On Her Own Wayve: Meet Diandra Barnwell
AROUND THE WORLD, THERE ARE WOMEN STARTING BUSINESSES, TURNING THEIR PASSIONS INTO PROFIT AND INSPIRING OTHER WOMEN ALONG THE WAY. WOMEN UPLIFTING AND SHINING A LIGHT ON OTHER WOMEN IS WHAT WE’RE ALL ABOUT AND IN THIS SEGMENT, WE’RE FEATURING Brand ambassador, designer, model and former So Cosmo star, Diandra Barnwell.
At A Glance:
What is the best advice you’ve ever been given? "Be proud of who you are, where you come from, and believe in yourself" Also, "there is nothing more important that spreading love and giving back"
What is your favourite go-to meal? My favorite cuisine is Mexican food, New Mexican to be exact—That is pure comfort to me. But since I have food allergies I tend to keep my diet very clean. With that said, I always have some sort of egg. Eggs are the perfect meal that can be prepared for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They can be simple or dressed up, and they are mostly low calorie. I prepare them all sorts of ways, so they are absolutely my go to and something I always have in my fridge.
What’s the last book you read? Last book I read was "The Universe Has Your Back" By Gabrielle Bernstein. loved it so much I also bought it on Audible so I can "listen" to it when I travel.
Where is your favorite place to travel to? Paris is my favorite city, and I'm trying to make it a tradition to go every year ( I am currently on a 2 year streak). But since I am back and forth between New York and LA, nothing is more comforting than going home to New Mexico to visit my family. New Mexico is where I feel most at peace.
Last time we spoke you were Cosmo Magazine's shining star both around the office and on E!'S "So Cosmo" and now you're doing so many incredible things. What have you been up to?
Thank you for that! Cosmo was a beautiful chapter in my life that I am so grateful for, and I will cherish forever. But I have to say, this new chapter has undoubtedly been my favorite. I am now a Director (Director of Customer Relations) at a The Model Experience (modeling and production agency) in LA. One of my best friends started the company while we were in business school, and I was fortunate to join the team officially a year ago. I hold a huge responsibility at the company that commands most of my time, but it is truly the most fulfilling job I've ever had. Aside from TME, I am still very much an "influencer" even tho I despise that term ha! 2018 I was busy finding my footing as a true business woman and leader, so my influencer work had to be put on the back burner. But this year I am determined to build up my brand partnerships again, and I'm happy to report I've got a handful already lined up and ready to go. Also, I am still extremely involved with my non-profit partnerships, and I hope to do more work with all three this year. TV is definitely on the horizon again, which is beyond exciting, more on that soon. And most exciting, I will be launching a beauty project with one of my oldest friends and business partners in the spring. We have been working on this for over two years, so the fact that we are revealing it to the world soon is a dream come true!
Ah! That is so exciting, congratulations! As a viewer, I personally learned so much from you but I can only imagine what you learned at your previous job. What lessons did you take from working at Cosmo Magazine that are helping you with your new career?
I learned many lessons both, good and bad, at Cosmo, but these are the ones that immediately come to mind are: Do your research, nothing worse than being unprepared in any aspect of life. Don't be afraid to use your voice and to make your own seat at "the table". Do give your all, and do your best at work, but remember everything is temporary so have a plan B.
One of the many things I have always admired about you is your willingness to giveback and use your platform to educate and inspire. Are there any new nonprofits or foundations you're working with?
Thank you! Of all the things I do in life, my philanthropic work is truly the most fulfilling. I was raised to believe that we have a responsibility to help one another, and there truly is no greater feeling. A majority of the work that I do I don't even speak about, I only post the galas and bigger events to raise awareness. Because for me, It's not about getting a gold star for volunteering, It's about actually doing the work and getting the job done for the greater good. I am currently involved with the Brooklyn Youth Sports Club, The National Down Syndrome Society, and The National Defamation League.
What advice would you give fellow twenty something women who are looking for a career change but are a little nervous to take the leap??
Change in any aspect of life is hard, period. And I being a type A Capricorn despise things that are out of my control ha! But as I've matured, and have experienced significant changes in a short period of time, I can honestly say that it was in those moments that I grew the most. In full transparency, I might of stayed at Cosmo forever because I was comfortable and thought I'd never get an opportunity like it again—turns out I was so wrong. It was time for me to go: I had learned everything I could, accomplished many goals, and was on a very comfortable plateau, not realizing that my bigger life goals were on the other side of the Hearst Tower. Definitely have a plan in place, you don't want to make any impulse decisions, but you have to take that leap! If that doesn't help, then think of all the times you took a chance and how different your life would be—that gives me nightmares! My favorite quote of life is by Neale Donald Walsch, and that is "life begins at the end of your comfort zone". I know that to be very true!
We have so many exciting things planned with Diandra Barnwell this year so be sure to follow her @DiandraBarnwell and stay tuned for some big announcements!