coming out party

Jen Fassino’s *NSFW Coming-Out Party

9 mins read

The title for this article might be a bit misleading; however, it did get you reading. 

This is a coming-out story—just maybe not the kind you’re thinking. 

It’s about Jen Fassino’s decision to address her “coming out” from the place where her two lives—personal and professional—collide.

 In her professional life, she of course has to be professional. She must act a certain way. 

“Then, in my personal life, everyone considers me that friend… the one you introduce last to the new guy you’re dating, because you know… I can’t keep my mouth shut. I can’t hide how I feel. If I’m happy, sad, mad… I can’t hide anything. That’s my downfall.”

This dichotomy was tough to balance; thus, Jen’s coming-out party today… 

To celebrate BEING Jen AF.

Jen was born in Wisconsin (which explains her obsession with cheese, cheese curds, and the Green Bay Packers). She lived in Los Angeles for five years before landing in Austin, Texas. 

She is a highly motivated, intelligent, articulate, and savvy businesswoman. Five years ago, after spending 14 years as a hairdresser, she decided to start a completely self-funded haircare company. She not only accomplished her goal, but she did it all herself—from product to finances and marketing. Her biggest accomplishment with this brand? It was picked up by Urban Outfitters. 

“I do hair, and I have worked in the celebrity hair world,” Jen said. “I go back and forth from Austin to LA working on campaigns for photography and film. I’ve done everything from New York Fashion Week to styling celebrities for red-carpet events while simultaneously working behind the chair with everyday clients. I even used to work at a well-known salon in Beverly Hills, and from there, I worked with an agency. So that’s how I got most of the jobs doing freelancing in film, television, and photography. I definitely feel I have to be more reserved in this industry because I’ve worked so hard to get here. You have to show up professionally and at the top of your game, with certain attire, verbiage, vocabulary, and presence.”

Jen also owns a successful online hand sanitizer line (targeting businesses), a consulting business for hairdressers, a salon, a freelancing gig in Wisconsin, and now… the super-exclusive podcast you’re about to read about.

Seems like a lot for one person, right? 

“Yes,” Jen confirmed. “I have been a very busy b*tch.”

Despite her professional success, though, Jen wants something very different. 

What she really wants is to live by the beat of her own drum… to be “fully expressed” while doing something she loves. 

Enter podcasting. 

“I started the podcast because I’m so sick of having to be a certain way in my personal life and in my business life. I just needed to be ME on this show. You can even see it in my cover art—check out the Yeti mic,” Jen laughed.

“Jen AF is essentially me rambling about my week—the things that happen daily, weekly—and just reporting back the stuff that pisses me off… my pet peeves and embarrassing stories. It’s everything and nothing at the same time.” 

Listeners should prepare themselves for Jen AF—and for her open, honest discussions about millennial struggles and life’s WTF moments. Jen shares her unsolicited advice, opinions, and unique perspectives in an open-book manner. And she does not embarrass easily. 

The podcasting bug bit Jen while making guest appearances on someone else’s podcast.

“I had such a fun time talking sh*t with them. I was like, ‘This is what you do for a job?’ And they were like, ‘Yeah, we’re pretty close to doing this full-time.” 

Jen was inspired. And now, as the host of her own show, she feels good just being her, with no restraints.

“There’s a certain set of rules you have to follow in the professional world. It’s business etiquette, and I can play that game. I’m actually very good at it. But podcasting just felt really natural. It’s fun to say whatever the f*ck is on my mind, because that’s how I am and exactly how I would say it in my personal life. I mean, that’s just how it is. Anyone who knows me will very much be like, ‘Oh yeah… that’s just Jen.’ I love being Jen AF,” she shared.

Jen’s friends and many fans love the show. Her mom, not so much.

“My mom was like, ‘You said that on the Internet!’ And I’m like, ‘I’m 35, mom. I’m pretty sure people know I’ve had sex before. I have no problem sharing funny stories about sexual encounters, embarrassing situations, or other funny things I’ve done! Everyone has similar stories they’ve experienced—I just don’t filter mine. I want to be relatable.’ And she’s like, ‘I can’t f*cking believe you’re doing this.’ And I said, ‘Well, at least I’m having fun and being entertaining!’ Imagine your mind having all kinds of open tabs, like your computer. People think about weird things and situations daily, right? Whatever pops into my mind is pretty much what I discuss.”

Even with all the tabs of her subconscious mind open, there are still a couple things Jen will not discuss on the show: politics and current events. 

“I want to cover pop culture and really stupid sh*t. I mean, really mind-numbing stuff. If you want to listen to something serious like the news, that’s a different platform. That’s not comedy. I just want to be a f*cking idiot and give you something just to kind of zone out on and laugh your *ss off.” 

What does the future hold for Jen and her podcast?

“I really LOVE podcasting. I mean, I really f*cking enjoy it. I would love to quit all my other endeavors and focus full-time on the show. I would love to quit doing hair and everything involving it, and just be my true, authentic self.”

No matter how things unfold for Jen, I have no doubt she will be a great success, even more than she already is. The show is so easy to listen to, and the best part is that Jen does not even try to be funny—she just is. I am humbled that she chose this platform to officially come out as her true authentic self! You REALLY should listen to Jen AF. You can thank me later.

 

May 2021 Issue

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