Welcome to Super Human, where we sit down with inspiring founders and leaders paving the way in the wellness space.
We chatted with Dianna Cohen, Founder & CEO of Crown Affair. Dianna’s rituals are a reminder to live slowly and intentionally. Read on to learn more about her passions for not just caring for your hair, but your body and mind as well. In her day-to-day founder life, you’ll learn how she creates balance through activities like journaling, reading, recharging, and spending quality time with her loved ones.
Where do you live and what’s your favorite mode of expression?
I currently live in Miami, FL—I moved here one year ago after living in New York City for 12 years. My favorite mode of expression is creating and building things. I love to spend time creatively solving problems with people.
When did crafting a hair ritual you loved become a part of your daily routine? Why?
I’ve always been curious about hair and have taken the time to care for my hair since I was young. There’s something so powerful about creating consistent rituals that transform you overtime—be it for activity, journaling, nutrition—why would caring for your hair be any different? I saw the results add up: brushing my hair in the evenings before bed, using a hair towel and being gentle on my hair when wet, taking time to learn about ingredients that brought my hair to it’s healthiest state and made it the best version of myself. I wanted to share these rituals with everyone I knew and create a universe that shared this mission.
How does your day typically begin?
I start every day with The Five Minute Journal, followed by foam rolling and stretching. Stretching is my form of meditation—I love the feeling of foam rolling to move energy or any stiffness from sitting at the computer for the following hours. It allows me to be mindful of my breath and set the tone for the day. I workout on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings at 8am, so my work day starts around 10am. I’m a night owl so I love having my mornings for my personal rituals. Between 10am – 7pm ET I’m in meetings or in deep work mode. I enjoy creative work in the late evenings. No two days are the same, which is one of the things I love most about building Crown Affair.
What are your current self-care routines and how do you nourish yourself?
Finding time to take care of yourself is the most important thing you can do—it allows you to take better care of your loved ones and also show up as a better leader for your team. I have a deep journaling and stretching practice, I also have dozens of beauty rituals, not surprisingly a lot for my hair 🙂 Reading and listening to poetry is one of my favorite self-care practices (my favorite poetry pod is Poetry Unbound). I nourish myself by finding alone time to rest, read, and recharge. I also make sure I’m present with my partner when I’m with him. I’ll put my phone away and have fully focused, present time with him. That nourishes me more than anything else.
What’s your most sacred time of day?
The evenings. Shout out to the night owls who the structures of this world are not created for—I see you.
What’s your superpower?
Connecting the dots across my curiosities and conversations with others. Your vision becomes clear when you can marry what you love with what others are seeking as well. Every little conversation matters, details matter—that’s what leads to insights and true understanding of your why.
What inspired you to launch Crown Affair?
I’ve always been passionate about hair care—my hair was a source of self-assurance and something I’ve cared for daily since I was young. A few years back, I consolidated all of my best hair-care tips and tricks into a shareable Google doc after constantly fielding requests for info on routine from friends and the document was shared way beyond my immediate network. It was a major lightbulb moment, having worked in consumer brands for a while, that all my favorite hair care brands were salon-driven and dated in their language and formulations. So much of the prestige category was professional brands selling styling and perfection, talking to customers in a way that real women don’t actually talk to each other. I wanted to create a brand that I looked forward to using every day, in every touchpoint of my haircare ritual. I wanted products that were modern and clean, but also actually worked.
You encourage the Crown Affair community to slow down and honor their own rituals. In a world full of “go go go” and hyper growth mentality, can you talk to us about this (very refreshing!) mindful approach? And how do you integrate this way of being into different parts of your own life?
One of our core values at Crown Affair is ‘Take your Time.’ It is important to take your time, especially in a world where things move so quickly. I find that blocking out time for activities that make you feel good (or also time to do nothing!) is helpful to slow down. It’s easier said than done to lean into ‘being’ versus ‘doing’ in our society, but I always feel grateful for making the time to slow down. Finding that space over the last few years has transformed my life—also, I could never tell people to take their time if I’m not practicing what I preach.
You’re a founder, mentor, community leader–and so much more. How do you manage to wear all of these hats, while still finding your own mind-body balance?
Surround yourself with virgos ! Just kidding, although it does help when your partner and executive team is top of everything else 🙂 Truly though, surround yourself with people who have the superpowers you don’t. Hire for what you’re not as good at—it’ll allow you to lean into your superpower and find time for harmony in your life.
Our community learns and grows by hearing how others navigate their wellness challenges. Has there ever been a time when the mind-body scale tipped out of balance for you and do you have any tools or rituals to share that helped you bring it back?
This balance is relatively new for me. I came from company cultures of 24/7 hustle that were operating at a growth at all costs mindset. Part of what made me truly recognize how meaningful my relationship with my hair was was when I was working at a high-stress role years back and my hair texture began to change, and then fall out. Nothing else in my life had changed—nothing medical, environmental—it was stress related hair loss. Since then I’ve been prioritizing taking time to care for myself holistically and I’ve found balance through my consistent rituals.
You’ve just recently launched at Sephora (big congrats to you and Team CA!). What does the future of Crown Affair and ritual building look like as you continue to grow?
The last two years of business have been about setting the tone and foundation for what’s ahead in this category as a whole. I’m so excited about the new products we are launching, growing our team, visiting all the Sephora in-store locations, meeting more customers, launching the fifth season of our mentorship program Seedling. I love doing what I do and I couldn’t be more thrilled for the years ahead. It feels like it’s just the beginning for Crown Affair. While I’m dreaming about what’s ahead, I practice rituals that remind me that the accomplishment and joy comes from doing what you love for a living, not just the future wins.
What is something special happening in your life right now that you’d be excited to share with our community?
My sister, who has lived in LA for 7 years, recently had a baby, my first niece. They’re currently moving across the country to be closer to our family (we’re all now in Florida). The last two years have awakened me to realize how important it is to spend time with your family and loved ones frequently, so there’s nothing I’m more excited about than to be spending more time with my sister and our family this year after years of living across the country.