How This PR Maven Landed Her Dream Job with a Buzzy Beauty Brand
Photo courtesy of Meaghan Curcio
It's no secret that we're fans of clean cosmetics and skincare brand Beautycounter because of their safe, non-toxic yet cutting-edge products for ourselves as well as the entire family, so we can't blame VP of Public Relations Meaghan Curcio for putting all her efforts into the company the moment she first got the chance. The Easton, Massachusetts native had cultivated her skills in the business working with established fashion brands like J.Crew and Madewell before jumping on board with the budding beauty business and she hasn't looked back since.
The fact that she's working solely with one brand she's completely passionate about means Curcio is especially invested. Recently, her job description has included heading to Washington D.C. to lobby for stricter safety standards in the cosmetics industry, a cause Beautycounter is fully committed to. And when she's not lobbying on Capital Hill and working her butt off as a public relations expert, the wife and mother of two is spending quality time with her family in Los Angeles. This made us curious about the ways such a busy, successful woman practices self care (besides slathering herself in Beautycounter's bounty of goodies, of course), so we caught up with her to get her response to that question, as well as to learn more about what led her to her dream job, and what advice she'd give to anyone launching a brand.
Photo courtesy of Chelsea Prestin
How did you first get your start in the PR world?
Well first of all, if you know me, you know I love to talk, and I love to meet people. So I knew I wanted to be in the business of people — whatever that looked like. I have a degree in English and Creative Writing so I thought I wanted to work in magazines. I moved to NYC straight out of college and into an unpaid internship (when they still did that!) at Harper’s Bazaar where I first learned the meaning of hustle, grind, and hard, (extremely) long hours. I went from an intern to (briefly) assisting the accessories department.
While there I would answer calls from all sorts of designers — big names, small names and everything in between. But the ones that always stood out to me were the calls I would get from young designers, women who were just getting their start. I would spend so much time on the phone listening to their stories and accepting their samples — knowing if I could just get them in front of my editor that I could potentially make such an impact in their life. I decided then that instead of being an editor, I wanted to help young designers tell their stories and connect them to the people at magazines. I wanted to help them tell their stories and help editors fall in love with their products as much as I did. From there I went to a PR agency where I worked on over 15 different brands, then I went to J.Crew during a very exciting time at the brand. Madewell had just launched a month before and one of my first projects was opening the third Madewell store. Working for these brands I learned so much and had such incredible mentors who taught me so much.
And how did you connect to Beautycounter?
After my husband Tim and I moved to LA, my former boss connected me with her friend, Gregg Renfrew, who was about to launch an exciting new beauty brand. I jumped at the chance the second I met Gregg and heard about Beautycounter.
What makes you most excited about working with such a buzzworthy company?
The day I met Gregg and learned about the vision she had for the Beautycounter, I never looked back. Beautycounter is more than a beauty brand: it’s a movement for better beauty that I feel so proud to be a part of. This job has pushed me to limits I never thought possible and I have learned so much about myself. I have done everything from pitch the science behind patented innovation in skincare to working with Christy Coleman on why our lipsticks rock, to having the honor of pitching Gregg’s story and this incredible brand, to lobbying on Capitol Hill as we fight for stricter safety laws in the beauty industry (which have not been updated since 1938!).
The work we are doing is important, and it’s hard, but it gets me out of bed every morning knowing we’ve having an impact on people’s lives. How incredible will it be to know that when we finally pass cosmetic reform in this country for the first time in over 80 years, that the work we all did at Beautycounter had a significant impact on it getting passed? That gives me chills.
What's your "desert island" product?
Our Dew Skin Moisturizing Coverage: it’s perfectly dewy in texture and effect, and has an SPF 20 in it. I wear it every day and feel naked without it! I can’t have just one though; the other is our Countermatch Adaptive Moisture Lotion. It’s a game changer.
Photo courtesy of LA Kids Photography
Besides fab skincare products, what are some other ways you practice self care as a busy working mom?
It’s so hard to find time for yourself but it’s so incredibly important. My release from everything – work, stress, kids, etc., is to dance. I started doing Body By Simone a few years after my friend convinced me to go and am so obsessed. I try to go three or four times a week. When I can, I also try to incorporate a session with my absolute favorite trainer in LA, Erica Hood, who just launched her own brand HoodFit. You’ve never met someone more positive or encouraging than her, I highly suggest you check her out. And lastly would be finding time to connect and laugh with friends over a glass of rosé.
What's the hottest tip you can give about promoting a brand (for all the entrepreneurial mamas out here reading this)?
A personal touch to a pitch to someone is the best way to go. Do your research on their writing, their magazine, their blog. Find out what they’ve already written about so you’re not pitching the same thing they just covered. The one thing I hate to do are send email blasts; they’re so impersonal and obvious. When you’re writing that email, write it to that specific person and for that person and their outlet, no one else. It’s definitely more time consuming, but I honestly think it’s the only way to go.