It seems like every day a celebrity is being named the face of a beauty brand. But for PRAI Beauty‘s campaigns, the brand has always refused to follow in the footsteps of its contemporaries. Instead, it recently embarked on what it called a “Not Just a Pretty Face” search to find a woman who not only looks good, but for whom doing good is as rudimentary as applying moisturizer every morning.
A nation-wide search ensued, led by famed fashion photographer Nigel Barker, the brand’s Global Creative Director, as well as its CEO Cathy Kangas and HSN host Amy Morrison. The criteria was simple: applicants had to be over 40, as CEO Kangas says they feel “the fashion and the beauty industry has truly left women behind who are over 40.” And they had to have a passion for community service. And tonight, PRAI Beauty announced its winner, Mindy Frazier, a 46-year-old registered nurse who resides in Tennessee, and whose outer and inner beauty is something to behold.
What inspired you to enter PRAI Beauty’s “Not Just a Pretty Face” model search?
Well when I turned 40 about six-and-a-half years ago and I started noticing some wrinkles on my neck and I thought, “You need to get ahead of the game here and start working on this as soon as possible!” And I started using their neck cream. From having ordered their products, I get emails from them. When I got one that described the contest, I was excited to learn how involved they were with animal rescue, which is near and dear to my heart. I think on the very last night we were able to submit our applications, I said, “Why not just give this a try?” So I snapped a photo in my bathroom, which I am told by my family was very unflattering!
Well it must have been because you won! What was your reaction when you learned the news?
I was jumping up and down! I’m completely honored in such a contest as this that Nigel and Cathy and Amy would even notice me. But mainly, I am thrilled that the SBK animal shelter, which I am very involved with, is getting a charitable donation. [PRAI Beauty donated $500 to the charity of the winner’s choice.] They are in desperate need of monetary donations all the time.
For winning the contest, you will receive a year’s worth of PRAI Beauty products — what’s your favorite item from the brand?
I absolutely love the Ageless Throat & Decolletage Creme. My neck is what I have been focusing on since I entered my 40s, so I make sure I never run out of that! As a nurse, I don’t have an overabundance of extra cash on hand to spend on products constantly, but I do feel like the PRAI Beauty line is worth the extra investment.
When do you feel the most beautiful?
Well I feel most proud of myself when I am volunteering and doing something that’s benefiting the animals of our community. Otherwise, I go to church on Sundays — that’s something that’s near to my heart as well — so I dress up a little bit and put a little more makeup on and try to look my best.
What do you do on days when you don’t feel one hundred percent?
I put my hair up in a ponytail in a baseball cap, put on some fashionable sunglasses and lip gloss and sneak out! I guess that’s one way I handle the days when I’m not feeling like I’m looking my best. I get up at 4:30 a.m. most days to work at an eye surgery center, and some days you just don’t feel like putting that much effort into a beauty look. But it does feel good to wake up and do your skin-care routine, put your makeup on and try to make the best of what you can when you’re going to be out in public. So, I give it a try every day, even though I’m getting up extra early to do that.
Do you have a hair or makeup trick that makes you instantly feel better about yourself?
My eyelashes are not the longest, so I always use an eyelash curler. I also use an eye shadow primer. Discovering that it would make eye shadow stay on all day long while I am doing 12-hour shifts was an eye-opening experience for me.
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What is your definition of beauty?
It’s not only about feeling great about the outside, but also making sure that what you project to the world is the most beautiful expression of yourself that you can in the realm of caring for other people, and caring for animals. I think that expresses the true beauty from within.
What has this experience of participating in this contest taught you about yourself?
I have learned that taking care of these homeless animals and taking care of myself have ultimately been appreciated by a lot more people than I would ever have expected. I’m absolutely humbled by the number of people who have contacted me and shared the contest details and asked their friends to check out my contest photo. And I was flabbergasted that so many friends and family were admiring what I do with homeless animals — and that I had taken care of myself and used products that would keep me looking young. I thought I was maybe a non-entity in the community and I down-play everything I do, and don’t want any praise for anything. I lead a low-key life. But in the aspect of all this that has happened, I’ve learned that there’s several people in the community that really appreciate someone who lives out their morals and standards in a low-key fashion.
What do you think of Mindy’s beauty philosophy?