At our first ever Beauty Dummy meeting, back in October 2016, we made a list of our core values. Inclusive, inspiring, informative, modern, personable, fun – this is how we saw ourselves. We had a lot of knowledge to share, but we didn't want to be just another blog full of reviews and how-to videos. We like taking photos, but we didn't want to be just another "influencer" instagram page showing off how wealthy and carefree we are (because, well, we're not.) What we really wanted was to start a different kind of beauty conversation, with a diverse community of voices, and talk about beauty beyond the surface level. To uncover something deeper.
When we launched in March of this year, we made a commitment to feature one person who inspires us each month, and chat with them about everything we believe falls under the beauty umbrella: self love and care, media representation, personal strength, following your dreams, combatting the status quo, standing out, finding yourself, being proud of your background, and, of course, the best beauty products on the shelf right now. We knew they would be illuminating, but we had no idea just how much they would change us. And in the very best way.
These ten months haven't been a whirlwind for us. They've been steady and deliberate and sometimes hard. But we couldn't have asked for a better first year. Thank you for joining us on our journey to make a difference.
Here's a look back and the amazing conversations we've had this year.
"What does it matter that I am beautiful, if I'm suffering?" Jamila is a writer, activist and self-described Life Enthusiast. She encourages us to question the systems that make us feel less-than, to pursue absolute happiness in our lives, and to generously care for ourselves.
"My advice for finding yourself is BABY STEPS," Ms. Fitz says. She's a producer, a stylist, an artist and creative director, and it didn't just happen overnight. We talk about feminism in fashion, getting inspired, and making your own way little by little.
A standup comedian and fellow beauty blogger, Julia Solomon wants you to know it's ok to not always be perfect, healthy and happy. There's beauty and humor in dysfunction, too. Her down-to-earth approach to writing about skincare is so real and hilarious, we didn't even know how much we needed it.
"Live your truth, and if it goes viral, cool," says model and artist Ashley Chew, who started a movement for racial equality in the fashion industry. "But if it doesn't, it doesn't mean your message doesn't hold weight." We talk with Ashley about inspiration & change-making, and get the run-down on her favorite beauty products.
"These girls that seem like everything is easy for them because they're pretty? You have no idea what's going on in their lives." Anjali is a writer, comedian and beauty vlogger who's as hilarious as she is skillful. She talks with us about not taking beauty so seriously, remaining true to herself, and her absolute must-have products.
Anne-Claire is a badass singer-songwriter who just crowdfunded her second album, and her journey to this point is truly inspiring. She shares a powerful story about her eating disorder recovery, speaks on sexism in the creative world, and shares some advice for those who want to make a big change in life. Oh, and we talk about tattoos, too.