#HerLifestyle: Shanrika Oliver

Puma and DTLR team up for this line-up of amazing women. | Miami, Florida

Hello, my name is Shanrika Oliver and I’m from Miami, Florida. I am an event host.

How long have you been in business or working in your business industry?

I’ve actually been in the hosting field for about 16 years now. I did my first event for free; it was my cousin’s trunk party, back in July of 2002, and my aunt just thought I’d be a perfect fit for her as a host because of my personality. She said I’m very outgoing, I’m a people person. I hosted a trunk party, and it was a complete success. I just took off from that point on.

When and how would you describe your big break?

When I first started hosting, it’s really funny, of course I wasn’t serious about it. I was doing it for fun. More importantly at that time, I was doing it to make ends meet. It was a source or means for getting money at the time. I had just gotten over a really big, big curve ball in my own life, so things were kind-of hard for me. What better way to get money than by doing something that I actually love, which was hosting. It’s so funny because when I think back, I might’ve been charging like $50 to $100 just to host any event—a baby shower, a reception, anything. I knew that I was putting my name out there, and I was also accruing some type of money as well. It kind-of worked hand-in-hand for me. I decided to really take my business serious, I want to say in 2014. That is when I trademarked my name, Gorgeous Matters. I revamped my logo; I did a new website. I just started doing all types of things I thought would make it a better business. I also was trying to do things that people in my lane were not doing. I look at a lot of admirable hosts in my industry, and I want to say almost none of them had a website. That was something I wanted to include, and because we’re living in a world of technology, I felt like that was really big. You have to get a website. People need to be able to go visit your website, see your work, and see that you are really who and what you say you are.

Are there any unique challenges you face in your industry as a woman?

As far as challenges in my industry are concerned, I’m not really sure if this is a challenge for everyone, but a challenge I definitely face is living up to the hype. People really expect me to be awesome, so I go into every event thinking, “Is she really what they say she is? Is she really going to make my event stand out? Is my event going to be over the top because I have her? Is she going to be the reason why they talk about my event for years to come?” I take that in with me every time I’m doing an event because I definitely want my name to ring. I know that by doing so, their event is going to ring. We’re all going to get what we came for at the end of the day. As for women in my industry, I can definitely see where there will be challenges. After all, we are in Miami—a melting pot of different types of entertainment. Whether it be hosting, performing, dancing, there’s just a million of us constantly doing the same thing. I think the challenge for them is creating their own lane, finding what it is that sets you apart from the rest of the people that are doing the exact same thing you’re doing. That’s what I did. I just found what works for me, what separates me from the rest, and I took off with it. I think that’s just how I got to where I am today.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

Some advice that I would give to my younger self: be loyal to yourself. In the past, I’ve allowed my loyalty to others. They’ve superseded some of my own and it’s cost me dearly. As an end result of that, I found that nobody is going to have you like you have you.

What is your long-term goal for your brand?

As for long-term goals, I definitely have one for Gorgeous Matters. I eventually want Gorgeous Matters to turn into a power house. I want to have built such a reputation for my business that 5 or 10 years down the line, I’m able to pass the torch on, have a team of great hosts that can go out and host events while I focus more on the business aspects of things. Be on the lookout for that because the grind does not stop.

Hi, my name is Shanrika Oliver and this is HerLifestyle.