Elisa Goodkind and Lily Mandelbaum want to see women everywhere they own who they are.
Mother-daughter duo Elisa Goodkind and Lily Mandelbaum have been working side by side on the StyleLikeU multimedia platform for the past 10 years. At that time, the joint venture grew and changed, but the mission remains the same: telling the stories of real people in the name of self-acceptance – usually through the lens of style.
StyleLikeU was born when Lily was just a college freshman struggling with her body image and finding her way. Elisa was a successful designer at the time, but was frustrated by the industry’s homogeneous landscape. Both were bumping into the constraints of society – for different reasons. Interested in making movies, Lily grabbed a video camera and the two began interviewing people about their bodies, their lives and what was hanging in their closets. The rest is history.
A few years ago, the pair published a book called True Style’s What’s Below: The Self-Acceptance Revolution, but nowadays their narratives take the form of documentary-style videos shared on their YouTube channel and social media. Their main series, titled ‘The What’s Underneath Project’, shows nonconformists of all ages, body types, races, expressions, and gender abilities. The videos show subjects who take off their underwear and open up about their self-image, style and identity.
“The guys share radically honest stories, unleash shame, and share their journey,” Mandelbaum explains. “We empower viewers who are watching to discover the same sense of self.”
“It’s almost like a collective form of therapy,” adds Goodkind.
Following is a documentary to be released in 2020, as well as a series of shorter videos focused on men and masculinity. Here, they share what keeps them motivated to share other people’s stories, their greatest sources of inspiration, and how they make time for self-care.
The Passion That Drives Them
EG: “My passion is to bring truth and authenticity around the world and that is a real value. I want people to see what it really is to possess who they are, to feel comfortable with who they are and to see what this is it is really being a unique individual that’s what motivates me because i feel that’s how it should be and that’s what makes a thriving and dynamic culture for me that’s what makes the world an exciting place to be to live “.
LM: “My mission is to enable people to feel comfortable in their skin and release any shame they have about their self-image and identity. That’s what motivates me: reverse the media landscape that takes advantage of the exploring people’s insecurities to make them feel they need to be fixed by buying things. My passion is to help people recover from this system and to own who they are. “
Where They Get Inspiration
LM: “My journey was so inextricably informed by everyone we interviewed. Because when we started this 10 years ago, I was really uncomfortable with my body. I was struggling so hard to find that my own style wasn’t just to fit what I was Doing these interviews became a release and inspiration for me. Since many of the people we were interviewing were artists or lived some kind of creative or entrepreneurial lifestyle, I didn’t just draw on a self-image to feel comfortable with. in my skin, but also at career level. They were living their lives with such an independent spirit. “
EG: “I feel the same way as Lily. I was super inspired by everyone we interviewed. But I also have some people that I admire a lot, like Marianne Williamson and Oprah. I draw a lot of inspiration from my spirituality too. I needed it because we went through it.” more time doing this. My life and spirit world give me a lot of strength. “
On Balancing Self-Care and Running a Business
LM: “This has been a big fight for both of us as women, and we’ve both had rude awakenings in recent years. Sometimes we both get tired of having too few limits and not taking enough care. Now, I think that we both developed different tools. I moved to Los Angeles a year ago which has been critical. It is much healthier for me as much as my ability to handle the stress and pressure of running my own business. doing exercise every day, spending time outside, and spending time with friends are crucial for me. It’s still a challenge. It is a practice to have limits, but we are working daily. “
EG: “In addition to exercising regularly and eating well, setting boundaries has been important. Not every workday has to go until 10 pm. Learning to let go and trust is really huge for both of us. Different ways “You have to let go of how much you have to try. You have to get how much you give. Not everything is in action.”