Hire a Professional. If you’re down in the dumps and don’t want to change out of your sweatpants, wash your hair or put forth one second of effort, just outsource the beautification. Judge me if you will, but I happen to think a fantastic blowout, an amazing hydro-facial or an all-out spa day is the most sure-fire way to instantly feel refreshed and beautiful and I don’t care who knows it.
As a part of our series about “Five Things Anyone Can Do To Have Fabulous Hair”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Cristin Cooper.
Cristin Cooper is a beauty and lifestyle influencer based in North Carolina, sharing daily fashion, beauty, and lifestyle content at CristinCooper.com. Juggling duties as a wife, mother, and businesswoman, Cristin believes in having maximum style with minimum effort — something her readers find fresh, approachable, and realistic.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dive in, our readers would love to learn a bit more about you. Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
I worked in retail when I was younger and have always dreamed of owning a boutique. I blame Meg Ryan and The Shop Around The Corner. The timing was never quite right for me to open up a brick and mortar, so when I was on maternity leave with my first daughter, I started kicking around the idea of an online site that could support an eventual store. Up to that point I had always worked in marketing and communications and it kind of just fell together, in the way that things fall together when you work non-stop for 12 years.
I graduated from college in marketing and loathed my first job with a burning passion. It was a sales job and I took it because it was the only job I could find in the middle of the recession. As I was hating that job and crying myself to sleep in my one-room apartment, I started my first blog. It was a great coping mechanism as I posted about things that made me happy, things I loved, and trends I was interested in. Nobody read it and I eventually shut it down as I took a new job at an ad agency in a city closer to my friends.
Social media was new on the scene and as someone who is naturally curious, I loved learning all about how the internet could leverage creativity and communication. I continued working in marketing, communications, and social media until I had my first child. I love to work and was quite bored on maternity leave when my youngest was sleeping, so I started dreaming up this new business and working tirelessly to build my website. It’s interesting to see how all of those years later, I both had the passion and the know-how for communicating via the internet.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?
This is probably where I should write about how I got asked to be on Dancing With The Stars but for some reason they haven’t called me yet.
Are you able to identify a “tipping point” in your career when you started to see success? Did you start doing anything different? Are there takeaways or lessons that others can learn from that?
I started my blog as a resource for people to discover where to shop, stay, eat, and play in different cities across the South. The blog component started as a way to drive traffic so that I could eventually monetize the site with ads and paid newsletter placement. As I began to get more site visitors and blog readers, the questions and the interest became less and less about what I was sharing and more and more about me personally. Why did I like that item? How would I use it? What did I think about it? If it was clothes, how did it fit? Could I show people? What size was I in? How did I apply that makeup product? I am not an aspiring model, to say the least, and by no means am I a professional designer or makeup artist, so the thought of putting myself out there both in photos, videos and with my opinions was daunting, to say the least. But I found that as I did that I was able to build trust with people that followed along. I think that sharing more of an “unpolished” and real-life insight with people was a tipping point to connect with readers.
In your experience what were the most effective ways for your business to generate leads and sales? Can you share a story or give an example?
Word of mouth marketing; that’s what blogging is. I’m not driven to purchase because I see an ad or an infomercial but you better believe that if one of my girlfriends is raving about something, I’m buying it. Trust and honesty in communication lead to leads and sales.
None of us can achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person to whom you are grateful who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
Of course, my husband, Zach, who put up with my late nights, constantly working & taking photos of my food before he could eat it. But collectively (no pun intended), I found a valuable partnership with ShopStyle Collective. One of their reps was a friend of a friend, I took a risk and worked exclusively with them and from the beginning, they have done nothing but elevate and leverage my brand.
Can you share a story with us about the most humorous mistake you made when you were first starting? What lesson or takeaway did you learn from that?
Why limit it to when I first started? I make mistakes all the time! I have fumbled a word or ten in every form of communication, accidentally sent an auto-corrected swear word to a brand, and let my sassy personality show a tad too much on Instagram Stories from time to time. Let’s just say nothing will humble you quite like the internet critics of the world. You misspell one homonym in a caption and the spelling police are coming for you! I have learned the importance of not taking yourself too seriously and being able to laugh it off when you mess up.
You have been blessed with great success in a career path that many have attempted, but eventually gave up on. Do you have any words of advice for others who may want to embark on this career path but know that their dreams might be dashed?
As my husband likes to say, “everyone is a blogger”. The truth is anyone can buy a domain, create a blog, and work to create an audience. I would say that if you want to cultivate a lifestyle website and brand, then you have to block out the noise of what everyone else is doing and stay true to who you are, what your likes and dislikes are, and not try to compare yourself to your competitors. The thing about being an influencer is that while everyone has a voice, you’re the only person that can be you. Share things you love, tell people about it, and repeat. It might not gain traction immediately but if you have a unique voice or perspective then you will eventually find followers who appreciate that!
Ok super. Let’s now shift to the main part of our discussion. Can you please share “Five Things Anyone Can Do To Have Fabulous Hair”. Please share a story or an example, for each.
- I take gummies that have Biotin, B12, and other natural ingredients. I’ve also taken straight Biotin and that has helped me grow longer, stronger hair.
- Sleep on a silk pillowcase with dry hair. I find that the major thing that contributes to my hair breakage is tossing and turning in the middle of the night. I like to sleep with dry hair (wet hair can lead to breakage) and on a silk pillowcase. There are plenty of expensive pillowcases out there but I have found that this Amazon pillowcase does the trick! The reason you want to sleep on silk is so that your hair won’t pull or break as you toss & turn. Plus, if you are prone to frizz, it’s less likely your hair will get disheveled in the middle of the night.
- Use hair ties that won’t break your hair and mix up your styling. If I wear a top-knot too many days (I mean weeks) in a row, my hair begins to break off at the nape of my neck. Switch up your hairstyle every day.
- I also air-dry my hair as much as possible. If I’m using a hairdryer brush, I’ll let my hair air dry to about 80-percent before I use the hairdryer. I make sure to use a heat protectant spray as well!
- If you color treat your hair, try to spread out when you get it color-treated. I push my appointments by at least 10 weeks if not 12 and I only get it cut or trimmed every other time.
Can you share 3 ideas that anyone can use “to feel beautiful”? (Please share a story or example for each.)
When I think about the times I’ve felt beautiful, it definitely had to do with an experience, a memory, or in all honestly a time like my wedding day when I put a load of time, money, and effort into feeling that way. I think if you want to “feel beautiful” there are a couple of options at your disposal.
- Shopping. I mean let’s just face it, a new dress, a great fitting pair of jeans, or getting a new lip hue that perfectly complements your complexion does not hurt when you need a little beauty pick-me-up.
- Consistent Routines. This one takes more work, but if you want to feel beautiful consistently, focus on a great skincare routine coupled with eating foods rich in vitamin c and drinking a load of water. Your body can naturally produce collagen and boost hyaluronic acid by eating foods rich in vitamin c and water is a gift when it comes to healthy skin and hair! Did you know that the reason you see dark circles under your eyes is that the skin is thin there and what you are actually seeing are tissues and blood vessels? Now a tall glass of water won’t fix your under eyes but drinking water daily can do wonders for your skin!
- Hire a Professional. If you’re down in the dumps and don’t want to change out of your sweatpants, wash your hair or put forth one second of effort, just outsource the beautification. Judge me if you will, but I happen to think a fantastic blowout, an amazing hydro-facial or an all-out spa day is the most sure-fire way to instantly feel refreshed and beautiful and I don’t care who knows it.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
As a mom and self-proclaimed technology nerd, I would love to see more awareness and attention brought to internet safety for children. I’d love to see more features from technology companies to filter out sensitive content, alert parents/guardians of safety issues, and protect young users. When I was growing up, I was protected by movie ratings, tv schedules, and no cell phones, much less phones that were connected to the internet. Knowing what I as an adult encounter on the web in regards to privacy, it makes me nervous for young kids that will grow up in a fully-digital world.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
My dad always told me to “do the things you need to do before you do the things you want to do”. I think this has helped my work ethic, my drive, and my sense of responsibility. This can play out in your career, with your family and in your day-to-day life around the house. It speaks to having your priorities in order and making sure that you are keeping commitments and prioritizing the necessary things in your life (even if it’s dedicated time to reading, working out, or spiritual and mental development) before the frivolous things. This phrase helped me in every part of life but especially as it pertains to running a business with small children.
We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world with whom you’d like to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this. 🙂
Mark Cuban… hit me up. It’s my lifelong dream to be on Shark Tank. I realize I need to build a successful product or service but I can have 47 ideas on your desk by morning. It will be a never-before-seen angle and I can just pitch until someone agrees to partner with me.
How can our readers follow you online?
Read my blog at cristincooper.com.
Follow on Instagram @CristinCooper.
On Facebook: Facebook.com/CristinCooper
On Pinterest: pinterest.com/cristincooper/
Thank you so much for this. This was very inspirational, and we wish you only continued success!