Shontay Lundy Powers Into Her Work Week With Positive Affirmations
And a few sneaky Sunday emails.
In TZR’s franchise Scare-Free Sundays, industry leaders discuss the all-too-common weekend anxiety (aka Sunday Scaries) that can rob one of the relaxation and rest they so desperately need to properly take on the week ahead. Here, we sit down with Black Girl Sunscreen’s founder Shontay Lundy who discusses the stress-fighting strategies she employs.
Becoming a beauty industry pioneer doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it’s a result of diligent work and tenacity — which unfortunately does mean working the occasional weekend. But Black Girl Sunscreen founder Shontay Lundy wouldn’t have it any other way. According to her, the business is her baby and despite its rapid success, she still struggles to set aside days off.
Black Girl Sunscreen, like so many other reputable beauty brands, was created out of the founder’s own frustrations. “I was inspired due to the lack of,” Lundy tells TZR. “There wasn’t a sunscreen on the market that catered to my skin. On the beach or hiking, I wanted to look and feel good with a sunscreen that complemented my skin tone. After searching for one, I was unable to find it, so I decided to try and create one.” And in 2016, she turned her big idea into reality.
These days, the sunscreen hero for melanated skin (think no white cast and skin-loving ingredients like avocado and jojoba oils, cacao, and carrot juice) can be found in major beauty retailers including Target, ULTA Beauty, CVS, and Walgreens. But as a Black beauty entrepreneur, Lundy’s journey to this point hasn’t exactly been as smooth as the finish of her brand’s bestselling formula. In fact, even now she says has to work twice has hard to be taken seriously by her non-POC counterparts. “Lack of funding and the belief that our community would not support a sunscreen brand due to the ill-conceived notion that Black people do not need to wear sunscreen and protect their skin,” she explains. “After almost six years on the market, and while having a strong consumer base and connection to our community and target market, finding investors who believe in our product is still a challenge to conquer.”
That said, it’s not too surprising that free time isn’t exactly easy to come by of late. Nevertheless, Lundy is making the most of her “out of office” days — which might have a looser definition in her book. The active entrepreneur does love her beach days (well protected from the sun, of course), scenic hikes, and other non-work activities that spark joy, but she’s also genuinely in love with her career.
Of course, there has to be a bit of balance. Lundy’s still learning to redefine her “me time,” but for now she manages to keep work stress — including the notorious Sunday Scaries — at bay with a few simple but effective tactics. Read on to learn what this rising name in the industry does to step into her week free of anxiety and full of self-love and confidence — even if it means sneaking in a few Sunday emails.
With your constantly shifting schedule, do you ever get a day off?
Days off? What’s that?! But seriously, it can be difficult to pull myself away from work. Black Girl Sunscreen is my baby. Do parents pull themselves away from their children?
Do you have any strict rules you abide by during the weekends or OOO days to avoid working or thinking about work?
My assistant would love it if I did! But no, I don’t have any strict rules I abide by. Typically, if I have a day off or time away, I tend to steal a minute or two just to peek into my emails.
When do your Sunday Scaries creep in? What are they like?
Realistically, late Sunday afternoon and they last until Monday mid-morning. I’m used to them now, but they are butterflies in my stomach. And also, a sense of worry, like “What’s gonna happen tomorrow?”
How do you overcome them? Any secret power product, practice, or mechanism?
On Sundays I pump out emails to make my Monday smoother, and it allows me to spend time with the team.
What does your Sunday evening routine look like?
At this point, I feel like anything that comes my way, I can handle. So, I practice a ton of positive self-talk, like “Shontay, you got this.”
What other strategies do you employ to combat stress and intrusive thoughts that can come before the work week?
I love to hike and spend time with my three bulldogs. They keep me busy and oftentimes take my mind off work. Hiking or taking a class on my Peloton helps to combat any stress I may be feeling.
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