When I see how my daughters move in the world as young adults, knowing that they are kind, compassionate, caring and curious, is the best feeling ever. When I see their beauty radiating from the inside out, it sparks a sense of my own.
At times it feels like wellness or elevating one’s well being, is diametrically opposed to high achievement and high performance in one’s career. The stress, mental energy, long hours, lack of restful sleep and preoccupation that result from a high-achievement life seem to directly inhibit wellness. And yet, in order to sustain the creativity, flexibility, mental acuity and resilience that are necessary for high performance, wellness and wellbeing of the mind, body and soul are also mandatory. So how do we achieve both? This is the question I’m hoping to answer through conversations with high-achieving leaders and influencers who are practicing their own philosophies about how to maintain their wellbeing.
As a part of our series about “Social Media Influencers Share Their Top Self Care, Wellness, and Beauty Tips, I had the pleasure of interviewing Jenny Patinkin, a highly sought-after beauty expert, entrepreneur, makeup artist and author known for her earth-friendly and age-aware approach to beauty. Nationally recognized for her broad industry knowledge and expertise, Jenny has appeared on GMA, The Today Show, The Rachael Ray Show and prominent digital media channels. She is the bestselling author of Lazy Perfection, The Art of Looking Great Without Really Trying (Running Press/Hachette).
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to get to know you a bit better. Can you share with us the backstory of how you came upon this career path and to where you are today?
I was such a late-bloomer and didn’t start in the beauty industry until I was 40. I had been a stay at home mom and then kind of fell into makeup artistry, getting signed by an international agency 3-weeks after I finished my training. That led me to start a business where I would teach women how to apply makeup, which led to me developing my first collection of beauty tools, which somehow led to me working as an on-camera Beauty Expert. All the exposure that came from being on camera led me to getting a book deal with Running Press/Hachette, which put me on a path to doing national broadcast appearances and speaking at a range of events, and finally, now, expanding my assortment of Eco-Luxe Beauty Tools.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
My husband has been my biggest cheerleader. He was the one who encouraged me to explore the development of a product line and writing a book, and he stepped up big time to help care for our kids.
In the industry, I credit Nicky Kinnaird (founder of SpaceNK) and Lily Garfield (founder of Cos Bar) for helping me to put me on my path. I reached out to both of them blind — Nicky over LinkedIn and Lily by phone — and they were both gracious enough to accept my outreach and set up a meeting. They both brought my line onboard in their stores and have been great supporters ever since. I am also grateful to a company called Joyus (now run by different owners) who helped me to hone my on-camera skills. I think I shot around 400 videos for them as one of their Beauty Experts and it was an invaluable experience.
Can you share a story with us about the most humorous mistake you made when you were first starting? What lesson or take-away did you learn from that?
The first time I shot a video to promote my collection of makeup brushes, I had literally just gotten off of a plane from vacation in Morocco and was jet lagged and foggy. It was my first time on-camera in that format and the shoot was excruciating — it took forever because I had such a hard time getting the hang of it. When the video finally aired, I HATED it and was mortified because I found myself so annoying to watch and was sure everyone else would find me annoying, too. Long story short, the products sold out, I got a contract to be a regular on-camera Beauty Expert, and it turns out that I built a very devoted and supportive group of core followers.
As an influencer, you have been blessed with great success in a career path that many have attempted, but eventually gave up on. In fact perhaps most people who tried to follow a career path like yours did not succeed. 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?
I have found that the most important thing you can do is figure out your perspective and then be true to it. If you try to fit into a trend or use language that’s not authentically yours, or that doesn’t come from the heart, the audience will be able to tell and won’t want to engage.
Can you share with our readers some of your strategies you’ve used to build an engaged, loyal, and large online community?
As mentioned in the previous question, I try to just always be myself — good, bad and ugly. I share how I am feeling whether happy or sad, the services and products I have tried, funny stories about my quirky husband and kids, and I also try to respond personally to all messages and make sure that everyone who follows along feels seen and appreciated. I love my followers and feel like many of them have become friends in a way.
You are a busy person with a demanding schedule, can you share with our readers two self-care routines, practices or treatments that help your body thrive? (Kindly share a story or an example for each.)
As my Beauty Tool business keeps growing, and my following on social media along with it, I have to carve out a few minutes of each day to stretch and take a few deep breaths to calm my central nervous system. My list of things to do has become almost overwhelming, so getting into a very present state of mind and loosening up my sitting-at-a-desk posture a couple of times a day gives me a physical and mental reset.
I also like to get out into nature as much as I can, especially for walks in a forest. Being where there is so much green to stimulate my vision and oxygen to energize my body brings me a sense of peace and the quiet time I need to find inspiration and motivation.
Can you share with us two routines that you use to help your mind or heart to thrive? (Kindly share a story or example for each.)
When I wake up in the morning, I run through a checklist of things for which I am grateful. That starts my day with positive energy that I can carry with me. I do an internal inventory from the different parts of my life and make a list of all the things that I am appreciating. The other thing I do is set a goal for the day — one thing I want to accomplish or overcome.
The other thing I like to do is use my Rose Quartz Face Roller and let myself soak up the energetic vibrations of love, self-love, kindness, warmth and compassion. Rolling on my skin makes my face look good, but the energy boost I get makes my heart feel good.
Can you share 3 ideas that anyone can use “to feel beautiful”? (Please share a story or example for each.)
Is there a particular resource, a practitioner, expert, book, or podcast that made a significant impact on you and helped you to thrive? Can you share a story about that with us?
- Helping other people is the fastest road to gratification and finding that sense of inner-beauty. During quarantine, I went through my entire storage area where I keep products that have been sent to me but that I have not been able to use, and was able to make up care packages of cosmetics that I sent to a facility that helps formerly incarcerated women. The satisfaction from being able to bring a little self-care to someone else is immense.
- When I see how my daughters move in the world as young adults, knowing that they are kind, compassionate, caring and curious, is the best feeling ever. When I see their beauty radiating from the inside out, it sparks a sense of my own.
- I find AOC to be incredibly inspiring. Setting aside her politics, she has shown a new generation of women what it is to be a leader, how to stand your ground and that it’s ok to embrace self-care without being made to feel superficial or weak. Women have been so programmed to think that it has to be one or the other — looking good or being smart — and there is still some amount of shame or guilt in taking care of yourself. I love how unapologetic AOC is about embracing her brain and her red lipstick.
Do you have a story about the strangest, most bizarre or funniest wellness treatment that you’ve ever experienced?
I was set to teach a high profile national Makeup Master Class when my daughter asked me to do the Kylie Jenner Lip Challenge with her, which was basically applying suction to your lips to make them look puffy and pouty. It seemed like a great way to bond with my then-15-year-old, until I felt some blood vessels pop in my lips. First I looked like I had a mustache-shaped hickey, then the bruise spread down onto my lips, and finally all around my mouth. Thank goodness I know how to color correct, but it was very hard to camouflage it entirely.
As an influencer, 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.
One of things I talk about all the time is how demoralizing the term “anti-aging” is. Aging gets talked about as though it’s a condition that needs to be cured, like there is something wrong with us if we let it happen. I want women to know that every moment is a blessing, getting older — with all the wisdom and perspective that comes with it, and with all the changes to our skin — is still a blessing. Sure, the wrinkly skin on my neck sucks, but I wouldn’t trade my life experiences for anything. I want women everywhere to know that real beauty is in the now, not in the rearview mirror.
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. 🙂
I think it would be fascinating to sit down and chat with Dana Bash from CNN. First of all, she and I both attended George Washington University at the same time, although I was a few years ahead of her, but also I would love to know more about the pressures of being a woman in the tv news industry and what changes she has seen over the course of her career. She’s so smart and so quick on her feet, and she always looks great — she’s very much someone I find intriguing.
What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?
@jennypatinkin on Instagram
Thank you for these fantastic insights. We wish you only continued success in your great work!