Steph Shep Shares the Best Career Advice She Got From Her Mom

Steph Shep

Beekeeper's Naturals / Design by Tiana Crispino

The Hustle

Welcome to Byrdie's series, The Hustle. We're profiling women and woman-aligned folks in the beauty and wellness industries who are usually behind-the-scenes. From the cosmetic chemists formulating your holy-grail serum to CFOs driving the biggest beauty companies forward, these women are the definition of career goals, and they're getting real about the journeys that led them to where they are—the highs, the lows, and everything in between.

Stephanie Shepherd, better known to her nearly two million Instagram followers as Steph Shep, has carved out a unique career. Once Kim Kardashian’s assistant, she quickly rose through the ranks and became the chief operating officer of the mogul’s brands. Shepherd is now building her own empire, lending her time to initiatives that positively impact the planet and the lives of others.

In 2019, she co-founded Future Earth, a non-profit organization focused on climate education. This year, she joined Plus, an eco-friendly body care line, as its chief impact officer. On any given day, you can find her juggling deadlines and meetings for the two. In addition to those roles, Shepherd regularly takes on projects with other brands like Augustinus BaderAlpha-H Skincare, and My Theresa. Most recently, she inked a partnership deal with Beekeeper's Naturals to help launch its new Energy Lozenges (which she calls one of her workday essentials). Ahead, Shepherd talks to us about her latest partnership, career highlights, and the products that help her tackle a busy workday.

Growing up, what did you dream of becoming? What was little Steph like? 

As a kid, I wanted to be a cashier. I loved watching cashiers work and type in prices with their long acrylic nails. Honestly, little Stephanie was silly and outgoing, constantly putting on a show for anyone who would watch.

What was your first job? What lessons do you still carry with you to this day?

My first job was at Cici’s Pizza in Ontario, Ohio, and I would take the pizzas out of the oven, cut them, and put them on the buffet bar. To this day, I can still cut a pizza perfectly. On a bit more serious note, the lessons I still carry with me to this day I learned from my mother. She was a single mother and didn’t grow up with a lot. She taught me the importance of hard work and that perseverance and kindness will always get you where you’re supposed to be. 

Your passion for protecting the planet inspired you to launch Future Earth. What has it been like working on this endeavor? 

It has been an incredible learning experience. Future Earth started as a seed of an idea to help communicate information about the climate crisis to our small circle of friends. I’m so proud to see how we’ve grown and been able to start discussions about the climate crisis with people worldwide. 

Steph Shep

Beekeeper's Naturals

You often collaborate with brands on creative projects. How do you decide who to work with? What made you want to partner with Beekeeper's Naturals?  

I have been friends with the founder Carly Stein for many years now. I am always so impressed with her commitment to wellness and conservation of the bee population. In my career, I've begun prioritizing working with and highlighting brands that share a more holistic approach to business, like Carly. Our values align, and collaborating with a friend has been really fun.

Can you tell us more about the upcoming launch of the Energy Lozenges? 

We’ve taken the Beekeeper’s Naturals Propolis Lozenge you know and love and given it a boost of caffeine using ceremonial-grade matcha. Alongside the lozenges, we’re launching some exclusive pre-loved vintage tees designed by Future Earth. 

What are some of the essentials that help you get through a workday? 

I need my Beekeeper’s Naturals Energy Lozenges, seaweed snacks, my incredible team (Christina, Allison, and Annelise), and Soulection Radio on Apple Music. I also like to fit in breaks to play with my dog Binx.  

What are your go-to WFH makeup, skincare, and hair care essentials? 

No makeup. I’ll brush some Kerastase Elixir Oil through my hair and let it air dry in a braid or up in an Aquis Hair Towel. I also apply Merit Lip Oil and Augustinus Bader The Rich Cream from head to toe. 

If you could give 21-year-old Steph any personal or professional advice, what would it be? 

Embrace the qualities that make you different. 

Steph Shep

Beekeeper's Naturals

What are you most proud of accomplishing this year? 

I had the opportunity to host my second annual charity event for The People Concern. It’s one of Los Angeles‘s largest social service agencies that help people dealing with homelessness and domestic violence rebuild through interim housing, mental and medical care, abuse services, and more. We raised over $80,000 to help combat homelessness in Los Angeles. 

What are you looking forward to in 2023? Any upcoming projects you can share? 

I've been asked this a lot lately. I can't believe 2022 is already almost done. Honestly, I can't share many things yet, but I'm excited about what is coming in 2023. I can share that I’m starring in the Amazon Studios feature film Something From Tiffany’s, produced by Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine. It's coming out in December and is such a feel-good movie for the holiday season.

When you're not working, what brings you joy?

I’ve become a homebody. I enjoy simple things like movie marathons on the couch, playing with my dog Binx, game nights with friends, and volunteering. I love it when I can unplug, get off my phone, and read a book. 

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