Instagram star Nastya Lisansky gets real
The effortlessly stylish insta-blogger star opens up in a candid interview.
Nastya Lisansky commands attention for just being herself. After studying dressmaking and public relations at the Shenkar College of Engineering and Design in Israel, Lisansky worked at a number of fashion companies before organically creating her own digital brand.
She's a pioneer in the burgeoning field of insta-blogging, short posts on social media. Lisansky’s raw, unedited photos on her Instagram feed provide a peek inside a somewhat mysterious life and offers stylish outfit inspiration for her more than 54,000 Instagram followers. With major brands like Nike and Moschino advertising through her feed, several capsule collections under her belt, collaborations with Israeli luxury fashion brands like Joseph Haver and a new e-commerce site launched that allows followers to shop her style, Lisansky finds herself at the forefront of the fashion industry and busier than ever. But for someone who’s built a business based on her image, she’s surprisingly private.
In an interview from her home in Israel, we got Lisansky to open up about how she balances work and family, why she doesn’t care to join Snapchat and how she continues to grow her stylish and successful brand.
From The Grapevine: Your Instagram feels very personal and raw. I think people gravitate to you because you show the real you, not a glamorized version of yourself like so many accounts we see out there. Why is this important to you?
Nastya Lisansky: I think that's the beauty of Instagram and this new insta-blogger profession that was born. This is a personal account that tells a personal story: personal taste and lifestyle. Over time, I began to gain followers and started to evolve with marketing content. What I've always placed a lot of value in is to be loyal to my personal taste: to always work only with brands and products that I would use at home without a camera and the public eye involved. No one really likes to be washed all the time with ads. It is important to me that when I'm promoting a product, I use language as authentic as possible.
FTG: How have you fostered such a devoted following on Instagram? And how did your Instagram account evolve from just posting photos of yourself to a full-time career?
NL: I started a long time ago, during the first few days of Instagram. At first, I posted all kinds of nonsense because I knew that nobody was watching. But over time I began to naturally shoot more and more fashion, because this has always been my passion. I am a fashion designer by profession. I’d post outfits in the mirror, and suddenly I got more and more followers, and I noticed more interest in my fashion pictures. I was mostly getting asked about my outfit posts: 'What are you wearing? Where is it from?' I suggested to my friend that had just launched a fashion brand to give me some clothes to wear and post. And it worked! Suddenly her brand was really well known. And that’s when I realized that there is a real business potential here. I then appeared on a cover of one of the leading Israeli magazines who called me an "official Israeli insta-girl" when I had 7,000 followers. I then started to go through the public relations offices of brands one by one and try to sell my idea. Most did not understand until one person gave me a chance.
FTG: It must be incredibly gratifying to know you had this vision for your brand and you made it happen. You've really opened some pretty big doors for yourself.
NL: As a pioneer in the field and one of the first in my country, I am proud of my achievements. I’ve been taken to Fashion Week, I designed two capsule collections for women and one for children and introduced my designs during fashion week in Tel Aviv. I was invited by Nike to a blogger event in New York and even took part in a half marathon! Following Instagram came television, writing, photography and also entrepreneurship.
FTG: Can you give us a glimpse into your creative process?
NL: First of all, it is important for me to love and believe in the product. As I said, authenticity is valuable to me. It's important to me that my pictures, my vision and my language are unique. I am getting inspired sometimes from accounts that I appreciate but I never copy and paste, I always make it my own. Instagram is full of imitations and cliches. It can be boring and not original.
FTG: What inspired you to build on your success and create an e-commerce site?
NL: I think entrepreneurship. My e-commerce site – When It’s Gone It’s Gone – is my baby and was a natural next step. Instagram will not be here forever and at some point, I got tired of being upfront in the public. Deep down, I feel I am a person behind the scenes. I’ve gained a lot of creative and marketing tools, and a large following to help me launch a business like this.
FTG: In this crazy busy, digital world we live in, how do you slow down and take time for yourself away from the accoutrements associated with being a blogger?
NL: I'm not on Facebook and I refuse to become a Snapchat addict. I have children and I want to transfer them to the road hand in hand without being stuck on the phone. I'm not in a panic to get more and more content all the time. I have different boundaries now, and I realized that not everything must be published at all times. I value my privacy now. This work, it’s fun work but it’s still work, and the work can not be 24/7. That would be insane.
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