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Best Kept Self

Leading Ladies - Megan Brandle

MeghanBrandle

Anytime you see the talented Megan Brandle, one of the first things you notice is her infectious smile, but also her impeccable style. As a personal stylist and image consultant, Megan works with her clients to define their personal style with simple wardrobe strategies. I first met Megan through Shauna Mackenzie as Megan is a part of the Best Kept Self team. I've worked with their team on a couple of different projects, but my favorite had to be presenting during one of their Webinars over Wine. One of the times I KNEW I adored Megan is when she passed this note to Shauna during the webinar....yep....she's my kind of gal! 

 

HOW DID YOU GET YOUR START?

I feel in love with Image Consulting/Personal Styling in one of my college courses. I have always liked helping people with their wardrobe and watching What Not To Wear, but this class helped me understand the science behind making someone look amazing. I couldn’t get enough. I sought out an internship in the Image Consulting industry and came across Shauna with Mackenzie Image Consulting. I started as an intern with her in 2009, turned apprentice, turned employee, turned lead stylist and now I am handling all the appearance clients for what now is Best Kept Self. So, all it took was one class and one awesome teacher to inspire me to do what I absolutely love. 

WHAT RISKS DID YOU TAKE?

I took the risk of moving to a new city with no plan and only following my passion. 5+ years later, I love looking back and acknowledging how I took that leap of faith and it worked! I couldn’t imagine my life without being a Personal Stylist and Image Consultant. Helping people look their best it something that is a part of me and always will be. 

WHAT IS SOMETHING THAT SCARES YOU?

I am pretty terrified of having an unhappy client. Although this has never happened, it’s always a fear. Before every personal shopping trip I think, what if we don’t find anything? Ha, yeah right! We always find tons of amazing pieces that are perfect for the client in every way, but it’s just a little thought that pops up. 

LOOKING BACK ON YOUR CAREER, WHAT WAS A MAJOR TURNING POINT FOR YOU?

A major turning point for me was a year ago when Mackenzie Image Consulting rebranded to Best Kept Self. Once we launched it was really an awesome experience, I love sharing the message and having such a positive and empowering brand behind me. The support of our fabulous group and contributors is something that I cannot explain. It makes me feel unstoppable. 

WHAT ARE THREE PIECES OF ADVICE YOU'VE RECEIVED THAT YOU'VE CARRIED WITH YOU THROUGHOUT YOUR CAREER?

All of these have come from Shauna, Founder of Best Kept Self. She has taught me so much over the past 5 years and I couldn’t be more grateful. 

1. To own it. Specifically, my bold personality and southern accent and not try to tone it down. 

2. Know your worth and value. 

3. Your boss doesn’t always know best or have all the answers. Never be afraid to speak up if something needs to be changed or to bring new ideas to the table. 

BIGGEST MISTAKE?

The biggest mistake I have made was not leaving a job I absolutely hated sooner. After you leave a place that is holding you back and only putting stress and negativity in your life, your world changes for the better instantly. I wish I would have made the jump years before I did. 

 

CONNECT WITH MEGAN ON TWITTER, INSTAGRAM, OR PINTEREST!

Best Kept Self RX Subscription Box Has Arrived!

 
BKSBox
 

I don't think the excitement of letters or boxes in the mail for YOU really ever goes away. (Ok, minus the bills!) Subscription boxes seem to be available from all different types of companies, but when Best Kept Self announced they were opening the RX Box with their team's picks in each one, I knew it would be amazing.  

Their newest box is completely jam-packed with goodies!

1.  Fashion Emergency Kit with 14 essentials to keep you put together (literally!) during your day. You never know when you might need this! (Picked by Megan, BKS Personal Stylist)

2 & 3. Dry Brushing Kit to keep your body smooth and the list of benefits seems endless! Exfoliation, softer and tighter skin, reduces cellulite, boosts circulation, and MORE! (Picked by Jessie, BKS Health Coach)

4. Deep Steep Bubble Bath to rejuvenate you after a long day. This smells like heaven and I noticed on the bottle it says "our bubbles + you = queen for a day" --> well, I'm SOLD! Bring on the bubbles! (Picked by Kristin, BKS Beauty Expert)

5. Argan oil has been a recent favorite of mine. I love that this has been included because I feel like I can't be without this product ever again. Use it directly on your skin, add it to moisturizer, or even in your hair. (Picked by Shauna, BKS Founder)

6. Powerocks Super Magicstick charger will keep me powered up and ready to go even after a busy day. These portable chargers are excellent to pop in your bag or car to have handy for those moments where you notice your cell phone battery is about to check out for the day. (Picked by Margaret, BKS Career Coach)

The last item in the box was my favorite though.... a letter of gratitude. This letter was for me, but it also included another letter for me to copy and send to three other people to show my gratitude towards THEM. "Gratitude works because it's shared" I'm excited to share this with other amazing women and remind them how special they are in my life. 

The Best Kept Self team does it yet again... Taking the idea of a subscription box and bringing it to a completely different level. With items from each of their team members, it shows their commitment to sharing their favorite products that keep them feeling like their "best kept selves".  Can't wait to try all of these products! I'll have to come back and update this blog with my findings!

Leading Ladies - Shauna Mackenzie

ShaunaMackenzie

I'm excited to start my "Leading Ladies" series featuring some of the amazing women who have been friends, mentors, and an amazing support system for me! First up is Shauna Mackenzie, founder of Best Kept Self. Get ready to be inspired by Shauna's start, her work ethic, and overall outlook on business and life.  

How did you get your start?

I started my first business when I was 22 while working in my first full-time job post college. It began by first reaching out to those in my industry to get on the phone with anyone and everyone who would talk to me. Through the help of friends and family, I got my first few clients from simply having a website and existing. If only everything could be that easy!  I worked both my full-time job and my business at the same time for about six months before my full time position was terminated due to lack of funds. It was then that I made the decision to go full-fledge with my company and NOT take another job or even a part-time job because I knew, in order to make it work, I had to dedicate my all to it. It was both the hardest and the easiest thing I ever had to do. 

What risks did you take?

I addressed one in my previous answers (taking the leap to go all in) but there are others :)  I think an ongoing risk that I take regularly is spending the money to make money in my business. Sometimes that can be a hard pill to swallow but knowing when the right times to 'spend it to make it' are at play are significant to my success, but not without a huge amount of risk (and energy).  Also, not a risk that's often addressed but any new entrepreneur faces, including myself in the beginning of any product/biz launch is just announcing it to the world. Making it public can be incredibly scary because it stirs up the most conflicting emotions. You're scared but excited; confident but totally insecure; ready to spread the word but ready to crawl in a dark hole. Just managing those emotions is a risk in and of itself sometimes!

What is something that scares you?

Being so in my own world that I'm not able to see what I need to do or want to do in the best way clearly. Meaning, I never want to be so close to something that I'm missing opportunities to receive input from those around me that may know better, have incredible insight to share, or who can see it form an angle that I'm totally missing. I just never want to stop learning, connecting with others, and seeking feedback. Taking the initiative seek feedback (good and bad) and more importantly - using it appropriately -  is what I believe distinguishes those who are successful from those who aren't. 

Looking back on your career, what was a major turning point for you?

Hiring my first employee. It just completely took things to another level. Having someone involved in your business to hold you accountable, to become more structured, and  to take things off your plate among many other things is an incredible feeling. It really has pushed me to think bigger and do bigger. 

What are three pieces of advice you’ve received that you’ve carried with you throughout your career?

Simple and well known but impactful tidbits I implement every. single. day.

Think bigger. Underpromise and overdeliver. Keep it simple. 

Biggest Mistake? 

Not thinking bigger from the very beginning. Sometimes I think, 'why was I seemingly waiting for permission to think bigger? I had the ability to do it from day one.'