Meet Stephanie (@stephgeebeauty ) - The creative brain behind Gee Beauty, a modern concept spa that combines a makeup & brow studio, skin specialist & beauty retail destination in order to save precious time for the on-to-go, modern-day woman.
PRADEGAL had the pleasure of chatting with Stephanie about what it takes to be an entrepreneur and how to stay resilient through it all.
What does your day to day look like at Gee Beauty?
Being active and mentally engaged gives is so important me. I thrive on multitasking. My days involve a much-loved mix of working with our incredible team of beauty professionals, educating clients (in person, through email and via social media), demonstrating how to create their perfect brow, achieiving foolproof concealer or customizing a skincare routine, while also developing our digital voice and e-commerce channel.
Were you ever nervous/scared when you started (with) Gee Beauty?
I was very young when Gee Beauty started, so I would say the initials pressures and fears were more felt by my partners – my mother and two sisters. Once I came on board full time at the age of 17, I began to have a deeper understanding of business and where my strengths could contribute to grow the company. Being an entrepreneur means taking risks, almost everyday. It’s important to have a slight nervousness before any new venture because it means change is coming!
What challenges have you faced and how did you overcome them?
Professionally, when I started at Gee Beauty my age was a challenge because women had difficulty trusting my word on topics like ‘anti-aging’ and ‘collagen production’. I was so frustrated by it and I was determined to prove my value. I remember the day that I decided I would no longer let it interfere with what I did have, which was my knowledge. From that day on, I took my style very seriously to show my maturity and confidence (wearing a blazer always means business) and used my words to explain the science behind the skincare to show my passion, knowledge and experience. Personally, it was a challenge socially to have my work life be my priority, especially while all my friends were abroad at university. It certinaly singeled me out in my many social settings but I truthfully wouldn’t have had it any other way. Working has groomed me into the person I am today and I greatly value everything I have learned in business. I tell people I am a student in the school of life and I am so proud of that!
What are some exciting things happening with Gee Beauty this year?
We have taken our digital and social strategies to a new level this year. We are deeply tapped into our online community, our e-commerce clients and our growing followers who tell us what they want and we aim to deliver! The online world is extremely powerful and we are so energized by this new type of growth.
How do you stay inspired? Where do you find inspiration?
I gain inspiration from those who I admire. Most often it’s people who have achieved success in areas I wish to one day. I also greatly admire my business partners, who continue to motivate and push me to reach new goals. And sometimes I get inspiration from something as beautiful as a newly renovated grocery store! It makes me reflect on our (Gee Beauty) studios and think about how I can make people as excited as I do when I see shiny apples in the grocery store.
What woman/women inspire(s) you?
This list could go on and on but for now let’s say: my business partners (Miriam Gee, Natalie Gee, Celene Gee), Hannah Bronfman, Melissa Wood, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Sara Blakely, Michelle Levine (@6bygeebeauty), Aimee Song, Emily Weiss, Serena Williams, Beyonce, Selma Blair…the list goes on!
If you could give advice to your younger self, what would it be?
Think it through. Up until I turned 25, I said yes to everything and everyone. While that is a very positive outlook, I never took the opportunity to ask myself if it was something I wanted to do. And I rarely ever took a moment to think it through – ask myself the questions that would lead me to make a choice that worked best for me. Now I take my time when things are presented to me (personally and professionally), take my time to think it through and then reply. It has made me a more thoughtful person.
How do you deal with negativity (personal or work related)?
I talk it out, I work it out and sometimes I cry it out! I am emotionally expressive person and I always feel more resolved once I talk it out with someone I trust. Communication is the most valuable tool I have.
"Show up. Showing up is half the battle. You need to put in your 10,000 hours before becoming an expert at anything you want to become. More deeply, the value of showing up shows your commitment to yourself, to others, to your belief system. You have to show up for yourself and for others so they will show up for you."
"I’m a big believer in balance—from my greens to my dark chocolate—& that you (and your skin) are what you absorb. I’m curious by nature and always learning about nutrition, mindfulness and other facets of wellness and how it affects our energy and outlook."