If you haven’t met Amy Wood, well, you’ve probably heard cool things about her through mutual friends. Amy is the superwoman behind Yes New Friends, an experimental friendship-making website, and Co-Principal at 100 Acre Wood, a leading creative agency run by T.O.’s marketing masterminds. Amy has been killin’ it since the late ‘80s with an A+ entrepreneurial spirit, LOL Twitter account and fearless pastel hair. Naturally, I felt journalistically compelled to uncover the nitty-gritty details that everyone is dying to know, specifically about her skincare products, favourite rap music and work habits. Like, how can one woman be that talented? You’re about to find out.
SB: You’re living the purple hair mermaid dream. Were you anxious to bleach your locks purple? How has lilac hair changed your life?
AW: My hair hasn’t been its natural colour in YEARS. I’ve never been too scared to do weird stuff to my hair. I definitely had a hot pink Gwen Stefani moment in middle school and inexplicably in high school went through a short-lived Daryl Hannah in Blade Runner phase. There are no photos of it, so don’t bother asking my mom.
I like having pastel hair—it makes it extra fun to watch men try to take me seriously in meetings. I’m already a youngish woman with the difficult task of occasionally trying to command respect from people (barf!). Might as well make it even more difficult, right? Life’s a journey.
You’re a very talented lady with experience in everything from experiential marketing, branding, marketing, non-profit, B2B, social media strategies, walking on water, hilarious tweeting, and ageless skin alchemy. Have you always considered yourself to be a fearless woman, with multiple projects and talents? Do you identify with unicorns? Are you a unicorn in a woman’s costume? Tell me the truth.
*Unzips human bodysuit to reveal unicorn body* I’M FINALLY FREE!!! No but for real, I think that’s just how a lot of people are—we dabble in lots of things that satisfy our various interests and in some ways I welcome a shift from feeling the need to specialize and focus on one specific skill to nurturing a variety of projects and interests. I always try to encourage other women to do the same—if you want to try something new, host a dance party, make a web series, start a podcast, just go for it! Again, life is a journey.
At what point in your career, between graduating with a PR certificate to your current role as the Co-Principal at 100 Acre Wood and Founder of Yes New Friends, did you truly feel confident; like, “I’m killin’ it,” sort of bathroom mirror confidence? Have you always felt it?
No way! Everyone struggles with self-confidence. If you feel like you’re killin’ it too often maybe you need to push yourself harder. The key is to stay humble and let shakiness motivate you to get better at the things you’re less confident about. We’re all beautiful angels and wonderful humans but sometimes I think ego gets in the way of self-improvement. In my experience, it’s actually more helpful to get over yourself a little bit.
Do you ever Google yourself? And if so, what key words do you use?
Oh god, well now I just did. My Twitter came up first, and that’s not good. Does my mom read my tweets? Oh god, this is a nightmare. How do I stop this? There is a singer named Amy Wood. That’s pretty cool—I guess if I ever want a music career I should choose a cool pseudonym like A+ Very Cool Girl Singer.
What does a day in the life look like? Beginning with your ringtone alarm (Timba? Motorcycle? Circuit?)
I always set my ringtone to be a good-ass song because I don’t want Apple default sounds to be the first thing I hear when I wake up. Don’t give Steve Jobs the satisfaction!!!! (RIP) Wow, I am crushing this interview.
Anyway, I usually start working from bed because I like to clear my emails and make my list for the day first thing and also catch up on any Dril tweets I may have missed. I eat breakfast and go get a cappuccino, shout out to the various locations of Sam James Coffee Shops. Shout out to never calculating how much money I have spent on cappuccinos over the years.
Depending on my schedule, I’ll be running around to meet with clients or maybe quietly working in a coffee shop somewhere. I always make sure to put in lots of snuggle time with Hank, my dog (and therapist).
If your life was encapsulated in a one-hit wonder movie montage: what song would play, and featuring what rapper?
Okay I’m confused. Is the song a one-hit wonder or is the movie? Either way, the camera opens with me rolling up to TD Bank. I walk up to the teller and pull $40 out of my wallet (my student VISA card glints in the fluorescent lighting). ***Casting note: can we get Channing Tatum to play the bank teller? Anyway, the teller can see from my confidence that I am very wealthy and cool. He gives me a once over like, Whoah she’s really goin’ for it, and I nod like, Let’s do this. He opens the safe and pulls out several rolls of quarters, which he heaves onto the counter and slowly slides towards me. Cut to me in the Laundromat, slow-motion throwing quarters in the air while rolling around in a pile of my dirty sweatpants — Rich Gang’s Lifestyle plays softly in the background.
I’m a voodoo gypsy you met at Cold Tea, and I’m granting you one AMAZING night to take Amy Wood (age 20) out for a ladies night. What bar do you take her to and what advice do you give her?
I think Amy Wood at 20 would be happy discovering the existence of Palm Bay™. We’d just sit in a park and I’d blow her mind by telling her that one day She Does the City will one day want to know about her skincare routine.
Describe your reaction when Action Bronson followed you on Twitter. Did you freak your freak when it happened? Barack Obama is following you too, btw.
Yes, thank you for noticing. Action Bronson is a really proud follow for me. I keep thinking he will realize how basic I am and unfollow me, but it hasn’t happened yet. As for Barack Obama, that dude follows EVERYBODY so I’m Over It.
You’re a t-shirt collector, I can tell (JK, Twitter tipped me off). What’s the funniest t-shirt you own and where did you buy it from?
My boyfriend made me a shirt that says “Don’t @ Me,” which is currently a front-runner.
If you had to tattoo one piece of professional advice onto your wrist (Comic Sans font), what would it be?
Left wrist: Life is A Journey. Right Wrist: Ban All Men.
What is something spectacular you didn’t expect to happen, but did, after launching Yes New Friends?
I think I was just surprised at how well it resonated with people! The demand has actually been a bit too high for just one gal to run it so I’ve had to work on a new build, launching very soon! Eek!
To all the women, like myself, who see you as a v. cool and connected role model, what’s your secret to success? And by “secret” I mean – breakfast. Cap’n Crunch? Greek yogurt? Whipped cream-covered oatmeal? Yoga? Pretzel bagels from Tim Hortons? Chia seeds?
Apples and almond butter, baby!
Okay, real talk. What’s the deal with Rich Homie Quan? Why is this American rapper from Atlanta so special to you?
Okay Real Talk, I Appreciate His Work Ethic and Talent And I Guess What I Am Really Trying To Get At Without Beating Around The Bush Is That I, Like Rich Homie Himself, Will Truly Never, Not Even Once, Ever Stop Going In.
I’m a drunk girl and I violently scream at you in the bathroom mirror at a bar, “YOU’RE BEAUTIFUL!” What’s your skin-care routine? Is it something weird, like SCOBY acid peels, coffee grinds or raw honey? You have to tell me. This is an interview.
Oh god, I thought my skin would stop being crazy when I reached my late twenties but it turns out it’s crazy just in a Fun Exciting And Completely Different Way. I am still trying to figure it out. I started getting eye wrinkles this year and I have just decided to do nothing and ignore them completely until I die. I swear by $1 Korean sheet masks and sometimes I use red clay on my face (you can buy the powder for like $3 at a health food store. Cheapest and best.) If I break out I use Mario Badescu drying lotion. That stuff is the TRUTH.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years: In 2020, when the world is run by immortal health goths, iPhone 13S is released and 2Pac is discovered alive at Carls Jr. What are you doing in all this futuristic chaos?
I honestly hope I’m living a quiet life in a cabin in the woods but that someone will have the decency to send a drone out to tell me if they find Pac alive.
If you were an emoji, which one would you be?
An under-used legend of the emoji keyboard.