Moms Doing It For Themselves: Jennifer Rock, The Skin Nerd
Ireland’s top skin expert, Jennifer Rock didn’t get to the top of her game without hard work and huge dedication to her fascination with skin, and how we can all make the most of it.
Her online skin consultation business and cosmeceutical store www.theskinnerd.com is helping people all over the world. And, she built her empire while being a mum! We had a chat to find out how she did it all.
Tell us a bit about your background:
I started off as a clinician working in laser clinics and dermatology clinics and have worked in salons, spas and in makeup artistry but ended up dedicating six years of my career after all that to skincare, as it was my real passion. To be honest, I tried a bit of everything before settling into lecturing for brands and accrediting bodies such as CIDESCO and ITEC all over the world.
After that, I was the proud ambassador and brand manager of IMAGE skincare. The Skin Nerd, my online consultation company, started from my passion to give educated as opposed to opinion-based information in regards to skin.
Did having a child change how you felt about your career? How so?
I don’t necessarily endorse it but as long as I’ve been an adult, I’ve been a mother. I had to start earning as quickly as possible so that I could become a long-term provider. I’ve never seen any of my jobs as jobs, I’ve always seen them as a step (upwards) of my career.
What changes did you make to make your career work for you?
To be honest, nothing changed for me, seeing as becoming a mother and starting my career happened around the same time. I needed a lot of support from my family and others around me and I’m lucky to have had plenty of it. I went from my leaving cert exams, to being a mother and then straight to college and I couldn’t have done it without the support system I had in place.
Did you receive support from your employer at the time?
I didn’t have an employer at the time. However, the principal of the school I was in and the relevant teachers were as supportive as they could be under the circumstances.
How did your partner support you through this time?
I didn’t have a partner, my parents took on the role, in that sense. They are amazing.
What worked and what didn’t work along the way?
I have to say, having a brilliant childminder means that I can focus on work without worrying. Matthew has always come with me everywhere, and because of this, he knows how to tint brows! He’s accompanied me to exams, had his nails painted since the age of two and he’s been the subject of baby massage. He’s pretty much grown up in the skincare industry.
Considering your happiness levels before making a switch to now - how have they improved/decreased?
I wouldn’t change being a mum for the world, my son has taught me to be a better person and helps me to prioritise and serve a better purpose in the world.
How do you rate your work/life balance?
I am constantly working, always on the go - so my work/life balance is essentially non-existent. However, when I come home to Matt, he helps me not want to work so I can spend time with him.
Three bits of advice for working mothers?
- Never compare yourself to those who don’t work!
- Enjoy your work and don’t feel guilty about it!
- Fulfil yourself - as your own journey is important too!
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