WALDWICK, N.J. — A toddler with cerebral palsy, a pre-pubescent teen and a newborn baby made identifying as anything but a mother difficult for Kristen Castro.Then, in January 2015, she began selling makeup online.
Castro and a handful of other Waldwick women are launching their own businesses selling beauty products — primarily through social media — thanks to Younique.
Younique is a naturally-based cosmetics company -- best known for its 3D Fiber Lash Mascara -- that rallies women worldwide to "uplift, empower and validate."
"I’ve seen all these women come together from different worlds and income brackets," Castro said, "but we're on same mission to help each other....I never went to college, but I can imagine what we have is like a sorority."
Mustering up the courage to inbox perfect strangers on Facebook at first seemed daunting to single mom Danielle Koehn, who brought Younique to Waldwick in 2014.
Running her own business with a team of 100 women, however, has boosted her financially and socially.
"I have these ladies I never would've met or gotten to know as well as I have," said Koehn, who recently earned an incentive cruise to Jamaica and was promoted to the top two percent of the company. "We're like family."
"Training my teammates and talking to ladies I meet within online parties has definitely taken me out of my comfort zone and made me grow as a person," said Koehn, also the admin of Facebook's Waldwick Moms.
Castro is happy to help her husband provide for their family, and has relieved some of the burden that the out-of-pocket therapy sessions for her daughter with special needs created.
Applying the shiny pink lip glosses, sparkly eye shadows and lash-lengthening mascaras also helped Castro rediscover herself without affecting family quality time.
"The effort to want to look better comes from the inside," she said. "It's shining on the outside."
CLICK HERE to see Danielle Koehn's Younique products.
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