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“Hi, I’m Cassi Lopez-March (@cassisoclassy)! I currently live in Queens, and I am the owner of So Gold Studios in Brooklyn. I essentially do everything for the studio, including piercing, ear curating, jewelry buying and sometimes designing, as well as the usual monotonous office work. The best thing about my job is that I get to be creative every day—I love decorating the human body. It’s actually similar to the way you might recommend beauty products to someone else: when styling piercings, I might consider everything from a person’s skin tone to career to overall aesthetic. While I certainly have a style that I prefer, I have to put that to the side when working on someone else's ears. I'll make suggestions based on my client and their anatomy, and then we’ll move forward from there. With everything I do, my main goal is to make something visually pleasing.
I was very much an angry, goth teenager. I got my first piercing when I was 14 years old—an eyebrow ring that rejected soon after. I tried it a second time, and it also failed. (I STILL have a scar!) I also dyed my hair a bunch of wild colors, got into eyeshadow and dramatic liner, and tweezed my brows super thin. It was about making a statement—I wanted to raise hell and I had to look the part! When I was a senior in high school, a tattoo shop opened up down the block from my house. I’d hang out there with friends and, after a while, the guy who owned it offered to teach me how to pierce. I would go to school all day, then when I finished I’d go work at the tattoo shop. I’ll be eternally grateful for that foot in the door. After two decades of piercing, my best piece of advice to those looking to get pierced is to go in with an open mind. Not everyone has the right anatomy for certain piercings, and the majority of ears you see on social media are healed with the jewelry switched out. If you let the piercer do their job and are open to compromise, I promise you'll leave happy.
As I've gotten older, I've become more comfortable with myself. Cosmetics aren’t essential, but I just happen to enjoy beauty products! No tea, no shade. I always wear some sort of fragrance, and it's usually between Chanel Chance, which I've been wearing forever, or Tom Ford Santal Blush. I don’t wear foundation, but highlighters are important to me. There is nothing worse than putting on a highlighter and realizing it just looks like glitter—I love gold, and I love gemstones, but I hate glitter. I usually use Glossier’s liquid highlighter in Pale Pearl because it gives me the perfect dewy look without all of that sparkle.
In a perfect world I'd have naturally curly lashes, but in reality they’re very straight. My Kevyn Aucoin eyelash curler paired with YSL Shock Mascara in Black is so necessary. That’s my all time favorite mascara—it doesn’t flake off throughout the day and nothing keeps my lashes curled better. I don’t use anything on my brows but I do get them microbladed annually, which has been a real time-saver and game-changer. And, though I don't get to wear them much these days due to masks, my lipstick collection is quite large. The Morphe X Ourfa Zinali limited edition liquid lip set in Vinyl [Ed note: discontinued] will always be my favorite. It is, hands down, the perfect shade of red for my skin tone. It doesn’t dry my lips out, lasts all day, and comes with a complimentary liner. The liner is actually a tad darker, which makes the lipstick that much better.
I wash my face with a cheap drug store Clean and Clear cleanser—I’ve been using that stuff forever and it's never given me an issue. If I run out of face wash, I just use a microfiber towel to remove my makeup and then rinse with water. My 62-year-old mother has the best skin ever, not a single pore and barely a wrinkle, and her secret is that she only washes with water. I hope to have skin like that when I’m her age! I think everyone can benefit from using moisturizer, but I have incredibly dry skin so I really rely on it. (I also chug as much water as humanly possible.) The Rose Deep Hydration Cream from Fresh is my go-to moisturizer at the moment. I hate feeling greasy, and this one keeps my face hydrated without leaving it oily. It’s the perfect in-between. I also love rose scented anything—I put on Smith’s Rosebud Salve every night before I go to bed, too. My husband thinks I’m crazy, but I cannot sleep without it.
I had my first curly hair cut about a month ago by someone whose hair actually looked like mine. It was wild! Now, I’m really making a conscious effort to enjoy my hair's natural texture and avoid heat. I did purchase a Dyson blow dryer recently, which dries my curls in 20 minutes (as opposed to an hour) with minimal damage. I also try not to wash my hair often since it's so curly and dry. I'm currently living for the Ouidad Climate Control conditioner, and the Climate Control gel is great too.
The beauty industry used to say, pretty blatantly, that women weren’t worthy unless they bought a certain product. Now, I feel like that’s what the wellness industry does. My free time is limited, so when I do have some there's nothing I love more than just lounging around, lighting a joint, and watching a funny movie. My best friend just got me a rose quartz Gua Sha tool that I use to help with my TMJ and sinuses, and it’s also supposed to help tighten skin, which is a win-win for me. It feels so good when I keep it in the freezer. I do love the way yoga gives my mind a moment of stillness, but I’m honestly not so consistent with it. Regardless of what you’re into, no one should feel less than if they don’t see the appeal in living up to someone else’s expectations.”
—as told to ITG
Photos via the author