In our Sleeping With… series, we speak to people from different career paths, backgrounds, and stages of life to find out how they make sleep magic happen.
Trinity Mouzon Wofford is the co-founder of Golde, an uber-successful wellness brand she started with her partner, Issey, when they were both only 23. Since, Mouzon Wofford has become the youngest Black woman to sell her line at Sephora, which she achieved at 25. Golde has also partnered with some small-time retailers you may have heard of—you know, like Goop, Revolve, Urban Outfitters, and Nordstrom.
Mouzon Wofford has achieved what many beauty and wellness startups can only wish for, yet at the core of her beliefs is an insistence that, as part of her work, she has a duty to spread her knowledge. Over the summer, Mouzon Wofford held Mentor Mondays, where she offered free 30-minute advisory sessions to startup founders seeking mentorship, prioritizing POC founders for the month of June. In 2019, she also launched #office_hrs, an Instagram video series where Mouzon Wofford educates young entrepreneurs about how they can grow their own businesses.
Recently, Trinity and Issey left their Brooklyn apartment and moved upstate, where they both grew up. Now, they’re staying with family while they find a new home. “It’s been a very strange year in particular for us, because we’ve seen so much growth with our business during this time along with managing everything that’s happening in the world,” she tells SELF. “But I think also, it’s been nice to have a really positive channel for my energy.” Here, Mouzon Wofford walks us through her bedtime routine, how to establish a work-life balance when your husband is also your co-founder, and the small skincare brands she loves to support.
Usually, I’m finishing up work between 6:00 and 7:00 p.m. Then, dinner is following that.
Usually my partner Issey is leading the charge on the cooking front. If I’m still getting through some work stuff, he’ll be able to jump in and start preparing food. He’s an awesome home cook, so I’m very blessed to have him as my life partner and business partner. Then we’ll eat dinner.
We both are very actively involved in the business, so we spend all day, every day together. Our desks are right next to each other. I think it’s a little bit unrealistic to expect when you’re running a company that when you go home, you go home and you shut the door to work. When you have a startup at this stage, you have a baby, maybe you have a toddler. Even if it doesn’t need anything in that exact moment, it’s always just right in the back of your mind.
Generally speaking, we’re pretty good about making that transition once we start making dinner. But if there’s something urgent that’s happening or there’s something that we’re really excited about, there’s not a hard and fast rule that you can’t talk about it. I think it’s just about making space for both, and trying to really not let too much work come in on the weekends.
I found that the best thing for me is to accept that ebb and flow rather than getting frustrated by a lack of work-life balance each and every day; acknowledging that more realistically, it means that you have weeks at a time where things are a little bit lighter and then you have weeks at a time where things are a little bit more involved. I think the biggest piece is just being flexible with that, and being patient with yourself and with your partner.
After that, my wind-down routine is usually catching up with a favorite TV show and getting changed into PJs.
I think it’s really important to—especially when you’re working from home—have those delineations. I make sure to get dressed for my work day, but then I make sure to change into some nice PJs for wind-down time.
I’m watching this Korean show that my partner got me into called Reply 1988. It’s this fairly peaceful, feel-good series about this group of families that all live in the same neighborhood, and the daily life that they’re going through. It’s not very dramatic, which I appreciate. I feel like I don’t need more drama in my life right now.
I also totally just binge on old Seinfeld reruns whenever I don’t really have the capacity to pay attention to a show. That’s my go-to if I’m just wanting to have something in the background to chill out with. I might take some time to do some reading.
From there, I do my skin routine.
I generally try to keep it relatively simple. I wouldn’t say that I’m a total product person, but I do care about what is going on my skin. It’s very important to me that the products are natural and I know the story behind the brand. I really appreciate if there’s a sustainability aspect to it as well. Some of the brands that I’m really loving right now—one is called epi.logic. That’s a Black-owned skincare business that was founded by a dermatologist, which I really appreciate. They have one cleanser, and I really like it because it’s really hydrating, but it also has some active ingredients in it, so I feel like especially if I need a little bit of a boost in my cleansing routine, that’s a good one to go for.
They also have a really great toner that’s pH-balancing. I’ve honestly never been too much of a toner person, but I tried theirs out and found that it was not stripping at all, very hydrating, really felt like my skin was softer with that. If I need more of a gentle cleanser, there’s another brand called Klur that makes a really great gentle cleanser that I like. That one especially is good for the evening, if I’m just trying to do a more gentle cleanse of my skin. I don’t really wear makeup, so I don’t usually have to do a major face wash at the end of the day. I tend to do more of an involved routine in the morning, and then in the evening I just wash my face with something gentle and then put on a nice thick face oil and then let it soak in overnight.
One of my favorites is from a brand called Supernal. Their Cosmic Glow Oil is really, really awesome. It smells very yummy. It’s got a slightly fruity scent, and it’s really good for brightening acne scars. It’s also very, very good at locking in hydration and moisture, which is important, especially getting into the winter.
If I am doing a little bit more of a routine in the evening, I’ll probably break out one of the Golde face masks and do a little mask routine. I’ve really been leaning on our Clean Greens Face Mask as of late. It’s got real superfood ingredients in it, so it’s awesome and gentle, but you can really see the difference in your skin the next morning. It just feels much more even, and it can really take a lot of the junk out of your pores.
If I want to have a little bit of a treat, then I’ll probably use the Golde Turmeric Blend and make a latte with a little bit of honey and some almond or oat milk. That’s really, really yummy and also seems to help me fall asleep as well.
I think finding opportunities for sanctuary is very important when things feel like they’re so in flux.
I have a little night light I got from IKEA three years ago, but it’s really nice and it just gives a nice, soft light. I love to transition over to using that light once it’s more of a wind down moment. Setting that scene is really important, even if you’re not in a space that is your permanent home base, or finding those little touches that make it feel that way.
I’m a big fan of bringing our actual sheets and quilts with us and making sure that we have the “home bed experience.” I use Parachute sheets, and I also have a really cute quilt from them that I like a lot. I also have one of those pillowcases that’s good for your hair from a brand called Act+Acre. That’s my friend Helen’s company, and she gave me one of these pillowcases and I just became absolutely obsessed with it and I feel like I need to buy 10 more. They feel really lux and they keep my hair from getting frizzy in the morning, so it’s win-win.
I have a really early bedtime. I’m usually in bed by 9:30.
So I don’t have a lengthy evening routine. It’s usually like, stop work, eat, chill out for a little bit to decompress, and then go to sleep. Because I’m often getting going by 5:00 or 6:00 a.m.
When I wake up, I check my email. I’ve always been a bit of a morning person. I definitely am not someone who can work into the evening. I envy folks who can get their best thinking done from 9:00 p.m. to midnight or something like that. I’m not a functional working person at those hours. So I like to just make sure that I’m getting in my full eight plus hours of sleep. That’s something that’s totally non-negotiable for me—even if everything else is out the window, like food or exercise, sleep is something that I do not play around with.
I think the work-life balance thing is really huge. And I do encourage folks to really think through when their most productive hours are and to manage their schedule so that they can do most of their focus work during those times. I’m definitely not the boss who’s sending 11:00 p.m. emails and expecting responses. I think that’s kind of cruel.
This interview has been edited and condensed for length and clarity.