“Career Diaries” is a column from Step Up Magazine where we feature established professionals on what it’s like--and what it takes--to enter their field. Today we are excited to learn from Stixx Mathews.
Stixx Mathews is a fashion influencer from Memphis, Tennessee. From getting his foot into fashion from men in the Hip-Hop/Rap industry to being a stylist at Good Morning America, he has many affluent names under his belt. From fashion now to beauty, Mathews is continuing his brand as he has partnered with L’Oréal.
In a few sentences, please tell us what you do and what your job involves.
My current role allows me to bridge the multicultural gap of millennials and beauty heads offering them a platform through my voice to open up different shades of beauty through all colors and generations.
How did you become interested in beauty, fashion and styling?
Honestly it was something that was innate. I’ve always been interested in beauty and fashion since my beginning. I think as I got older, I knew that I would have to end up going after my passion and not just talking about it.
Has there been a moment in your career when you realized you'd "made it" or achieved a level of success you had aspired towards?
When I moved to New York and within a year I was styling for Good Morning America I had a momentary “I made it” feeling, but all is temporary and until I’m parking my boat into my yacht, I won’t ever feel as if I’ve “made it.”
What inspired you to name your blog and book Stixx In The City?
I’m such a huge fan of Sex and the City and I’m an even bigger fan of Sarah Jessica Parker so moving to New York and really modeling my life after that great show was really a big deal for me!
What is the process for styling? Have there been any looks or people you've worked with while styling that you're especially proud of?
There are so many different processes. A lot to get into because there are so many different avenues for styling. I think the proudest I’ve been of my work is styling two rappers from my hometown, Money BaggYo, and Young Dolph. It is always humbling when people from your hometown seek after you out of all the stylists in the world to assist them with their styling needs.
Your styling page on your website says that you'll help people with styling, no matter their budget or lifestyle--does this stem from anything personal you've experienced?
Yes! When I started styling so many people were afraid to reach out to me because they thought that helping them gain their best personal style meant they had to shop at the higher end clothing marks when that’s not the truth. The truth is that so many of us have clothes that we can wear in so many different ways in our closet but don’t necessarily know how to put them together. That’s where I come in. You’re at your best when you feel you look good both outside and in!
How do you feel you have expanded your voice to people through your blog and your Instagram page? Do you think certain subject matter (fashion, personal health, race) that you've written about previously is covered in greater quantities on either--and if so, why?
I honestly have no clue. For whatever reason people have always been drawn to me and my story be it me telling it through personal experience, fashion, from the way I carry myself, or whatever. I think it all depends on people just seeing that you’re as pure and genuine that you can be in the most humanly way and rocking with that!
I know you launched your own line of lipsticks last year--what was the process for that like? Will you pursue more beauty product endeavors?
The process took me 2 years to research and develop the product. I don’t want to be out here killing people and giving them allergic reactions! The long process was worth it! I’m also in the process of expanding the brand as well. I can’t say much, but I will say that foundations are next up on the product expanding. Of course it won’t be close to 40 shades, but it’s my personal thing.
What is something you wished you knew about your industry before you entered it?
How to actually get people to pay you. Everything I’ve mostly learned thus far has been from trial and error. Being paid is the biggest part of it all.
Who are sources of inspiration for you in your career?
I draw sources from everywhere. I don’t have a particular person but I’m a part of the high fashion community on many media platforms which inspires me the most, people from my hometown counting on me and rooting for me, and just the thrill of the city and knowing that I have to work hard in order to stay here is all the inspiration I need.
What are some goals you have for your brand and yourself this year?
The biggest goal I’m working on now that will carry me into the ending of this year and into the next will be to host more beauty events with my brand and product expanding!
What's the best career advice you've ever received?
June Ambrose told me this when I interned for her, “I never was taught anything. I learned everything from being silent and watching. Silence is golden.”
Aaron Royce, 20, is a student and journalist with writing experience for print and online publications. His journalism interest began when he started reading back issues of Entertainment Weekly, Rolling Stone and Vogue before entering high school; he was a co-editor for the school’s newspaper and arts magazine. Post-graduation, he attended Christopher Newport University before transferring to NOVA’s Annandale campus, where he is currently a sophomore pursuing a Communications major. He recently completed a summer as Northern Virginia Magazine’s style intern, and now writes for online publications and interns with ArtJamz Creative Director, RMCI Senior Designer and fashion blogger Anchyi Wei.