For anyone contemplating a career in beauty, you’d do well to listen to the great career advice from Stephanie Roy-Dufault. As Lancome Canada’s Integrated Communications Leader, she oversees all communications and social media activities for the luxe French beauty brand. From accompanying editors to Paris press trips to preparing press kits for new launches to monitoring social media discussions, Stephanie has landed one of the most glamorous and challenging jobs in prestige beauty. And while she juggles a multitude of tasks everyday, she is equally generous with her time for anyone wanting career advice. I recently sat down with her to get to get an insider’s look at this fascinating career opportunity.
Stephanie Roy-Dufault, Lancome Canada Integrated Communications Leader
Dave: To start, tell us a little about your job and what it entails.
Stephanie Roy-Dufault: I am the Lancôme Integrated Communication Leader. In a nutshell, I take care of all public relations for the brand as well as managing the social media platforms and influencer relations too.
D.L.: What is your career background? How did you get to this point in your career?
S.R-D.: I studied Fashion Marketing in Montreal as well as Communication at the Sorbonne in Paris. I started as an intern and few mistakes (and promotions later), an older, slightly wiser me was given the opportunity to work for a luxury communication agency in Paris. From a very early stage in my career I realized I wanted to be able to dedicate my energy into making a difference for brands. I wanted to be a part of one big vision. And I couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunities I had been offered. After spending a year in Paris and five years in Australia, I decided it was the time to come home to Montreal. Working at Lancôme has been challenging and so rewarding. I couldn’t be happier.
D.L.: What advice would you give anyone starting out in the beauty business today?
S.R-D.: Don’t be afraid to work hard, and do innovative things. I think it’s also super important to test yourself and your creativity in different fields and take risks! Think big, trust your instinct and surround yourself with the best team.
D.L.:What advice do you have for any bloggers who want to work with a brand like Lancôme? What do they need to do to get noticed by a brand?
S.R-D: Create some beautiful content according to the brand aesthetic. (Look at Lancome’s website & Instagram account to get an idea of how the products are displayed, photographed and styled.) Lancôme is a premium brand with exceptional creative team behind it and your content has to represent that too! I am constantly looking to work with up-and-coming talented bloggers! Don’t forget to tag #LancomeCanada!
D.L.: What do you look for in a blog or website when deciding if it is right for Lancôme?
S.R-D: Any blog or website absolutely needs to elevate the brand and be authentic. (Look at your blog or story and see if the visuals and approach is similar to what Lancome creates. It doesn’t have to be exactly the same, but it should have a similar quality to it. In terms of your stories, have you really researched the brand and the topic and shared good information with readers? Always make your posts and stories as professional and high quality as possible – DL)
D.L.: Tell us what a typical day is like for you.
S.R-D: A typical day in my life goes a little like this:
I usually get up late (I sleep 10 hours) and check my email, schedule and social media before getting up. I also do my makeup in the car because I love the bright lighting.
I am very close to my team and we usually discuss upcoming shoots, events, blogger collaborations and strategies first thing in the morning.
I have lunch very early and it’s usually with my team at the office. It’s always light, fresh and healthy. I favour salad, soup and juices. I sometimes take the time to go to Sephora or Hudson’s Bay to check on the competition!
I reserve this time to get the most important things done: presentations, strategies, preparation for meetings, product mail outs to bloggers and media.
I also manage all Lancôme social media platforms and I usually spend about 2 hours per day organizing content, managing posts, responding to customer requests, etc.
Now that I don’t live in Sydney anymore I can’t rely on a swim in the ocean or an evening run in the middle of January to keep me active. A few times a week, I do pilates or ballet barres here in Montréal. I mix it up.
I don’t create menus in advance so I end up at the market every day! My boyfriend calls it a ‘complete waste of my time’ but I call it eating fresh! I love to cook light but flavor- packed dishes for dinner.
I have a long and hot shower every night. I also use my Clarisonic and once a week I apply an Advanced Genefique Mask.
I check my social medias platforms and my Pinterest boards. (It’s my favorite!). I drink two glasses of water and go to sleep! I am so lucky because I fall asleep in about 45 seconds every night. I’m very grateful for this gift.
D.L: What the biggest mistakes that you see people make when starting out their careers?
S.R-D: Not trusting their gut or their instinct. Huge mistake.
D.L.: What is the best press trip you’ve ever taken?
S.R-D: I really love going on a press trips to beaches in remote and exotic locations but nowhere can beat Paris! My recent press trip was at the Hotel Salomon de Rothchild and it was incredible. I also got to meet Lisa Eldridge!
D.L.: How is social media changing what you do?
S.R-D: Social media has been changing how I work for a long time now. I have always been very curious about it and I have had the opportunity to work with true influencers through the years. Social media has changed the beauty and communication landscape forever and I have found myself so lucky to be part of this momentum.
D.L.: What has been the highlight of your career so far?
S.R-D.: The people! I have met so many inspiring, successful and humble people across the world through the years and I am very grateful for it. Also the celebration of the Lancôme 80th anniversary last year was very rewarding.
D.L: How far ahead do you work in your planning?
S.R-D: So far in advance it’s almost claustrophobic! I also work in the present time with all social media management which is very nice too.
D.L.:Tell us about the cute little café you have in the L’oreal office. What is your regular order?
S.R-D.: I usually get the Camelia Sinensis earl grey or I bring my own Pukka green tea.
D.L.: What do you like to do in your spare time?
S.R-D: I love long and lazy day on the weekend. I usually get some brunch or coffee with my boyfriend, go the Jean Talon market and get fresh ingredients, go boutique shopping in Mile End. I also love to cook for my friends and host lovely dinner parties. I often travel, go to the spa or hike up north.
Lancome Juicy Shaker
D.L.: And finally, you get the opportunity to try every product in the entire Lancome brand. It’s a dream for many beauty enthusiats. What are your five favourite products?
S.R-D: I absolutely adore the Miracle Cushion for a perfect dewy finish. I wear Advanced Genefique Yeux Light Pearl and I don’t know how I actually functioned before discovering it. The Maquicomplet is by far the best concealer I have come across. I have very blue dark circles but the botanical complex really hides them without that cakey texture. I absolutely adore the new Juicy Shaker! (launching in May 2016) My favourite one is meli melon, yum. Finally my top Lancôme list will always have the legendary Bi-facil, which makes my cat-eye makeup disappear in a split second every night.
Stephanie lives and works in Montreal, Canada.