Careers: Tattooed Social Media Representative

25-year-old Mikaela is a Social Media Representative at LUSH in London. We caught up with her to chat work, her tattoo collection and being vegan…

How long have you been working for Lush? How did you get your current role? I’ve been working at Lush for about three years now. I started on the shop floor at the flagship Oxford Street store, then joined the in store events and branding team. I’ve always wanted to bring my love of photography into my everyday job, so jumped at the chance at joining the social media team. I’m now a social media rep, and support events and branding when needed!

What do you love about your job? I love working for a company that’s so accepting of everyone, and encourages individuality. It’s a company that cares about their products, what goes into them, where ingredients are sourced and of course is fighting animal testing which is incredibly important to me. Lush also creates and supports a number of campaigns each year and isn’t afraid to use its voice as a popular brand to make people think, and I think that’s great. It’s also quite a tongue-in-cheek company at times so there’s always an element of fun involved.

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What sorts of stuff do you do? What projects do you get involved with? On a day-to-day basis at Lush, I do a lot of community management on the store’s social media pages, shoot photo and video content etc. Outside of work I try to do as much photography as I can, the majority of which is portrait work and it’s something I’d eventually love to be able to do full time.

I’ve also been vegan for two years now, so that’s a big part of my life. I’ve been trying to get fitter and healthier so spend a lot of time at the gym with my badass female, tattooed, vegan trainer @princessoftheunicorns!

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Can you tell us about your tattoos? Do you have any future plans? I’ve been getting tattooed since I was 19, my first one was a tiny heart on my wrist. I then ventured into getting bigger and more colourful pieces. My first ones being by Gemma, Amy Savage and Adam Ruff. They’re mostly quite traditional, lots of hearts and a few lady heads! I also have portraits of my dogs on my calves and two Fall Out Boy inspired tattoos. I also have a dotwork Maltese Cross on my ankle that I got in Malta, which is quite sentimental.

I think my favourite is still the first colour tattoo I got by Gemma, it’s a locket with my mum’s initials either side that I later had a key added to underneath. I have so many ideas for tattoos that I still want to get. I want to finish my sleeve and get my knees tattooed next, but I definitely know why I’m maybe putting that off a little bit!

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Can you show them off at work? How would you describe your fashion style? Not having to cover up my tattoos at work is another thing that I love about working at Lush. Everyone is encouraged to express their individuality and tattoos are no exception. I’m around so many tattooed people at work that I sometimes forget that they can still be a problem at other workplaces. Everyone loves seeing each other’s work as well and discovering new styles and artists as a result!

I don’t really follow any kind of fashion in particular, I mostly wear black, occasionally dipping into a little Bettie Page 50s feel when I have time to put the effort in – but mostly keep it a little bit dressed down “goth” I guess.

What kind of reception do your tattoos get? Most of the time I get a really positive reaction, people love how colourful they are and finding out why I got certain pieces. I do get the occasional negative comment or dirty look but I’m pretty used to it now, and nothing will ever make me feel bad about them when I know how happy they make me!

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Has being vegan influence your tattoos or job? Does it influence the company you work for?  I would probably say that I became vegan as a result of working at Lush. I’d always had a bit of a guilty conscience when I used to eat meat but once I started working at Lush with lots of vegans, I learned so much more about the meat and dairy industries that I couldn’t ignore it anymore.

In terms of tattoos it means that I have to think about whether tattoo ink being used is vegan and aftercare, which hasn’t been too difficult so far. I don’t have any vegan-related tattoos yet, but I’m sure I will end up getting one eventually. I’ll definitely be getting more animal tattoos!

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