Teenpreneur can inspire your child with the story of their professional journey and their child IRA
In 2018, Fiona Frills, then 14, was interviewed for the book From cradle to retirement: the IRA for children. In this interview, she told the following story (page 143 of the book):
Like many her age, Fiona Frills from Saratoga, Calif., loves YouTube. In fact, she loves it so much that she started her own YouTube channel when she was just 10 years old. She started posting a series which she called “Gross Food”. She developed a sequel.
In the meantime, she was fascinated by makeup. At the age of 12, she decided to follow a path she had seen other YouTubers take. She noticed that they were promoting and selling products. Fiona thought it would be fun to try. She combined her two loves and – presto! – she created Frilliance, a brand of cosmetics and makeup tools for teens.
Fiona started the line of makeup brushes and tools because she loves makeup and fashion. She posts makeup videos. Nearly half a million people subscribe to his YouTube channel. This gives him a large ready-made audience to showcase his products.
Now 14, Fiona still runs the business today. She knows that it takes a lot of patience to work out all the details of the business. She discovered that setting everything up for a business takes a lot more than she thought. She credits Frilliance’s success to her passion and love for makeup and beauty, so she feels like it’s not a lot of work.
Now 18 and a high school graduate, Fiona has seen her business grow. Her beauty and skincare company Frilliance currently offers products in 500 Walmarts across the United States. Here’s her first-hand account of how parental support encouraged her journey, taught her about money and started preparing her for retirement at a surprisingly early age.
Question: Fiona, it’s great to talk to you again. Give a quick overview of what has changed in your business over the past 4 years.
Fiona Frills: There has been a huge change in recent years! Most of my life I have always been in front of the camera with acting, modeling and social media. I am now focusing on the business side of things, which is my teen makeup and skincare brand. Currently, I am building my brand using my knowledge and experience of social media and influencer marketing.
Question: Looking back, as a pre-teen, what made you go from “hobbyist” to “entrepreneur” at such a young age?
Fiona Frills: Absoutely! The freedom of owning your own business/working for yourself is extremely rewarding. On YouTube and all social media platforms, the algorithm is your boss. I started to see that building my own brand gave me more control and creative freedom. With your own business, you have complete creative and branding control – no algorithm or person can push their agenda.
Question: What could you share with parents, from their children’s perspective, that could help parents encourage their children to start their own businesses?
Fiona Frills: In my opinion, most school systems (and jobs) don’t give you the freedom to think outside the box and explore your passions and intuitions. My parents encouraged me to follow my passions rather than structured learning. I loved (still love) all things makeup and struggled with acne, so my “science” class was formulating makeup with a cosmetics lab – the first step to starting what has now become Frilliance . Owning your own business teaches you so much more than you might expect. Persistence and determination come from running a hobby turned business, and passion comes from successfully completing something you’ve built.
Question: When you started, what did you think “money” was?
Fiona Frills: At first I thought money only bought things like handbags, clothes, shoes – the extra material items I wanted. I didn’t understand that money could buy experience, knowledge, and more lasting things of value. Money seemed simple.
Question: At what age did you finally understand the value of money and what happened to trigger this understanding?
Fiona Frills: Around the age of 13. At the time, I was making money from my YouTube channel. I was buying trinkets, shoes, clothes that I liked for a week and then completely forgot about them. My mom started teaching me to watch my income, my expenses, and take advantage of my earnings. When I saw what goes in and what goes out, it really opened my eyes to the value of saving and investing.
Question: How did you feel when you first created your Child IRA? Was it something you wanted or was it something that was suggested to you?
Fiona Frills: My parents raised opening an IRA child for me. I thought the idea of having money invested (and basically untouchable) to grow over many years seemed like a smart way to have money when I was older. That’s still my mindset to this day!
Question: How long did it take you to grasp the power of investing early in a children’s IRA?
Fiona Frills: Not long. Something that I have always experienced is this: don’t think short term, think long term! It pays off in the end, and an IRA is just that! Compound investment charts are really powerful in getting this idea across.
Question: Now that you are an adult, what is your strategy for saving for retirement while growing your business?
Fiona Frills: Currently, my plan is to continue investing in developing my skills, growing my business, and putting 10% of my earnings into an IRA.
Question: How do you see the future of your business?
Fiona Frills: I want to inspire teenagers, my own Gen Z’ers. I want to help teens feel empowered in their own skin, build their confidence, encourage them to think outside the box, and most importantly, help them believe in themselves!
Question: If you were in a room full of teenagers looking to start their own business, what would you advise them?
Fiona Frills: Do it! Nike
Question: What would you tell them to save for retirement?
Fiona Frills: You will thank yourself later. No shoe, no handbag will compare to your comfort and freedom later.
Question: Is there anything else you would like to share?
Fiona Frills: Save for retirement and invest your money in the right things! It pays. By investing your money, both in investments and in yourself, your future self will thank you!