One of the aspects of the beauty and wellness industry I love the most is how dynamic it is. A year ago, no-one had heard of BB creams, and now we can’t live without them. A few years ago, no-one had heard of $39 massages, and today there are n654e1`wover 800 Massage Envy and Massage Envy Spa locations throughout the US. This company’s business model has changed our industry, and CG Funk has played a huge role in this change. I remember meeting her very briefly at ISPA in 2007, at my Alchimie Forever booth (who doesn’t remember a name like hers?!). At ISPA last month, I had the pleasure of being seated at her table for dinner – and loved chatting with her about the industry and politics in Arizona and DC. And I loved that she too remembered meeting me back in 2007!
AP: What city were you born in? CGF: I was born in Honolulu, HI. My Dad was in the Air Force so I spent the first few years of my life as an Island Girl. This must be one of the reasons I love to visit Oceanside spas!
AP: What city to do you live in? CGF: I live in Tempe, AZ. I have a pretty house in a community called “The Lakes” and my home is actually lakeside. I know it sounds a bit strange to live on a lake in Arizona but there are many diverse and interesting neighborhoods throughout the Phoenix area.
AP: What is your middle name? CGF: Gay (hence the G in the CG!).
AP: What is your astrological sign? CGF: Cancer.
AP: What is your favorite thing about the beauty industry? CGF: I like to refer to it as the beauty and wellness industry. And, my favorite parts are the people, the products, the places…………love it all.
AP: Least favorite thing. CGF: I struggled with this answer because every industry has it’s challenges. But, I always approach challenges as opportunities in disguise!
AP: What is your most prized possession? CGF: Besides my family and pets, my old Gibson guitar, which is a remake of the 1934 blues edition, and a box full of mementos, cards, letters and pictures that I have collected throughout my life. I would be so sad to lose either of these.
AP: What is something about you most people don’t know? CGF: I am a song writer/singer and spend an evening a month jamming with musician friends.
AP: Do you wear a watch? If yes, what model? CGF: I have a Philip Stein watch, from their Prestige collection. The watch has two clock displays so I can keep track of where I am going and where I have been. I set the top display to the time zone I have traveled to and keep the bottom display on Arizona time.
AP: Diamonds or pearls? CGF: I am a ruby and turquoise girl but do dust off my pearl necklace every once in a while. It was my Grandmother’s and was purchased in Japan in the 1930s.
AP: If you could have dinner with the person of your choice, who would it be? CGF: Shirley MacLaine; she has led such an interesting life and is the epitome of a strong, independent and wild woman which is a personality I try to emulate!
AP: What is your secret to work/life balance? CGF: I am constantly working and on the road so I have to be diligent about keeping balance when traveling. I make sure to exercise, do a little hotel room yoga, and curtail late night activities in favor of sleep. When I’m home, I make time to hike, attend yoga classes, meet up with friends and get plenty of rest.
AP: What are your three top tips for travel? CGF: I am a proponent of traveling light and pack separates that are interchangeable. I always bring one extra outfit because one never knows when an unexpected event might take place on the road. I also pack some of my favorite things; IPAD (with books), facial cleansing cloths, a facial mask or peel, bath salts and yoga mat.
AP: What is your favorite book? CGF: I am an avid reader and have the opportunity to read a lot on airplanes. I’m in a book club that meets monthly and this Summer we read “Born to Run” by Christopher McDougall, “Wild” by Cheryl Strayed and “Moloka’i by Alan Brennert. I just started “Boomerang” by Michael Lewis and “Hell-Bent” by Benjamin Lorr. I also love books like the Da Vinci Code and one of my all time favorites is a very quirky read called “Skinny Legs and All” by Tom Robbins.
AP: What is your cocktail of choice? CGF: A fine Pinot Noir or chilled Veuve Clicquot, black label.
AP: What is your #1 beauty secret? CGF: Exercise and time for relaxation are top 2 beauty secrets. And, fitting in lots of laughter. Beauty comes from the inside out and having a full, happy life is paramount. Also, for an old gal like me, any product that promises anti-aging is a winner. I have a morning and evening skin care regiment that includes all the basics; cleansing, toning, treat and moisturize. And, I travel with these to keep my skin looking good on the road.
AP: What fragrance do you wear? CGF: For casual days, I have Philosophy – Inner Grace. And, for more serious evenings, I wear Jimmy Choo.
AP: Botox or not? CGF: I am all for any little enhancements for perking up the skin and adding the illusion of youth!
AP: Hair color: natural or not? CGF: Both. I only weave in blond highlights so the rest is au naturel.
AP: 3 songs on your ipod right now. CGF: I have very eclectic taste in music so let’s see………Dar Williams “Its Alright”, Kid Rock “Born Free” and Bliss “A Hundred Thousand Angels”.
AP: Quote to live by. CGF: “Sow a thought, reap an action, Sow an action, reap a habit, Sow a habit, reap a character, Sow a character, reap a destiny” by Ralph Waldo Emerson and “Life is like riding a bicycle, in order to stay balance, you must keep moving” by Albert Einstein.
AP: Who is your mentor? CGF: I have been blessed with two incredible bosses, one former and one current. I worked with Norm Cohn, the founder of the Utah College of Massage Therapy for 13 years. He was tough and kind at the same time. I learned how a vision can be manifested into reality through commitment, hard work and standing in belief, even through adversity. Massage Envy’s CEO, Dave Crisalli, is one of the most intelligent, insightful and caring person I have ever known. To have a philosophical and forward thinking conversation with him, gets all my cylinders fired up and charging. He has offered me guidance so many times and I truly believe the success myself and my department has experienced is due to him. Dave hired me for this position 8 years ago and we both haven’t looked back since. I also have to give a special mention to my Father, who passed away several years ago. He taught me how to think outside the box, how to discover my own truth and how to be compassionate and loving.
AP: Words of advice for young women starting their careers today. CGF: Be yourself. Bring all your talents, ideas and courage to the table. Don’t be afraid or back down if there are those that don’t agree with or support you. Great successes come when we commit to listening to our own hearts. Be ready to work hard for what you want and remember that we all had to start at the bottom and travel up in our careers. Be kind to those you interact with as I believe one of our marks in life is how well we treat people. Be a listener and a lifelong learner. Take time to consider where you are at today, where you want to be tomorrow and what do you want to be remembered for.