Travel Beauty’s #GirlBoss Series continues with mother of four Julia Samersova Garfinkel - fellow Brooklyn girl and founder of cast inc. cast, inc. is a full service casting agency based in New York City that specializes in advertising campaigns, editorials, fashion shows and commercials. With an impressive worldwide network of modeling and talent agencies, art directors, producers, photographers and designers, cast inc. works with some of the most prominent names in the industry.
TB: What Was Your Path To Becoming An Entrepreneur? Was It Always A Goal Of Yours?
JSG: No, it was never a goal. I had been working as a model manager for close to 12 years. I had worked at four agencies (Elite, Ford, Company Management and Next). In 2004, I decided to make the jump to the client side and become a freelance casting director. My best friend John Pfeiffer, Casting Director legend, took me to J&R Music World and bought me my first laptop. John and my mom encouraged me to do my own thing. I jumped into the shallow pool with my eyes closed and wished for the best! I had nothing to lose. I was not operating from a place of fear, so it all fell into place! The first year was tough financially and I had to borrow money just to survive. Gradually, through networking, word of mouth and sheer perseverance I started to flourish! The better I did, the more driven I became.
TB: It’s Your Job To Find Beautiful People. How Has Being A Casting Agent Changed The Way You Relate To Beauty…Inner And Outer?
JSG: Constantly working around beautiful men, women and children has taught me that inner beauty trumps outer any day. A gorgeous person becomes ugly very quickly with a bad attitude, and vice versa. I have also learned that personality goes a long way. You can’t just be pretty or handsome with nothing inside. Then you are just a pretty, empty shell. Also, genetics are a motherf#@ker, period.
TB: What Constitutes The “It” Factor? What Makes Someone Truly Stand Out?
JSG: A sense of humor and sense of self.
TB: What Beauty Hacks Have You Established Over The Years As A Casting Agent, Mom and Entrepreneur?
JSG: Massage, massage, massage! I am a huge massage freak! We found an incredible masseuse that comes to our home once a week. He is a Tibetan Buddhist from Mongolia; a true healer. I also have been massaging my kids daily (sometimes twice daily) since they were born. I believe that touch is so essential to intimacy, both with my husband and with my children.
I am also a huge sunscreen fanatic. Always on the hunt for a fabulous easy to apply, yummy smelling, natural sunscreen.
I love anything vanilla scented…but not cheap vanilla. I also love musk, patchouli, tobacco, citrus, sandalwood and bergamot. Scent is very important to me – it establishes the strongest memories. Also, manicures and pedicure, family style, on the regular!
TB: How Has Your Work Shaped The Way You Talk To Your Daughters About Beauty?
JSG: It’s never too early to start the dialogue about beauty, weight, societal expectations, self love, nutrition and sex in my house. We talk about everything in an extremely open, liberal way. We answer questions very honestly and name body parts by their real names. Sex is not some secretive, sinful thing.
My oldest daughter has seen my weight fluctuate several times. From very overweight to “medium” (as she calls it) to too thin! As a family, we stress the importance of fitness and activity. We try to eat super healthy but are not perfect, so of course there are plenty of lazy days and pizza parties! I tell each of my kids a million times a day how absolutely gorgeous they are. I hope it just sinks in!
TB: What Beauty Products Can’t You Live Without?
- Maybelline New York Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner in Blackest Black
- I love Weleda products with all my heart! The citrus body lotion!
- Coconut Oil for everything!
- Chanel Vamp or Iced Roses by Essie for nails
- Baby Foot Deep Exfoliation for Feet peel (OMG!)
- L’oreal Voluminous Carbon Black Mascara
- Kiehl’s Creme de Corps Body Cream
- Tweezerman tweezers
- Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Moist Hair Conditioner
- Exfoliators! I use different ones all the time
- Ling NY Skincare DUAL MOISTURE EMULSION (Ling for facials too! Ask for Carol!)
- Q-tips and baby wipes!
- Black hair ties!
- Gillette Clinical Antiperspirant
- Atelier Cologne Absolue – Vanille
- Dove Soap (love the smell)
Photo credit: Wildfox Fall 2015 campaign. Cast by cast inc. Photographer: Mark Hunter
By: Claire McCormack, Twitter & Instagram: @clairemcmack