One of the most rewarding things about being an entrepreneur, regardless of the industry (I imagine), has to be the ability to create jobs and to mentor team members. I have a very special place in my heart for all of my former team members; and a particularly special place for those who have left Alchimie Forever to pursue their own entrepreneurial ambitions, often remaining in the beauty industry. A perfect example of this is Rachel Johnson, who was an essential part of the development of my brand between early 2007 and mid-2010. A DC native (almost…), Rachel left Alchimie Forever after being my right (and left!) hand, to move to LA, and recently opened her own beauty PR firm. Fellow niche beauty brands, if you need any press advice or help, please call her!
AP: What city were you born in? RJ: Mt. Kisco, NY.
AP: What city to do you live in? RJ: Los Angeles, CA.
AP: What is your middle name? RJ: Lynne.
AP: What is your astrological sign? RJ: Aries.
AP: What is something about you most people don’t know? RJ: I have lived in 7 states…and attended 3 high schools. We moved a lot growing up.
AP: What is your most prized possession? RJ: My awesome parents, sister, brother in law and beautiful nieces!
AP: If you could have dinner with the person of your choice, who would it be? RJ: At the present moment President Obama…what really goes on in the White House…..
AP: Describe your fashion style in three words maximum. RJ: Classic, Sporty, Accessories!
AP: Do you wear a watch? If yes, what model? RJ: Sometimes. Marc Jacobs and DKNY.
AP: Diamonds or pearls? RJ: Diamonds… also my birthstone!
AP: What is your #1 beauty secret? RJ: Not so much a secret, but moisturize, moisturize, moisturize and I apply a hydrating face mask 1-2 a week. I also let my hair air-dry… eliminating a blow-dryer which can damage your locks.
AP: What fragrance do you wear? RJ: Mademoiselle by Chanel.
AP: Botox or not? RJ: Maybe. Not there yet, but I am sure I will be soon.
AP: Hair color: natural or not? RJ: I am all for playing with hair color. I love that you can be a bit blonder for a few months and go back to a darker shade. Keeps things interesting!
AP: What are your special diet tips, if any? RJ: Eat fresh whenever you can and listen to your body. If you are craving meats than order a steak! It’s all about moderation.
AP: What do you do for exercise? RJ: I love hiking and running outside and I also hit up the gym a few times a week.
AP: What are three things that you always have in your fridge? RJ: Wine, hummus, carrots.
AP: What is your cocktail of choice? RJ: White wine! Always!
AP: What is your secret to work/life balance? RJ: I love what I do, which makes things much easier, but I always make plans with friends each week to make sure I get out of the office! Exercising is also so important!
AP: How many miles do you fly per year on average? RJ: I fly to the east coast and back maybe once a year and other than that I fly to San Francisco and Monterey. I wish I traveled more!
AP: What are your three top tips for travel? RJ: 1. I always bring a water bottle so I don’t have to wait for drink service. 2. I like to bring my makeup case and fill it with the TSA approved beauty essentials (hand sanitizer, moisturizer, concealer, lip gloss, Advil, Neutrogena wipes etc). 3. I don’t worry about delays… or try not to.
AP: 3 songs on your ipod right now. RJ: Skinny Love, Bon Ivor; The Village, Boy & Bear; Flowers in Your Hair, Lumineers.
AP: What book are you reading right now? RJ: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.
AP: Quote to live by. RJ: Don’t worry be happy! (My dad gave me a picture of a bear with this quote written under it when I was younger. I never forget it). Essentially, everything in life will be better if we just smile.
AP: What is your worst pet peeve? RJ: Ignorance.
AP: What time do you usually wake up in the morning, and how many hours of sleep do you usually get? RJ: I wake up at 7:45am and go to bed by 11pm.
AP: What is your favorite thing about the beauty industry? RJ: The people I get to meet and work with!
AP: Least favorite thing. RJ: People can go a little overboard on fillers and plastic surgery overall. Less is more.
AP: Who is your mentor? RJ: I have a few –
Ada Polla – she has taught me so much about being a successful business woman. I fell in love with the beauty industry while working at Alchimie Forever! Thank you Ada!
Heather Phillips – my fabulous, beautiful and intelligent sister has always been an inspiration to me personally and professionally. She has shown me that if you love what you do and you work hard your dreams can come true!
Steve Ross – Steve is the President of Artists & Athletes Alliance in Washington, DC and has always told me to follow my dreams and the rest will fall into place. Thanks for always believing in me and supporting me through the years!
AP: Words of advice for young women starting their careers today. RJ: Don’t give up! Believe in yourself and follow your heart!