As a part of my series about “Connecting With Yourself To Live With Better Relationships” I had the pleasure to interview Heather Marianna. She is a popular Youtuber, whose sassy DIY beauty videos using common kitchen ingredients has been viewed by over 3 million fans in conjunction with her all-natural whimsical skincare line, Beauty Kitchen, founded in 2013.
In 2015, Heather starred on Bravo’s luxury-reality TV show, ‘Tour Group,” where 11 soul-searching strangers traveled the world together to resolve a variety of inner-personal issues.
A respected and reputable expert in the beauty industry, Heather, has appeared on over 80 national TV beauty segments and been featured on prominent websites including The Today Show, E! Online, Yahoo, The Huffington Post and more. Beauty Kitchen celebrity fans include Vanessa Simmons, Christina Milian, Dascha Polanco, Lisa Vanderpump, Viola Davis and more. Beauty Kitchen products have also been gifted at high-profile award show events including The Grammys, Golden Globes, Emmys, and Espy gifting suites.
Beauty enthusiasts can shop the brand including collagen eye gels, lace face masks, bath bombs, monthly beauty boxes, sugar scrubs and more at beautykitchen.net.
Thank you so much for joining us! Let’s Get Intimate! I’d love to begin by asking you to give us the backstory as to what brought you to this specific career path.
I’ve always been into beauty and skincare and had been spending hundreds of dollars a month on product for years and years but really had no idea what I was really putting on my skin after all, the majority of ingredients on any given beauty product feature a bevy of fancy-named chemicals that the average person is oblivious to. Frustrated with feeling blind to what I was putting on my skin, which mind you is our body’s largest organ, I began researching all-natural solutions for various skin care issues. In 2012, I launched my YouTube series where I demonstrated DIY beauty treatments using common kitchen household ingredients and within just a few short months, my channel’s popularity skyrocketed, and I had millions of views on each of my videos. During this time, I began gifting close friends with some of my hand-made beauty products and they were always super blown away and captivated with my creations. I knew I wasn’t the only one who was intrigued with all-natural beauty, and in 2013 I launched my own company, Beauty Kitchen by Heather Marianna which encompasses the at-home spa experience with a selection of fun, whimsical and all-natural beauty products including bath bombs, eye gels, face masks, sugar scrubs, lip masks and more.
Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you hope that they might help people along their path to self-understanding or a better sense of wellbeing in their relationships?
I just recently opened Beauty Kitchen Boutique in Boulder City, 20 minutes away from Las Vegas in November 2015. It’s super exciting for me because finally, my customers have a chance to shop Beauty Kitchen in person. It’s also allowed me to host a bevy of fun celebrity meet-and-greet events. “The Real Housewives of Orange County” stars, Gina Kirschenheiter and Emily Simpson, hosted the boutique’s grand opening and then Vanessa Simmons hosted a pop-up shop for her clean-beauty bath line, Sugar Me, which we manufacture in January 2019. Beauty Kitchen products help our customers connect with themselves (which is the most important relationship of all) and make the most out of their “me” time with pampering products. Beauty Kitchen is self-love.
Do you have a personal story that you can share with our readers about your struggles or successes along your journey of self-understanding and self-love? Was there ever a tipping point that triggered a change regarding your feelings of self-acceptance?
I’ve been on a long road of understanding self-love. I’m a walking billboard that money does not equal happiness. By society’s standards, I am successful and rich in wealth but I’ve been on a journey of self-love for awhile. For me to feel complete, I’ve realized I have to give back and help others in need. I love myself by being a lover, giver, and a healer.
According to a recent study cited in Cosmopolitan, in the US, only about 28 percent of men and 26 percent of women are “very satisfied with their appearance.” Could you talk about what some of the causes might be, as well as the consequences?
I really feel like people are losing their self-esteem from how social media and the media portray what is beautiful. We see all these influencers and celebs on social media, driving fancy cars, taking picture-perfect selfies, traveling to exotic places, living in big houses or on the covers of magazines without a flaw to be seen. I also think often times social media subconsciously causes us to compare our lives (or should I say posts) to our friends and family we follow which can sometimes cause some jealousy or envy. It’s important to stay focused and remember the difference between reality and fantasy.
As cheesy as it might sound to truly understand and “love yourself,” can you share with our readers a few reasons why it’s so important?
When you love yourself, you move differently. You know your worth in this world and you respect yourself, therefore, others learn they must respect you too if they want a place in your life. Your self-confidence shines through and people around you pick up on your powerful energy. Also when you love yourself, you make better choices in relationships because you are seeking a partner, not love to pick yourself up.
Why do you think people stay in mediocre relationships? What advice would you give to our readers regarding this?
Because it’s comfortable and often people are scared to be alone. If you love yourself you’ll never be in bad company — alone or not.
When I talk about self-love and understanding I don’t necessarily mean blindly loving and accepting ourselves the way we are. Many times self-understanding requires us to reflect and ask ourselves the tough questions, to realize perhaps where we need to make changes in ourselves to be better not only for ourselves but for our relationships.
What are some of those tough questions that will cut through the safe space of comfort we like to maintain, that our readers might want to ask themselves? Can you share an example of a time that you had to reflect and realize how you needed to make changes?
A few years back, I was on a show on Bravo called “Tour Group.” I basically traveled the world with 10 strangers — and we all were traveling in hopes of doing some hardcore self-love and soul searching. I guess it sounds a little cliché to say one found themselves while doing reality TV but that’s exactly what happened. I was taken completely out of my comfort zone, with people I didn’t know, in places I knew nothing about. I did it all though to learn to become comfortable in my own skin. I knew I had to change many things in my life at the time — in my relationship (engaged for the 14th time) and in the company that I kept (bad friends. I had to completely take my shell off and feel naked in a sense, to build myself back up.
So many don’t really know how to be alone or are afraid of it. How important is it for us to have, and practice, that capacity to truly be with ourselves and be alone (literally or metaphorically)?
It is so important to love yourself. Being alone is hard, we are always on our phones and we have to shut that off. I find being alone is good for me. I embrace my alone time, it’s sacred. You have to be A-OK with yourself 100% and realize that when you move up in life you will lose people but it’s ok it’s about self-love. you don’t have to make everyone happy. Start by going to eat alone. I do it all the time, movies, pilates, sauna… get prepared for greatness by practicing it.
How does achieving a certain level of self-understanding and self-love then affect your ability to connect with and deepen your relationships with others?
You can be more clear when you talk to people and say how you feel and not fly off the handle. When you demand respect for yourself you can command it from others. Don’t expect people to respect you when you don’t respect yourself, and stay focused and realize self-love is the best thing you can do for yourself.
In your experience, what should a) individuals and b) society, do to help people better understand themselves and accept themselves?
Unfollow every single social media account that makes you feel like your less than good enough. Follow only positive pages. Stay active with people that are like-minded like you. Keep your moves to yourself. Celebrate your triumphs. Treat yourself to a face mask and wine.
What are 5 strategies that you implement to maintain your connection with and love for yourself, that our readers might learn from? Could you please give a story or example for each?
1. I work out, I make myself go to the gym every day. I have to so I can stay sane. It relaxes me and it’s my personal time I commit to myself a few days a week — that helps me become the person I want to be, strong, both physically and mentally. Going to the gym helps me discipline and hold myself accountable — and I love myself for that.
2. I take time every morning to sit on my balcony for 5–10 minutes just to look outside and drink my coffee — without any phone or distractions. I just sit and reflect on what is going on for the day and set my intentions. It allows me to fall in love with my goals and find peace.
3. Read in my bathtub. Yes, I take baths. I love it and I just sit in there even if its 11 pm and read usually mindfulness’ magazine or the latest Time or Forbes. Reading is so powerful.
4. Work trips can be brutal. I never put myself on a time schedule. I pick a place I will be at and have my meetings at the hotel. I send everyone a text on where I will be any time and that’s that. I am always on time most are not and this gives me way less anxiety on meetings and it runs smoother.
5. Skincare! With my Beauty Kitchen at-home spa products, I feel refreshed, pampered and beautiful. Even at my desk while working, I use my collagen eye gels, rosewater mist and face masks. It’s important to always take time for yourself and especially as busy and stressed as we all are, identify what gives you joy and relaxation — and do more of it!
What are your favorite books, podcasts, or resources for self-psychology, intimacy, or relationships? What do you love about each one and how does it resonate with you?
I lv the listen to JOEL OSTEEN, oh my I just love his messages. He is an inspiration. I also search a lot on Apple music motivation when I feel tired it really get you up and going.
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? Maybe we’ll inspire our readers to start it…
I would encourage people to do three things: give back, travel and volunteer. My recent 21-day volunteer trip to Africa was life-changing. It really opened my eyes. Besides reminding me how lucky I am — it reminded me of the bigger purpose in life, which is to make the world a better place and helping those in need. I actually wrote an in-depth blog about my experience, which can be viewed here. It’s super insightful and I tried my best to convey the stream of emotions I experienced abroad — in my journaling. Give back in any way you can — whether it be through your time, a thoughtful gesture or donation. I often pay for the person behind me in the Starbucks line you never know what kind of day they are having just pay it forward. Travel, open your eyes to the world we live in. Stop buying purses and start buying experiences. Volunteer, your time and knowledge given to others can make all the difference in the world if you can this while traveling do it.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote” that you use to guide yourself by? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life and how our readers might learn to live by it in theirs?
I think the best lesson quote would be to take your time and live patiently. So many times I wanted to just be like I give up, but you can’t. We all have good and bad days and if you’re not where you wanna be in life, just work towards it, believe in yourself and be patient. It will all work out. Sometimes you have to realize things take time and in this socially driven automatic reply society, we live in its not always all IG perfect posts and designer handbags at brunch. Its life and we have to live it.