Spreading Love – One Eyebrow Session at a Time

 

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Meet Ravy Mehroke & Amy Minhas, Owners of Bombay Brow Bar

Written By Ashley Basran

Playing dress up and styling one another’s hair is something that almost every little girl can relate to and it’s something that Ravy Mehroke and her sister, Amy Minhas found themselves doing quite frequently. “We always played together and pretended to own a beauty salon. We knew that when we grew up we would own some type of beauty business,” says Ravy. Fast track to the year 2010 where the sister duo turned their dream into a reality. Yaletown, Vancouver welcomed the first location of Bombay Brow Bar (BBB).

The idea of a brow bar ironically came to mind when Ravy and Amy were waiting for an eyebrow appointment of their own. They witnessed a number of girls waiting patiently to have their brows perfectly shaped. Some left extremely happy while others were just not satisfied. Ravy turned to her sister, Amy and said, “Wouldn’t it be great to go to a place that just focused on eyebrows by people who were passionate and truly cared?” Soon after the sisters had their light bulb moment, a business plan was created. Ravy and Amy worked with amazing mentors like Judy Brooks, Co-Founder of Blo Blow Dry Bar, to help develop their new vision. “Having a mentor is extremely important in business or anything else. It’s so valuable to have someone take you under their wing in an industry that you may not be an expert in,” explains Ravy. The sisters crafted their business plan in a year’s time and designed BBB to make others feel confident, well taken care of and most importantly, loved.

Bombay Brow Bar believes in spreading love to its fantastic customers and all Vancouverites. You may have seen some of the Brow Bar’s drops of love around the city. Ravy and Amy leave a hand written note, a long stem rose and a gift card for a stranger every Friday in Vancouver. With this generously kind act, BBB hopes to brighten up a stranger’s day and remind them that they are loved (what a fabulous movement). The lucky strangers will enjoy an eyebrow session for themselves. During the consultation, the beautician will listen for a preference (tweeze, thread or wax) and give feedback and recommendations. Once the eyebrows have been shaped, the client will then enjoy a peaceful massage with soothing rose gel (I almost fell asleep during my session). Once the massage is complete, the beautician will then apply brow makeup and you will be ready to go back to work, all within 20 minutes!

As the brow bar continues to empower women through beauty with its three locations (in Yaletown, Kitsilano and the Shangri-La Hotel) it also plans to introduce new products and services (from the face up). The BBB Team is excited to help enhance their beautiful clients features with future beauty additions. “We want to grow our beauty brand and want to be recognized as an iconic beauty brand. We have the opportunity to change what people think about beauty,” explains Ravy of the future plans for BBB. Ravy and Amy also want to grow through Canada and the United States. After developing what was once an idea into a functioning business (with multiple locations) Ravy has some valuable advice to offer for those who are pursing to open a business of their own. “Take the time to develop your business plan because this will make you more successful. It’s so important to be able to love what you do and be passionate about it. I’m also a big believer in taking calculated risks,” explains Ravy.

With three locations in Vancouver and plans to expand, there is no doubt in my mind that the Brow Bar’s will be beautifying women for years to come. Thank you to Ravy for providing me with new insight on developing a business from the ground up. It was a pleasure to learn about BBB’s story and we’re extremely excited to have Ravy and Amy as speakers for our NextGen event!

 

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Behind The Brand of Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation, BC & Yukon

Amanda CBCF

We are excited to announce that the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation – BC/Yukon Region will be the official charity of choice for NextGen! We love how this came across organically as the lovely ladies, Kerrie and April, reached out to the Pink Tank team to connect over coffee. We love spontaneous invitations to connect! In chatting, we found out they will be announcing a new campaign targeted to the younger generation and thought they would be the perfect fit for  our upcoming event which is meant to inspire and mentor the next generation of business leaders. Their Community Relations Specialist, Amanda, will be presenting at NextGen and will be talking a bit about the CBCF and their new campaign. Read on to find out a bit more about Amanda and the woman behind the PR of the charity.

How did you get involved in working for the CBCF?

When I was 16 years old, I lost my mother to breast cancer. She was just 43 years old. Seven years ago my son was born and becoming a mother brought new fears about my health, not getting to see my children grow up and I knew I had to get more involved so I started volunteering with CBCF. I first volunteered as the Run Director, helping to organize the Run for the Cure for three years. Just over three years ago I was offered the position of Community Relations Specialist.

What do you love most about your job?

This is a tough question as I often say I have the best job in the world. I feel extremely grateful that I have a job that allows me to honour my mother every day while at the same time making a difference for myself and others when it comes to breast health knowledge and hopefully helping to create a future where my children won’t have to worry about breast cancer.

Favourite app to use for work?

I love using Instagram

What are you most proud of?

I am most proud of the life balance that my family and I have been able to maintain and support each other in. We work hard and we play hard.

What advice do you have for the next generation of business ladies?

Find something that you love to do and do it. Everything else feels easier when you love what you do. Life is busy and there is a lot to juggle. I find that I am better able to balance everything because I love what I do so much and my family values that.

Finish these sentences

I love…laughing so hard my stomach hurts the next day.

I am happy when..I am surrounded by family and friends.

Life is…right now, so live it!

My Childhood ambition is…(was) to be a teacher. I was perhaps (a little) bossy and thought this would be a good fit. I also loved sharing what I knew with others.

 

We cannot wait to have Amanda in at our next event to share more about this amazing organization! For details on NextGen, click HERE.

 

Fashionably Working With Passion

Written by Ashley Basran

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Meet Tracey Drake, Editor in Chief & Creative Director of NICHE Magazine

The world of fashion is something truly inspiring and creative that not everyone is lucky enough to experience. However, it is an industry that is driven by passion, in which Tracey says, “In these industries, it cannot be just a job. You will never survive. It needs to be a passion. I love going to work every morning and as tough as it gets, and believe me, some weeks it gets really tough, it never feels like work. If it is your passion, it can be the greatest job in the world.”

Tracey gives us an inside scoop about fashion, mentorship and her job role with NICHE Magazine. Read on to learn more! Oh… and did we mention that Tracey will be speaking at our NextGen event?

What was the inspiration behind writing Fashioned For Success?

The book that I am currently toiling away on (due out now in late 2014) is called Fashioned for Success and it is a how-to non-fictional work that is written specifically for women who are just beginning their entrepreneurial journey. Based on 25 years of experience as a business and marketing consultant and publishing professional, my goal with this book is to shed light on the unique capabilities that every woman possesses, and how those unique traits can set a path for success. The key is to tap into your unique IPO, figure out what yours is, learn how to harness it, and determine how to use it to carve out your own path to success. The book is based on lessons learned and examples cited, that come from within the fashion industry – with analogies that women can relate to.

Can you tell us more about the mentorship program you run for 

young women starting out in business?

It is my favourite thing to talk about! If I had an endless source of funding, this would be the one job I would love to do forever. I believe that it is our obligation to mentor, teach and prepare future generations. In the end, it creates a better world for all of us. Women are wired to succeed as business leaders, as I discuss in my book, and through a structured mentorship program, I help young women understand how they are wired, and how they can use their uniqueness to their benefit in the business world. I work with several young women each year, and it is not an easy road. Yes, we talk and brainstorm and chat. But more than that, I challenge them to try new things, take on new projects, think outside of the box, grow, excel, and always be their own best cheerleader.

Who inspired or inspires you?

So many people inspire me for so many reasons. My husband is the most patient and kind person I have ever met, and he inspires me on a daily basis. The young team that works for me at NICHE magazine inspire me with their endless passion, creativity and energy. They continually challenge me to be better at what I do so we can all propel forward together. In the business world, there are a few women I admire for their accomplishments: Meg Whitman, Madeleine Albright and Bonnie Brooks.

One of our favourite quotes is “Girls compete with each other; women empower one another.” 

Can you speak to this and tell us your thoughts on it?

I love this quote and it is very true. As women, we should elevate one another. I have always said that the only person I compete with is myself and I try hard to live up to that, every day. Another great quote I love is by Madeleine Albright, In 2006, she was the keynote speaker at the Celebrating Inspiration luncheon, and said “There is a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women.”

As Editor in Chief & Creative Director of NICHE MAGAZINE, what kind of advice can you offer

to those who may be  trying to pursue a similar career path like yours?

I work at the apex of two of the most punishing industries in the world – the fashion industry and the publishing industry. In these industries, it cannot be just a job. You will never survive. It needs to be a passion. I love going to work every morning and as tough as it gets, and believe me, some weeks it gets really tough, it never feels like work. If it is your passion, it can be the greatest job in the world.

Please finish these sentences…

Fashion is… not something you wear. Fashion is not the trends that come and go with passing seasons. Rather, fashion is a vibrant, unpredictable, ever changing state of mind.

The colour red is… a classic colour that makes any woman feel confident and beautiful. It is the reason the iconic red lip is popular the world over. It is my one tried and true beauty go-to.

My life… has been an unpredictable series of highs and lows, peppered with eye opening failures and soaring successes, and I wouldn’t change it. Not any of it. I have been truly blessed.

My work… allows me to thrive in an industry that I love, produce a fashion magazine I am very proud of, and permits me to use my position to affect positive change along the way.

I’m happy when… I am laughing with my husband, playing with my grandson, hugging my golden retriever and helping others discover their light bulb moment.

A Girl With A Dream

written by: Ashley Basran

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Her name is Hibo Haye and she has shared her inspirational story with us, which proves if you give a girl a chance, she has the ability to realize her own potential because of that chance.

Hibo was a year old when her parents, two brothers and two sisters fled from their home country, Somalia, due to the civil war. The family sought out safety in Kenya (Somalia’s neighbouring country) where they would call the refugee camp their home.  This was the only home ever known to Hibo: “Ever since I came into existence, I found myself there (refugee camp) and I have a deep connection with it. Living in a refugee camp is not something that I can put in a paper. It is something that is naturally placed in the memory; something inseparable from the heart that will always, day or night and during happiness or sorrow be remembered,” says Hibo.

As she was growing up in the camp, Hibo always remained positive and focused on her goal of pursuing an education. “Living in the camp, in that situation was a good experience and made me focus on my future. My living conditions did not stop me from achieving my goals,” says Hibo. Although she was expected to fulfill her house duties, she never lost sight of her educational ambitions.

Hibo’s favourite part of the camp was the opportunities that allowed her to learn and focus on her studies. “Girls in the camp had to study hard and focus on the positive side of the situation we were all in,” states Hibo. These education opportunities were made possible for Hibo and other girls because of amazing organizations like CARE. The CARE organization believes in the power and value of women. It is a leading international development organization dedicated to defending dignity and fighting poverty by empowering the world’s most vulnerable, yet greatest resource for change: women and girls. Throughout our interview, Hibo expressed numerous times her gratitude and appreciation of CARE and how they have helped changed her life and allowed her to fulfill her dreams.

Hibo has overcome challenges and barriers in her life that some may not be as lucky to do. She has never allowed past experiences to interfere with her aspirations and goals. She lives her life by the motto “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” What a wonderful motto to live your daily life by! Hibo is now a student at Canada’s York University where she is studying Health Studies and specializing in Health Formatics. She is pursuing an Undergraduate Program and is expected to graduate in 2016. “After graduating, my main goal is to help the cast that I left behind,” Hibo proudly explains.

The Pink Tank Team has been inspired by Hibo’s story and we thank her for sharing her amazing life journey with us! Hibo is truly an example of how, giving an opportunity to a young girl, you can truly transform her life! We wish Hibo all of the best!!

Ladies, Meet Liz…Personal Trainer Extraordinaire!

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Liz is definitely one of the most positive spirited people we have had the pleasure to meet! She always has a smile on her face and a positive attitude, even during the most gruelling set of burpees. We love featuring women like Liz who truly have a passion for what they do! Liz runs Joyce Training with her husband where they train their clients out of a private gym in Kitsilano.  Our Co-Visionary, Reagan, has been going to Liz as a personal trainer for the last year and recommends Liz to anyone that will listen! Liz makes working out fun, exciting and works you extremely hard targeting the specific areas that you are working on. She is also a social media maven and has the BEST Instagram feed for anyone that needs some personal training exercises mixed in with a “get your butt going” type of motivation.

Another side to Liz we are super proud of is her newly created blog, “Bring On The Shine,” which is for other women like herself who have been diagnosed with a chronic disease.  Through her blog and her recent speaking engagements, she has since become a role model to many young women that are struggling with chronic illnesses and she is literally helping them change their entire outlook on life and helping them understand how to cope with the disease. Read on below to find out more about Liz and you can also follow her on the following social media handles:

Instagram: @LizJoyceFit; MyGirlLiz  |   Twitter: @bringontheshine

Q. What do you love most about being a trainer? 

When my clients begin to believe in themselves and capture their goals. The confidence from this experience adds a bounce to their step. I am rewarded through their success! The time with me training is a mini vacation from stressful days, a time to give back to themselves. I recognize that I am a tool that makes their whole lives truly better. There’s a magic that happens in the gym when the guard is down, the music is up and it’s all about positivity and growth. I am literally in that magic all day, every day. It’s a pretty special thing!

Q. What was the motivation behind your career?

There is a lot of truth behind the saying, “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” I was always active and competed at a National and International level in several sports. I have consistently used exercise and fitness as a means to celebrate incredible times and to comfort me in uncertain or scary times but I realized while I was going through the diagnosis of my Ulcerative Colitis that exercise needed to be about more than that.I carry my lesson of caring for my body forward with me, I am most motivated to care for my clients short term and long term health. It is a very serious matter we deal with but it’s always delivered on a sparkly, laughter filled, plate.

Q. What are you most proud of?

I create and design my life. I consciously evaluate, and reevaluate, my life. I make decisions in regards to what I want and I consistently take actions that serve both where I am and where I want to be. I am proud of my ability to speak directly from my heart to others hearts and connect on a real level.

I am proud of my decision to care for my disease and body in a very positive way. It is extremely emotionally and physically challenging to be diagnosed with a chronic disease. I know it will never go away and my system may never be what it once was but I made the decision to live a normal life, which I do and I literally fight for that every day.

Q. What time do you get up?

Most days of the week I am up at 4:32 AM. I get up 2 minutes after so it doesn’t seem so brutal! I always make sure to get a bare minimum of 7 hours of sleep a night, turning the devices off 30-45 mins before bed and curling up with my cat and a book is my nightly routine to unwind.

Finish these sentences. …

I love …Almond milk lattes. I love the challenge, excitement and rewards of my career. I love a good book and down time, music that I resonate with, dancing in the morning while I’m getting ready, laughing, smiling all day and sticking my hand out the window while I drive … In the summer. I love being present in the ordinary moments, the collection of which making an extraordinary experience.

I am happy when …I am outside and I am moving.  Skateboarding, running, paddle boarding, snowshoeing, you name it.  I thrive on endorphins and fresh air. I am happy when I set my sights on a goal and I knock it out of the park.

Strength is …2 big things for me.  A persons ability to stand in uncertain situations and walk towards what they fear.  A persons ability to be truly honest with themselves, about what they are failing at, what they are winning at, and finding ways to grow always.

My life…is rewarding. I have committed myself to my marriage, my career, my fitness, personal growth, advocating for other chronic illness patients. These endeavors require real focus and dedication. I love the challenges on the hard days, and I bask in the beauty of the moments where I just ride the wave.

My childhood ambition… was to be Rainbow Brite.  Ok, honestly, I didn’t have a clear career path designed for myself as a child.  My ambitions as a child were to build the best fort and beat all the boys in the races.

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Raw & Real with Erin Treloar, Founder of RAW Beauty Talks

Written By Ashley Basran

Beauty is defined as ‘Being a combination of qualities, such as shape, colour, or form, which pleases the aesthetic senses,’ but do these qualities sincerely define true beauty? Do they accurately paint a picture? While technology is continuously evolving with techniques such as photoshop and filters, it seems as though society’s understanding of beauty and what defines its raw and realness has become unseen. We explored further and sat down with Erin Treloar of RAW Beauty Talks to learn about her amazing new initiative, as she’s helping to change the stigma about beauty and how we speak, feel and think about it.

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Growing up, Erin always set high standards for herself. While she attended high school she was very active and participated in sports and maintained straight A’s. “When I was in high school, I was faced with a lot of pressures that we all face,” explains Erin. However, Erin was deeply affected by these pressures. “I felt as though I wasn’t enough and that my body could be better,” expresses Erin. Her stresses began when she felt that her thighs were thick looking. So, she did what many of us do and began eating healthy. She initiated to be more health conscious and cut fatty foods out of her diet, however, what was intended to be eating healthy eventually turned into an eating disorder. “When your mind is always critiquing your body, it’s a slippery slope,” says Erin.

While tending to her needs, Erin was admitted into the hospital for a three-month in patients program. “I did a lot of soul searching and found happiness over a course of time,” states Erin. As she made positive changes in her life, she literally began to search for images that would make her feel better. “While I was looking for these images, it quickly became clear to me that there just isn’t a representation of what we look like at all. We post pictures with our best angle and filter which is great but that’s not reality,” says Erin. Time went on but Erin continuously had the thoughts of beauty, its definition and its effect on society swirl in her mind. Erin knew that she wanted to create something real and help facilitate the conversation of beauty, but was uncertain of when or if it was possible.

Fast-forward to 2013 to the launch of RAW Beauty Talks (which was once a two-year conversation with her fiancé) which is now a full- functioning business that’s as raw and real as it gets (literally). Erin has created a safe, non-judgmental environment for conversations about beauty, confidence and self-love. RAW Beauty Talks takes photos of women without makeup, photoshop or filters and facilitates necessary conversations that many of us overlook or undervalue. “Beauty isn’t just a conversation that needs to happen with women, it needs to happen with men as well. We can start these conversations with women who can then speak to their parents, friends and children in a way for men to understand too,” states Erin. It’s become incredibly easy for all of us to help alter our looks with access to multiple apps, filters and photoshop, but the most concerning part of this all is how society has become conditioned to think about what’s beautiful in a women even though the true beauty of a women is persistently altered with computer programs to please the eyes of the world.

RAW Beauty Talks strives to shift our focus from superficial to accomplishing the unimaginable while helping women to find a deeper level of confidence. However, RAW is able to agree that a little red lipstick can help make the day better. Unfortunately, this only brings a short-term feeling of happiness. RAW believes that, “True confidence comes when we accept and love our ourselves in our most basic form. In our rawest state.” As RAW Beauty Talks embarks on its mission Erin says, “It’s a lesson and a reminder for myself and growth as well. I don’t have all the answers but I’m definitely learning at the same time and proud to help facilitate a raw and real conversation of beauty.”

Erin’s initiative in helping to change our mind-set and thinking process of beauty and women is admirable. It was great to sit down with her and to have an open and real conversation about beauty and how RAW Beauty Talks is actively making its positive mark.  Stay tuned for a feature with our co-visionary, Reagan Burwash, who dared to bare it all and removed all make-up on camera for  RAW Beauty.

If you would like to learn more about RAW Beauty Talks, please visit http://www.rawbeautytalks.com

Muff Love to You.

Written by: Ashley Basran

Ritz pic for Pink Tank

The secret is out and there is no need for women to continue to be so hush-hush when it comes to talking about down there (referring to your muff, that is). Feminine hygiene is something that all women have to deal with, whether our scent is of roses or not and finding elite and harmless products for our muffs can be tiring. However, we’ve discovered a fantastic line called I love my muff and we want to share it with you.

I love my muff was created by Ritz Clinging. An all-natural line of products for daily love and care, down there. “I had a need. I sought a solution. It wasn’t there. I created my own,” explains Ritz. Just like that, I love my muff was born. All products are cruelty free, vegan, free of parabens, SLS, synthetic colours and fragrances. But, how safe are these products for our most sensitive lady parts? We’re happy to say, all muff products are non-toxic and made with natural plant extracts and pure beneficial oils. These products include their refreshing wipes which are biodegradable and made with a cleansing and moisturizing ability to help keep your muff feeling fresh and fabulous.

The clean, iconic and bold muff brand first launched in Manhattan, New York at Henri Bendel – a premium department store. “When we launched, I had an ‘empire state of mind’ and wanted to do something outside of my comfort zone. I decided that I would go big or go home,” explains Ritz. A great mindset and aspiration for a business that was originally intended to sell hand warmers rather than female hygiene products.

As Ritz continues with the development of her business, she is also a mom to her 22-month-old son, Cooper and a loving wife to her husband, who is also her business partner. As a businesswoman, Ritz explains, “I love being an entrepreneur. Its thrilling, empowering and allows for me to be creative.” She also has some advice for like-minded individuals, “When you’re bored, there’s nothing scaring you. You have to think bigger and set new goals.”

As a busy female entrepreneur, we were curious as to how Ritz pursues her happy work/life balance that many of us are seeking. She states, “It’s a constant balancing act. As long as you’re attentive with everything in your life, you’ll find peace. You can’t put too much pressure on yourself and you have to be realistic.” She also says, “I have my son who continues to keep me laughing every single day.” It was so refreshing to hear the sincerity and honesty in her voice.

Whether you’re a busy mom with multiple errands, or in-between meetings all day, I love my muff products are intended for your muff on the move. If you want to show your muff some love visit www.ilovemymuff.com, where you can choose from an assortment of products.