I just met Josh and Kristen Taekman last week while they were promoting his EBOOST products to Southern Californians shopping in Whole Foods.
Josh offered me tastes of his EBOOST products, including his two new EBOOST products – Spruce, an on the go green juice and POW, a pre-workout powder. We talked about how he grew up in Danville, California, graduated high school and came down to Los Angeles to work in sales, before moving to New York City and working with Sean Combs in the late 1990s. Josh was Vice President of Marketing for the rap mogul’s Bad Boy Entertainment.
Kristen is a multi-tasking expert. Not only does this couple have have two small children, but she stars in the Bravo reality show The Real Housewives of New York City. She is an international model, has her own Pop of Color cosmetic company, a popular blog site and is passionately involved in the philanthropy Smile Train.
I liked talking to Kristen. She is beautiful, yet very sweet and down to earth. She shared with me that at the age of 16, she enrolled in the John Casablanca Modeling School while living in a small town in CT. She was one of the few at her school that starting working as a model in Boston and New York City. After high school she landed jobs in Paris and Milan. Her modeling agent continues to book this classic blonde modeling jobs.
After getting cast as one of the housewives on Real Housewives of New York City, Kristen started a blog www.lastnightslook.com. It evolved when fans wanted to know what she wore on the show the night it aired. She had so many inquiries to answer, that she decided to put her it all in one format for people to click on. Her fashion inspiration is Carrie Bradshaw’s style from Sex in the City. Kristen’s signature style is wearing chunky necklaces or layered necklaces.
Her nail polish line – Pop of Color by Kristen Taekman, started with the help of Josh and his relationship with Ricky’s NYC. The different colors have names such as, I’m Pretty, Pajamas, Rookie and Blue Moon and The King. Her nail polish can be purchased at Rickys NYC, East Hampton and Miami, FL. Since the polishes are 4 free, vegan and made in New York she is hoping they will go nationwide. She told me she has four new colors and is working on releasing a lip gloss line.
Her eyes lit up as she shared with me her involvement with the International Smile Train organization. This children’s charity offers a sustainable approach to a single, solvable problem — cleft lip and palate. With millions of children in developing countries with unrepaired clefts live in shame, many also have difficulty eating, breathing and speaking. Cleft repair surgery is simple, and the transformation is immediate. The Smile Train model provides training and funding to empower local doctors in 85+ developing countries to provide 100%-free cleft repair surgery in their communities.
Kristen was invited on a Smile Train trip to Mexico with doctors and administrators to a rural village to meet families with children born with cleft lips and palates. “For $250 Smile Train gives a child the gift of a smile,” Kristen told me. “Instead of being isolated in a village, these children become celebrities.” Kristen has made thousands of dollars on her smile and knows that the power of a smile is worth every penny. To learn more, go to smiletrain.org.
Before the interview ended, Kristen added, “If my journey on RHONYC ends, I will be fine with all the other activities, companies and organizations I am passionately involved in at this stage of my life.”
Watch Kristen in Bravo’s The Real Housewives of New York City on Tuesday nights at 8 p.m.