5 Rules For Life: Cordelia Smith

Cordelia Smith is the self-taught skincare and fragrance expert founder of Formulary 55, a cruelty-free, handmade range of bath, body, and home products. After years of customizing self-care products in her kitchen, she created the brand, which is now carried by over 800 retailers in 17 countries, and headquartered in Pueblo, Colorado. Here, her 5 Rules for life in her words.

1. Hire a professional/ Ask for help when you need it. 

Don’t try to do it all yourself.  Ask for help in your personal and professional life. You can’t do it all, and by trying, you are spreading your energy and talents way too thin. It took me years to learn this! 

2. Surround yourself with the best people.

One of my favorite sayings is, “If you are the smartest person in the room, you are in the wrong room.” The people I see and work with on a daily basis are simply really good people. They are some of the smartest and hardest working people I know (and I’m a little biased, because one is my husband!) so it’s easy to always be learning something. It’s also really encouraging to be inspired by the people you spend the bulk of your day with. Most of my close personal friends are also fellow entrepreneurs, and seeing the way they handle adversity just as well as success has taught me a lot. It makes me want to do better and be better. 

3. Don’t be afraid to fail

Take chances and don’t be afraid to fail. In the early part of my career, I was terrified to make mistakes. After failing a couple of times with different businesses or projects, I realized that failing gets you to where you are supposed to be, and that sometimes falling flat on your face is a really good thing. What you can learn about yourself after a “failure” is often a critical part of your next great success. 

4. Have fun

Laugh every day (especially in the face of adversity), and remember to have fun. Life is too short to be stressed out by things you can’t control. And as smoothly as things are running, there will always be bumps in the road.  

5. Don’t buy into the beauty industry’s bullshit. 

Don’t look at yourself through the eyes of advertisers. They are trying to make you see flaws that don’t exist to sell you something. See beauty all around you, in the real people you know, and look at yourself with fresh eyes. Then define what beauty means to you. 

Thank you, Cordelia! Stay tuned for more Five Rules installments.

 “5 Rules For Life” is a series on Rouge18 in which I ask others to share their five rules for life about anything and everything. You can learn a lot about a person by reading which five things govern their actions, no? 

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