Here @thebeautyagenteurs we love to celebrate strong women who follow their dreams and turn them into reality. In today’s crazy times when we’re feeling deflated, de-moralised and just totally lost, we wanted to share an uplifting interview with Samantha Freedman, CEO & CO-Founder at Curate Beauty to help inspire and get us out of this COVID-Coma. And, if any retailers are reading this… you need to do this!
[Sarah Sian] Can you tell us your name and job title?
[Samantha Freedman] Samantha Freedman, CEO & CO-Founder at Curate Beauty
[SS] Can you tell us about Curate Beauty as a business/brand?
[SF] Curate Beauty is the UK’s first wholesale marketplace for indie beauty brands. It’s the ultimate match-making service for retailers to discover new brands, and brands to be partnered with new like-minded stockists.
[SS] What inspired you to create Curate?
[SF] I used to be a Beauty Editor at Grazia Magazine and was lucky enough to interview hundreds of brand founders, who often struggled with finding new and exciting stockists. When I left my position I set out to change that, and really wanted to make beauty much more accessible. I started consulting for fashion brands, retailers, fitness studios and hair & beauty salons, buying for them a selection of complimentary beauty. As the business started to grow it became incredibly admin heavy, so together with my partner Margot, we decided to digitise the process, which is how Curate Beauty was born.
[SS] In the current COVID-19 retail situation, how can Curate help retailers?
[SF] Retailers need to run leaner than they ever have before, here are some of our site benefits that enable them to do so…
- Complimentary sign up’s are key
- Browse & buy across 80 brands
- Expert-led trending and topical categories
- Terms, pricing and pack sizes have already been negotiated, saving time
- There’s zero commission for using the site currently
- We can send them free sample packs – so they can ‘try-before-they-buy’
- Flexible financing – we have partnered with a payment processor to allow them to split payments over a three month period, helping with cash flow
[SS] What do you like most about your job?
[SF] My background is in beauty, so for me educating new buyers or retailers about beauty is incredibly humbling. I can use all the experience I’ve learnt and taught them more about a new category, for them to pass onto their customers.
[SS] What are your main highlights?
[SF] We recently got onto Huckletree’s Alpha Programme, which is a start-up accelerator for businesses within beauty tech. We’re only one week in, but so far it’s been a fantastic place to learn, network and expands our horizons. We’re amongst a pool of other likeminded entrepreneurs and have the opportunity to have talks from some of the greatest experts within marketing, sales and even with future investors.
[SS] How do you juggle/maintain a good work/life balance?
[SF] I’m quite strict when it comes to my working hours as I get easily distracted. So I always make sure I’m in front of my computer before 9.30am and set aside an hour at lunch to workout, that way it doesn’t eat into my working day. By at least 8pm the laptop is always away and I’m off work mode, I think it’s so important to have time to switch off, even away from Instagram.
[SS] What is your WFH routine?
[SF] Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday I have a catch-up video call with my team. On Tuesday and Thursdays, I work on Huckletree activities, so I have quite a nice split of my week. I’ve been really enjoying the at-home workouts on Instagram, so I usually start each day with @sineadtrains who does a 30 minute ab blast- the perfect time to do abs apparently. Then if I have time I’ll join @ciaralondon for a lunchtime session. Hopefully, it evens out the amount of eating I’ve been doing.
[SS] Any isolation tips to keep up spirits and stay motivated?
[SF] Daily workouts have really helped to keep me motivated, as well as taking time for a walk. It’s weird not having any after-work activities to do, so I’ve just ordered a Jonathan Adler puzzle and I love doing my mindfulness colouring book- don’t knock it until you try it, it’s a nice switch off from Netflix and the news.
[SS] What’s your biggest beauty dilemma?
[SF] My skin! When I’m stressed, it shows on my skin, when I’m tired or hormonal, you got it, it shows up in my skin. So I’m always trying to keep it on track with clean products and simple routines. Being in beauty means I get to try a lot of new products, but on the flip-side, that’s often not the best way to look after your skin.
[SS] What are your favourite beauty products and why?
[SF] At the moment I’m really loving Evolue, it’s a great skincare line for problematic skin, it’s really clean and contains no nasties, it was created by a skincare expert in LA. I’m a sucker for a great candle too, and last night burnt one from Skin Alchemists. Once it’s burnt across I blow it out and use it as an oil, my hands have been incredibly dry (from all the handwashing, obviously) so it’s a fantastic intensive treatment if yours are cracking up.
I cannot (no exaggeration) live without my Manta hairbrush. It honestly is the BEST hairbrush in the world. It feels like you’re combing your hair with your fingers, it’s super gentle, minimising fallout and leaves my hair softer and shinier than any other brush.
[SS] What do you keep in your makeup bag?
[SF] I have about three or four lip balms on-the-go at any one-time. A handbag sized perfume because you never know when you need a refreshing spritz. A hand sanitiser and hand cream because my hands are always dry. My friends always laugh at me as I basically carry all entire my makeup with me, all the time. That usually includes concealer, bronzer, blush, eyeliner, Mascara and brushes obviously.
[SS] Complete the sentence…A Woman is her most confident when?
[SF] … she accepts the skin she’s in.