The #Empowerista podcast is here! I’m pinching myself!! My first guest is Sharon Chuter, the founder and CEO of UOMA Beauty, an Afropolitan makeup brand. During her career journey Sharon helped bring Revlon to Nigeria; Now she’s taking the beauty space by storm with her own makeup brand by not only embracing inclusivity and diversity, but by also embracing individual identity.
Here’s the breakdown of my chat with Sharon:[01:12] Sharon considers herself a “global citizen,” and her accent represents her journey. Growing up in Nigeria shaped Sharon’s core at a young age because she learned to work hard and stand out to succeed. Whereas, Australia taught her to value happiness first. The mix of the two inspires Sharon to work hard and value her happiness. [04:51] Today Sharon values doing something impactful beyond making someone else money; She chose to go into a business that makes the world a better place. [06:09] When she turned thirty, Sharon realized she assimilated to Australian culture too far and lost her unique identity while climbing the corporate ladder. It’s never too late to return to who you are and find your unique path. Sharon understood she could be both, Nigerian and Australian, without compromising herself. [14:20] If you’re looking for freedom in your career, you get that from creating your own identity in your life and accepting yourself first. [19:00] It’s time women change the way we approach job opportunities. Men approach a job with confidence, even when they only have one of the qualifications, and a woman who may have all but one might not even try to apply. [19:56] Sharon said, “Women, we always want to be perfect, we want to know it all” but we don’t have to; We only have to try, and that is enough. This mindset shift gave Sharon the confidence to build her beauty brand, in an industry dominated by influencers. [25:30] “What if I had changed?” If Sharon had done what everyone wanted her to do, she would never have created the brand that is changing women’s lives. There is power in being your unique self. [26:00] Sharon urges everyone to love themselves and to be themselves. You only get one shot at life. Don’t waste it trying to be what others want you to become. [26:44] Sharon explains that UOMA’s products are a souvenir of a movement, of an experience. They aren’t the focus; The focus is self-love. [27:54] Sharon hopes that UOMA Beauty will inspire others to be proud of their culture and who they are. [29:20] Sharon shared that inclusivity isn’t creating a product only for African American women, it is creating a product for each individual identity, no matter their ethnicity, and customizing it to them. It’s about inviting them to the table, and learning more about them. [30:30] Sharon ends with her thought on inclusivity, “It’s not about just celebrating me, it’s about celebrating you. Tell me about you.”
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