Hello my name is Sindy, and a huge welcome to Challenging Perceptions of Beauty!
My background is in marketing, mainly in the corporate side of the beauty industry.
I worked at the headquarters of one of the UK’s largest health and beauty retailers and was involved in:
- International marketing
- Predicting lifestyle and beauty trends
- Brand management
- Developing new product ideas for cosmetics brands
- Market research
I worked with celebrity makeup artists, trends prediction agencies, customer research teams, and travelled to different countries to explore new ideas, then as part of a team advised some of the UK’s leading beauty brands on how to take their brands forward.
In 2004 I left the corporate world and took the decision to diversify and expand my understanding of women and their relationship with the beauty industry. I trained as a Life Coach, then followed my passion for cosmetics to London and trained as a makeup artist. I worked freelance for a few years, and it was as a result of working with women on a one to one basis, combined with my background in the marketing side of the beauty industry that I started to formulate the ideas which led to launching ‘Challenging Perceptions of Beauty’.
I am a Chartered marketer, and also work with the beauty industry charity Look Good Feel Better to deliver workshops to women and teenagers, to help manage the visible side effects of cancer treatment.
Have you ever been in a place where on the outside everything seems to be going perfectly, but inside things aren’t so good? That was my life pre 2004.
On the outside I was getting promotions and pay rises, enjoying visiting different countries looking for new beauty ideas for some of the UK’s leading beauty brands, and even got to ride in a helicopter taxi from Monte Carlo to Nice – dream job! But on the inside things were tough. My desperation for promotions and titles was driven by low self esteem (although I would never have recognised or admitted this at the time) – I needed them to prove to others that I was good enough because I didn’t believe it inside. I worked hard for my promotions, but when I got them I felt like a fraud – how did someone like me get to do some of the things I was doing? In hindsight I didn’t enjoy my external ‘success’ as much as I could have done.
Then in 2004 I was offered redundancy. Redundancy didn’t just take away my job – It took away my identity – an identity I had sacrificed 13 years of my life to create. I went from being a ‘Global Trends Manager for a multi-national company’ to ‘unemployed’ overnight. Around that time I also suffered from a severe burnout which left me mentally, emotionally and physically unable to work. I thought my life was coming to an end. But then I read a book called The Joy of Burnout by Dr Dina Glouberman, and in it she described how burning out is merely a sign that one part of your life has come to an end, and like a phoenix from the flames it’s time for a new life to begin.
As part of my own journey I worked through my own challenges with different life coaches, and in 2005 after completing a year long course I qualified with distinction as a coach myself. Since then I have never looked back. Through coaching I have learnt some really valuable lessons. For example:
- The biggest barriers / glass ceilings between where we are now and where we want to be lie in the stories we tell ourselves – in the beliefs we have in our own head about ourselves, our lives, and whether we are ‘good enough’ – and also around our definitions of ‘success’.
- Once you learn to like and approve of yourself, you don’t need so much approval from other people – which is liberating because it enables you to take bigger risks, have more fun, and learn to say no!
- There is a whole world out there waiting for us – if only we can step into our courage and embrace it. It doesn’t matter if we make mistakes, ‘fail’, or things don’t go to plan. As Mark Twain says, the biggest regrets we’re likely to have in 20 years time are the things we DIDN’T do – not the things we did!
I have no idea how the ‘Challenging Perceptions of Beauty’ story will unfold, but I’m open to finding out. Curious? If you believe in what we’re about, why not join us on the journey and together we CAN make a difference ?