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PROMINENCE It’s more than a way of living;; it’s a state of mind.

MARLA GIBBS + JOHN AMOS LONGEVITY IN HOLLYWOOD

MAYTE GARCIA OUT FROM PRINCE’S SHADOW AMERICA’S HEART THROB

NEVER LEAVE HOME WITHOUT THESE SUMMER ESSENTIALS p. 14

SUMMER 2012 USA $4.99 CANADA $5.99

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ROMEO GROOMED SINCE BIRTH HE’S READY TO TAKE OVER THE THRONE


PASSION PRIDE POWER PURPOSE POSITION


PROMINENCE It’s more than a way of living; it’s a state of mind.


CONTENTS SUMMER 2012 No. 8

FEATURES 10 MAYTE GARCIA A woman who is determined to show the world she’s more than who she was married to. 24 COVER STORY: ROMEO’S RISING Romeo Miller is all grown up and ready to take over the throne. 13 SUMMER READING Francis Ray has penned a page turner that will keep you intrigued until the very end. 14 SUMMER ESSENTIALS Summer just isn’t summer without the essentials that will keep you cool, stylish, and ready for fun. 16 MUSIC Maurice Rabsatt is an artist with creative vision and will not stop until he expresses himself on his terms. Karmella Daniel is taking control of her musical career and taking us along for the ride. 21 THE LADIES OF PRIMETIME Erica Hubbard, Angell Conwell, and Michelle Van Der Water are taking over primetime television with their wit, sass, and sense of humor 28 HOLLYWOOD LEGENDS Marla Gibbs and James Amos are examples of Hollywood longevity and have no plans of slowing down anytime soon. 30 HONEYCAT COSMETICS The vision behind the brand that will have the ladies purring for more.

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What’s your frame of mind?

PROMINENCE


PROMINENCE MAGAZINE

GLENYS COLCLOUGH Editorial Director CHARESSA SAWYER Creative Director SHIRLANNA LITTLE Intern EDITORIAL Brandon Davis Kelly Oxford Stacy McMillian Bill Covington PUBLISHING Evolve Media Group

Prominence Magazine is published bi-monthly by Glenys Clarice Media & Productions. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced, stored in any kind of retrieval system, transmitted in any form without the prior written permission of the publisher.

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EDITOR’S LETTER

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ne of the things I like to recite often is that “all things are made brand new”. No matter where we are in life or what the million and one things we tend to deal with daily, all things are made brand new. We each are blessed with a new dawn to begin again and become the best version of ourselves without limits or constraints. This issue is about new beginnings, a rebirth for many. Mayte Garcia is a woman who is a true example of strength and courage after losing a child and divorcing one of the biggest names in entertainment – Prince. She wants the world to know who she is as Mayte and not as Prince’s ex-wife and she is determined to let her light and truth shine. Romeo Miller, our cover story has grown before our very eyes to become not only handsome, but a mogul in the making. He’s ready to take over and is prepared to lead the way for those who will come after him giving credit to his father who inspires him. Then there are the Hollywood legends, Marla Gibbs and John Amos. If their careers in Hollywood is inspiration for anyone to begin again, I’m not sure what will. Their love and passion for what they do shows and is respected by many. Their longevity in an industry that has the power to wipe your career out within a blink of an eye is proof of that. I’ve been inspired by the people on the following pages. Just like everyone else, they too have dreams, goals, and desires. They’ve taken what they’ve been blessed with and put it good use knowing that with the coming of a new day, they have another chance to get it right.

Glenys Colclough Editorial Director Twitter: @glenyscc Instagram: @soulofawm

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More Than Meets the Eye MAYTE GARCIA SHOWS US HOW BRIGHT HER FUTURE IS

By Glenys Colclough

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ayte Garcia wants us to know who she is. The stunningly beautiful dancer, actress, singer, and choreographer is widely

known to the world as Prince’s ex-wife, but she’s more than her past and she’s determined to show us exactly who she is. Moving beyond the shadow of being an ex to an Alist performer into her own spotlight, Mayte joined the cast of VH1’s Hollywood Exes after being pitched by VH1 executives. “When I walked into the meeting I said I’m tired of ignoring the purple elephant in the room and they said let’s talk about it. I wanted everyone to get to know me for who I am and not just being Prince’s ex-wife,” she says. Starring alongside ex-wives Nicole Murphy, Andrea Kelly, Sheree Fletcher, and Jessica Canseco, the decision to join the cast came as an easy one. “It’s been an amazing journey meeting these women and our parallels are pretty crazy, we have so much in common,” she says with excitement.

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and our parallels are pretty crazy, we have so much in common,” she says with excitement. Known as a triple threat, Mayte remains focused on her first love of dancing and acting by auditioning for a dance movie starring William Levey. She remains mum on if she will star in the movie saying, “Will I get it, won’t it I get it? You’ll have to watch the show,” she says with a laugh. When Mayte isn’t on stage or in front of the camera her love and care for animals is a priority in her life. Jokingly calling her home a zoo, Mayte is the founder of Mayte’s Rescue an organization that helps shelter dogs find loving homes. With her sights set on her future and doing what she loves, Mayte’s alluring spirit is not only contagious, but warm as viewers will see on Hollywood Exes. She will definitely go far because now the world can see exactly who she is. “The show is a platform and you get to see me and what I’m in to and I’m really excited to share it.”


REVELENT


PYKNIC www.pyknic.com


Off the Shelf

New York Times Bestselling author, Francis Ray is a woman with the gift of storytelling. She knows how to weave together a compelling story with characters that seem to jump right off the page. When Morning Comes is her latest release, is an unforgettable tale of the lives of five adults, both men and women who grew up as orphans. They long to know who they are and where they came from and seek to find their roots, finding love and family along the way. Dr. Cade Mathis learned early that he was not the son of the man who raised him. His adoptive father, a cruel, bitter man had always been quick to tell him that he was an embarrassment to the wealthy family whose daughter got pregnant with him. When Cade received a full scholarship to college, he was only too happy to leave the only home he had ever known behind and never looked back. Now a successful doctor and one of the best neurosurgeons in the state of Texas, the only thing he longs for are answers about where he came from. What he doesn’t expect to find is Sabrina Thomas, the new patient advocate at his hospital or how this woman will lead him to the family he has been searching for and a love he never expected to find.

One on One with Francis Ray PM: As a New York Times Bestselling author, was a career as a storyteller something you've always dreamed of? FR: I never thought of becoming an author until I read a wonderful romance novel, Shanna, by Kathleen Woodiwiss. I fell in love with the strong romantic leads, and thoroughly enjoyed them having a page-turning, fun and monogamous relationship. They had problems just as all couples do at times, but they remained faithful to and trusted each other. PM: With more than 40 books in print, what's the first thing you do or the first thing that comes to mind when you begin to put the pieces of a story together? FR: The first thing that comes to mind or that I think about is what is the obstacle that will logically keep one or both of the romantic leads from committing. The problem must be realistic enough for the reader to believe, and sympathetic enough for the reader to root for the couple to resolve the problem and have their happily-ever-after. PM: What motivates you to write and create stories that take your readers into another world with the characters you bring to life? FR: I was initially motivated to write because I wanted to see people of color - people who looked like me - front and center in books. But just as strongly now is my desire to let women know that few people will go through life without problems. How you react to those problems will determine the quality of your life. My heroines might get knocked down, but they always get up and fight for what they want out of life, and they do it in a way that in the morning they can look at themselves in the mirror and be proud of who they are and what they've accomplished. www.prominencemagazine.com l SUMMER 2012 I 13


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WATER WITH LEMON We can never have too much water, especially during the summer months to keep us cool and hydrated, but the benefits of drinking water with lemon are astounding. Known to aid in digestion, giving the skin a healthy glow, and flushing the body of toxins, keeping water with lemon on hand is a thirst quenching treat.

SUMMER SOUNDS What’s summer without hip tunes to create lasting memories with? We found a love for Scottish born Emeli Sande’s Our Version of Events and Maroon 5’s Overexposed. Both are worthy of heavy rotation efforts as smooth beats and catchy lyrics flow from the speakers and fill the air. Favorites like Heaven and Mountains (Our Version of Events) and Lucky Strike and Lady Killer (Overexposed) can keep any summer pool party grooving until the wee hours. $7.99 l itunes.apple.com 14 l SUMMER 2012 I www.prominencemagazine.com


AVAITOR SUNGLASSES Protecting our skin and eyes from the summer heat and sun is must if you plan to be out enjoying it, and have a cool pair of aviator sunglasses as part of your summer wardrobe will not only keep you looking cool, but sexy. $145.00 l ray-ban.com

FLIP FLOPS Summer just isn’t summer without a pair or two or three of colorful, comfortable flip flops. Found in a an array of colors, you can pair these with just about anything from your summer wardrobe. Cute, comfortable, affordable, and convenient , flip flops are the best summer essential. $3.94 l oldnavy.com

APPLE iPOD TOUCH The beauty of technology is that we can pretty much take any and everything with us as we venture out this summer, and having a iPod Touch that allows us to share all of our favorites from music, videos, and photos is a trusty companion for any jetsetter on the go. $174.99 l bestbuy.com

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MUSIC

A

man with determination can go far if his determination is backed by unwavering faith. St. St. Thomas native, Maurice Rabsatt is a man who is not afraid to speak about his faith and how it helped him to be one of the hottest pop artists on music scene today. Infusing his love for reggae and pop music, Maurice followed the calling on his life and left his home town of the U.S. Virgin Islands for Los Angeles to pursue what he is most passionate about. Crediting R&B star Brandy, producer Rodney Jerkins, Maroon 5, Shaggy, and Bob Marley as his musical inspirations, Maurice knew early on the type of music he wanted to release, but like many recording artists, met that desire with some opposition. “I was signed at one point and I wasn’t making the type of music I wanted to make. I felt like I was being pushed in a direction that I wasn’t happy with. Everybody wanted me to be more like an R&B guy when I love pop music,” he says. “I wanted to fuse in my background, but I wasn’t able to express that. Even though we did a couple of films and television stuff, I wasn’t growing and that was one of the reasons I left the label once my contract was up.” Stepping out on a leap of faith, Maurice remained true to what he believes in by becoming an independent artist and creating an album representative of his love for pop music and his culture without the voices of music executives in his ear. Although he hopes to catch the attention of a bigger label, where he is as an independent artists is exactly where he wants to be. Having the success of four of his singles on the blockbuster film, Derailed soundtrack and then another on Quentin Tarantino’s The Protector, Maurice is fully aware of his God given talent and how to share it with the world. Currently promoting is debut singles, Love Letter and AOww WOww, Maurice is creating the type of music that moves him and his fans onto the dance floor. Not taking anything for granted, Maurice gives credit to God for each blessing, knowing that without Him he would not be where he is today; living his dreams on his terms. -SGD

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MUSIC


karmella daniel EVERY SO OFTEN WE COME ACROSS A VOICE THAT MOVES US INTO ACTION. IT UPLIFTS US, INSPIRES US, MOTIVATES US TO BE THE BEST VERSION OF OURSELVES. KARMELLA DANIEL IS THE WOMAN WITH THAT VOICE AND SHE HAS SOMETHING WE ALL NEED TO HEAR.

S

oulful, sultry, and sophisticated are just a few words to describe recording artist Karmella Daniel. Growing up in a musical household where her

Mother and father, Isaac and Emma Jean Daniel both shared the stage with the likes of The Temptations and Natalie Cole, it was in her blood to follow in their footsteps. Expanding her love for music, it wasn’t until Karmella’s sophomore year in high school that she took the gift she was blessed with seriously and wanted to make it her career. Karmella, without hesitation shares that Janet Jackson and her love for jazz are her biggest musical influences. “Janet Jackson is my favorite artist and always will be. I just love her. Also while I was at Howard University I studied jazz and that really helped to shape how I sing,” she says. A Southern girl at heart, Karmella’s decision to start her musical career in Atlanta versus New York or Los Angeles was based on how she felt. “I go with what I feel and I really liked Atlanta when I came to visit. I met with a producer by the name of Craig King who I still work with and we hit it off really well. He was like Atlanta is a really great city to get your career up and going, and that was really the choice. Atlanta just felt right.”

Once settling in Atlanta, her determination grew leading her to work with songwriters Chris Lindsey and Beth Nielson Chapman. Her career took off to new heights which prepared her for bigger things to come like pairing with B.O.B. on her latest single, The World Is Yours. Karmella proclaims she found her voice with this record. ”It’s been described as a record that fits me really well. I’m still finding my sound and still figuring out who I am exactly with my music and this is really in the lane. It’s about believing in yourself and understanding that you have a shot just like everybody else has a shot.” Currently working to complete her album, fans can expect her to be open with her lyrics. “I will be completely and totally honest with listeners about my experiences in life. I try to paint a very detailed portrait of what we miss in love and relationships, careers, failures, and successes. I want to cover that whole spectrum on the album,” she says. With a voice that moves you and an electrifying personality, Karmella’s ultimate goal with her music is to heal. “I want to heal with the music that I make,” she says with compassion and assuredness and something tells me her voice has the power to do just that. – GCC

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DWS

DINNER WITH STYLE

www.dinnerwithstyle.com


ERICA HUBBARD PLAYING THE GAME

Family Time with Angell Conwell We know her best from her role in the John Singleton film, Baby Boy, playing opposite Omar Gooding as his girlfriend, Kim. And as fate would have it Angell is teaming up with Gooding again, this time as his wife in the Bounce TV family sitcom, Family Time. Landing the role as Lisa Stalllworth was a blessing because Angell initially read for another role. “By the time I got home they called and said go back, they want you to read for Lisa, who is the lead. So I went back in, read for it, and I booked it. It’s been a real honor to work on this project,” she says. Seeing Angell and Omar together again is an added treat for fans who loved them together in Baby Boy. “I love working with Omar. We know each other really well and we have good chemistry; just to be back in each other’s presence filming the show after over a decade since we did Baby Boy is a pretty big deal.” Looking forward to the future of Family Time, it has already built a solid fan base, since the pilot premiered, June 18th.”Everybody loves the show, they say it’s easy to watch and they relate to it, and they can’t wait to see it grow and become something even bigger. So I’m just excited for people to watch and grow with the show.” -SGD

Fans of BET’s Let’s Stay Together have fallen in love with the show and its cast of characters. With well thought out storylines and punch lines that seem to fall in place within a blink of an eye, the show’s popularity is growing by leaps and bounds. The newest member to join the cast, Erica Hubbard has settled in and made herself at home playing the bold and sassy Kita Whitmore, the sister of Charles Whitmore, played by Bert Belasco. Considering her cast members like family, Erica shares that her experience on the show has been great. “I like working on Let’s Stay Together. It’s been a pleasant experience for me for the simple fact that we get to laugh, have fun, and crack jokes on set while making the show work.” Since first appearing on the show in 2011, Erica has learned a lot about her character and the similarities they both share. “We have the same personality. Kita is fun loving, she’s easy going, she’s approachable, and she likes to have fun in life. She just has a great sense of humor so I think that’s me,” she says with excitement in her voice. With the season finale leaving fans in suspense while waiting for season three, Erica’s focus during her time off is on being a new mom, overseeing her non-profit, The Erica Hubbard Foundation, and balancing it all like the pro that she is. -SGD www.prominencemagazine.com l SUMMER 2012 I 21


MICHELLE VAN DER WATER Gracefully Claiming What’s Hers Beautiful, graceful, and ready to claim what’s hers, Michelle Van Der Water is a woman with something special that will catapult her career into the Hollywood stratosphere.

with and I think one of the best things about the show is that we have so many guest stars every week. Obviously I’m a guest star myself so I didn’t really get to spend much time with the main cast because we all had different schedules, but just being able to meet all the people who Currently starring on the VH1 hit series, Single Ladies, come on the show is fun and very interesting.” Michelle plays Taylor Tillman, a socialite who is not afraid to speak her mind or go for what she wants. Having her sights set on expanding her career, Michelle is set to appear in the horror film Teeth and Blood later this Michelle didn’t know fully the scope of her involvement year, but something tells me that she will one day be until after she auditioned. “After I auditioned, I realized behind the scenes. “I really love making stories and that I would be playing Malcolm’s new girlfriend and this working with actors. I would love to be more involved in is a really interesting character to play because she’s so the creative processes on the other side of the camera. It’s over the top and also probably one of the few frenemies very fulfilling and rewarding at the end of the day.” on the show, so it’s fun,” she says with a laugh. Michelle is certainly a woman who has what it takes for Her time on Single Ladies is such an experience that leading lady status and I’m sure we will see her star rise to Michelle feels right at home. “They are so lovely to work be as bright as her spirit. -GCC 22 l SUMMER 2012 I www.prominencemagazine.com


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FEATURE


ROMEO’S RISING FROM CHILD STAR TO MOVIE STAR, ROMEO MILLER IS PREPARED TO TAKE OVER THE THRONE WITH PRECISION AND AN UNSHAKABLE THIRST FOR BUILDING AN EMPIRE OF HIS OWN, THAT IT WILL PROVE TO HIS FANS AND THE WORLD THAT HE’S NO LONGER LIL ROMEO, BUT A MAN WHO HAS COME TO WIN.

By GLENYS COLCLOUGH Photograph by KEITH MUNYAN

W

e’ve all come to know and love him best as Lil Romeo; the pint sized rapper who burst onto the music scene in 2001, following in his father, Master P’s footsteps, spittin lyrics like “Gotta Uncle named Silkk and a Uncle named C, I been dribbling the ball since the age of 3,” to “While you’ll sliding in that little bity 06 vet, I’m waiting on the runway for my g4 jet,” that gave us glimpse into what the future will hold for the little rapper with a big voice and so much to say.

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Fast forward twelve years and the young man that we saw grow up in the No Limit camp is no longer pint sized; he’s grown into a young man with chiseled features, a body young ladies swoon for, and a future as bright as bling that adorns his neck. Born Percy Romeo Miller, Jr., the road to becoming a mogul is definitely in his blood. With a music, acting, fashion, modeling, and a basketball career added to his resume, Romeo seemed to know early on what he wanted to do with his life and the path he would take to get there. He was groomed from the start for success and with a clear vision and a healthy dose of ambition that far exceeds many twice his age, Romeo came to play the game of life and he came to win. Romeo does not hesitate on who has been a major influence in his life, giving credit to his 26 l SUMMER 2012 I www.prominencemagazine.com

father, Master P for leading the way. “Being a young man your dad always plays a big part in your life. I learned the most from my dad. I never looked at him as Master P this big star. I learned a lot of good values like God, family, and education. He always made sure education was important,” he says. With a strong role model and sound values to build his foundation upon, Romeo had aspirations of becoming an astronaut growing up, but quickly laughs as he recalls what many people tell him they see him becoming if he wasn’t an entertainer. “A lot of people say I would be the President,” he says with Becoming the President or an astronaut is well within his reach, for his rise in Hollywood has exceeded that of many his age who are still dreaming of their big break and the chance to call major players in Hollywood like Will Smith and Denzel Washington mentors and friends. “Moving


out to Cali and being able to hang out with not just my mentors and people I look up, but who are now friends, like Will Smith and Denzel, I definitely want to be that next big man in Hollywood, that next leading star. Acting is something I love doing and I just want to take it to another level.”Another level is exactly where he’s headed since starring the popular Jumping the Broom. Every actor desires a role that will push him to show the range of their talent and at the age of 22, Romeo has been blessed with yet another opportunity to show his fans and Hollywood what he’s working with by starring the new Tyler Perry film, Madea’s Witness Protection, now in theaters. In the film Romeo plays Jake, a young man selected to be the new pastor of his father’s church. Romeo shares that playing Jake has been one of his favorite characters so far because it caused him to stretch his acting muscles and become someone who is not afraid to show how human they are. “The good thing about this character, he goes from A to Z. The range that I was able to show with this character, I think a lot of people are not going to be expecting it. He’s going to make you laugh; he’s going to make you cry. He kinda reminds me of the Will Smith character from the Fresh Prince of Bel Air. He’s real genuine. It’s a roller coaster, but it’s a lot of fun.” Having the opportunity to work with one of the biggest names in Hollywood has opened Romeo’s eyes to seeing not only how a man such as Tyler Perry works, but how he treats everyone on set. “Tyler has done a million things. He treated this project like it was his first project. He came in excited everyday and he had that eye of the tiger. He knows what he wants. That’s the difference between him and a lot of directors. He’ll be like look; I know exactly what I want. If we can get these one or two takes I’m good, let’s move on,” he says with admiration in his voice.

“Being a young man your dad always plays a big part in your life. I learned the most from my dad. I never looked at him as Master P this big star. I learned a lot of good values like God, family, and education.” That eye of the tiger is something Romeo knows all too well. Having competed in the ABC dance competition, Dancing with the Stars, he shares that has been the hardest thing he’s done so far, but he did it and proved that he could. Gifted in acting, music, basketball and excelling in school came natural for him, but getting out on the dance floor to display dance moves with sharp precision was something he admits he had to work on. “When I did that show, I wanted to inspire kids to not be afraid to try something new. I was definitely out of my comfort zone, but it shows with hard with that you can conquer anything.” During the short span of his career, Romeo has displayed the essence of who he is and who he aspires to become. He’s an example of where one can be if they put in the work to make it happen. He is surely on the right path to super stardom for his track record is proof.

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Marla Gibbs Longevity in Hollywood When we think of Marla Gibbs, we think of her funny role as the maid Florence Johnston in the 70’s sitcom, The Jeffersons, but her career in entertainment was destined from the start to be fruitful in many ways because of her quick wit and warm demeanor. Since her days of The Jeffersons, 227, and a host of television and movie appearances, Gibbs who is 81, has not skipped a beat. Starring in Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Witness Protection, she plays Hattie, Madea’s neighbor who tries to stay current on all the chaos going on. “I’m the nosey neighbor who lives next door to Madea and I want to know what’s going on in her house. She has a lot of stuff going on with people in and out and I want to know who they are. I told her I was the head of the neighborhood watch and that I had a right to know what was going on in the neighborhood, but she tried to keep me from knowing anything,” she says. Being honored to work on the film with such a talented cast, Gibbs hopes to work with Perry again in the future. Having worked with Perry once before on Tyler Perry’s House of Payne, she sees that as a great possibility. “I certainly hope to work with him again. I can see all kinds of things,” she says with a laugh. Having a vision and believing in it can make dreams come true and the longevity of Marla Gibbs’ career says a great deal about the level of respect she has as an entertainer. We are certain that she’s not done yet as she returns to television to play Grandma Eddy in the TV series, The First Family and Mrs. Shefflin in the upcoming film Escort Service (2013). - HLD

John Amos A Man on a Mission John Amos is more than a recognizable face in television and film; he’s a Hollywood veteran who has an impressive resume which speaks for itself. Most widely known as James Evans from the popular family sitcom, Good Times, Amos planted his roots in Tinseltown in the early 70’s and has worked steadily ever since. Teaming up with Tyler Perry in Madea’s Witness Protection as Pastor Nelson and the father of Jake, played by Romeo Miller, Amos was on set for two days for his role and found the experience memorable. “The character that I play is a pastor who hands the financial responsibility of the church over to his son and his son has somehow almost lost the church’s entire fortune, but there’s a happy ending to it in that the monies are recovered.” Amos also testifies that the set was harmonious and that he would work with Perry again. “My recognition of Tyler Perry is as an extremely capable and focused director with a very clear vision as to what he wants to see. He has a way of conveying his aspirations to his crew as well as to the actors. He was very courteous and professional,” he says. With an upcoming appearance in an as yet titled Martin Lawrence project as Captain Lorenzo, Amos is clearly a man on a mission with plans of leaving a legacy. - HLD

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A Fresh, sexy spin on bath and body products www.honeycatcosmetics.com


From Passion to Profit

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How one woman turned her passion into profit by creating a beauty line that is not only creative, but appeals to all the senses.

HONEYCAT COSMETICS PM: How did the concept for Honeycat Cosmetics come about? HC: Well, I've always been a bit of a bath-o-holic, one day my fiancĂŠ, and I were shopping at a popular bath shop, and he says, "You're always buying other people's stuff, why not make your own"? Now, you have to understand that I'm a real go getter. Sometimes all it takes it one little thing to motivate me. I have a strong chemistry background so, a light bulb went off, and I just started taking steps to make things happen. How does the saying go, "If you think you can, you can, and if you think you can't, you can't" PM: What void did you see within the cosmetics industry where you said this is where we can fill a need? HC: There is literally an army of cosmetic, and bath and body products. What we wanted to do was create a line that would appeal to animal lovers in general, and cats in particular. We do not deviate from that theme. We saw this as a completely untapped market. You know, there is a long history between women and cats which dates back to Ancient Egypt. A recent poll showed that 1 out of 3 women either owns a cat, or has owned one in the past. It was believed that cats could make their female masters irresistible (giggle). PM: From idea to product,what was the journey like for you in getting those first products manufactured? HC: Oh my mercy! It was insane, seriously. How many times did I say, "what in heavens name have I done"? Like most companies, I started concocting creams, and shower gels in the kitchen often practicing on my fiancĂŠ, until he said, "Oh no you don't. I'm tired of going to work smelling like I've been at a brothel". So, I had to find alternate guinea pigs (usually friends, and family). Then, came the research on finding a "green" manufacturer, one that absolutely had to be US based. The artwork had to be purrfect and finding a label manufacturer that was not going to demand a kidney, or my first born as payment was a bit difficult. Ahhh, but I managed. I'm from Brooklyn you know. We're tough chicks. PM: What type of ingredients do you use? HC: We are not 100% natural (yet), but being vegetarian, I'm working toward that. Our products are 97% natural. Many of our product ingredients are organic. Natural butters, oils, and fragrances. Many times we incorporate organic fruit seeds, and Jojoba beads for exfoliation and vegetable, and fruit powders for our color.

PM: What's your most popular product? HC: That can vary with the season, but our "Grooming Day" sweet potato pie scented bubble bath, and our "Rub My Tummy" milk and honey body cream pounces off the shelves : ). Oh yeah, the "Chocolate bath melts" do quite well too. PM: Will you be offering cosmetics in the future or will the line focus on bath and body only? HC: You know, when we first started, we were gonna jump into cosmetics, but we decided that we wanna do one thing, and do it well...and that is bath and body products. We are gradually changing the name over to just, Honeycat. We recurrently developing a whole slew of what we're calling, our gourmet shower gels, I'll let you in on the secret. ? CatTails 4 Two" apricot/grand mariner scented. "Cat-Bernet" red wine scented, "Cat Burglar" chocolate/bacon scented...yum! These are gonna be A-Mazing! PM: What's been your greatest obstacle in creating Honeycat and how did you use that to your advantage? HC: The biggest obstacle by far has been getting the name out there. PR is crazy expensive so, I started calling buyers, and Television Shows to promote myself. I've been pretty lucky too. Waiting to hear from the folks over at The Ellen Show. Ellen is a huge animal lover, and her producers were very open to Honeycat. PM: You are seeking a total of 250 votes as part of the Mission Small Business $250,000 small business grant. If you win, what will be your next steps for Honeycat? HC: That's an easy one! So many of our clients/fans have been asking if we have a physical store. The money will be used for that. To open a store where our clients can come by, buys some things, and have fun. We want shopping at Honeycat to be an experience. We will have nightly events like, cupcake night, wine and cheese night, jazz night, ladies night...you get the idea. We can't wait. Keep your fingers crossed for us. PM: What's the one thing that inspires you about what you do?

HC: That's an easy one. My clients, I love their feedback, and seeing their faces when they get their Honeycat gifts.

www.prominencemagazine.com l SUMMER 2012 I 31


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Prominence Magazine Summer 2012  

Summer issue featuring Romeo Miller, Mayte Garcia, Marla Gibbs, John Amos, recording artists Maurice Rabsatt and Karmella Daniel, and so muc...

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