Silvia Bonachea – Miracle in Puerto Rico

Posted by Rodan + Fields on Tuesday, May 1st, 2018

Silvia Bonachea discovered Rodan + Fields after passing through two completely different careers. Growing up in New York, she was prepped and ready to enter the corporate world from the beginning. “I attended college at Georgetown and worked for a prestigious public relations company in New York City right out of college. That was definitely what was expected of me. My mom had a very successful career, we had a very privileged life, and I’m seriously very grateful for her for that. She really influenced me a lot. But she ended up paying a price for such a demanding work life. I wanted to have a career and contribute financially to my family, but I wanted to make sure I found balance too.”

Shortly after graduating college, Silvia found an alternative path. She met her husband Eduardo, moved to his home in Puerto Rico, and everything changed. “Living on a tropical island will change your mentality about what’s important. I gained a completely different perspective from the grind of New York City. In Puerto Rico, we really value family time and quality of life. I quit my job in advertising when we started a family and I was determined to figure out how to maintain a flexible lifestyle. We really wanted to enjoy Puerto Rico and cherish every moment together as a family.”
R+F Consultant - Silvia Bonachea
Life on the farm
Though they knew very little about agriculture, Silvia and Eduardo moved to a small town on the island and turned to the land to support their family. “We started our own organic farm mostly as a hobby, because in Puerto Rico it’s hard to get fresh fruits and vegetables. But then we fell in love with agriculture. We started a plantain farm and it was very rewarding.” Unfortunately, the fun didn’t last. For a multitude of reasons, the farm wasn’t producing as they’d hoped.

“After each drought, storm, or fungus would wipe out part of our crop our agricultural venture was looking more and more like a labor of love. To make matters worse, we bought our house at the peak of the real estate bubble and had a huge mortgage. The economy crashed not once, but twice. We couldn’t sell our house or move to an area with more job opportunities. Our savings were dwindling and our business was failing. I knew I had to do something.”

R+F Consultant - Silvia Bonachea & Family at their Plantain Farm

Silvia with her husband, Eduardo, and their two daughters, Marina and Andrea, at their plantain farm in Southeast Puerto Rico.

Seeking new skincare
Silvia also wanted to address some lingering skincare issues that were impacting her self-esteem. “At the time, I was definitely putting myself last and not taking care of myself. I had a drawer full of expensive products that did nothing for my skin, and I was not about to spend what little free time I had at a dermatologist’s office. I wanted my daughters to see me as a strong and confident woman, but my insecurities were holding me back.”

Silvia heard about Rodan + Fields when Alex Agosta, a college friend in New York City, posted an article about her new skincare company. “I saw the amazing ‘Before and After’ pictures and reached out to her immediately. After one week of using the REDEFINE Regimen and the Night Renewing Serum, I saw changes in my skin’s appearance and my confidence soared. It felt so good to be happy with my skin again. I started telling my friends about R+F, and once I found out how the business worked, I wanted in.”

R+F Consultant - Silvia Bonachea in Miami

Silvia and Eduardo at an incentive trip in Bal Harbour, Miami.

A hard decision
Silvia had some internal challenges to work through before starting her own business. “We were working all day under the hot Caribbean sun, and at night I was drowning in paperwork and payroll responsibilities. I didn’t think I had time or energy to add anything more to my life.” However, on the farm, she had tasted the freedom from being her own boss and believed in the potential of this opportunity to help her family’s financial situation. With encouragement from Eduardo, Silvia launched her Rodan + Fields business in March 2013.

“Being one of the first to bring Rodan + Fields to the Puerto Rico market was definitely challenging. It was a big event for me to reach Level I. Of course I had support from my team in New York, but I still did events where nobody showed up, and I really struggled with the language barrier. Doing all of this by myself was hard. My business was slow to start. However, there was really no reason to quit. I didn’t always believe in myself, but I always had the belief in this opportunity. I think that’s what kept me going.”

R+F Consultant - Silvia Bonachea & Sponsor

Silvia with the first two LV Circles Achievers in PR, Karla Montijo and Xaimara Rodriguez, and her sponsor, Alex Agosta, on her first trip to PR to meet the team.

Finding her community
Silvia’s biggest wake-up call came when her mother passed away. “I really realized how special this opportunity was the summer after my mother died, about a year into my business. I was able to drop everything and go stateside without having to worry about my business falling apart. I was able to care for my family when they needed me most without having to sacrifice my career. Few people have that luxury. It was also a big turning point in my life because I realized I didn’t have the same kind of network my mom had supporting her. It was up to me to make friends, and R+F gave me the push I needed to really connect with new people.”

Little by little, by putting in 20 hours per week of hard work, Silvia’s team began to grow and she built the community she’d been missing. “I started my business in a tiny remote town in Puerto Rico, feeling isolated and longing for a community to connect with. I’m so grateful my business has plugged me into an incredible network of like-minded people who I now call friends! I’m really driven by having raw and vulnerable conversations, and it keeps me excited about being an Independent Consultant. It’s been the biggest, most rewarding part of my journey. These people are the reason I’m here. They make this fun and they make this worth it. They keep me going.”

R+F Consultant - Silvia Bonachea & Lexus

Silvia at Alex Agosta’s Lexus party in NYC with Karla Montijo and Xaimara Rodriguez, both LV Circle Achievers from Puerto Rico and Sarah Mentzel, her direct business partner from Perth, Canada.

Dealing with disaster
Silvia’s team members recently stood by each other during one of the biggest disasters Puerto Rico has ever seen. “I think this business brings out the best in people. We really saw that in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in September 2017. It was very scary and completely changed everyone’s lives. Every business stopped. Many of my business partners moved stateside or lost their full-time jobs, and suddenly their Plan B turned into their Plan A. The hospitals weren’t open and people were scrambling for clean water. A lot of people still don’t even have power six months later. Thankfully we do.

“The most reassuring part was, a lot of people around the country used their Rodan + Fields businesses for good during this disaster. We were able to donate to some of the hospitals, and I got messages and donations from other Consultants around the country asking how they could help. Amongst all the chaos, I had the assurance that I could take my business with me wherever we ended up. R+F is providing people like me with the opportunity to be more prepared when catastrophe strikes, and I’m so grateful to be part of it.”

R+F Consultant - Silvia Bonachea & Familly

Silvia with her mom and daughters, taking a break from the heat to enjoy the fall weather.

A bright future
R+F has given Silvia and her family the confidence to make big changes in their lives. They closed the farm and moved to the city in San Juan, and Eduardo is now able to work full time as an artist. Silvia is now looking forward to her future. “I love living here and I don’t want to move, but I do want my children to experience the world and see other places. I want to be able to give them all the important things my mom gave me. It’s definitely taken me a long time to accept my title as entrepreneur/stay-at-home mom. But it’s really exciting to know my daughters see me as somebody who is very hard-working and successful in my own way. I take a lot of pride in that.”

R+F Consultant - Silvia Bonachea & Daughters

Silvia with her daughters, exploring the southern part of the island with her extended family.

“Rodan + Fields is a really special opportunity. We are redefining social commerce by providing a system that works for a lot of people — where you get to choose when, where, and with whom you do business. I’m doing something I never imagined. I have grown as a person, a parent, a friend, and entrepreneur. I continue setting even bigger goals for myself. Because of this business, I have a clearer vision of what I want for my future, and I couldn’t be more thankful for this opportunity and what it has done for my family.”

To contact Silvia about joining her team or purchasing products, connect with her here.


Tell Me More…

What one word do you most relate to? Gratitude. Both of my parents are Cuban refugees and the importance of being grateful for health, family, and safety was a huge part of my growing up.

Your biggest splurge? A ski trip for my family. It’s my favorite sport and can’t wait to do it more often with my girls!

Have there been any especially significant people in your R+F journey? My husband, Eduardo, because he believes in me 1000% more than I do myself. Also, my business would not be where it is without my friend and partner, Karla Montijo.

What’s your biggest quirk? Not ordering alcohol or coffee because “I’m trying to be good” and then drinking all of my husband’s…

Where do you draw your inspiration from in life? I enjoy the simple things the most — a glass of wine at sunset, an early morning run, family dinners with my daughters and husband.




One response to “Silvia Bonachea – Miracle in Puerto Rico”

  1. Alex Agosta says:

    Silvia, you are amazing. I am so grateful for you and Eduardo, and so excited for you as we continue this amazing journey together.

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