Caroline Baudino truly can't be anything but herself, hence the name of her incredibly social platform, Being Caroline. She's redefining success at any age and motivates us to get up, get dressed, and do good. She's outspoken, funny, unvarnished, and super real and we had a blast going through her particulars and hearing her tales. Join us on this trip!
Melissa: Tell me about your pandemic pause and where are you in terms of the world reopening? What are you looking most forward to?
Caroline: I feel like everyone was so down and negative in the pandemic–it was scary and overwhelming. But there was something in it for me that I needed to maintain a normal routine. I like routines and schedules and I knew that if I didn’t get up to work out or get dressed–it would negatively impact my mood, I felt down, lazy, and anxious. I needed a balance of getting showered, working out and putting on nice clothes – it made me feel good in the pandemic. Now with the world opening, I feel more anxious– getting back into the world and getting busy. I am most excited to be able to get dressed again, go out with my girlfriends and my husband. Just really excited to get dressed up to go to places again.
Melissa: I completely agree with you there. So, you are a native New Yorker, tell us why you moved to LA?
Caroline: I was born and raised in New York. My parents are Cuban and Venezuelan, so I am the first generation here. I used to be an actress–I was doing Spanish soap operas–it was the most amazing schedule and taught me a lot of lessons. I ended up going through a breakup at the time and ended up getting the show, which ended up being a hit. I got signed by an agent out here, so I told my parents and landed here and did not know one person. It was the best decision of my life.
Melissa: LA is great, I love it. You can stay in your pocket, or you can explore. It sounds like you created your platform for moms and women who love fashion because your fashion is inspirational and attainable. It is fun and fresh which I think people appreciate. Tell us why you started your platform? What do you plan on doing with it in the future? What are some moments that you found took off differently than you expected?
Caroline: I went from working and making my own money to having two kids and being at home. I was like “I miss my old self,” this was the truth. My kids are older, they are in school, and I was over ‘mommying’. Two years ago, I said to myself I want something of my own, I didn’t know what it was, but I wanted my own money and to feel myself again. I then decided to be my old self–do workouts, have a routine, wear cute outfits. I started to film it–and take pictures of these outfits I was putting together. Then the pandemic hit, and this is when the turn came. There were a lot of family things going on during this time, especially with my parents and my world fell apart. I felt so overwhelmed. I started to talk about it on Instagram because I felt I had nothing to hide. I said it all and thought no one could say anything about it – it was therapeutic. Nothing is perfect, and we are all going through so much. I really started opening up about everything and this is where my platform took off. I was so authentic and raw about everything that was occurring in my life at the time. We are all going through so much and we don’t share that enough. I wanted to feel good in my own skin and like who I see when I look in the mirror. I started telling people to get up and get dressed, “when you look good, you feel good, and you do good”. We are connecting with so many women, there is an army, and it is incredible. I get hundreds of DMs from amazing women all day every day telling me that they have their lives back. All of us rising together and helping each other–there is just so much power in it. Keep being positive and being kind.
One says, “get up, get dressed, let’s do this” and they all have motivating messages on the back. The other one says, “look good, feel good, do good.”
Melissa: You are so empowering, and it is so inspiring. The pandemic has been such a testing time, such a whirlwind for so many people. Tell us about your merch?
Caroline: It has been two and half years in the making. We started with the notepads–as a reminder to not forget about yourself. As moms, we give so much to so many people, and we really do forget about ourselves. It is so important and not selfish at all, to take care of yourself. I wanted the notepads to be with good paper. One says, “get up, get dressed, let’s do this” and they all have motivating messages on the back. The other one says, “look good, feel good, do good.” From there we are hoping to do a sweatshirt–I also have a handbag line coming out. I helped design their holiday collection. The bags are amazing, I designed six – all the branding is really coming together. We also are going to start doing some subscription boxes. I am hoping to keep rolling the merch out
Melissa: Feels so good to do your own thing. Do you have any summer plans? Anything fun happening?
Caroline: We rented a place in Lake Tahoe, so we did that for two weeks and we are dog-sitting my friends’ dog, so we get three weeks. The boys are not doing anything, we didn’t enroll them in any sleepover camps. We are going to do another rental – maybe Malibu or Laguna beach – something close. We are going to bring my mom down for the summer from Florida. It is going to be a lot this summer, a lot of adjustments but it will be exciting to have everyone here and have the kids out in nature.
Melissa: Did you ever work in fashion?
Caroline: I worked at Prada for many years, and I loved it. I also wanted the discount. I was very fortunate to have parents that allowed me not to work, I was very fortunate to do what I loved to do, and I got to work at places that I was able to shop at. That was it in retail. I loved being around fashion and shopping. It has always been embedded in me. I love to mix and match – high end and low end. I have been fortunate that my mom has given me a ton of beautiful things. I have inherited great bags and jewelry.
Melissa: What is your favorite brand or jeweler?
Caroline: I love Jennifer Fisher. This was my first necklace from her–it was the first expensive piece I bought for myself with my own money. I loved it because I started adding charms. The lightning makes me feel badass, be tough, be strong. The star reminds me to reach for the stars, the happy charm was to remind me to choose happy, every day, always. I bought the fuck charm for ‘fuck it every time.’ Then I have my boys’ initial –J, F and S and lastly, a cross because I love religious pieces. My mom gave me this tennis necklace and the other necklaces are gifted. Everything I am wearing is woman-owned. My earrings are Happy Jewels, a mom in Canada and my other favorite is Rachel Gray. These are my most prized possession the other two things I bought for myself–they are wings to remind me to fly and my compass ring which shows you the direction you are going–to keep moving forward. I wear my wedding ring and then this bracelet that my parents gave me. All my pieces are made from moms–these are all moms who made their businesses in this pandemic and I wear it proud.
Melissa: So sweet, I love it.
Caroline: I could not be prouder about these entrepreneurs. I love shouting them from the mountaintops. It feels good seeing a mom who said they couldn’t, and they can and do. You are doing it because you love it, and it makes you happy. I am going to be 50 in January, but it is something that genuinely, I thought I would not be doing this at this age. If you told me a few years ago, I would have honestly not believed it. When I took that first shot, I was scared but I rocked it. People are always scared of aging, but truthfully, I have never felt better. I am confident, I feel good, and I feel strong. There is so much good to come and that is why I can’t stop talking about it. I just don’t think people realize how good the 50s are–they are the new 30s.
Melissa: We need to stop comparing ourselves to others. I do this all the time. I look at influencers online who are so young, and I remind myself that I am not 25. I need to stop comparing myself to that and what others are doing.
Caroline: Trying to do that will never make us happy. You go down a rabbit hole. You need to feel good about yourself and do you.
Melissa: You live a much better and happier life that way.
Caroline: Happy life!