Q&A with Danielle Cuccio, founder of Cuccio SomatologyLast Updated: April 1, 2019
Danielle Cuccio, yoga instructor to celebrities and founder of the Cuccio Somatology health & wellness brand, spoke to AGENT about her business passions and inspirations and provided numerous insights into life at the helm of her fast-growing global business.
AS A private yoga instructor to celebrities and corporate business clients in one of the world’s busiest cities, Los Angeles, CA, Danielle Cuccio knows a lot about the importance of searching for a calm, clear space amidst a turmoil of ‘busyness’.
“I realised that my fellow yogis were walking out of classes with a glow that no facial could ever give…”
It’s telling that Danielle Cuccio chose an alternative path to her initial career in skincare—influenced by her earliest entrepreneurial experiences in her parents’ successful nail manufacturing business—because it failed to ignite her passion for inner as well as outer beauty.
Yoga was the key to her future. When she started practising it, she noticed that her fellow classmates were “walking out of classes with a glow that no facial could ever give”. Danielle Cuccio had found her path. After working towards her teacher’s license, she started teaching, and was soon giving private sessions to top celebrities and corporate clients in LA.
It was merely the foundation of a broader yoga-based business: the Cuccio brand was born out of the relaxing experience she created for her clients. Since 2011, she has been bringing her healthy living tips, yoga exercises and recipes to a much wider audience with her health blog, The Beauty Blender, and she also spent around two years liaising with top chemists in California, before launching her business Cuccio Somatology in 2016.
Cuccio Somatology is a brand that gives further voice for the passion of Danielle Cuccio for helping people to look, and to feel, beautiful. Somatology is defined as the study of the body and assisting others in improving their general wellness and aesthetic appearance through information and practice of health living habits. Simply put, it’s about beauty from the inside out: simple and harmonious methods for enhancing one’s daily life. Within a year of the company’s foundation, Cuccio Somatology products were available in yoga studios worldwide.
11 Questions for Danielle Cuccio
Danielle Cuccio took some time out of her business commitments to talk to AGENT about the story of her life to date, her passions, her daily routines, habits she would like to break, and reveals the business advice that the successful modern-day Danielle Cuccio would pass on to her younger self.
1. Briefly tell us how you first got into business, and describe your business goals.
I grew up in the beauty business. My parents owned a successful nail manufacturing company in Valencia, CA, so I wanted to follow in their footsteps. I went to UCLA, and went to beauty school for my Aesthetician License for skincare. I was practicing for about a year, when I realised that making skincare products wasn’t my passion: it didn’t get to the root of inner and outer beauty. I had always loved dancing, and so I started practicing yoga. It was then that I realised that my fellow yogis were walking out of classes with a glow that no facial could ever give. I knew it was something that I had to dive into deeper, and so I did. Eventually, after receiving my teacher’s license, I started teaching private yoga sessions to top celebrities and corporate clients in LA, and the brand was born out of the relaxing experience I was creating for these clients. I’ve been writing for a health blog, The Beauty Blender, for more than five years, providing healthy living tips, yoga exercises, recipes… as well as numerous pictures of my pug and boxer—Toby and Beatrice. I spent about two years liaising and meeting with top chemists in California, and Cuccio Somatology was born. After a year of it being launched, the products were available in studios and yogaworks worldwide.
2. What age were you when you realised you wanted to run your own business?
Since I was very young! My Dad told me that I would go into the family business. And I thought that I would, but instead, I followed my true passion. I took my passion and used it to create my own business.
3. Who are your business icons and inspirations?
I have many but I love the story of Sofia Amoruso, the founder of Nasty Gal clothing. She started out by selling vintage clothing in her apartment, and her business has well and truly taken off since then! I love seeing women create their dreams. It’s not easy at all…
4. What has been your biggest challenge in business, and how did you surmount it?
I think that you have to realise that creating a business is no walk in the park. It takes a ton of hard work, persistence, drive, positivity and optimism. You will have setbacks, you will have people not interested, but you have to be mentally prepared, and keep yourself pushing forward despite those hurdles.
5. Work-Life balance: is it possible? How do you achieve it?
I truly want to believe it’s possible! I am only a year into my company so as I move forward I might see it get harder and harder. However, being that I’m so into yoga, I know that balance is everything. If I want to be happy in my life, I need to find time for my husband, friends and family outside of work. I try to not work on weekends. I try to not answer emails and just be able to go out to dinner, have a glass of wine and have fun as much as possible.
6. What is the first thing you do every day?
Take my pug and boxer outside, while checking my emails. This is a habit I’m trying to break… the e-mail part! I do believe that the ideal way to start my day would be to meditate for 5 minutes. Top CEOs do this and I want to incorporate it.
7. What screen saver picture is currently on your phone?
8. What is the most important app on your mobile phone, and why?
Instagram. It helps me to stay connected to my customers, fans, friends and family. The second most important app on my phone is Shopify. Using that, I get to see the orders as they come in. SHOPIFY. I get to see orders as they come in. 😊
9. What is the last thing you Googled?
The definition of a word I was looking up for one of these answers. 😉 Yes! I still have to look up definitions and spellings sometimes!
10. What item do you never leave the house without, and why?
Water. I drink so much water… Seriously, I can’t go anywhere without it, otherwise I freak out. I take my swell water bottle everywhere with me. I think a lot of it’s psychological: just knowing it’s there if I need it.
11. What advice would you give to your younger self starting out in business?
Keep Going. Keep Your Head Up! I feel young and still feel like I’m at the beginning stages of my business, so this is rather true right now. Just know that it will all work out. Keep pushing and growing the business. Do everything you can and know you are doing your very best.