We had the good fortune of connecting with Nicole Smithee and Alex Brown and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Nicole and Alex, every day, we understand how much execution matters, but we think ideas matter as well. How did you come up with the idea for your business?
At the beginning of 2018, we paused from our busy schedules (with lattes in hand, of course) to sit down and dream together. It was amazing! We highly recommend making space to dream with friends who share similar passions. In our case, our commonality came in the form of championing women. Both of our individual careers had already involved investing in young women. I (Nicole) had worked for a decade and a half in a male-dominated profession while paving a path for other women and taking every opportunity to mentor young female professionals in my field along the way. And I (Alex), after studying theater and working alongside a company of women in fashion, founded an organization in Australia that took what I had seen in these industries and developed a course for high school girls that focused on building confidence and self-worth. But we knew it was time to do more! With the latest wave of extraordinary female empowerment shaping society, we wanted to create a space for women to explore what it really means to live empowered. We wanted to make something that truly represented the diversity and uniqueness of women and spoke to the relevant issues women face today. We wanted to create a platform for women and by women. We envisioned an online space where we are supporting one another in our struggles, celebrating each other in our successes, and helping each other thrive in life. A few months later, after many long hours of working and planning that was sustained by a phenomenal team of women and ridiculous amounts of caffeine, Iridescent launched as a digital media company committed to championing the brilliance of women. Since our launch two and a half years ago, we have published articles from over 215 different female contributors from around the world, and have featured over 85 different women through written and video interviews, our podcast episodes, online webinars, and live events. And at the beginning of 2021, we launched the Iridescent Members Program– a community of bold women committed to investing in their personal and professional development while prioritizing their holistic wellbeing. Our entrepreneurial journey has been quite the adventure, and we can’t wait to see how the coming chapters unfold! Our greatest hope is that at Iridescent Women, women find more and more of their brave, embrace their brilliance, and celebrate who they are and all that they bring to this world.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Iridescent Women is a digital media company committed to awakening and championing the brilliance of every woman through honest conversations and authentic connections. We believe every woman is brilliant- uniquely formed and divinely woven together, with the ability to light up this world through goodness and kindness, bravery and resilience. Her shimmer is multi-faceted and potential uncontainable. Created with purpose, she is destined to shine. In a digital age filled with filtered selfies, highlight reels, and branded personas, women are often left feeling the pressure to become more aspirational versions of themselves or to conform to society’s narrow minded picture of the ideal woman. Women are also struggling to tend to their personal wellness, cultivate life-giving relationships, live from a deep sense of purpose, and fight gender and racial inequalities. Iridescent Women is changing the narrative for women today. We are building an online community where women can be real and vulnerable, where authenticity is more than a buzzword, where females of all sizes, skin tones, and seasons of life are celebrated for who they are and not just who they aspire to be or who they are told they ought to be. Iridescent Women is fostering an online space where women are celebrated, encouraged, challenged and empowered by other women. This January, we also launched our Iridescent Membership Program- an online membership community of bold women committed to investing in their personal and professional development while prioritizing their holistic wellbeing. We offer our members monthly resources, regular online events, opportunities to collaborate with other women, and exclusive discounts to female led brands and businesses.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We both live in the greatest city in the planet… NYC, of course! There’s so many adventures to be had in the city, but we would definitely take friends for a stroll around Central Park, shopping in SoHo, and for the world’s best pizza at Lombardi’s in Little Italy. The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Our greatest shoutout goes to our Iridescent Women community- our subscribers and members! They make our company the vibrant online community it is! Many women have boldly and vulnerably shared their experiences, insights and perspectives on our platform, and modeled what brilliance in action looks like! It’s these women, using their voices to bring inspiration, education, and practical wisdom to other women that has created an online environment at Iridescent Women where women feel seen, heard, supported, and championed.
Other: https://www.pinterest.com/iridescentwomen/ The Iridescent Podcast found on iTunes, Spotify, and Google Play
Lillian Brown Photography