Former fashion blogger-turned-magazine editor Nadia Geneviève Masri got her career off the ground when she was just a teenager. It makes sense, then, that the protege is now helping other aspiring entrepreneurs get their dreams off the ground with her latest venture, Foursixty, which Masri cofounded. A phenomenal concept for an increasingly online world, Foursixty helps companies put all their social media platforms in one place. Check it out for yourself (and your business) here. We caught up with Masri to find out more…
Tell us a bit about yourself. What should people know?
Growing up I was always a writer, a craft that prevails to be one of my greatest passions. My ingression into the fashion industry began at 17, when I started a fashion blog (now long gone) and was presented with the opportunity to travel and attend different fashion weeks. As a creative person, one of my favourite aspects of fashion is creating the stories behind photo shoots, so I decided to start a small fashion magazine here in Toronto at 19. I had a phenomenal team and had a fantastic time in the two years that I worked on it, and it became one of my greatest educational successes. I think one of the greatest things I know about myself right now is that I am young, driven, and wildly passionate. This recipe, coupled with the opportunities I have before me at this stage in my life, really motivate me to go after my dreams and work twice as hard. I’m really into public speaking, and I love talking to brands and businesses about my ideas on entrepreneurship, branding, and social media. Foursixty is proving to be an extraordinary adventure for me, and I am greatly looking forward to see where it takes us. It’s funny, you would think that people build businesses, but ultimately I think that businesses build people.
What are the biggest challenges and best rewards about what you do?
Greatest Challenges: We have experienced significant growth over the past few months, and as a result I’ve found myself wearing multiple hats. I love keeping busy, though sometimes I feel there are not enough hours in the day. Despite being a challenge, I never let it get the best of me, and always find a way to do what I need to do. Sometimes it is simply a matter of managing my time more effectively. At the end of the day, the greatest challenge can become your greatest reward when you reap the benefits of the time and effort you put in.
Maintaining a healthy work/life balance can often be a challenge. I think that no matter what business you are in, it’s imperative to take care of yourself in all aspects of your life. Trips, “me” days, and spending time with friends can sometimes get lost, but I strive to manage it all and keep a healthy balance.
Greatest Rewards: My team! Working with them every day is a blessing. I feel so grateful to be on board with such a unique group of brilliant-minded individuals, tenaciously moving forward in our industry and striving for the best outcomes. Another big reward is meeting new people and getting acquainted with a myriad of industries. In my business development, I’ve had the opportunity to learn about how different industries operate, and for me, the constant flow of new learnings always keeps me on the edge of my seat. I’m a big fan of variety, and with Foursixty that’s exactly what I get.
What are three things you can’t live without?
My iPhone, my Macbook, and my passport. I feel like that’s the most realistic answer, because I don’t think I could do everything I do without these things. I always keep my phone on me, because it’s important for me to stay in touch with what’s happening. After all, I work in social media! My computer is my portable office, so I almost always have it on me. As for the passport, well, I couldn’t live without the ability to travel. My passport is my golden key to what the rest of the world holds, and it allows me to seize opportunities internationally. There is one additional item though, an honourable mention if you will, that goes to my beloved sneakers. Anyone who knows me knows that my Air Force Ones typically accompany me everywhere!
Finish this sentence: I love Toronto because…
…it’s where I’ve planted my seeds – it’s where I’ve grown. I think that part of appreciating where you are is appreciating where you started. I was born here, raised here, and I take great pride in this city. What I love most about Toronto is the people who surround me. So many individuals I’ve had the fortune of meeting in this city are so incredibly talented and passionate about their lives and their work. What makes a city is never really the city itself but the people who reside in it. Toronto wouldn’t be what it is if it weren’t for those who manifested their dreams and made them realities. That speaks to the restaurateurs, the event planners, the fashion designers, the artists, the magazine editors – everyone. Whether they are from Toronto, or from elsewhere, we are all part of the same city and therefore share the same home base. It’s invigorating to know that we are on each other’s team.
What’s your favourite restaurant and why?
Lately I have really enjoyed Bellwoods Brewery. What makes it so great is the sense of community when you walk in. Even if you are merely passing by it is evident. You can always hear the comforting sounds of chatter and a hearty laugh here and there. That’s always what draws me into a restaurant – the environment. Whenever I go I always see friendly faces, and sitting outdoors with friends on a warm summer’s day eating chickpea salad is just my cup of tea. Another place I really enjoy, just up the street from Bellwoods, is The Saint Tavern. The food there is delicious, and I always find myself going back time and time again. I went for the first time with a friend a few years back, and I’ve loved it ever since. Be sure to try their daily fish!
What’s one of your favourite go-to designers/brands or accessories lines and why do you sport their fashions?
I like to change up what I wear quite often and find the best of what different designers have to offer. I’m really big on buying key pieces, and then filling the rest of my wardrobe with closet staples. I find myself wearing a lot of brands like Topshop, Zara, and Nasty Gal, then throwing a designer piece into the mix. I love Badgley Mischka for handbags, Wildfox for loungewear, and J. Crew for a more business-casual look. For events in Toronto, I love wearing Matthew Gallagher. He is such a talented designer and knows how to dress the female body in a luxurious and freshly feminine way. I like a lot of Toronto designers, and am really looking forward to working with more in the future. We have so much talent here!
Since there are so many designers I enjoy, it makes it difficult for me to choose a favourite. Just yesterday I walked into the Tory Burch store and fell in love with everything there. The store was filled with the brightest colours and I couldn’t get enough! It made me so happy! I like to be bright, comfortable, and play around with contra-distinctive looks. I feel that I gravitate more towards brands and designers that make me feel both stylish and comfortable, while allowing me to reflect my own personal taste and style through my outfits as opposed to exhibiting predetermined trends.
What products are always in your beauty bag?
I always have my “They’re Real” mascara by Benefit Cosmetics with me wherever I go. It makes my lashes look so beautiful! They also just released a new “They’re Real” liquid eyeliner, which I adore. Most of my beauty products are by Benefit. They have such a sassy, youthful brand and as a bonus point, they don’t test on animals. In fact, they are huge advocates for ending animal testing. As for my hair, I keep it quite natural, and I’m always on the go so don’t really have the time to style it. Moroccan Oil is my go-to product and I always have a little vial lingering in my tote.
What style trends are you obsessed with right now?
Everyone is wearing sneakers. With everything. And I am loving it. I’m talking suits, skirts, dresses – everything from workwear to evening wear. I find it so freeing to openly embrace comfort as a trend, and strolling around in kicks is probably the foremost way to do just that. I see girls waltzing down the street in the most stylish apparel, dressed to the nines, while sporting a brand new pair of trainers on their feet. Everything from New Balance to Nike has me tickled pink. I’ve heartily adopted the trend, and now you can barely catch me in something other than my Nike Air Force Ones. Unless, of course, I get my hands on those Air Max 90s I’ve been coveting. Either way, sneakers it is!
What’s your favourite spa or service?
The Organic Oxygen Infused Facial at the Windsor Arms Spa is quite amazing! My skin is always so healthy and radiant afterwards. I’m not much of a spa person, but I will say that this service was fantastic the few times I went in for it. I’m mostly a do-it-at-home kind of girl, and when it comes to that, Luzern and Tata Harper are my go-to lines for skincare!