From a breakout starring role on the hit TV show “Toddlers and Tiaras” to NBC’s Bravo Game of Crowns to her own series in Germany called Beauty Queen Isabella managed to navigate a successful reality TV/business model with product brands that made her a millionaire. Isabella was named one of the youngest self-made millionaires in the United States after developing several business ventures around her initial TV success.
How were you drawn to the world of entrepreneurship?
I grew up in a big family where pretty much everybody owned their own business so it didn’t seem out of the ordinary to run a company and take on the task of being an entrepreneur.
At six years old did you ever imagine becoming a millionaire and how do you feel about it?
For me, it wasn’t until I was 10 years old that I fully grasped an understanding of what a millionaire was. I knew at six years old people loved the product (Custom Charm Bracelets) and I saw a lot of people wearing our product wherever we would go but I just thought that’s how business works. Now at 15, I truly know how lucky I was to have my first brand take off so quickly.
In learning the ups and downs of business did you find it challenging at your age not knowing business knowledge and having maturity?
The answer to this question is 100% yes which is one of the main reasons I’m writing a book called “Teens Guide to Business.” There were zero books out there for young entrepreneurs like myself to follow. I truly knew nothing about business so it was a lot of trial and error. Lucky for me IG and Facebook were becoming extremely helpful tools and those were things I did know to help grow the brand.
Your hard work and dedication have earned you the status of an idol to many what do you think is the key to your success?
I think one of the most important things to me is to be yourself and be relatable. Most of the time you are the face of the brand and clients may buy just off how you’re presenting yourself. This may sound simple but most people change how they act based on status. Stay humble, stay relatable and most importantly show all sides of your life. On my IG channel Business with Bella, I talk about my wins but I also talk about my losses. This includes businesses that I may have started that failed or even bad choices in design. Don’t just show the pretty. People will respect you more for it.
How are you drawn into the world of skincare and clothing?
I started making clothing when I was young. A lot of the mini business suits I would buy for interviews were super itchy and uncomfortable so I started to make custom outfits for myself. People would always ask where did you get that? So we started to make samples and the rest is history. Skincare is also a personal story. I had bad acne when I was younger and nothing worked. Finally, I found some of the most natural products were also the most powerful. We are currently developing skincare and a system around plant-based products.
At such a young age you have accomplished so much. How did you come from toddlers and tiaras to this ? How have you handled and still make time to just be a teenager?
I will always be grateful to pageants as they gave me an outlet to do something I truly loved: to perform and dance. Being on “Toddlers & Tiaras” changed my life and ultimately turned out to be one of the best decisions I made. That being said most of my time was spent like every other kid going to school and hanging with friends. In junior high, I was cheer captain for my school’s basketball team and this year I am on the school’s competitive cheer team.
Tell us about the next big thing what was it like being on the show?
Next Big Thing NYC was one of the best reality TV experiences because there was no fancy editing or drama. It was just 8 kids on their come-up to success. We filmed for over 6 months and had such an amazing time. The show just won a Telly Award and new episodes are slated for 2022.
What would you say your greatest lesson is so far?
The greatest lessons have been to always follow your dream. I see too many people care what others think and let their dreams go.
What inspired you to write your first book a teen’s guide to business? when is it coming out? and what message does it convey?
A teen’s guide to business is geared towards helping young teens and a guide to success. The book gives tips, tricks, and advice on how to start a business as a teen, how to build a business plan and so much more I have learned about what to do and what not to do, too.
How would you explain your fashion style and what is the one thing in your closet you can’t live without?
My fashion style…well it’s eclectic, that is for sure. I have everything from vintage Chanel Suits to Nike sweat outfits, Jordan pro sneakers to Fashion Nova. I think the one thing I can’t live without is my sneaker collection.
What other things are in store for Isabella Barrett?
This year my main focus is growing my brand, New York Fashion Week, launching my book “A Teens Guide to Business” and hopefully doing a book tour so I can meet other entrepreneurs and talk to them about their experiences.