So when I told y’all about Zandra Beauty, showing y’all how my hair was laid because of her tea shampoo, how my lips and face was glowing thanks to her body balms, and how I made it through cheerleading with her deodorant, y’all thought it was a game. Guess what? Zandra Beauty is now in over 700 Target stores across the United States right now as I write this in January 2019! Go get you some and #zandrabeauty – xoxo Allie.
WHEN ALLIE WANTED TO START KIDNEWSMAKER AT AGE 11, SHE ALREADY KNEW SHE WANTED ZANDRA CUNNINGHAM FOR HER COVER. BEFORE SOME OF THE BIG OUTLETS KNEW OF ZANDRA, ALLIE WAS ALREADY A ZANDRA BEAUTY AMBASSADOR, FAN AND MENTEE. THIS IS THE INTERVIEW THAT APPEARED IN THE FALL/WINTER 2017 ISSUE OF KIDNEWSMAKER WHEN ALLIE WAS 12 AND ZANDRA WAS 16. BE SURE TO SCROLL DOWN TO WATCH THE VIDEO!
When Allie caught up with Zandra at Johns Hopkins University, they were both being awarded for their entrepreneurial spirit and were ExCel Youth Ambassadors. Now, excelling in their own fields, Allie gets one on one with the 16 –year-old who now has her products in major stores and has been featured on the TODAY Show, Nickelo-
deon and Etsy. Find out how she went from experimenting in the kitchen to executive in the beauty industry, then find out what Allie’s favorite products are as she learns what it takes to be a Zandra beauty ambassador.
ALLIE: How old were you when you took an interest in creating beauty products and who inspired you?
ZANDRA: I was nine years old when I took an interest in beauty products but my dad is actually the one who inspired me to start because he refused to buy me lip balm. His
“NO” meant I had to learn how to make my own.
ALLIE: When did people begin buying products from you?
ZANDRA: People began buying products as soon as I made the decision to turn my
hobby into a business. I started selling at local farmers markets and after I rebranded, I started to get picked up by stores.
ALLIE: Is it easy telling adults your vision as a CEO who is also a kid?
ZANDRA: At first, it wasn’t easy because when I was starting out many people thought it
was weird that a kid was actually creating natural skin care products and was the CEO
of a real business. I had a hard time getting people to take me seriously but that made me only want to become an expert in the business world and in the skincare industry.
ALLIE: Where have you been as a result of your business?
ZANDRA: Because of the brand, I have built, I have been able to travel nationally and internationally and speak, I’ve been featured on the Today Show, ABC Nightline, Harry Connick Jr. Show, I have been featured in Seventeen Magazine, Girls Life Magazine, Black Enterprise, INC and more. I have also been able to meet with top executives from major company’s like Twitter, Gap, Uber, and Nike.
ALLIE: When did you leap from your kitchen to your own business location?
ZANDRA: In 2012 my dad ended up kicking my mom and me out the kitchen, he was
tired of not getting dinner lol. So we found an amazing small business incubator space
called The Foundry. Within two years we outgrew that space and moved into a 1300 square foot GMP compliant production studio.
ALLIE: How did you get your parents to see that this was a big deal?
ZANDRA: I first told them how interested I was and how I was going to be committed but I always showed them by doing research on my own, learnings much as I could on my own and I think that’s caught their attention and made them want to get involved.
ALLIE: .Have you always been homeschooled? How has that helped your business?
ZANDRA: No, I have not. This past year was actually the first time we tried it out
and it went pretty well. It was weird but it allowed me to spend more time with my
family and focus more on my business. I honestly don’t think I would have been
able to do most of the amazing things if I was not homeschooled. Also, due to me having more flexibility I have been able to expand my brand. I have just completed the beta of my new Young Mogul Prep School Program and I have also launched my nonprofit, The Zandra Foundation.
ALLIE: What are some of the most popular products?
ZANDRA: The most popular products are our Big Balms, Hair and Body Souffle, and our Bamboo Clay Facial Bar which is amazing and is one of my favorite products. The two most popular scents are Japanese Kumquat and Lemon Tea Tree.
ALLIE: People who go to college hope for your success. Do you plan to go to college?
ZANDRA: I do plan on going to College I will actually start going on tour this summer with my dad.
ALLIE: Enough about Zandra the business-woman. Tell us what makes Zandra a regular teenager.
ZANDRA: Lol, I love to sleep, watch Netflix and hang out with my friends and family and just have a good time. Thrifting is my new favorite thing to do.
ALLIE: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
ZANDRA: I see myself owning several businesses, growing my platform and
maybe sell a few. I see myself graduating from college with my MBA, traveling the world and eating great food. I see myself living well!!