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Creating cult products & Sophia Amoruso as your mentor, with Chillhouse Founder Cyndi Ramirez-Fulton

Joining me on today’s episode is Cyndi Ramirez-Fulton, Founder of Chillhouse.

Chillhouse is an experiential flagship in Soho which offers a suite of spa services and in addition to their physical space, they have a line of products ranging from press-on chill tips to candles and Chill Wear. The Chill Times is the media arm of Chillhouse that covers beauty, health, fitness, and wellness topics.

Born and raised in New York City, Cyndi has been dubbed “The Queen of Chill” through her creation of Chillhouse. The idea was sparked when she and her husband realised the city didn’t offer something that was aspirational and affordable, and their desire to create a place with something for everyone led to the creation of Chillhouse -- which is now the authority of modern self-care.

In this episode we’re talking through bringing this vision into reality, how a cult product can be used as a major discovery tool and how the ultimate Girlboss of entrepreneurs got involved with Chillhouse in the beginning, getting Cyndi to think and dream bigger.

Please note, this transcript has been copy pasted without the lovely touch of a human editor. Please expect some typos!

Sure, yeah, I'm Cindy Ramirez Fulton, I'm the founder and CEO of a company called Chillhouse, and we are the party of modern self care. What that means is we have a basically a 360 outlook on giving people ways to practice self care regularly. So we have a physical space in Manhattan's Soho area, our flagship location. And out of that space, we do a large suite of services ranging from manicures, massages to facials. And we have a wellness cafe and we also have an infrared room. And additionally, we also have products. So you can kind of visit our website or Tollhouse Dotcom and either Shop Tollhouse products or third party products that can basically just bring you from feeling like to feeling really good. So it's really just about creating experiences, products and content that make people feel good on the regular until, gosh, so needed at this time in the world.

And what's going on. And my God, I cannot wait to get a massage and a money and a petty when things go back to normal. Holy moly. Let's go back to life before house. What was sparking that idea in you to bring this vision around attainable self care and modern self care to life?

The story is one of those like, oh my God, I need this sort of stories, but I guess kind of back it up even further. And my mom's in esthetician. So I think subconsciously I always kind of knew I was ingrained in the space. I was. I grew up watching my mom sort of run her medi spa and she was more focused on maintenance and upkeep and that obviously, as a young woman, I didn't really, like, find that appealing to me because I was like, OK, I don't really need stuff for cellulite. I don't really need stuff for, like anti aging. These are services. And so I think in some way, shape or form, I was watching her. I was also shaping forming my own opinions on what I wanted. Fast forward, obviously, many, many years later, my husband and I were trying to get massages in Manhattan and kind of one day just hit us that we didn't love what our options were at the time. It was, you know, even now, aside from Hillhouse, your options were either you spend kind of like an obscene amount of money for a 60 minute massage or you ended up somewhere kind of weird, sketchy in like a basement with you don't know who you're going to get, what kind of therapist you're going to get and, you know, at a very, very cheap price point.

And that didn't really sit well with us either. So we were kind of just realize that there was something missing somewhere in the middle where I didn't feel guilty getting a massage in either capacity. And then we kind of talked a little bit more, just developing the concept a bit more, because I like doing a little bit more than one thing. I'm not one to do just one single service. I was like, I don't massages. And what I want to do ultimately is like the only thing Hillhouse does, like what else can we bring to the table, what else is missing? And, you know, as someone that practice self care in a way regularly, but like I wanted more like experience, base place to go, like manicures or one of those things that I got weekly, I mean, my manicure is terrible right now. I've been I've been putting my tips on and off, so I don't have anything going on right now. But yeah. So Banneker's are one of those things that I wanted to that I got regularly and I never found a place that had fun experience attached to it. You know, it was very much like, here you go, go get your nails done. If it was a high end place, maybe I would get a TI offer to me or champagne offered to me.

But it was it. There was nothing further than that. So we realize it dawns on us that there was a hospitality element to any of these stores or salons as well. So we started basically putting all of these things together, all these things that we love together, which is beverages and for me, manicures and the massages. And so the first location was those three things. It was cafe manicures, massages, and then we just evolved the brand from there. I think what we realized is that people were just really excited to see what we came up with and what we were able to offer them from an experience standpoint, but also from like a digital standpoint, because there were people that just were really gravitating to the brand just because of what we represented. Right. We were fun. I mean, we are fun. We don't take ourselves too seriously. We talk about self care from a very holistic standpoint, where it's not just about how do you spend all your money towards services. It's it's more so about just how do you make sure you're thinking about yourself regularly. And here are all the ways that we can help you achieve that goal. And yeah, so it has evolved obviously way past those three things. And the concept is so funny how it.

Started there, but really now is like taking on a life of its own totally, I can really see that as well and all the things you're coming out with and just the whole vibe around it, it's so amazing. I really love the chill times and the kind of content that you're publishing online for people who are on the other side of the world that love the brand and follow you on Instagram and then like, cool, I want to read about this stuff, too. Right.

And I want to talk about your branding for a hot second, because obviously it is such a special part of what you're doing with the business and especially, you know, from what I can see about the space and when you step into the space, it's just so incredible. How did you approach the look and feel for the space? And was it like that from the very beginning or has that evolved to.

I see the look and feel definitely has evolved, the first location feels totally different than the second one, but I think the brand as a whole has stayed pretty consistent as far as how I envisioned it. I think the first space wasn't fully representative of what the brand like could be, which is why now we were like very excited about the flagship. I feel like it's like, ah, we've grown into it. When people come to New York City, they go to Chill House and it's like, oh, this feels like it matches the Instagram versus the other one. It was like people are like it's so small or like it it really is ismy like this on this block, you know, it was the perception wasn't fully aligned. So I'd say the flagship definitely is very much representative of the whole brand. But as far as the look and feel, I mean, I definitely had a vision for how I wanted it to look from like a branding standpoint. But then also how to tie the decor in simultaneously was definitely like kind of tricky. And I've never this was my first time ever doing that. So a lot of it was just mud boarding, you know, looking at different types of brands ranging from food brands to fashion brands, the beauty brands, and kind of honing in on our own brand identity from a logo color, all that standpoint. And then the design. It was kind of like we started working with our architect, who also was our interior designer, and telling him, hey, this is what we have going on from a branding perspective.

How do we align this with the store? So that was a really fun process. But I will say that I was much more hands on in the design of the second one. So actually being able to, like, source the furniture, we really wanted to have final say on the color of the tables of the material of the surfaces, all that, you know, that was very important to me, whereas the first time I it was my first go ahead. And so I just didn't want to step on his toes. I kind of wanted to let the expert sort of lead the way. And then this time around, I was like, no, I know my brand more than anybody else. I need to make sure that I have final say over every single element that happens in the space. So it takes some time. I will say, even like the first time, if you're not really savvy when it comes to interior design and an even branding, it's hard to match it up to the point where it's perfect. It would really take some time if you're not well versed in it. And I was not well versed in it totally. But, you know, as time goes on, you just realize, OK, I know my brand inside and out. Let's go. I got this one.

It must have been a pretty thrilling moment to see that actually come to life, you know, from when you mood boarding and coming up with your thoughts and how you wanted it to look and feel for that flagship store and then actually unveiling this thing and walking in and being like, holy shit, I did this. You know, this is crazy.

It was a wild day. Yeah. We did a whole ribbon cutting for our launch party and a full on. I did like a little speech and I fell on like burst into tears. I was like I never thought I would be that perseverate. Gosh, it is wild when you I mean, it was it's one store into a lot of big companies. It's like one store is like whatever, because they are used to doing this volume of real estate transactions and store openings. But for us it was like the main thing that was going to solidify us as a company. And it was a big moment. I mean, it was it was a long time. It was in the works for a very long time. Like the build out wasn't as long maybe as you would think, but the actual process of so we were reached out to by the landlords and then they were kind of trying to like entice us to come to actually, you know, take the risk and enter their their space. And that took a lot of convincing, I'd say, for us to actually go for it. And it took a long time to fundraise for it. So it was just a lot of anticipation, I'd say. And then, of course, about a little under a year of building as well. So. Wow.

And then here we are and then here we are. That's crazy.

On the topic of fundraising, I always love to ask how a business was financing in the very beginning. So when you were first, you know, coming up with the idea, you and Adam are like, yeah, this is this place that we want to bring to life.

What was the process in terms of like savings loans or financing from the very beginning? Investment, rather?

Yeah, the process is pretty much getting to work from a research standpoint, putting together a business plan simultaneously. We were doing a lot of real estate scouting at the same time. We were also doing a lot of research into competitors, I guess, even though we don't have like direct competitors, but like understanding the nail industry, understanding the Bosarge and spy industry and even the cafe industry. So getting a better sense for what our margins are going to be. And, of course, putting together your financials based on that and. Coming up with pricing and all that, and then based on where you end up with all that, you kind of put your deck together and get to work. So we've only really have done friends and family and angels up until this day. We've raised about a million total. But that's really just to power the stores. So X amount for flagship, X amount for the location. The rest of the business has been pretty much bootstrapped. So that's something I'm pretty proud of, of course, because we haven't raised institutional capital yet. I think there's a different there are different expectations with your business when when you do that. And I'm not saying we're not going to do it. It's just it's kind of cool to have gotten this far without it.

But we did have a fair amount of friends and family that have invested in Adams bars prior to opening up till house. So we went out to them first, of course, as people that we knew that were interested in doing smaller investments. And to be honest, I mean, it's mostly just a lot of people that were very good friends with our inner immediate like know network that have given anywhere from 10 to 50 grand. And, you know, it may sound like a lot to some, but, you know, I think you'd be surprised how many people are just ready to to make these smaller investments. And so it was really interesting when I kind of realized that I went out to a few friends and people were like, oh, yeah, of course I would invest in you like, oh, music. OK, so I never thought that I had friends that had that kind of money, like just sitting around in the bank. But as soon as you started talking about it, you'd be surprised how many people are actually really interested and almost like flattered. I'd say that you consider them or ask them. Right. So that's how we fundraise for the most part.

And then, of course, it's extended past our network. We've asked people if they know anybody that would be like a good fit from an advisory type standpoint. So we brought on a lot of really amazing founders, entrepreneurs that have done similar sort of not similar businesses, but have been down this road before. You know, that can kind of help us guide us in the right direction. So we just that we have a credible group of investors. And I feel like for US loans, we never really went down that road. And I do feel like doing friends and family, at least for me sort of you have a built in community that already supports you and is there for you and that you can bounce ideas back and forth with. Right. So I think that for us was super helpful versus having going to a bank and being like, give us a million dollars and you won't hear from us until we're ready to pay you back, you know? So that's not something to me that excites me. I like the collaboration aspect of having people that I can call partners, you know, totally. So that's pretty much that was it. And so a lot of people, they just they went for it.

I love that. And it also further kind of like builds this notion of this community that you've been building. Your whole brand is built on community and bringing people into the spaces that you're also doing that within your own community, which is a really nice way to think about it. I read that one of your mentors in the beginning was Sophia Amaru's. So is she someone that you're talking about as one of the founders who was helping you in the beginning? Yes. Would you be able to tell a little bit about how that came about and how she was able to help you?

My God, that's such a crazy story. I feel like she probably thinks I'm such a psycho any time I share this story, because I was always a huge fan of hers. I was a nasty gal shopper when I was younger, in my early 20s, and she was like an entrepreneur I could actually relate to. You know, she didn't have a fancy pedigree, college education or anything like that. It was more so that she just kind of went went with her gut, with her intuition, and she just worked her ass off. And she was unapologetic about her personality. She was unapologetic about her leadership style. I just love that she was super raw. And I anyway, so I followed her for so long. And at one point prior to launching Telehouse, I ended up on a trip for her girl boss Netflix, I guess, promotional. It was a promotional trip that influencers and media were invited to. So I luckily my friend Alyssa Casaroli, she she couldn't go and she's like, I put you up for it. Would you want to go? And I'm like, you have way more followers.

I'm sure if they want me, I'll happily go. I'm obsessed with Sophia. And then there was also this like Chelsea Handler episode that she was going to be on. So I get to meet Chelsea. It was unreal, as obsessed with both women, of course. So off I go and I get to interview her and everything. So but I'm amongst like 50 girls or something and saying that she had to meet that day and then fast forward like a year and a half later. And I've noticed that, like, it was a crazy year. When we opened up HILLHOUSE, we had an influx of followers that range from celebrities to founders and entrepreneurs that I really admired. So it was definitely like a very wild time in my life where I was like, wow, there's so much attention happening. I don't know I don't know how to feel about all this, but cool, like, very flattered. So I didn't notice at one point that she followed me and she followed Hillhouse and I was like, whoa, big stuff.

Big stuff like this is cool. She follows me back.

This is so cool. I have the attention of my favorite entrepreneur of all time and then I'll never forget this. At one point it was just a random day. We had a party that canceled last minute at Hillhouse and this is like back when maybe we're still figuring things out. We didn't have her credit card on file, whatever. It was sloppy. We didn't have a system for when people canceled last minute, you know, these sort of parties last minute. And it was it was a lot of money that we had lost because she decided to cancel last minute and there were no repercussions. And I just took to Instagram. Instagram, I'm sorry. It was like early Instagram, Saugerties. And I started complaining about the situation. I was like, please, like, if you ever find yourself, like, wanting to cancel, like, please consider the business. It's like so disrespectful to do this last minute, blah, blah, blah. And it's not like me to complain about customers anymore. But in the beginning I was very sassy because I was dealing with so much, you know, and I'm still dealing with so much. But luckily now I have people that deal with their own individual customer service concerns. Right. I have a lot of people that it gets to them first. But in the beginning, it was coming to me first and I was like, oh, so yeah, she was like DM's me as I'm complaining, she's like, I love what you're doing.

Let's talk. I'm like, of course you do me when I'm like complaining about customers that such as Sophea thing to do. And now it's amazing that I was like, OK, I must be doing something right. Like this is, you know, part of being an entrepreneur is being vulnerable and sharing these sides of what happens on a regular basis. And anyway, so she really took a liking to that, I guess, and Demi decided to Demi in that moment. And that's kind of when I feel like a lot of things change for us. We really we realized that we were more than that little store, that we had the opportunity to really take things to the next level. We had the attention of some really notable people. And, yeah, she she came on board, ended up flying to L.A. and went to her house and chatted with her. And she became an advisor, an investor shortly after that. So and then, yeah, we've had you know, that's just having her to bounce ideas off of has been incredible. So she's one of the few like really bad badass entrepreneurs that we have. And it was a wild story. And I was like, what is happening?

That is going to be the coolest thing ever. That is like the ultimate fan girl moment for an entrepreneur in today's world. Obviously, having followed her like her career and everything, that's just so cool. Congratulations. Wow.

Absolutely. Thank you. Yeah, it was a really crazy moment for me. I just never knew that I would manifest that. I love that fear. Very bizarre. And she doesn't reach out to I mean, she's very supportive of female businesses and all that, of course. I mean, she's made a whole career out of it. But we were her first adviser role and her first investment, I think. Oh, wow. Which was crazy.

Yeah, that is really interesting. That's so. Yeah, I want to switch gears and talk now about your marketing and the launch, especially in those early days when you were just getting started and you needed to spread that word and put in that grassroots hustle, I guess. And I'm sure you still do it today.

But you know that early time when things are up in the air, how did you launch and how were you putting the word out there?

Our launch strategy was to be a little, I guess, secretive in the beginning because we were doing something completely unique and we didn't want to kind of come out and say exactly what we were doing. We wanted to keep things a bit of a mystery to keep people on our toes. So, yeah, I formed an Instagram. Maybe I don't want to say like six months prior to actually launching. And it was just a really pretty feed of things that symbolized self care, that gave people a good idea of what our brand was going to be. I started asking people to follow and it just kind of quickly gained a little bit of speed. We ended up with about, I want to say, seven or eight thousand followers prior to even opening up our doors. And then by the time we opened up our doors, people were like ready to come in. So we were teasing it out. And and I think giving people a little bit of a little bit of a tease into what we were doing. And then I think by the time we opened, they were just like, wow, this is cool, you know, because they were obviously we don't want to let them down, like, we only do this and you can't come or you have.

It's not that exciting. People were very excited. We also had a PR team that I think did a really exceptional job for our launch. We ended up on all the major New York outlets and all of our favorite beauty outlets. And I think that definitely, certainly helped. And then, you know, of course, I definitely relied on a lot of my digital influencer friends to come by, share the space and get services and get the word out so that I think that little that hybrid definitely got us to that next step. And yeah, I mean, New Yorkers are I mean, prior to the pandemic, I mean, even now we're so curious and we love experience more than anything. Right. That's why we live here. We don't live here to sit in our homes all day. So I think if there's something cool that's like visual and a place where you can go take care of yourself and drink a delicious drink, that's also pretty and go get a massage or feel good afterwards, like, of course, people are going to show up. So it was really the concept, I feel like more than anything that sold itself at the end of the day. But of course, the hybrid of marketing sort of that whole mix certainly got the word out.


And how is that kind of evolved given covid and last year and this year being so weird. What's working for you now when it comes to acquiring new people, especially for online? I know that you guys are doing a really big push with your tips, which is just the coolest things absolutely.

Ever. How's all that working and what's kind of driving the growth for you these days?

Good question. It's definitely a new playing field for me, being more on the digital side of things, you know, because we have the one location in New York City and a lot of people already know us. So we have that. We have a membership. So we have members that come in monthly for their services.

And we also have people that just come in and get there like bi monthly massages or facials or whatever it is that they enjoy coming to get at house. But even that, we run some ads on Instagram and Facebook just to make sure we're reminding people that were there and obviously acquiring new people that may be new to New York City or just don't know us because they hadn't you know, we haven't made there our name hasn't made their way to their circle.

There's a little bit of that going on for tips. The biggest thing for us has been digital ads. I'd say just because you do hit a wall sometimes when it's just you're talking to just your own customer. So you need to think about that next step, right. How do I acquire new customers? How do I make sure I'm not just kind of like sitting with the people that already know us? So that's been a big part of our growth, I'd say. And continuing to gift. Luckily, we have a very visual product and people. Even we don't we send things out without any expectations for the most part, but just like everyone obviously knows or said you a gift, we hope that you can share it on social. A lot of times girls just like end up with the tips on their hands and they talk a lot into the camera and they're doing this. And then it's like word of mouth. And so we have a lot of that happening, too, which is quite cool because that's something that there are no limits, I think, with products, which is what's really exciting. You know, you can create something and then you never know where it's going to take you. I mean, like, who knows? Or tips could be picked up in some retail or in Japan one day or Europe, you know, it's there are no limits. So that's been really fun.

And yeah. And we're now carried in Urban Outfitters. We were in Nordstrom. We have a few retailers we're in talks with. Don't want to talk about it too much, but our biggest one is urban. And so we're going to be in stores across the country and in the US. That's so cool. Hopefully one day in London, in Europe. I would love to see that. So that also opens up new doors for people that just have never heard of you before. And they're like, what's Hillhouse? They make cool tips. And let me check out their website. You know, it's this new level of discovery that is so new to us just because we've always been the brand that it's just like come to us, come to us. It's just Hillhouse, you know, and we have other things that we have other products from other brands that we we carry and we promote. But it was always about the tollhouse experience. And now that we are actually entering other doors, it's about hopefully us entering now their lives and then now they become customers. We acquire a new customer for life because they love their tips and then they become fans and they maybe shop other things down the road, whether that's through urban or that's through us directly. So that's a new level of discovery that I've actually never really embarked on, which is really fun.

Totally. And it's really that it's that cult item. It's something that, you know, it's so social media focused. It's that thing that brings people from all over the world to be interested. And then the day they're in New York, they're like, well, obviously I've got to go to Stillhouse.

Exactly. Yeah, nailed it.

Oh, I love that. That's so cool.

When you look back on your you know, the success that you've had over the last few years building this brand, what do you attribute that success to?

So just being a very authentic, honest brand and hopefully founder to but I think the biggest thing has been just, again, sort of our transparency and just our voice overall. Our voice is very lighthearted. Again, we don't take ourselves too seriously, but we're there for you. We're kind of like I love how you described your podcast is kind of like top level for us is talking to your big sister, I think. Or like we're like your big sister. We're there for you or we're going to keep it real and we're going to tell you what it is. But we also would give you a big hug at the end sort of thing, similar to what you were saying. Like, you just meet at a bar and you're talking to like someone that just happens to know it. Like, I love that it's very similar in that sense. So I think our voice, in addition to our visuals and like what we represent and our services and the staff, the team, the people behind the brand, I think also continues to transcend past what we actually do. So that is the big sort of differentiator, I'd say, between Hillhouse and any other sort of self care brand out there.

And something that we're seeing now, a lot more like a lot of brands are really starting to embrace this type of identity. And I feel like we were definitely one of the first in our space at least. So I think it's it's mostly it's that, you know, it's definitely that. And then, of course, it's the people that our customers interact with are our staff, the service providers. They form like actual relationships with these these individuals. And they are so loyal to them, you know, to the point where we've definitely had people that have left and then we've have customers that have either left with them or just are like, I was so loyal to this, you know, to this individual. So I may not be coming back. And obviously, we want to make sure that everyone does come back and kind of loves the brand even without a person being associated to it. But it's been a huge part of our growth, too. I'd say just that that loyalty to either individuals behind the company or the actual brand and what it represents as well.

I love that that's such a cool thing to have and to know that people are so connected to what you're doing. And it's not just the beauty salon that doesn't have a name kind of thing, right? Exactly. Wow. Well, thinking about today, where the brand is and what's for the future, can you shout about some cool things that are going on right now that people should know about?

Well, we have a lot of really exciting launches in the pipeline, one coming in March, a big one, I'd say face somebody related. So I know we launched last year our presence and those are going really well. You'll obviously continue to see new designs, but now it's time to kind of embark on some new categories. So face and body, as you know, we do massages and we do facials. So we'll start playing around with products in those categories and really trying to help people if they can't make it to Hillhouse, recreate some of these experiences at home in some way. So I'll just kind of leave it at that. But that's really our entire mission is giving people more ways to bring little home, you know, even like from clothes that we create to the candles. We you know, we're always kind of testing out new candle options and obviously now like our bigger sort of formulated products. But I'd say there are a good amount of formulative products in the works this year. So you'll see a lot of really fun, nerdy new cool stuff from Tollhouse.

Oh, I'm very excited. I will be obviously keeping my eyes peeled and cheering for you on the sidelines. Thank you.

What advice do you have for women who have a big idea and want to launch their own business?

I would say stop second guessing yourself, the biggest differentiator I find between men and women is that men just do and women talk a lot about their ideas and try to get feedback and try to get advice and all that and all of that's good. I'm not saying that's a bad thing, but men just do they don't ask questions. They just go for it. And I think I want to see more women just having that sort of innate reaction when it comes to something that they think about. If it feels like a brilliant idea to you, then it should be a brilliant idea to everyone, because, I mean, you know what's needed, right? You know, if it's something that you actually need, there are probably millions of people out there that probably need to unless it's something so friggin specific. That may not make sense, of course. But, you know, I think for the most part, we're all smart enough to know what's actually missing and what's what's not and what would actually sell and what would it. So that's my biggest thing. I find that so many women to second guess themselves a lot. And I just wish that we just trusted or got more. So the biggest, I guess, feedback or the biggest advice would be just trust your gut. And as far as it you think it could take you and I think there are many specific things that we have to be like. I can't trust my gut here. I actually have to seek out an expert. And knowing how to differentiate those two is very key to making those moves and moving forward with that next step for sure.

Yeah, that's a good one. Trying to figure out where you can run fearlessly towards the fire and where you should seek advice and seek some counsel.

Exactly. Totally like I don't know anything about legal or licenses or anything, so I'm obviously not going to represent yourself in the courtroom.

Yeah, totally, totally. At the end of every episode, I ask every woman that I speak to six quick questions and some of it we might have already touched on. But for the sake of all the six questions, I do this at the end. So question number one is, what's your why? Why do you do what you do?

I do what I do because I create experiences that I want for myself. Truly, there is nothing that I've done that I. I wasn't like, I need this. So my wife is to create a better lifestyle for myself, as selfish as that sounds, because I know if I'm creating a better lifestyle for myself, I'm creating a better lifestyle for other people in our community.

Mm. So true. So true. Question number two is, what do you think has been the number one marketing moment that's made your business pop.

We've had so many random ones, I mean, we haven't had like Justin Bieber poster tips or anything like that, but we were on the Today show not too long ago. The editor in chief of the Lorsch, Michelle Lee, she talked about our tips so that we saw like our traffic and our sales spike incredibly high like that one day, which is really cool. So I guess that was the last one that I really felt was like a big, big success for us.

Hmm. That's a good one. Yeah. Question number three is where are you hanging out to get smarter? What books are you reading, podcasts, listening to or newsletters that you subscribing to?

I have been listening to too many podcasts, to be completely honest. I'm been a little consumed with with work and all that.

But yeah, I mean, I love listening in the past. I've loved listening to a lot of podcasts, obviously how I built this my second life podcast, like yours, I'm finding that I'm getting smarter weirdly through like this may not sound that smart, but. Thing content, like take talking, like really random content that just I end up landing on, I think the algorithm is getting smarter and smarter and they're realizing I don't necessarily need the fluffy stuff. And I'm starting to actually learn a lot in very bite sized content, which for me works right now. So, yeah, I've been getting fed a lot of like five tips to do this or here are some tricks for this platform and or here are some, you know, whatever the content may be. And I'm saving a lot of that. And we're talking a lot about a lot of these things that I'm learning and we're all learning around the office. Okay. Or Google Hangouts. So I'd say that right now, and I'm not always on clubhouse, but I'm starting to become more curious and I end up on chats every now and then that are very smart. And obviously I follow really interesting people on there. So I like the idea of clubhouse. I haven't fully set the Kool-Aid yet, but I do think there is a lot of value to be found there as well.

And I feel the same about clubhouse. I haven't totally nailed it yet, but when I'm like poking in and out, I have received some cool value from, like other cool speakers. But when it comes to Tick-Tock, I am so obsessed and I literally also just think to myself, I learned the craziest stuff like just before I saw this video and it was like, hey, here's the best way to clean your blender. Like after you make a smoothie, you just put the dishwasher liquid in it and turn it on and it cleans it and then you just rinse it out. It's like just really so it takes all the fruit off the side. And I was like, shut up. This is the coolest thing.

That's what I'm saying. I mean, we don't have to be learning. I don't know the craziest stuff from these, like, long podcast or anything. I mean, of course, I think there is a difference. If you really need to hone in on a skill, then there are good places to do that. But on a day to day, I feel like we are getting a lot of that content on the Sociales that we're already on. And we're like digesting a combination of really fun, easygoing, lighthearted stuff, but then also like tangible tips on how to do things that we never even knew we needed totally or, you know, or how to grow our socials or whatever it is that we actually do need. So I love that about just what the algorithms do, which I know I shouldn't like about the algorithm. But in a way, I'm like, keep doing this. I'm into it.

Yeah, me too. Me do.

Question number four is how are you winning the day at the moment? What are your A.M. or PM rituals that keep you feeling happy and successful and motivated?

My best days are really the days that I go to sleep early and. Sounds like so typical, but it's the days that I go to sleep early and I wake up early and I hang out with my baby. I have like a solid hour with him. And I actually like to have a bit of a routine with him and then feed him and then also kind of like feed myself and my husband were, you know, it just that to me, that whole sort of baby cooking breakfast, drinking like your moccia in the morning.

I never knew I'd have that. To be completely honest. I was always like prior to having a child and prior to the pandemic where we were running to the office, it was like I get out of bed at like nine o'clock. And then I was like out the door. And then I barely make it to the office. By 10:00, it was always just like a rush. And it's so nice to actually, like, go to sleep early and wake up and have like a normal night's sleep every now. And it's not always because we still have a baby that's six and a half months old, of course. So it's not it's not perfect every day. But the days that it is, it feels so good. And those are always the days that I'm the most productive and I get a lot done. And I feel really good about our life and what we've built and having that moment to ourselves at night, similarly, where it's crazy. I never thought I would say this stuff, but we put them down at seven and like we pop open a bottle of wine and my husband cooks and we throw on a movie or a TV show and that's it. And like, we just chill and we have like a very normal nice night in. And of course, I love to dine out and all that too. But I always find that those days are just the best when things are just calm around the house. And I just feel so relaxed, cozy.

Kotsay question number five is, if you only had a thousand dollars left in your business bank account, where would you spend it?

I probably spend it on gifting. When it comes to just making sure that we don't die as a business, and where would I spend my marketing dollars on just like where's the most important use of a dollar for you guys? I mean, if I'm trying to survive and get our sales back up, which is what I'm thinking of it in this capacity, it would be towards making sure I'm working with the people that we already have in our network, our community, gifting people that I know can amplify our products and our services and begging them to to help us out so that we don't go out of business. I think that's the biggest thing, like the people that already love you and care about you in those moments. That was the first thing we did during the pandemic. We're like people, community, we need you. And they came through for us. So always look to the people like right in front of you. And of course, like people with the bigger audiences to help you get back on your feet. That's we've had to do it already. We didn't have a thousand dollars and are ready to go. We had more than that.

But we've certainly have had to think that way in the totally getting the people who really are already cheerleading for you. And last question, question number six is how do you deal with failure? What's your mindset and approach when things aren't going so well?

I luckily have a pretty good outlook on failure. I failed multiple times. I don't come from much. I mean, this is my first business that if we failed, it would definitely be like. But I look at like individual little failures inside within like launches or within certain initiatives that we have going on. If they don't really pop off, it's like, OK, we tried it. So I look at failure like it's fine to test it. Of course, test whatever you think is going to work. And if it doesn't land, then now, you know, and it's always a game of trial and error. I mean, jailhouses one company. But we I like to think that we have a bunch of many companies happening within our day to day just because we have so much going on. And all these launches could be individual companies on their own. So, yeah, I mean, I think certainly like. Never get so emotionally attached to something is I think that's super important because when you do, that's when it failure hits you the hardest. I think they're always go into things knowing that there could be a possibility that it doesn't pop off. But a lot of times you just kind of end up learning and knowing what will work and what won't for your company. So I hope that we don't have any failures moving forward, but we have and we just kind of learn and grow.

I mean, I really love that what you just said about don't get too attached to personally attached to something in case it doesn't work. I think that's a really great insight and a good thing for people to keep in mind. Mm hmm.

Yeah, Cindy, thank you so much for taking the time to be on female student club today. I have loved chatting with you and I am such a cheerleader of everything that you've been doing. So I will be following along and watching all these exciting launches.

You're so sweet. Thank you. I have to get you some tips, even though we're not available out there yet. I'll make sure we get you some. Thank you.

Hey, it's just me here. Thanks for listening to this amazing episode of the Female Startup Club podcast.


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