Lara Koljonen - CEO & Founder of Essentially Pink


Lara Koljonen is a licensed Acupuncturist and Owner of the Herbin Acupuncture and Wellness center in Banker's Hill, San Diego. She started Essentially Pink in 2006 while finishing her Master of Science degree in Traditional Oriental Medicine at Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, San Diego. She also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology with a minor in Philosophy-Ethics from San Diego State University, San Diego and massage technician certificate from Mueller Massage school, San Diego. People often ask Lara if breast cancer runs in her family. Her answer is that breast health runs in her family, and she wants to pass it on to others. Her interest in the body's health started, like many people, with a fear of getting sick. Soon, however, her motivation changed to helping everyone feel great in their body. From a dynamic start in public health, she was recommended by a doctor to look into oriental medicine and acupuncture. Two years into her studies at PCOM, she noticed that breast cancer was the disease most prominent in the public eye. The negative, fear-based attitude toward treating breast cancer needed a makeover. Guided by her upbeat outlook that cultivating health is a much better way to combat sickness, she began to educate herself on how to draw the public focus onto breast health, rather than on cancer. She launched a series of free classes on breast health, teaching nutrition, breast massage and the TCM approach to cancer prevention to anyone who wanted to listen. A second epiphany followed when, in the middle of the night, she seized upon the idea of the Tulip Tap. It would become an easy and evocative way to keep energy moving through the acupuncture meridians, clearing the lymphatic system and allowing the body to constantly heal itself. Lara is a driving force for changing the image of breast health from a fear-based yearly reminder, to a way of life that fosters fun, sexy, vibrant health in everybody.

Why Tulips?


We have 12 main Acupuncture meridians and 7 of them cross in the chest and torso area. When we connect these meridians together it makes the shape of a tulip stem, leaf and flower. When we tap (using our index,middle and ring fingers) this tulip shape around each breast and down the stem on both sides of our body we move the lymph, energy and blood flow in our body, vital to maintaining health.

Why Tuesday?


Since Breast (lung and heart) health is so vital, promoting it once a week is a good place to start. We also love things that rhyme. Since we are promoting Tulips; Tuesday’s became the perfect day! Tap your tulips Tuesdays!

About Essentially Pink


Essentially Pink is a grass roots SELF LOVE movement and paradigm shift. We are shifting from our fear based breast cancer model to one filled with self love and breast health. The cure for breast cancer is HEALING the body and supporting a lifestyle that supports PREVENTION.

Essentially Pink’s model for breast health is "sexy"- an acronym that stands for "S"- Self breast massage & Tulip Tap "E"- emotional & environmental connections to breast health "X"- out stress and "Y"- the breast health yes foods. Tuesday is breast health day, Tap your Tulips Tuesdays!

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Our History

Essentially Pink Created
May – Breast Cancer Network of Strength Walk
October 27th, 2007 Womyn’s Wonder – Feminist Art Collective – Fundraiser Dedicated to Women’s Health – Cream Coffee Bar
October 2007 - Essentially Pink partnered with Keep-A-Breast at their event at Swift Tackle Circus in Oceanside, CA
July 15th - Essentially Pink’s Art Into Action Project presents: Tulip Tuesday at Bar Basic
October 15th - Essentially Pink “Bust a Move” – An Event to Move the Bust at Voyeur Night Club
June 8th - Tulip Tuesday a Breast health event at The W Hotel
June 7th - Boobies & Bunnies a Breast health event at Eden Nightclub