Instagram stars Marianna Hewitt and Lauren Gores on turning friendship into business


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Photo: Summer Fridays
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Being an Instagram influencer in the lifestyle space comes with certain perks, from testing cool products to developing a group of dedicated followers. But for the lucky ones, friendship and even collaboration is possible. That’s just what happened when Marianna Hewitt met fellow blogger Lauren Gores in 2010. The duo, who were known for their personal lifestyle blogs, found common ground and are now business partners.

It was a mutual love for face masks that inspired their skin-care line Summer Fridays, and the first mask dubbed Jet Lag ($48), is out now, with more to come. Here, Hewitt and Gores share with me how wellness inspires them, why self care is oh-so-important, and why skin care is just a piece of a larger puzzle of wellbeing.

Keep scrolling for more on the duo, including what Summer Fridays means to them.

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Summer Fridays
Photo: Summer Fridays

How did getting in sync with each other inspire your brand?

“We’ve been friends for a really long time and have a lot of the same interests,” says Gores. “We actually would make DIY face masks a lot for our own blogs—especially while I was pregnant because I couldn’t find any skin-care products that were clean and worked.”

From there, the duo began concocting lotions and potions at home until they realized there was actually a greater opportunity—and they jumped at it.

“Finally we were like ‘Okay, we want to do face masks, we want to do skin care.’ We knew our audience really loved these products,” she says.

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Why the name Summer Fridays?

“Summer Fridays is a lifestyle. It’s a feeling. It’s all about taking care of yourself,” says Hewitt. “We’re such big believers in that. And then you’re so much better for everyone else around you.”

“Self-care isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity. It’s something that you take time and do for yourself all the time.” -Lauren Gores

“Self-care isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity. It’s something that you take time and do for yourself all the time,” Gores says. “Whether that’s taking a bubble bath and putting your face mask on or just sitting on your couch watching Netflix.”

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So, self care is a priority. How do you practice?

“I love the sauna. It’s one of my favorite things,” says Hewitt, adding that since she experiences jet lag often, she relies on it. “I just feel refreshed. My skin feels better and is glowing.”

Wellness is a top priority, Gores says, adding that getting in a workout is crucial. “I either go do a run or I’ll try to do a little yoga. Just kind of depends on the day.”

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Jet Lag Mask
Photo: Summer Fridays

Why is skin care crucial to overall wellness?

“To me, beauty and wellness are together. The skin is the largest organ on your body. You should be aware and conscious of the ingredients going into your skin care. It’s just as important as what you’re eating,” says Gores.

“It’s not taking care of your skin. It’s taking care of your body.” -Marianna Hewitt

Hewitt says it’s all connected, too. “It’s not taking care of your skin. It’s taking care of your body,” she says. “I think that Summer Fridays really embraces all of that.”

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How does social media—especially Instagram—factor into Summer Fridays?

“We love the social element of putting on a face mask—it makes you think ‘Okay, I want to get with my girlfriends and put on the mask,'” says Hewitt. “Or take a bubble bath and put on the mask. Watch your favorite show. There’s a feeling you get.”

But Hewitt isn’t super into the many masks people post pictures of on Instagram that are just “cool for social.”

“Do you want to put glitter on skin? Is it doing anything for your skin? Absolutely not,” says Hewitt. “We wanted [Jet Lag] to be effective first and foremost.”

“We love the social element of putting on a face mask, too.'” -Marianna Hewitt

And while how the products worked was most important to Hewitt and Gores, perfecting the packaging so that it looked good in a flat-lay was high on the list, too. “It needs to be photogenic packaging. That was a priority for us,” says Hewitt, which is why the duo used a clean type in big letters on their tubes. In addition to beautiful packaging, we have Instagram to thank for bringing these these two #bossbabes together and also for the creation of a new clean beauty brand. Double tap to that.

Read up on other badass beauty bosses like Jamie Kern Lima of It Cosmetics and Lisa Price of Carol’s Daughter.

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