Do you have any idea what body sugaring is? Have you tried it yet?
Body Sugaring is an ancient ritual for removing body hair with completely natural paste made of sugar. But the magic of this method lays in a few details, as everything else of course, and you can learn all about it through one of the upcoming self-sugaring events that Marianne Weiss, the owner of OrientalSugaring is organizing next month. In the meantime I want to introduce to you Marianne, who is one of the most inspiring, honest, feminine and yet very strong women I know. Marianne really owns her personal essence, that Iconic Factor I keep talking about! Read through and you’ll understand what I really mean! The interview I did with her is so powerful that I still get the chills reading it!
And yet before I start I want to tell you the story of how Marianne and I met.
I notice her almost immediately in the crowd of women listening to my presentation at Modissa that day. It is not that she shuffles in her chair and makes noise, or that she wears something bright; it is her poise and the quiet self-confidence she exudes that lights up the room. There is grace and wholeness in her that’s impossible to miss.
Later, when I get to talk to her, it becomes obvious to me that Marianne lives in complete alignment with her true nature. Nothing around what she says suggests any insecurities, nervousness, or too much self-consciousness. Marianne doesn’t try to cover up hesitancy with laughter or fill in silent moments with cliché words – she looks you right in the eye and speaks straight, with genuine warmth and unguarded enthusiasm.
We meet a few weeks later to talk over coffee and we learn a lot about each other’s lives. It feels like we’ve been friends forever and neither of us acts surprised at that. Much later the same year I invite her to my birthday party and we have a hell of a night together with other friends. I notice in between cocktails the way men observe her, turning in their chairs to watch her gracefully cross the room clad in her light blue trench coat, leather trousers, and black fedora hat, holding her sweet white poodle on a leash. Later some would come to talk to her but then walk away, overwhelmed by her genuine and smart way of making jokes and testing their interest in her.
What come next are the usual things in every ordinary but true friendship: a frequent exchange of long phone messages, plans for long lunches and afternoons at the Hammam spent in honest conversations and storytelling, and of course many SelfSugaring Ladies’ Nights. Here’s what Marianne has to say about friendship, motherhood, and being your own boss:
Tsitaliya: Can you introduce yourself with a few sentences? Who are you and what do you do?
Marianne: My name is Marianne Weiss. I was born as a Scorpio in 1978 in a small and wonderful village called Aeugst am Albis. Since I was a little girl I liked doing things my own way, independently from everyone else. I grew up an independent and passionate rebel who wanted to play by my own rules.
I am an entrepreneur and businesswoman. My company is OrientalSugaring and as the name says, it’s all about the sugaring, the ancient method of hair removal with sugar paste made of 3 organic ingredients; sugar, lemon, and water.
Tsitaliya: What is your superpower?
Marianne: I’m lucky, because I have more than one superpower.
Here they are in no specific order: I can turn a cactus into a peach, I’m a shapeshifter, I can uncover secrets and make fairytales come true.
I like to find fast solutions and to move forward. When I have a vision, I act upon it almost immediately and I don’t like to let it go. That’s what I love the most about entrepreneurship, turning ideas into reality, not just fantasising about them.
And finally, I am a phoenix who rises out of the ashes. After every crisis in my life I rise to get better & smarter, finding better business & life solutions than before and reaching more clarity. Change and transformations are like home to me.
Tsitaliya: For how long have you been in business?
Marianne: I started in April 2007, so 11 years now. As many do, I also started with almost nothing, just a vision mixed with passion, the best mix ever. I invested in my business every part of what I knew and what I could, my business became my life, I’m still not separating the two, just adding more to the mix. Some have hobbies, I have a sugar-pasted life.
Tsitaliya: What changed in your life when you became your own boss?
Marianne: What didn’t? In fact, it is still changing! There is one thing that I needed to learn faster than everything else and that was synchronising motherhood with entrepreneurship. I don’t like the word “juggle”; for me it sounds like a fight between the two and it’s not. It’s a merger, a marriage of sorts. I’m learning every day as my own boss as well as a mum.
Tsitaliya: What is the biggest challenge you have faced as a woman in business till now, and how did you deal with it?
Marianne: Being a woman feel like a privilege. Women have so many talents and skills that we mix and match all the time in order to serve and connect the most diverse and seemingly incompatible things in our lives.
I feel so enthusiastic about independent women, who rock with success, who use their creativity and at the same time take care of and raise their children.
Tsitaliya: Being a single mum and running your own business, how do you make that work for you?
Marianne: It works because I don’t separate the learning process. With me, it’s always to be continued, there is no “the end”. I’m learning new things through my work every day, which I can then pass on to my daughter. Being a single mum is a learning process as well but not a job, so everything I learn for and from my daughter I can incorporate in my work life. Both are extremely rewarding and I wouldn’t change or trade them for anything.
And honestly, it feels like I’m coming out of a battle, pulling the dirt out of my hair, putting on my high heels, looking back and wondering, how did I manage all that by myself. It got the best out of me and it made me the woman I am today. I am so grateful for this journey that became my life.
Tsitaliya: How do you describe your approach to parenting?
Marianne: You have to feel what kind of being your child is and how you can support her to become who she is meant to be. No silly rules because other parents do so or your parents did. It is important to me that my daughter is connected with herself, that she thinks independently and can make her own decisions, so she feels protected and strong, even if we are not in the same room. And as an “adult” be aware that you may know some things “better”, but by no means everything. To sum it up, I see parenthood as two companions on one way learning from each other. And of course clarity and natural authority full of love at eye level.
Tsitaliya: What does a typical day look like for you?
Marianne: OrientalSugaring customers book their appointments online, no walk-ins, I sugar them, magic happens – that’s the short version.
I don’t have a typical day. But I can tell you how my work at the studio goes. I cook the sugar, put on a pot of tea or a cool refreshment, welcome my clients, sugar them, chat, listen, and send them on their sweet way…
Longer version – The sugaring is the mediator, the tool, the bridge between people and their inner selves. When my sugaring family members come to me, they get their favorite hair removal treatment mixed with a relaxing atmosphere where they feel at home, at ease and with their clothes they also put off their shame – excited of their appearance after the treatment.
I serve people to feel themselves in a more conscious way, to love their bodies as they are.
In the early mornings and late evenings I do things like preparing and sending webshop orders, answering mails, updating my website and social media, writing blog posts, working on my new website to be launched soon and studying with Formula Botanica, where I have just successfully graduated from the Diploma in Organic Skincare Formulation degree and am just starting now the Advanced Program to formulate my own cosmetic range. And I am learning threading, finally!
I also have written and published a book on the Body Sugaring Method, which was printed and published in Spring 2016 and the new English eBook is about to be launched one of these days… I am refining the design and at the same time I am working on launching my very own line of sugar paste.
There is one more thing I do and I saved the best fort he end – my SelfSugaring Ladies’ Night once a month, where women come together to learn the body sugaring method which they can do alone at home. We enjoy each other’s company by sharing wild stories about life and having drinks. It is like a circle of beautiful sirens. Amazing nights… And much more than an ordinary beauty event. It is important for me to share know-how freely with everybody.
I love all of these experiences and the variety of things I get to do in my days.
Tsitaliya: Do you believe in sisterhood and women supporting each other or do you still feel this is a myth? What have you experienced personally?
Marianne: I have met some wonderful and supportive women in my life and the common ground we have is that we are all committed to making our dreams come true. We are all on the same path. So sisterhood is not a myth. It exists but it’s limited. When I started out I also met some deeply dissatisfied women who talked about their dreams instead of making them happen; they resented my speed and I had to let them go. My time is precious, and I want to spend it with the right people in my true sisterhood.
Tsitaliya: Tell me about the method of body sugaring. How did you become passionate about it and why do you think it is the best way to remove body hair?
Marianne: This is a fabulous ancient method dating back to 1900 BC, maybe even longer. I discovered it by accident when I worked as a massage therapist. One day I searched the Internet for a new supplier for Kese, the Turkish peeling gloves. Immediately I was fascinated even though I couldn’t imagine how it actually works. The Hammam was not ready to offer this at their place, so I registered for the training by myself and it didn’t take long for me to realize how amazing it was. The best way to remove body hair because of the long-lasting effect, it’s relentless in the fight against the unwanted hair, it’s soft and nurturing to the skin, not to mention organic and oh – such a wonderful ritual.
Tsitaliya: How do you think the concept of beauty has changed today for women?
Marianne: We live in a time of so many choices and making a decision what to use or how to take care of yourself should come as an act of self-love and mindfulness. Today we are called to live our very own true beauty concepts, and we are free to change and transform as we wish and when we wish so. No one cares if you want to walk with unshaved legs. Nor would I ever say that this phenomenal OrientalSugaring must be the thing for everybody, how crazy would that be?! But if you are into it, I will give you the best sugaring treatment & share my knowledge about this beloved method.
Tsitaliya: How do you take care of yourself? How do you practice self-love? What is your favourite self-care routine?
Marianne: I can proudly say that I am a master in practising self-love. I made it my mission to never forget to put my phone on airplane mode for my “me time”. I am merciless when it comes to choosing between meaningless coffee chats and true soulful sisterhood dinners and talks, which turn into creating projects together or vice versa – I always choose the latter. I am now wise enough to know what feeds my energy and nurtures my soul and spirit.
And very important: I have been living and planning my days and work around my moon cycle. It makes my life easier and so much more joyful.
There is also a more common self-care routine that I practise like going to the Hammam, getting an Abhyanga massage, eating delicious fresh food, almost daily meditations, nourishing facemasks, Pilates, deep sleep, spending time with my lovely daughter, and I enjoy long forest walks with my dog and cuddling my cats as much as I enjoy going for drinks with my darlings and of course wild sex.
Tsitaliya: What makes you laugh?
Marianne: Crazy wild stories, my own human being, subtle smart humor that hits the mark and my daughter, my dog, and my cats.
Tsitaliya: What do you dream of at the moment?
Marianne: That I am able to choose even more how to spend my time. To get a ton of money to speed up all my projects. To get younger, wiser, healthier. To be able to live a passionate life every day until the day I die with a smile on my face.
Book your spot at the next Self-Sugaring Workshop and get 10% discount with the code: MIH10
All photos in this article: courtesy to Manuela Bruderer