proverbial glass ceiling and proves that in a world where the most thriving businesses are male dominated, more women like her are hogging the business spotlight because they bring in pioneering brands with a bespoke—and charming—approach.


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