We had the good fortune of connecting with Victoria Cartagena and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Victoria, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
I am very personable up front. Sometimes that quality can backfire as a business woman however it is a quality that has served me well with the success of my brand. Building honest relationships and authentic following is key. Having to show up for yourself first and foremost is important but now that you have this platform it’s your obligation in my opinion to use it as your own form of expressing positivity.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
With any creative outlet comes a greater sense of self. You find yourself and your niche. Being a Lash Artist gave me a strong connection to the community + the value I bring . I am a very loyal person, at the end of the day its not just about lashes. It’s the people I meet – my mentors, trainers, clients + students. The foundation that brings me so much joy to making connections is like nothing else I’ve ever experienced with any job. I am an artist I got to where I am at now because of the time and effort I put into my practice without any expectation. I am weak when it comes to any kind of support, I serve myself when I serve others and I think that plays a huge part of my success. In short every skill you acquire comes with challenges to face and hurdles to jump over. Having a “never give up” attitude / mindset is powerful. And that is something you have to do for yourself every single day. Your craft is your passion and I got a passion for lashin! Some lessons I’ve learned along the way is pricing + valuing my services. You know your value and that is something no one else can decide for you. Once you know how to value yourself you make space for everything you deserve. Kind of like manifesting the perfect life. Don’t do it for money or materialistic things. I genuinely want to be better every single day and In my house we practice the 1% rule. Be better 1% than you were yesterday every single day. Be honest and work to the best of your ability and set realistic expectations of yourself. The rest will work itself out like it should.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
In San Diego there are some hidden gems + good eats to experience! I absolutely love showing my friends + family around North Park, HIllcrest, Barrio Logan + Normal Heights and of course the beaches. North park has some amazing food, I like to take my people to Under Belly, their ramen is the best and speciality cocktails are amazing. Across the street is Blue Foot dive bar and always a good time to create memories. Tacos Libertad in Hillcrest is my favorite taco joint in the area! Kick off taco Tuesday there and head on back to the speakeasy serves my primary purpose to unwind after a long day. Barrio Logan has so many places to experience authentic Mexican culture. Chicano park is a must see with so many murals and of course more tacos to eat at Salud! I like to take my friends and family to places to see and do things they wouldn’t otherwise on a regular day. Chicano Soul Food is my favorite pop up food truck in the area. The comfort food there is the perfect ending to a week long trip after family is visiting. Thorn brewery has my favorite Micheladas, June Shine has my heart, Polite Provisions is my favorite ambiance to be at. And last but not least Adore You Esthetics Lash Studio to take a selfie at the selfie wall.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Jaime Canela Barbershop owner of Divine Theory, my role model. He was already in the industry before I was. When we met I was working in Corporate America full time. I was laid off twice in a row within a 3 month period. It was already on my radar to take a course and obtain my license but of course things don’t always go according “to plan”. I looked to Jaime for guidance and I was always pointed in the right direction. He even gave me a solid foundation to set up my small business along side with him in a tiny studio but we made it work. Humble beginnings and now we have our own separate spaces. With hard work and dedication to your craft creates unexpected blessings. He is a smart business man and I honestly respect him so much. In this industry there is no time for doubt. Having a solid support system can you get so much more farther. That’s what he did for me, Thank you.