Renae Bluitt, Creator of In Her Shoes Blog

“My name is Renae Bluitt. I am the founder of Crush Media, which is a Brooklyn-based beauty PR consultancy and I am the creator of In Her Shoes blog. In Her Shoes is a blog that I created six years ago, that’s all about celebrating what I call “fly female entrepreneurs.”

I started In Her Shoes because I launched my [PR] business as the economy was tanking. But, I was still finding inspiration from the women around me. All of these amazing women in New York that I was meeting were building brands and starting these businesses. I knew that this type of inspiration may not have been common for most women to see at the time, so I wanted to create a place online where everyday women who were following their dreams could tell their stories in the hopes of inspiring other women to follow their dreams.

It wasn’t strategic, but there’s so much synergy between the two [Crush Media and In Her Shoes] because a lot of my clients are women-owned brands or brands that are targeting women of color. I’ve even gotten clients through In Her Shoes and then, obviously if I’m doing PR for my clients, I am able to give them exposure through the blog. One really supports the other.

The beauty of doing PR for yourself is that you can hand pick the brands that you work with. An aesthetic is a big deal for me. I don’t know if it’s a Virgo thing, but these are some of the things that I consider if I’m working with a brand. If the brand’s image doesn’t resonate with me, personally, it’s hard for me to sell it to other women. So, I’m very particular about which brands I work with.

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Beauty for me starts with things that don’t even involve products. It starts with getting a good night’s rest. I feel beautiful when I’m eating properly. So, when I’m doing things like getting rest and eating well, I feel good even before I put product on my face.

I don’t have a ritual with pretty much anything that I do. The only thing that I do in my life that’s a ritual is get up, thank God for the day and take my dog out. Everything else with my day can go in a thousand different directions.

I make sure that I wash my hair once a week or every week and a half, depending on whether it’s summer or winter. I believe in deep conditioning my hair every time I wash it. I do have some favorites. I think Aveda’s Be Curly line is amazing for textured hair. I think Ouidad is amazing for textured hair, too. I really enjoy using Eden Bodyworks’ Coconut Shea Collection. I love every single item in that collection.

[With makeup], I keep it really simple. It’s all about a good concealer. I’m blessed…I don’t need a lot of coverage, so I’ll just do some powder or whatever. I use MAC. I definitely like to have a bold lip (I love coral), but in the summer I like to keep it simple with something a little more neutral.

I’m gonna have to pull myself away from Ruby Woo, but I’ll try to mix that sometimes with an orange to brighten it up a little bit. I love a cat eye. But, I have not mastered it.

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I know that my confidence comes from my parents. My mom is from Trinidad and my dad is African American. It’s interesting because my mother is a caramel color and my dad is a shade lighter than her. No shade to the Midwest, but there isn’t a lot of diversity there. The town that I grew up in Indiana is Black, White, and maybe some Mexicans. It wasn’t a melting pot like New York. You didn’t see all these exotic looking people the way you would here. So, things like my complexion combined with my hair texture was an assumed weave for some people. It’s like no, no. Black women can grow hair. Black women have long hair.

My family always instilled in me that I was beautiful and that I could do anything. It really stuck. I wouldn’t say that I’m arrogant, but I would say that I’m confident, even in things that I don’t know anything about.

There’s a certain amount of confidence that you have to have in order to maneuver this world and not be taken advantage of or run over. I thank God for my parents reminding me frequently that I was beautiful, that I was capable and that I was strong.

I don’t know if confidence is something that you teach someone. I think that it’s something that you have to truly feel, in your heart of hearts, no matter what’s going on.

That unwavering confidence takes a lot of work and it’s something that you have to work on daily.”