After a successful career as a Hollywood fashion and wardrobe stylist in the entertainment industry, Michelle Rath is recognized today as a leader in the lash industry and travels the world as a trainer, speaker, and judge. She was also included in the books, Secrets to Success, Lash Industry Influencers and Lash Masters Volume 3. Michelle opened her first studio in 2011 and has expanded into an international lash brand. This entrepreneur owns a Lash Academy, retail store, and online eyelash extension supply business in Los Angeles, CA. She has a dedicated staff and a group of talented trainers. As owner of her Lash Academy, she has trained over 5,000 artists, with a team of National/International trainers who help other artists succeed by leaps and bounds ahead of the competition.
Michelle is also the owner/producer of The Hollywood Lash Conference, a star-studded lash conference bringing together the best educators from around the world for a weekend of learning, networking, and playing together. It's held at the beautiful Hilton Hotel (adjacent to Universal Studios-Universal City Walk). It's an amazing experience to elevate your lash business. Michelle has a passion for our industry and the camaraderie this event creates for women and men. She also produces The Lash Pro Expo, an in-depth retreat for trainers and brand owners, held on the beautiful island of Hawaii.
She built her business in a way that allows her to live and run her business on the island of Kauai. This inspires her to help other artists live the life of their dreams.
DT: Michelle, thanks for agreeing to talk to me. I loved chatting with you and hearing about the successful lash and brow business you've built.
What inspired you to launch and create, Sinful Lashes?
MR: In my late 40s, I was working as a stylist in film and tv. I took a weekend class on lash extensions, and I knew it was for me.
[I] started a small business; and, it grew in one year…to a multi-million dollar company, since its inception in 2011.
It helps men and women of all ages to establish to create their own business…salaries can easily start at $130,000 and up.
Being a woman in business, getting out of my head, and not listening to naysayers were the key to my success. Now, I live and run businesses from Kauai.
MR: We have two locations; we do products and training to artists around the world. We have a warehouse, and retail space with a lash academy.DT: How long does the first session take for lash extensions?
MR: The procedure takes at least two hours; literally extensions are applied to almost every lash. It is a custom procedure and highly creative. We are known as "the kings and queens" of styling for each individual client from natural, wispy, to celebrity glam.
MR: We created a botanical lash wash, that helps them last longer and gives them a fresh look.
DT: For pros like myself, do you offer this service on set, especially for touch ups on actresses?
MR: I think it's so important to do for continuity. It should just be part of the makeup routine. One of my artists worked with/on Renee Zellweger when she played Judy Garland, [it] was crucial to how the lashes and brows are for period roles.DT: You also do private seminars for salons and pros around the world…and, how do you create balance?
MR: I do a lot of remote training with online courses, and I travel once a month to other states and again to other countries once the pandemic travel restrictions are lifted.
Pre-pandemic, I was going to a different country every month. We now produce two major conferences every year as well, plus a boutique conference in Hawaii.
DT: Would you share some of your favorite personal beauty tips?
MR: As you can guess, for me, lashes and brows are everything. It gives you a polished look. Bad brows can change the whole face.
I'm excited by this new semi-permanent brow gel for pros called, "Brow Lamination," that last four to five weeks.
DT: Thank you Michelle for being so open and inspiring!!