Not only is Christine Bullock a fitness and lifestyle expert and co-creator of Kayo Better Body Care, she's mom to 1-year-old Remi Rain. How does she juggle it all? We sat down with Christine to learn her tips and tricks for being the ultimate mom boss, while caring for a little one—and herself—at the same time.
How did the concept for Kayo Better Body Care come about?
As a fitness model and instructor for over a decade, I was beginning to notice the skin all over my body age and my clients were noticing the same. No matter how excellent my nutrition or how tone my muscle, aging has its separate effect on the skin. I was actively on the search for clean yet effective anti-aging body care and with about a zillion premium face products out there, it was becoming kind of ridiculous that there weren’t the same skin care options for the body.
The only option I found was putting face care all over my body, but I couldn’t keep up the the high price. So, I teamed up with Carrington, whose family has developed and owned skincare brands around the world for over 30 years. We felt all women deserved better than the options available so we began a new and improved body of work—and developed Kayo Body.
What was the process of going from the concept to launch like?
Honestly, we flew through development to launch. The process of developing the products was exciting and easy. It’s our favorite part of the business. CJ and I know exactly what we want and already have plans for innovative products for years to come. We can quickly edit formations, where it usually can take months, because her family owns our lab as well. We flew through development.
We hired experts to design our packaging and write the text, but ended up redoing everything ourselves. Call us control freaks or just two women who knew their “baby” better than anyone else. This added a little extra time, since this was new to us. Then, we received press before we had planned to launch, so we had to launch our website two months earlier than expected.
As a mother, how do you make it all work?
I love being a mother to my child and I love being a mother to my “business.” I just have to share the time like they were two different children. Luckily, I work from my home office, so I can take small breaks to take Remi to classes, play or feed her. I love being able to see her throughout the day. I have had to take a few trips away for business and it is heartbreaking to leave, but honestly it empowers me as “Christine” and refreshes my soul to work . When I return, I just make sure to set aside plenty of time to spend with my daughter (more for me than for her).
I’ve also learned the power of being fully present. Even if Remi is playing outside my door, I am focused on work so that when I shut down work at 5 p.m., I am fully present with her all evening and weekends. I used to work 24 hours a day but I have learned to let go.
I also have a terrific husband who shares responsibilities with me. We each grab Remi, if there is sudden work to be done. He takes night shifts and I take day shifts, and he changes just as many diapers.
Remi was born a little under a year after we launched. We adopted Remi, so although I didn’t go through the physical birthing process and hormones, there is an entirely other emotional “birthing” process preparing for adoption. My work was my emotional safe haven during this time.
What advice would you give to friends considering starting a business together?
Don’t start a business just because you are friends. Let the business develop naturally and team up with the best person to help it grow. CJ and I are alike in many ways but we are also opposites. She handles much of the business, while I handle much of the PR and social aspects. It makes a great team.
I also recommend discussing your responsibilities before you start and revisiting that as the business grows, so you don’t step on each other's toes. Think of starting a business just like a marriage. You will talk to this person every day and you will have disagreements, so your friendships has to be strong enough to last—or the business won’t.
When did you first feel successful?
I felt successful when we received our first few months of press. We won an award almost immediately after our launch. But I truly felt recognized as top brand last summer when we picked up some major retail accounts.
Has there been anything about creating Kayo that surprised you or inspired you in a way you didn't expect?
I become re-inspired every few weeks about my personal health, and health in general, as we work on Kayo. We are always learning about new and ancient ingredients that affect wellness. Also, I love taking on the methodical business tasks that I’m not initially trained or talented at accomplishing. I want to learn and improve at all parts of the business so I can create another even faster.
What's your advice for moms who are looking to start their own business?
As with raising your child, take it step by step. Children won’t walk and talk at the get-go and neither will your business. But that is OK, because it would be hard to keep up with the growth and you would miss all those special moments leading up to success. I also recommend having an excellent business partner or team in place to support the growth of the business. You can’t do it all by yourself—and even if you could, why would you want to? I have created businesses without a business partner, and I love having CJ to bounce ideas and share responsibilities with for Kayo.
What sacrifices have you made as a mom and business owner to keep everything in balance?
I’m more lax with everything in my life. I am an ultra type A, needing everything to be perfect. I wouldn’t stop working until everything was accomplished. Now, as an entrepreneur, I don’t get to all my emails every day; as a mother, the house is in disarray and Remi is wearing two different socks; and as a wife, I decide to Ubereats our dinner. All that matters is that my family is happy and that I am happy and we are continually growing. Everything will get done—maybe just not in 24 hours.
If you could have lunch with any business person/mogul/entrepreneur/nonprofit founder, living or dead, who would it be and why?
I would like to meet with Dr. Dre. He took his expertise in music to create a million- (maybe billion-) dollar product. I would love to discuss the creative development of the product, the marketing and his growth as a business owner.
Are there any new initiatives or products on the horizon for Kayo Better Body Care?
In 2018, we plan on launching our bath and shower line, along with some innovative new body care. Stay tuned!
What is your favorite time-saving app or service you use regularly?
Uber, LOL. There is so much traffic in Los Angeles, so sometimes it’s worth it to just get a driver and work in the car rather than waste 2 to 4 hours of driving time.