These days, developing your personal brand can easily become a well-paying, full-time gig and thanks to the internet, women can literally be whoever TF they want and actually get paid for it. While navigating the world of bloggers and influencers and PR (oh my) can be overwhelming, one self-made CEO is here to make the industry a little bit more accessible.
When life gives most people lemons, they make lemonade. But when God gave Taylar Barrington-Booker lemons, she built a lemonade stand and founded her very first business. Years later, the 31-year-old entrepreneur created Cliquish, a community of over 10,000 content creators that is dedicated to showing other women how to do the same thing.
Courtesy of Taylar Barrington-Booker
According to Taylar, the Cliquish community was developed out of a desire to eliminate the "you can't sit with us" stigma amongst women in business and is on a mission to create room at the table for everyone. Taylar told xoNecole, "I personally believe unhealthy competition comes from a misinformed concept that there is a lack, or not enough to go around; that collaboration means you have to share something that's not infinite, and that competing means it's you against someone else for a handful of spots."
The founder shared that this way of thinking incorrect AF and, in fact, emphasized the importance of having a strong group of fellow business owners in your corner that can support you along the way. She continued, "In most cases, the resources are infinite (even underutilized) and there's room for everyone to have upward mobility towards their dreams."
If you're looking to level up your brand and get into the influencer game but don't know where to start, scroll down for more info!
Find Your Niche
Courtesy of Taylar Barrington.
Nobody on this earth can do you, like you, and that's why Taylar says it's important to find your niche and commit to it. She shared, "The biggest mistake new content creators make is that they're afraid to niche down. Studies have shown that when you're talking to everyone, you're talking to no one and as a result, your message gets lost."
Thriving in an oversaturated market may be difficult, but that doesn't make it impossible. Taylar says that zeroing in on the message that you want to send isn't only a plus for your customer, but can also help you grow a loyal audience organically. "It's important, that on the big vast internet where billions of messages are being served, we be intentional about who we want to talk to. You'll know you're doing it right because when they show up to your corner of the web, they feel at home:"
When defining your niche, Taylar says that the more specific you are, the better. " [For example,] instead of focusing on skincare, focus on skincare for an audience segment like women of color with dry skin, or skincare through a content channel like DIY videos."
Along with finding your niche and understanding your audience, Taylar says that it's also important to create a consistent strategy that yield high-quality results. She continued, "In a world full of microwave dinners, be a good slow-cooked, well-marinated meal. People just can't resist quality. Find a consistent strategy for creating quality content, and show up with excellence every time."
"In a world full of microwave dinners, be a good slow-cooked, well-marinated meal. People just can't resist quality. Find a consistent strategy for creating quality content, and show up with excellence every time."
Know Your Why
Courtesy of Taylar Barrington.
No business or personal brand is picture-perfect, and this is especially true if there was no vision to begin with. Taylar says that one major misstep entrepreneurs make when developing their brand is forgetting to lay down a solid foundation.
She advised, "Identify what you plan to do with your platform, who exactly you plan to do it for, and how you plan to do it. These very foundational steps are often overlooked but are important in deciding your audience, niche and content purpose."
Once you understand why you're doing it, you need to understand why people should actually care. According to Taylar, solidifying a brand promise and creating a way to measure results is a sure way to level up more than just your follower count. She explained, "It's very easy to allow the Internet to tempt you to be someone other than you, but regardless of how easy it seems to do something that will help you build numbers, you have to have an unwavering commitment to simply being you. What's most important, is showing up the way that makes you feel good and true - focusing on the impact. The steady, dependable, numbers will follow."
"It's very easy to allow the Internet to tempt you to be someone other than you, but regardless of how easy it seems to do something that will help you build numbers, you have to have an unwavering commitment to simply being you."
She continued, "Change your mindset to measure success on impact. Can you motivate people to take action? To engage with your content? Once they do show up, be focused on the people who you are already serving, and serve them really, really well. It's not about numbers, it's about the influence."
Network Your Ass Off
Courtesy of Taylar Barrington.
Any healthy relationship needs a certain level of reciprocity, and Taylar says that when you're developing new business connections, it's important to think more about what you can give than what you can take. Creating long-term business relationships might be easier than you think, but Taylar challenges us to do more than make a connection. According to her, the goal is to create a community.
During our talk, Taylar also stressed the importance of being selective with your network. Every business opportunity that looks good isn't necessarily good for you, and this is important to keep in mind when meeting new people in your industry.
"Finally, I'd say be clear about what you need/want. Everything that glitters isn't your gold and every opportunity, isn't an opportunity for you." She continued, "This means you have to get really honest with yourself about your immediate next steps and create a networking strategy that aligns."
To learn more about Cliquish and join the movement, click here! And you can keep up with Taylar on Instagram @TaylarBarrington.
Featured image courtesy of Taylar Barrington.
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Taylor "Pretty" Honore is a spiritually centered and equally provocative rapper from Baton Rouge, Louisiana with a love for people and storytelling. You can probably find me planting herbs in your local community garden, blasting "Back That Thang Up" from my mini speaker. Let's get to know each other: @prettyhonore.
This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
If there’s one thing that every anxious baddie out there needs, it’s a hug and something comforting to ease their minds. That could come in the form of a warm embrace from a significant other or something inanimate yet reliable, like a blanket.
With the fall season finally upon us, the signals in our brains are telling us to curl up and get cozy by any means necessary. But on the flip side, shorter days and less sunlight are simultaneously telling us to brace ourselves for the impact of seasonal depression before it hits. With all factors considered, there’s no better time than now to prep your cozy-girl season survival pack with one at-home companion that will never leave your side; it's a weighted blanket.
Consider a weighted cover to be your therapeutic hug in blanket form. Filled with materials such as glass beads, plastic pellets, or metal chains to make them heavier than regular blankets — ranging from 5 lbs to 30 lbs — these blankets are designed to provide gentle and even pressure to the body for a calming and soothing effect.
The concept behind weighted blankets is based on deep touch pressure (DTP) stimulation, which is thought to release neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, promoting relaxation and reducing stress and anxiety, providing a sense of security and comfort.
Having a weighted blanket alongside you through the chillier months can give you a comforting touch when you’re feeling the effects of touch deprivation or just need to relax after a stressful, anxiety-inducing day.
Take this as your sign to surrender to the soothing, comforting sensation of a weighted blanket, and add one of the below to your cart while you’re at it.
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Featured image by JulPo/Getty Images