Karen Civil has created her own blueprint by turning her passion for helping artist and brands to a long-standing career. On top of repping artist like YG and the late Nipsey Hussle, Civil was a key factor in leading the Beats By Dre marketing campaign.
At ENVSN Fest this weekend, ESSENCE got a chance to chat with Karen Civil about the legacy she wants to have, what she can’t leave the house without, and what keeps her going. Read below.
ESSENCE: Why was ENVSN Fest a great partner?
Civil: Last year, I thought it was incredible. Just from the outside looking in from the colors, aesthetics, and everything that was happening in messaging, which was the most important part of what was being done for entrepreneurs, especially women of color.
ESSENCE: What is the impression you hope to have on young girls?
Civil: The influence for me is living life on your own terms, realizing that I turned a hobby into a career. Figuring out how to dance to your own rhythm. Just walk your path, figure it out, and understand every loss has a lesson, and really knowing your worth and doing what’s best for you.
ESSENCE: What has been the motivation for you to keep going in your career?
Civil: The freedom of being me, living life the way I want, and not the way society kind of dictates for women of color. Not having the stigma of being the product of my environment. The second thing is when I get those messages from people like, “Because of you, I started my own business.” It feels really good to know that people identify with what I’m doing.
“Understand every loss has a lesson, and you’re really just knowing your worth.” – Karen Civil
ESSENCE: You have such great style, how do you manage your day-to-day while also looking chic?
Civil: I’ve been working with my friend Stephanie, who helped me realize that I have a great need for my closet. So, she comes in, and she’s like “Karen, all right. You have stuff here. Let’s figure it out. Let’s make it work.” You know that side of the closet you don’t go through, or to the back of it.
ESSENCE: What are the five things in your closet that you are loving right now?
Civil: I love a 4 Hunnid t-shirt, Mac Miller hat, John Geiger sneakers, LV coin purse and, I love a good sweater.
ESSENCE: When putting together an outfit, what’s something that you can’t leave at home?
Civil: I’ve started doing this thing where I layer my clothing, and I forget that it’s like 90 degrees outside. The extra layering of clothes can stay at home. I’ll start my day like “Oh, this looks good.” By the end of the day, I’m in a sports bra or a tank top.