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Photo credit: Earnest “Streetnoize” Nelfrard

This past weekend, Ladies Who Brunch hosted The Connect: Business, Bubbles, and Brunch.

Ladies Who Brunch is well known for having successful and experienced speakers like Myleik Teele (CEO of CurlBox), Toya Wright (author and founder of Garb Boutique), Claire Sulmers (founder of Fashion Bomb Daily), Necole Kane (entertainment and lifestyle blogger), and many more attend to share their knowledge on starting a business and making sure it becomes successful.

So, there was no surprise when editor-at-large of Instyle Magazine Kahlana Barfield, and owner of Mielle Organics LLC, Monique Rodriguez, arrived as keynote speakers.

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Photo credit: Earnest “Streetnoize” Nelfrard

Barfield talked about her experience graduating from Howard University with no job, but landing an internship at Suede magazine with an income of $15 a day while living in New York. She eventually applied for an internship at Instyle where she worked as a general intern moving between whichever department or editor needed her support. She worked hard and remained humble, which didn’t go unnoticed. Eventually, she landed an assistant editor position. From then to now, Barfield has been promoted many times within the company, including positions as associate beauty editor, beauty editor, senior beauty editor, beauty director, and now beauty editor-at-large.

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Photo credit: Earnest “Streetnoize” Nelfrard

Rodriguez is a businesswoman with an all-natural hair and skin care line. She went to school to become a registered nurse, but in her heart, she knew that wasn’t her calling, so she became a beauty mogul. With her background in science, she knew what was good and bad for the body, so when she went out to buy organic products for her hair or skin and saw that some of the ingredients weren’t as healthy as the brand made it seem, she knew that she had to help educate women on what natural ingredients are best. That’s where Mielle Organics LLC came about. Now her product is sold in multiple countries and is in stores like Target, CVS, Sally Beauty, and more.

Rodriguez let the audience know her business was not an overnight success, and the reason her business is blooming is because she followed her dream and that everyone should do the same.

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Photo credit: Earnest “Streetnoize” Nelfrard

Both ladies may have taken different routes to get to their current success, but their hustle mentality and go-getter strides are what made getting there significant, and something many women in the audience can relate to.

Marquavia "Queen" Smith

From the top of my head to the bottom of my feet, Black Girl Magic is within me. From deep down in my soul, to the goals my brain holds, Greatness is upon me. -QUEEN