Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R. Show Notes
Episode title and number: Featuring Beauty Expert Dana Hinnant, Christine Bharosi, Marta DiVito & Ryan Maxwell #6
Brief summary of the show:
"Because whether we can see or not we're being seen. So people are looking at how we present ourselves, so that's very important. " ~Dana Hinnant
In this special edition of the podcast, the summer interns are taking over! Bold Blind Beauty's three amazing interns: Christine Bharosi, Marta DiVito, and Ryan Maxwell are participating in our Virtual Work Experience Program. During their time with us, our interns will gain meaningful work experience to help them in their future endeavors. We are so excited to introduce you to the newest members of our team!
Please be patient with us as there is a bit of feedback in this episode during our interview with beauty expert Dana Hinnant. We are still learning the ropes to podcasting including the editing process. Thank you and we hope you enjoy this episode.
Bullet points of key topics & timestamps:
Contact information & social media handles to connect with our interns & Dana Hinnant:
Finding Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R.
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Music Credit: “New Inspiration” by BasspartoutX https://audiojungle.net/item/new-inspiration/7204018
Ryan Maxwell 0:17
Hi, welcome back to another episode of Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R.
Christine Bharosi 0:23
Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R. is clearing the air for more A.I.R.
Marta DiVito 0:28
Accessibility, Inclusion, and Representation.
I'm Ryan Maxwell. I'm Christine Bharosi. I'm Marta DiVito. We are your co-hosts, and this is the podcast takeover.
You may be wondering, what is a podcast takeover? And what happened to our regular co-hosts Steph, Nasreen, and Sylvia
We, Christine, Marta, and I are actually summer interns working with Bold Blind Beauty’s virtual work experience program.
During our internship, we will be gaining real-world work experience with a social enterprise.
The skills we learn at Bold Blind Beauty will benefit us by being transferable and will help us create our own opportunities. And now a little bit about us.
As I said before, I'm Christine Bharosi, an incoming graduate student at Fordham University. Like the others, I too have a background in psychology because of my bachelor's degree from Lehman College. I'm currently working to become a cybercrime analyst and have gained a new passion for data.
In September, I'll be starting my first master's degree. It's a new challenge, but I'm excited to tackle it. When I'm not studying, my hobbies include gaming, reading, and watching movies. I'm excited to be working with Bold Blind Beauty and hope to gain new perspectives as well as practical experience to take my skills even further.
Christine, I couldn't agree more. I mean, I feel like it's so wild that we have just met each other a few weeks ago and yet we have so many similarities.
I too am an avid reader and I also am coming from a psychology background. In fact, I'm going to be a neuroscience major as an incoming freshman at Binghamton University in Vestal New York. I'm an aspiring social worker, or maybe a clinical psychologist.
In the fall, I'm going to be starting to work in Dr. Deborah Kreiss's Lab doing some really interesting, spicy research about OCD and social anxiety. I am just so excited to be working with Bold Blind Beauty because I have a great passion for helping people with disabilities just to be empowered and to strive towards a more equitable future. And it's obviously a great honor to be working alongside a great team of really qualified smart and talented interns.
Thanks, Ryan, I totally agree with you. And I'm so excited to be working with Christine, as well.
Hi, everyone. I'm Marta DiVito and I'm an advocate for people with disabilities. I'm currently pursuing a bachelor's degree in communication from Purdue University Global.
I am so excited to be working with a company like Bold Blind Beauty, this summer. I'm also excited to be getting hands-on work experience that will help me develop the skills I need to one day be a communication representative for a nonprofit for people with disabilities because I believe that people with disabilities deserve to find their own voice.
So we hope you enjoy today's episode. Our guest is Dana Hinnant, a self-professed beauty junkie, former makeup artist, and esthetician by trade, and the new beauty editor at Bold Blind Beauty.
We now turn it over to our regular co-hosts Steph, Sylvia, and Nasreen.
Hey Dana, welcome to Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R.
Dana Hinnant 4:54
Thank you. It is a pleasure to be with you today.
Dana, can you share with us your sight loss journey?
Yes, sure. I have what is called retinopathy due to prematurity. I was a premature baby; I was also a twin and basically, my low vision resulted based on the treatments that I received. And so I refer to myself as a lifer, old-school, visually impaired person. I still have low vision and I went to regular public schools. I just received vision services throughout my elementary, middle school years, and high school.
Once I got out [high school], I didn't really have the resources about when a person who is visually impaired goes through the whole transitioning youth aspect of things. Because back in the early 90s, information wasn't available, like things are now. So, it was more challenging if you didn't have the resources or didn't have the connections to connect with to help you with the next steps of your life.
So I was boots on the ground, in the trenches, whatever resources that we found out, meaning me and my family, then we went with what we found out. It was very challenging. If you talk to anybody who's been a lifer with their visual impairment, and they started their journey before all of this technology came to be, they will tell you “yeah, it's not like it is now.”
So I went to community college first and I receive disability support services for my classes. Then I transferred, once I got my associates degree, I transferred to the University of Maryland. And got support from the Disability Support Services; it was okay, but it wasn't easy. The college part was not, that's a whole other book.
When I graduated from college, I wanted to go to beauty school. I always loved beauty. Always, always, always always, since I was really young. Usually, for those of us who go into the beauty industry, it usually starts very young. I didn't take the chance when I was in high school to either go to a cosmetology program in an area high school.
And by the time I got out of college, I was in my late 20s because I went to school part-time, and I was going to go to school, my mom was like, “do you still want to go to beauty school?” And I said, “yes, this is my last semester graduating from college.” And she said, “we're going to make that happen for you.”
So that kept my energy flowing and the positivity because I knew I was getting ready to pursue something that I really, really wanted to do. And that was a challenge in itself because you're coming into a situation. I went to a very good beauty school, I had very good support staff, I went from makeup first when they actually gave out licensing for makeup artists. I went through that. And I thought, once I did that, I want to sit for my boards, I want to become an esthetician, I want the higher license.
So after I graduated, I did some local things in the area. I went back to the same school and got the training to get the certification so I could sit for my state boards.
The school wasn't used to dealing with somebody who has a visual impairment, at least at the time that I went. They had other people with disabilities that may have attended the program, but not quite like mine. And then they had some type of bad experience with that one person and they kind of wanted to say or had the opinion that they might have the same experience... But they realized that I was very different and I did extremely well in that program. I wish my grades looked like that in college.
So it's been a journey. It hasn't been an easy one, to crack the glass ceiling, to go into an industry that's not necessarily traditional for somebody who has a quote-unquote disability. Because back when I was coming through, if you had a visual impairment at the time...
I live in the DC metropolitan area and a lot of times, for people who are visually impaired or with any type of disability, they would recommend “get a government job, get a government job. It’s easy to get into the government. And I did that for a little while and found out I don't like office jobs. So I found out that was not for me.
So I felt like I was a trailblazer early on. Because I didn't have anybody that looked like me that was going through what I was going through to tackle an industry that may not recognize people who have visual impairments. So it wasn't easy, but the journey was definitely worth it. There were some ups and downs like with anything else, but I persevered through all of that.
Dana, I love that you went for your passion. And as you said, you went into something that there are probably very few people who are visually impaired working in the beauty industry, especially as estheticians. And so why should women who are visually impaired, like, Steph Nasreen, and I really get excited and care about beauty, about makeup, about skincare? Now I can tell you all three of us do. But for our audience, why should we care about that?
Well, we should care about that, because we also want to look good as well. One of the things that I have noticed is the beauty industry is recognizing that blind and visually impaired women do love beauty. And we do care what we look like.
So they're recognizing that which they never recognized before. So we're seen as being relevant. That's thanks to some of the beauty visually impaired/blind bloggers that are out there who have a lot of followers showing how they apply their makeup.
And the industry is trying to be a little bit more inclusive. And even with the packaging, creating packaging for tactile purposes for somebody who can't see. I mean, the cosmetic industry, had one of the major cosmetic companies has a blind Ambassador as one of their spokespersons. So we should be excited about beauty because we want to look good, too and it's a part of our well-being.
I totally agree, totally agree. I can tell you that over the past year and a half when we haven't had to fix up our hair and put on makeup and jewelry and get all dressed up—when I now get to do that, I'm so excited to do it.
Me too, I love doing that part.
Yes, if nothing else, we do it for ourselves.
It feels good, right?
Yeah, it does. I tell people when I put myself together, my outfits and you know... I don't wear a lot of makeup—because I feel makeup can be an accessory where it is a finisher, but I do it for myself, not to impress anybody else. Because whether we can see or not we're being seen. So people are looking at how we present ourselves, so that's very important.
That's an excellent point that you make Dana. One of the things that I like to say, you know, you've heard it said, “when you look good, you feel good.” I like to do it in reverse, when you feel good, you look good. Believing that beauty resides on the inside that reflects on the outside. So when you feel good, you look good. And as you say, using makeup as a finisher, only helps to illuminate what's on the inside.
I agree. I agree.
So what I wanted to ask you, as a skincare expert, one of the things that I'm interested in, in regards to skincare, is natural methods. Can you recommend any natural ways of caring for our skin such as using essential oils? Perhaps products for people with sensitive skin as we age, is there anything out there that you're aware of? Or can you make any recommendations?
Just for general purposes, it all depends on what a person is going through and you're not in my chair or anything like that and I'm not doing a consult with you. But three or four oils... I love oils. They sometimes pop up in magazine articles like it's the new hottest thing, no, it's not. It's just popular at the moment but we as estheticians have used oils for years.
Would you spell that for us?
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Dana, can you share with us the three best trends for 2021 that we as women should know about for the summer?
Oh, the summer is finally here; the warm weather! So I know a lot of us are excited about starting to get out and starting to move around a little bit, so I'm going to do popular trends.
That sounds so much fun. I think I'm gonna get some pink eyeshadow. And I have some nail polish so we'll do some nail art. And I think I already have bangs, but I guess curtain bangs a little longer from the ones I might have.
Yeah, yeah, I’ve seen that everywhere, it’s like a big thing right now.
Can you tell us a little bit more about what that is for people who can't see? And that's an interesting thing is that when you're blind or you have enough vision loss where you can't really see the new styles, the new hair cuts, the new trends, it's really hard to know what's going on. And so I'm actually not sure what that is and I'm due for a haircut.
Okay, so curtain bangs. Think about/visualize when you see a person, and they have full frontal bangs, and it's right above their eyebrow?
Oh, you know, that full bang is not parted on the side or anything. It's just across your eyebrows.
Okay. How do these things just come back into style though? I had those when I was a kid. And I'm sure I've had them since.
Is their age for that Dana? Curtain bangs and age group.
No, I don't think it's an age group. It's just you want to figure out if you have the right face for that. And I would go to a professional and have a consult to see if that look would be right for you.
I just spent an entire year growing my bangs out too long, okay. This is wrong and that's what needs to be popular now. [Laughter] So Dana, give us some tips on how we can just look fabulous, especially with summer coming. And I want you to speak to those of us who are a little late 40s 50s 60s? That’s where Nasreen, Steph, and I are.
I'm right behind you, I'm close to 50 myself, and so I'm always trying new things. One of the things is to get yourself on a really good skin regimen. Now, you might have to seek out a professional to kind of get on a good regimen of what you need for your skin. I don't want to get into specifics because it can vary from person to person. But get yourself on a very good skin care regimen. That's very, very, very important.
I'm going to say I kind of changed this around a little bit as I thought about this. Diet has a lot to do with how your skin looks. And I'll get into that more in moving forward. What you eat does show up on your face, believe it or not. people think it doesn't. But it really, really does, it just gives a mirror of what is going on inside of your body. And if you're as you say, moving towards the sunset, but not quite at the sunset, with makeup, less is more, less is more. And you will be your best fabulous you. And just work with what you have.
Dana, I want to also ask, Can you share with us sort of the color schemes of this summer? I'm sure a lot of women out there would like to know, hey, what are those color schemes, what should we be wearing?
Well, like I said, I'm seeing a lot of neon colors. A lot of the bright colors. And if you are a daring person, just experiment, and it doesn't even have to necessarily be like, me personally, I'm not gonna wear a green eyeshadow or pink eyeshadow. But I would wear a bright green dress or I'll switch the color in another way. Because everybody wants to see, those who are looking, you know, color makes people happy.
I'm not that brave to wear that bold of an eye color on my eyes per se. But switch that up into a nail polish, a bright color nail polish, do it that way. The pinks and greens, the yellows. One of the Pantone colors of the season is yellow.
So try sunny yellow on your toes. Try it on your fingernails if you want to be so bold. I know a lot of people like to play with color more so on their feet versus their hands. But that's a great way to just pop a little color. Just add a little color.
Yeah, that's what I always like, to have fun colors on my toes. My fingers are always the same color pink, light, light pink, but my toes can be all kinds of colors.
Colors make people smile. People like to see it. It just brings a smile about like you just get a happy vibe when you see colors.
I literally walk into the salon and say 'cuz you know, they want you to pick out your color and I can't see the color and I go “you know what, whatever is fabulous, and you think is gonna make me look fabulous. Do it surprise me.”
I love that. I love that. That means you'll try you're open to trying different things.
I'm sure they've said a few things that I've been like. Maybe not quite that.
Actually, Dana, I love those tips and trend colors that you said. So if it's not working for you and your eyes, switch it up to your fingers, your nails, fingernails or your toenails. Or if that's not working for you and that's too bold, put an outfit on. Maybe match up a shoe or a handbag to swag it all out. I think that's a fantastic tip.
Because all of us have our own different comfort levels of wearing color. And I have to be honest with you, Dana, before going visually impaired, I was sticking to the winter colors—the red, white blues, and blacks. But I tell you now with the change of sight loss, I'll wear chartreuse green and all kinds of different funky colors with funky names. My favorite is coral in shades of coral and orange. I'll even wear orange and more on the colorful side and daring with color now than I was before. Go figure.
I love. I love it.
Thank you, Dana, Sylvia, Nasreen, and Steph for this amazing conversation.
If you'd like to connect with Dana, you can do so at boldblindbeauty.com.
So please share this and ask your friends to subscribe and follow us and join us for our next podcast on Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R. Thanks for listening.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai