Before there were brands like Glossier and Drunk Elephant, there was Renée Rouleau — another cult-loved skin-care brand that’s been earning the praises of editors and celebrities for years.
Founded by Renée Rouleau in 1997, the company — which sells products based on a system of nine different skin types — has become famous for its anti cyst treatment and the skin-care advice blog that Rouleau started writing long before content was king for brands. A once full-time celebrity esthetician, Rouleau still counts the likes of Demi Lovato and Chiara Ferragni as fans today.
This year, in honor of its 20th anniversary, Rouleau decided to give the brand a makeover that included a refreshed logo and packaging, new products and a sleeker, speedier website. Most notably, she did away with the pink-heavy and cluttered branding of previous years, opting instead for minimalist neutrals and blues, which she feels elevates the brand.
Rouleau with fashion bloggers Chiara Ferragni and Tina Craig
The brand, which has its corporate office and warehouse in Austin, currently has two in-person spas in the state, in Dallas and Plano. Rouleau also regularly travels to Los Angeles and New York for in-person consultations, and does virtual consultations, in addition to managing her 23 employees.
“As for work-life balance, I have none,” she said. “I simply love what I do, and making it all happen is just so much more interesting to me than anything else.”
She detailed a recent day for us that involved a workout, back-to-back meetings and answering fan questions via Instagram Live.
6:45 a.m.: My husband and I get into our workout clothes and head down to the kitchen. He has his coffee while I have a hardboiled egg. I don’t do coffee; one sip in this lifetime was enough for me to know I don’t like it. He, on the other hand, is French and would bathe in it, if he could. It’s a nice morning, so we walk to the gym. We discuss details related to the one-night staycation we have planned for next week at this fab hotel downtown, the Hotel Saint Cecilia.
7:30 a.m.: We arrive at our gym, Dane’s Body Shop, and work out Crossfit-style for an hour before we walk back home.
8:45 a.m.: I shower and get ready for the day. Today is a shower cap/dry shampoo day, so it doesn’t take me too long to get ready. I try to make every hour of the day productive, so I have a TV in our bathroom that I use to catch up on recorded shows. I watch an episode of “Jimmy Fallon” from last week that featured Chance The Rapper. I saw him perform recently, here in Austin; he’s such a talent, and I admire the fact that, unlike every other successful artist, he never signed with a record label. He has a vision and wants to do it his way. I can relate.
9:30 a.m.: I pop into my home office to quickly get some emails knocked out. Our graphic designer just sent me our next email blast, so I review this closely and send her back some changes. Then I pack up my bag to head to the office.
Rouleau’s anti cyst treatment
10:15 am: I swing by my favorite taco joint, El Chilito, to get a to-go lunch to eat at the office later. Once I get there, I say hello to everyone and then hop into a 90-minute leadership meeting with our COO (who happens to be my husband), along with our managers from operations, marketing and finance. We strategize, problem-solve and make sure we’re all on the same page. Today we’re talking about some issues related to our inventory system, our need to hire another person in the warehouse and when we’re going to get one of our new filling machines up and running. We also discuss our new Overnight Eye Serum (a gentle under-eye exfoliator) that will launch in January.
12:30 p.m.: I have the tacos for lunch — they’re delicious. Everyone in the office is buzzing about our December 1 “Burpee Fundraiser Challenge.” For the entire month of November, we’ve been training with daily burpee goals to prepare us for this Friday’s big event. Each person will choose to do burpees for 10, 20 or 30 minutes, and, for each burpee they complete within that time frame, our company will donate one dollar to The Movember Foundation. It’s great to do team building stuff like this and keeps work fun. Last month, we had an outing at a new axe-throwing facility in the area.
1:00 p.m.: I roll into our weekly 90-minute marketing meeting for a bit. We’re working on our 2018 marketing calendar, so we’re brainstorming all the new and exciting projects we have in the works.
4:00 p.m.: After having some one-on-one meetings, I head back home to work in my office, where there are fewer distractions. I check a few emails, and then hop onto my personal Instagram and do a 45-minute Live video, where I answer skin-care questions. It’s a great opportunity for me to connect with our loyal customers and help them with their skin. Today, I was asked a lot of questions about how to keep skin hydrated, now that the weather is cooler, without causing breakouts. It’s definitely a balancing act for those with certain types of skin, but I offer some great solutions. Afterwards, I save the video so people can watch it for the next 24 hours.
5:15 p.m.: I have a blog post to write about how drinking alcohol affects your skin, so I dust on some SPF-infused mineral powder, put in my wireless earbuds, grab my phone and go for a walk. While I’m walking, I record a voice memo with all the details of how I want the post to go, while getting some fresh air and getting in some exercise. I’m all for triple-tasking.
6:00 p.m.: I head back home and hop on a 15-minute call with my food coach. We have weekly calls. I’ve been working with her for the past six months to keep my relationship with food a healthy one. Since I travel so much, I can get really out of my eating routine on the road, so she helps keep me accountable.
Demi Lovato sharing a Renée Rouleau product on her Snapchat story
7:30 p.m.: My husband cooks up a delicious meal for us to enjoy. Spaghetti squash with chicken and sun-dried tomatoes. He cooks, I clean. I’ll get an apple with some peanut butter for dessert — my favorite!
8:30 p.m.: I head upstairs to the bathroom to change into my pajamas and do my nighttime skin-care routine. Then I grab my laptop and lay in bed for an hour, working and returning emails.
10:30 p.m.: The workday is done. I put my laptop aside and stretch on my bed for 30 minutes, while checking Instagram and Facebook. Prince Harry got engaged, so that’s popping up everywhere. I also hang my head upside down for three minutes — it’s my nightly ritual for bringing blood flow and oxygen to my skin to keep lit from within.
11:00 p.m.: I turn on my Dohm white noise machine to get my beauty sleep. We live in downtown Austin, so I need it to filter out all the outside noise.