My message is love who you are … embrace her! The good, the quirky, the messy, the goofy, the beauty, all of it – the darlin’ parts of yourself and the not so darlin’ parts of yourself.

My mission started with my love for fashion, beauty, and community. Over time, my message evolved into the “Not So Darlin” podcast and created a lifestyle supporting women over the age of 40 to be fabulous! The “Not So Darlin” brand/mantra stems from my not-so-perfect moments in life which ended up being the catalyst for growth and inspiring others. We’ve all had a point in time that we made a not-so-great decision or choice and spent too much time beating ourselves up. Instead of wallowing, dust yourself off. Take it as a lesson learned and keep going! 

I built the “Not So Darlin” platform after facing my eating disorder (ED). I formed a relationship with “Fred”. I call my ED – Fred and – I tell him to drop dead often. His voice can be loud, but my will to help myself and the people around me is louder. The relationship is love and hate; however, it is the catalyst that brought me here inspiring others that no matter what age you are, there is time to do what your heart desires. Also, I don’t come from the traditional background of straight A’s and then transitioning into college and beyond. My path has been different, and I’m here to show others that there’s more than one way to show up in the world and be successful!

What has been traditional in my life, was getting married in my 20’s and having a son and tucking away some dreams to be a wife and SAHM. My mid-30’s rolled around, and my grandma’s and father’s words started to ring in my head as far as what I wanted to do with this one precious life other than the traditional things. Don’t get me wrong, being a wife and mother have been the inspiration in my life, however there’s been a fire in me since birth that I wanted to reach many and make people feel beautiful, heard, and seen. Enter Fred, enter my modeling, enter the podcast, enter my brand the “Not So Darlin” to inspire women over 40, reminding them life is just getting started!

Over the last eight years, I’ve gotten therapy for my ED, started a podcast with guests from fathers discussing c-parenting, women starting businesses over the age 40, life coaches, mental health experts, and more. I’ve tried all things beauty at various local beauty bars to assist with product knowledge and modeled for a variety of magazines, again encouraging women there are no age restrictions in following your goals!

And for me, I am just getting started, too!

More to come… follow me on Instagram @notsodarlintonya for updates.

Tonya Phillips, model, influencer and host of the Not So Darlin’ podcast is on a mission to inspire women over 40 to play big, speak up and realize that this is only the beginning! Having developed and overcome an eating disorder as an adult, Tonya is a warrior who knows how to overcome self-doubt, build self-confidence, and shatter the old stories that can block you from living your purpose. From this journey to authenticity, came Tonya’s mantra “Perfect is Lame.” Her grandmother and mother serve as inspiration for Tonya to always strive to help others recognize their own value as well as their beauty inside and out. Tonya has appeared on Bravo TV as a Top 5 finalist at the Kentucky Oaks Fashion Show, is an award winning PTO volunteer and formerly a host of Beauty Boost Louisville’s Women’s Empowerment Event. She’s a brand ambassador for many incredible brands and an active supporter of cancer survivors through Louisville nonprofit, Shirley’s Way. In her personal life, Tonya enjoys styling everything fashion, beauty and home decor, working out at barre3, diy projects and spending time with her husband Brian and teenage son Braxton.