BY: ALYSSA MAHADEO
The bond between women has been a hot topic of discussion over the years. Many have been left with bad impressions of catty behavior, jealousy, and competitive natures that seem to destroy relationships and distort the rights and privileges that women of past generations fought so hard for.
For the 3rd year in a row, Beauty Mark hosted by Jackie Clarke founder of The Well Connected returned to the UpTown Loft in Toronto for a Summer exclusive shopping experience. Beauty Mark is an influential event for women, entrepreneurs, millennials, and beauty lovers alike.
Beauty Mark was created to inspire women through beauty and support local women-owned businesses. The Well Connected is passionate about an event of this caliber because it is a platform that supports and encourages women in business and inspires a community to come together, network and support one another. Their intention is to create a space for information, inspiration, understanding, and acceptance that will allow our community of millennials and entrepreneurs to share in the power of beauty and for local businesses to showcase their work.
The Uptown Loft was buzzing with anticipation and excitement as women from across the GTA came out to support and network with their sisters meeting new people and making connections with companies and brands that they could potentially work with in future endeavors.
Host of Beauty Mark, Jackie Clarke shared some of her personal experiences, in making the decision to host this event, struggling as a woman of color to get her foot in the door in the realm of Public Relations in Toronto.
“After entering the world of beauty PR, I found that there were a lot of brands and products I couldn’t connect with. I also found that still being new to the industry not having very much practical experience people didn’t want to work with me, didn’t want to hire me and it took a huge blow on my self-esteem.” Jackie shared.
“I wondered why people wouldn’t give me a chance to showcase my skills and that’s how Beauty Mark got started,” Jackie said.
“I looked at all of these young entrepreneurs, all these young women and young men trying to start something, and because consumers don’t want to hear from you if you’re not a distinguished brand name they weren’t being supported and so Beauty Mark stems from that connecting with men and women and showcasing what they have to offer.”
Guests who attended Beauty Mark 2017 were invited to come out and enjoy complimentary hair and beauty services from independent consultants and entrepreneurs offering their own brand of services. Attendees were able to shop exclusively from vendors at a special price, enjoy tasty luscious eats from Burger Pawty while vibing to the sensational sounds from DJ Steph Honey.
In addition to all of the exclusive opportunities throughout the room, guests were invited to listen to some interesting and engaging panel discussions that included Fab For Fashion, Gale, Nancy, Leslie and Judy, four women of all shapes and sizes sharing their own personal fashion journey, learning to love the skin they’re in and also offering helpful advice on where to find clothes to fit different body sizes and not get discouraged if you can’t find something in your size. They started their brand to promote body positivity and body diversity. The clothing industry has been working to become more inclusive to the different shapes and size of women and though it has been a struggle for most, it’s all about learning where to find what you need.
The afternoon ended on a high note with a panel discussion speaking of Self-Love and the challenges we face learning to love ourselves, engaging in positive affirmations and coming to the understanding that we are perfect just the way we are. The panel was comprised of four women from all walks of life including beauty maven Ashley Victoria of StoneFox Beauty, Alessia Giustini Reiki Master, Self-Love Coach and Spiritual Healer, Sasha from Flaws of Couture and Mom and Blogger Shani Cares.
Each woman shared their own unique experience, struggles and challenges when it came to loving themselves and what it means to continue to practice self-love every day. They shared how they felt when life was unbearable, living up to high expectations and accepting failure as part of the journey.
“It’s about believing in yourself, because if I don’t believe in myself then nobody else would believe in me,” said Alessia Giustini.
It was a wholesome and fulfilling event, there were tears and even tears of laughter as the women in attendance connected in ways they didn’t know was possible. Attendees left with a swag bag of goodies filled with items provided by Beauty Mark’s many sponsors Skyn Iceland, Swegg, Castlefield Designs, Perth Soap, Narley Media, NYX Cosmetics, Curls & Confidence, The Taste, Softlips, Chakrubs, Sugargirliee, Vasanti, Barre Works, Erno Lazlo, and much more.
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