This month’s Guest Editor is Jackie Johnson, founder and host of Natch Beaut, a fun podcast all about modern trends, cruelty-free beauty and skincare, and the golden years known as the late 90s to early 2000s. We chatted with Jackie about why she started her podcast, her favorite LA vegan sushi spot, and Weird Al (um, you will have to read on to find out…)
Image via Jackie Johnson
How start doing a podcast?
I have been doing live comedy in LA for several years, and last year I got really into Snapchat. I discovered it as a way to directly address my audience in a conversational way, and people started watching and the audience grew. Through the growth, I was encouraged by some fellow comedians to parlay this into a podcast so more people could find me and hear what I was doing. I knew doing a podcast on something as visual as makeup might sound crazy, but I had a hunch it would work if I handled it correctly. And a few months later, Natch Beaut was born!
What is your biggest challenge with producing a podcast? biggest reward?
The biggest challenge I have personally is relinquishing control. I planned an all vegan wedding last year and learned that about myself- I am a control freak. Luckily, I trust my producer Steven Ray Morris along with the entire team at Feral audio implicitly, and they help guide me down this path of team work. I still answer every email I receive myself because the audience is very important to me. I want them to know I am grateful for them for spending an hour of their week with me. The biggest reward hands down are the daily messages I get saying I have opened so many people’s minds up to the plant-based lifestyle and cruelty-free makeup and skincare world. Natch Beaut gives full transparency about the harsh truths of the beauty industry that no one really talks about, and I love that so many listeners have vowed to no longer support these injustices with their wallets!
How do you partner with Feral Audio – explain what they are?
Feral Audio is a “fiercely independent” podcast network (like a TV network, but for podcasts instead of TV shows), which means they host Natch Beaut on their server and allow me to record in their beautiful studio. Every show on Feral is 100% creator-owned, uncut, and unfiltered. When I started shopping Natch Beaut around, I knew I wanted it to be on Feral for those reasons. Plus, the name makes me think of kitties and raises important awareness of the importance of spaying and neutering your pets! We can all get behind that message.
Why is cruelty-free beauty important to you?
Beauty to me is not about achieving perfection. It is about self-care, taking time for yourself, and feeling like the most confident and best version of yourself. As a vegan and an animal lover, having animals harmed for the sake of my beauty would be an absolute irony of the entire point. We can all look beautiful and feel beautiful, animals included, without anyone being hurt in the process.
Who inspires you?
My sister, who makes motherhood of two look easy. She still hot rollers her hair every day and had both of her babies all-natural at home. She is beautiful, inside and out, and has eaten a plant-based diet since she was a child.
My dog Chooch because she lives her life with such wild trust and unconditional love of all people and things. She is also vegan and the most gorgeous creature I’ve ever seen.
Lisa Simpson for being one of the first people (albeit a cartoon person) for first presenting me with the idea of not eating animals if you love them.
Weird Al Yankovic for being one of my first big comedic inspirations, as well as a longtime friend to the animals.
Image via Jackie Johnson
What is your morning routine?
The first thing I do every morning is take Chooch on a walk. Then I wash my face with my face wash du jour. Right now I am all about Source Vital apothecary, which is an all-natural, cruelty-free skin care line out of my home state of Texas. I love their algae deep cleanse, and their custom facial cocktail has changed my life. I would bathe in it if I could! I also ALWAYS sunscreen my face and neck. I’ll give the hair and teeth a good brushing as well. I may or may not do makeup, as I love to take a break and enjoy a natch-faced day when I can. I also start every morning with a cup of organic jasmine green tea with a splash of almond milk. I am a big tea lady! And I will most likely check all of my social medias a few times throughout this whole process, let’s be honest.
What is your favorite restaurant?
I love the all-vegan sushi restaurant in Los Angeles called Shojin. I have every birthday/anniversary/excuse to celebrate there that I can. They have truly elevated the art of vegan cuisine there, and they are also so ridiculously nice there. The bathroom is also very cute. Go eat there and go in the bathroom and you will see what I mean!
My husband and I love to travel! We love to go on local trips in California, like to the Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo, or down to San Diego where the vegan cuisine scene is top-notch. We did a Euro trip for our Honeymoon and it was absolutely magical. We also love a short jaunt to Vegas for some slot machine action and our favorite vegan pizza place, Slice of Vegas inside of Mandalay Bay!
I don’t drink alcohol, but if I could drink a cold pressed juice from Kreation juice every day of my life, it would be the ultimate #LifeGoals. Everything in that place is delicious and makes my life brighter, although my favorite is the illuminate juice! It is truly the organic nectar of the Gods.
…Thing to do in LA?
I love taking my dog to the beach. She comes to life when her paws hit that sand. She also loves to sunbathe, which she got from her mom (although I SPF myself to a comical degree!) My favorite one is the Huntington Dog Beach. We always get lunch at Vegan Nirvana beforehand, so it’s not an entirely selfless excursion.
If you could have dinner with any 4 people in the world, who would they be?
This is a very difficult question, as I love having dinner with people and have a lot of favorites:
Paul McCartney because he means more to me than any person in the world I’ve never met for many reasons (He is a Beatle, he is a longtime animal advocate, and I like to think on some level that he is my dad.)
Howard Stern because I have been listening to him for so many years and following his life and career. We spend so many countless hours together- it would be nice for me to finally be able to respond to the conversation.
Weird Al. Is it weird that I’ve mentioned him twice in this post? Too late cause I’m going there.
And, Adam my husband who is my favorite person in the world to dine with.
Any advice for budding entrepreneurs?
Just do it. I waited for years to start my podcast because I kept talking myself out of it. “There are already so many podcasts; no one will listen to it. Get a life and stop listening to so much Weird Al, ya goof!” I was just afraid of “failure” or of what people might think. I was being lame. Don’t be lame like me. Put your art into the world. It will resonate with people who appreciate it and that is truly the only thing that matters. Do YOU, honey!