Today we’d like to introduce you to Danielle Preyer.
Danielle, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I was ambitious even before I knew what ambition meant. Early on in my childhood, I had visions of success, constantly daydreaming of my future. I didn’t know what my path would be, but I knew that I was ready to work hard for whatever I was meant to achieve in life. As I think back, my journey really began in elementary school learning and competing in sports such as gymnastics, ice skating, tennis, on to Junior High, it was basketball and step team. I loved the gymnastics & ice skating, but because of how expensive they were, and we weren’t financially stable, I wasn’t able to fully mature in those programs. However, I was a beast on the step team! Sports & step team gave me purpose, leadership experience, and the outlet I needed to release and be a better me – especially dealing with the typical struggles of an African American home life. Moving into high school sports, it was track and basketball, but then modeling was where my thoughts began to focus on how I could transition out & up in the world.
I was raised in a single-parent home with two older brothers who were already in sports, and I wanted to be like them a tough girl! My mother, who raised all three of us alone, carried the load of both parental roles with a strict hand but was super supportive. She made sure we knew quitting was not an option and if we thought about it, it had better be for a damned good reason. Without the strong support of my mom and brothers, which still stands strong, I might not have been able to build that level of self-confidence needed to continue pushing myself and be where I am today.
There was, and still is, a growing drive within me to go bigger and do better. 9th grade, I became certain that I wanted to be an actress, and thought modeling might be good exposure for my camera experience leading into the film/tv industry. With my family as the wind at my back, I ran fast & fearlessly to get going. After searching out modeling agents, putting together a portfolio and sending out over a 2-month period, I was signed by my first modeling agent, The Clutts Agency in Dallas, TX. It was an exciting time for me, the competition was fierce, but I didn’t let that scare too much. When I completed my contract with Clutts, I signed with Dallas Modeling Group (D.M.G). Through D.M.G. I landed my first small commercial print gig, some online and tv commercial gigs. That really boosted my confidence and made me hungry for more. With the modeling experience, I learned to network & the importance of it, toughen up when the “nos” were flowing like champagne (only because of my height) and know that this was not the end all-be all of my journey. Modeling was a tough industry though, but it helped to prepare me for what was to come. I got the opportunity to fly out to Miami with my agency D.M.G. I got the opportunity to compete and win a scholarship to New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts or a school in Canada. I chose NY. “BINGO” here was my chance to pivot and transition into the acting world.
I plotted and finished high school in 3 years, age 17, completed one year of community college, age 18, but I never lost sight of wanting to be an actress and use my platform to be an inspiration to other young girls/ladies. My biggest inspiration from the tv world, when I was a young girl myself, was Raven Simone. She inspired me to want to be a role model for young girls. I admired how she was a young talented actress that I could relate to. Her confidence and ambition intrigued me, and I thought “hmm I can be an inspiration too, and I want to be just as relatable for girls who grew up like me”. So, I made sure I put my best foot forward in everything I was to take part in and earned every title ever received (captain, co-captain, friend, model, actress, etc.). Age 19, I headed off to NY to attend the New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts school with a dollar and a dream. I finished strong and graduated the 2-year program with my Associate Degree in Occupational Studies in Film & Television. The biggest takeaways from school were the different acting techniques, more networking, seeing me on the acting screen for the first time, but the most important piece of advice from the teachers: “audition, audition, audition then forget about the auditions & keep going”. That is exactly what I began to do and it became easier. I landed my first leading role in a short film “Smile of a Monster”, a film about domestic violence. There were quite a few other opportunities to audition, act, or secure bookings, but I remained anxious to do more, go further, dig deeper.
With a lot of planning, I orchestrated relocation for myself and a group of friends to the “Entertainment Capital of the World” – LA! Grinding out 7 to 12 auditions a week, acquiring a manager, and attending big networking events became my life in LA for the last 2 ½ -3 years, all while working small jobs here & there, but it was paying off in doses (auditions, bookings, other short film projects, etc). I didn’t stop there, I branched out in other ways, building new skills, such as writing scripts for submission, directed & filmed my own short, started a podcast “Overlooked to Overbooked,” and even filmed my own monologues relative to world issues. Most recently, danced in Alicia Keys & Khalid’s new video “So Done”.
Then the unforeseen hit hard, “Global Pandemic – Covid-19”. Hollywood shut down. It was then, I was able to hear that voice, almost like God whispering & nudging me to keep moving, calling out “NEEEXT”. I became disciplined to meditate, seeking to understand what that still small voice was whispering to me over and again. My spirituality rose to the forefront, and my third eye opened, as the world’s toxic levels boiled out of control with the loss of many African Americans played out on television. It came to mind, the black community needed positivity & healing injected into it and I was up for the challenge to be one of those lights shining from our community. What I wanted people, not of the black community, to see is we to can be successful entrepreneurs, doctors’s/nurses, judges, and so on. We are more than what you see on the surface, more than the color of our skin.
Well, there it is, “OUR SKIN”, I knew where I needed to go next. Beginning in my late teen years, I struggled to maintain healthy skin, trying nearly every product on the shelf and going to a number of dermatologists. My skin, as likely many other people’s skin, is sensitive and can flare up at the smallest of things. I began researching for months on the different types of all-natural butter products, skin types, oils, and vitamins best for all types of skin. I was ready to share my discovery with the world once I had received that positive response from my skin and others during trial period. My product, Allure & Beyond, is one I felt was essential for all people. With much preparation and focus, I made it happen! For those of you out there troubled with sensitive skin and looking for an all-natural product that promotes soft & alluring skin, come visit my website allurebeyond.com. You can also subscribe to my YouTube channel -Danie Preyer and you may see a skincare video or two there. My journey doesn’t end here. I’m still in flight and I love it!
Has it been a smooth road?
No, not at all. One of the many challenges, for example, was right before I flew out to New York. I had a sponsor, a sorority member who said they would pay my school fees. I needed to make the first installment a couple of days before I left Texas. Before you know it she was nowhere to be found nor contacted. That’s why I stated that I went to New York on a dollar and a dream. That was the financial hurdle, somehow God and the Universe found a way for me to pay that first fee for the school. I had little to no money in NY, so of course, I had to work, and that was the hardest having mandatory school from 7 a.m to 10 p.m my first year. I couldn’t miss a beat, or my grades would have dropped tremendously, and wouldn’t be able to work in class.
We can even go back as far as my childhood. My household wasn’t the best environment. Having to constantly move away from harm and people with ill intent and watching my mom struggle with three kids on her hip. Not a fun sight to see. It was a nightmare at times.
Learning how to accept “no,’ was a big deal as well. The toll that took on me really had me dig deep and have to tell myself that it’s ok. I have had many obstacles. Being a model was not easy. Either I was too short, or just wasn’t pretty enough. Talk about really having to find my self-worth.
Starting out in acting, my teachers were tough, it was almost like a school of therapy, and figuring out my emotions being able to control them yet set them free to be my most alive. I was already coming from a bad childhood so that really pulled some heartstrings.
I don’t like to complain about what was, and so I made sure that my childhood trauma was turned into nothing but positivity. I try my best not to be apart of America’s problems. I look for a solution in any situation. Instead of holding my head low, I look to the sky and remain optimistic.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Allure & Beyond story. Tell us more about the business.
I needed to figure out what was an essential item for most people. That item was Allure & Beyonds Body butter. Many people such as I have struggled with our skin. Whether it is acne-prone, or it sunburns easily or damaged from stretch marks, wrinkles, or dark spots. I wanted to help people with there problematic skin, as well as people who wanted to have healthy skin. A lot of the world doesn’t know that those over the counter lotions that are bought have a lot of parabens and chemicals that prevent our skin from glowing and getting the vitamins it needs to keep the largest organ of our body healthy. Allure & Beyond is an all-natural vegan product that penetrates deep within the skin to help push out old skin cells, fix damage skin, and feed the skin.
Our product uses pure and unrefined Shea butter as one of the bases and Mango and Cocoa butter as the other depending on the product. We use pure oils rich in vitamins A, E, C, and K which are some of the most important vitamins for the skin. We have sold out and people continue to buy. I am highly appreciative of everyone who supports Allure & Beyond. I also am excited to say that this is only the beginning. I gift everyone a Rose Quartz and Amethyst crystal with there first purchase. We all could use help with more love and healing. That’s one of the many things that set’s Allure & Beyond apart from others. We focus on healing instead of selling what smells good. Even our scents are 100% natural. We don’t add any preservatives to our butter to make them last longer. That’s part of what harms us is preservatives.
Our best seller is the Beyond Butter, which is the simplest of our butters. Beyond Butter has Shea and Mango butter as its base. That in itself is extremely powerful. Allure & Beyond’s biggest mission is to heal the skin and make everyone satisfied, and feel smooth and beautiful.
How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
As a person who tries to stay in the “now”. I do have longterm goals. I make sure that each day I live in the present that I work towards them. In 5 to 10 years, I’d say that my business will expand by adding more items that are essential for us. Essential for our self-care, whether that is candles, herbs, teas, all of the above. I know it’s only up from here. I’m willing to make sure that anything that steps in the way gets moved aside, and any hurdles get jumped over. As time passes, I notice the world is starting to go towards being more natural. I want to also be apart of that movement by being a business who provides those things.
- Beyond Butter 7.oz is $18.00
- Rejuvenating Butter 7.oz (for dryer skin) $18.00
- Rejuvenating Sweet Lavender Butter & Sweet lavender Beyond Butter- 7.0z is ($19.00)
- The New Mini Collection 3.4 oz – Lavender Beyond Butter is ($12.00) Reg Beyond Butter (@11.00)
- Website: Allurebeyond.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/allureandbeyond/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Allure-Beyond-107070597755590
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/home