The Story of Dear Lash + Love and the Woman Behind It
Hi! I want to take a minute to introduce myself to anyone who doesn’t know what @dearlashlove is all about! Quite honestly, I’m still figuring it out myself. But for anyone who might not know the gist of it, here's a little introduction and some background on the woman behind the 'gram and beauty biz you see online.
(But first, grab a coffee or a cocktail 🍸)
First things first, I’m Lorena! I consider myself creative, sarcastic, sensitive, independent, forgetful, thoughtful, very specific about certain things but WAY chill about most of life’s curveballs. My life has always been unpredictable and it’s taught me to go with the flow. I grew up as an only child and was raised mostly by my Mom but was constantly surrounded by my cousins and family. My Mom took me everywhere and anywhere and I learned to be one with the adults. I think this is why i'm not an asshole. I can be very girly but also SO tomboy, too. I grew up playing sports but always cared about matching my clothes since I was a kid. A relative recently told me "it makes so much sense that you're doing what you do now" and that to me was such a nice compliment but I never really had a clue and that's the point of this blog.
I didn’t know my “calling” like some do. I worked at about 22 restaurants (Cocos, Hooters, Hard Rock Hotel, Hollister, two more places, and lastly, a hair salon before I finally got my license). I did some amateur modeling (cringe but hey, it got me here) and liked it but never enjoyed not being myself. I didn't love trying to be something I wasn't so it does make sense that I'm now comfortable showing my face on IG a ton because I am slightly used to being "seen" but find comfort in the fact that this kind of "being seen" has value behind it. I get to be me and I get to share with you how to grow your business. Back to the story.
I attempted fashion school and dropped out because I wanted to make $$ not be stuck inside studying. (I kick myself for this now because it would be pretty helpful right about now) and then even tried online school to be a Teacher. (It seems like I kind of of had ad idea of what I might be good at but couldn’t quite fully commit)
I was 26 when I went to Esthetician school. Truthfully, I didn't even know what an Esthetician was until I desperately needed my brows done and went to a spa. Once I connected with the girl doing them, I realized HOLY SHIT. This is a job? I can sell skincare and do brows and maybe run a spa of my own? I was sold and really quickly signed up for school (something to know about me - when I'm ready, I'm READY and then go full speed ahead).
So like I said, I started school at 26 and also had a very part-time job because I was determined to get out of working in nightlife. It was such good money but all I saw was me at 50, selling bottles of vodka with no husband and it was enough to push me out. My 20s were the most fun time of my life but I was really ready for a different stage and what I was envisioning didn't include any of the above. (If you want something you HAVE to have hard lines that you do and don’t cross and this was mine)
Fast forward through school and I graduated with no money and no job. So, I packed my shit and moved to LA (somewhere in suburbia) and applied to a Burke Williams close by. It was a temporary move (an escape from my old life if I'm being honest) but when I applied, I told myself if I got it, I'd stay. Well, I did! On my 28th golden birthday, they called me and offered me the job.
Lots of training, too many facials back to back, and being stuck in a dark room later, I was OVER IT. I've never cared for the amount of structure and restriction offered by that job, and frankly, was SO BORED making $600 every two weeks (when I was used to MUCH, MUCH more working in nightlife) so I started looking for other jobs.
What came next was something I can only attribute to the universe knowing exactly what I needed.
OK, I guess I don't want to skip over the whole story, so let's backtrack a bit. I ended up renting a room at Glow Skincare and also cleaned, answered phones, and pretty much did whatever I could to help out, (you could usually find me spray painting something gold to make it “new”) This partially helped me pay my room rent until I was fully booked. At the time, she needed back up and I needed clients so it was a win win for us both. I got booked fast though and I believe it was a combo of these things:
- The location
- The place itself
- ME. I was a hustler and still am. Because Kasey was so focused on skin, I thought it would benefit me to make lashes and brows my thing. I was RIGHT.
Somewhere along the way, I absolutely fell in love with lashes and took a class (before anyone really knew about them), switched gears within my business, and convinced my clients in 2013 to switch, too. I’m still shocked looking back that they trusted me to try something so new and unknown but they did and I have them to thank for catapulting my career. I do still love skincare and miss aspects of it, but I chose to make my business very specific and to kind of create my own niche since lashes were SO new at that time.
Once I started shifting directions, I was on a new path of figuring out how to make even more money (money that was made while I was home sleeping...a beautiful thing called passive income. I would bitch to Kasey that there was no way we could do this “job” forever and she would laugh just assuming we would (I’ll later find out she was actually pondering what I was talking about ) I also loved to constantly bitch about wearing a "uniform" of some sort (I even made us aprons at one point LOL). I guess as much as I hated the “corporate” jobs I did respect the level of structure and standards it created at work. I wanted us to look trendy but professional and felt very weird showing up in jeans to take clients. I was always coming up with ways to “match” the aesthetic of her spa or wear extra flair. Then, because I hated figuring out what to wear to work all the time, I decided to make my own tees in 2015. It was for selfish reasons until I googled lash tees and could not find a SINGLE ONE. I knew I had to jump on this because every industry from hair to makeup to yoga had tees! Basically things blew up from there (all out of my garage) on IG because it was a totally new concept!
Finally, after managing both my lash room and the t-shirt business for three years, I had to step away from lashing. I was very burnt out and unable to give my energy to all the parts of my business. Plus, my goal was to always move my entire business online so I knew I had to give one up to get all of the other.
Around the same time of feeling this way, I seriously inured my neck (combo of a car accident, poor rehab and being hunched over lashing all day) This to me was the sign I needed. I’m big on signs. I find them all the time when I need them and I’ve always read them loud and clear.
It was scary to walk away from clients who stuck with me for so long and to admit to myself that I was supporting myself from my passion project and my “dream”; that I actually got to where I wanted. I felt selfish to give up such great (what I call pretty damn close to nightlife) money because honestly...how could I ? I worked hard for that shit. I worked hard for my clients but they were also the most supportive about it all and that made it so much easier. It's so freeing now to do what I'm most passionate about - creating tees, launching new products, sharing content and helping others with their business struggles. My passion changed and that’s okay. It’s okay to evolve and sometimes that means letting go. I’m no expert but I know what I’ve done and how it’s worked for me. Truly, I feel like I can say I've walked all the roads alone and it gave me a ton of confidence in myself and my ability to help others. I built my business from the ground up, with a lot of other responsibilities on my plate at the time. I didn’t ask for help and in the process used that time to learn a lot about myself. My business has been my baby and something I’ve fallen so in love with. (Is that even normal?)
I may forget how to use my own TV remote occasionally or be completely forgetful sometimes but I know my business and my community that has supported me through all this like the back of my hand and I take pride in that.
And that about sums it up. Of course there have been MANY ups and downs along the way, but I've worked hard to keep things simple and natural so this can feel like something anyone can do, too. I don’t want it to look easy because it’s not but I do want anyone who comes across my website or social media platforms to feel happy, inspired and motivated to take all the roads, enjoy the experiences that come with it and enjoy the ENTIRE journey.
This business of mine is homegrown and I like that I’ve figured it out all on my own. It's prepared me to be able to help others looking for the same things I was once looking for - quality beauty-inspired tees (to wear or to sell in their own studio!), share simple business tips, motivation, and a good coffee recipe.
The best part of all this has been connecting with you; the reader; my new friend. I hope you read this and feel even more connected to me than maybe you did before. Gotta go; my carpel tunnel is kicking in;)