Intern Bible: FLARE’s Tara MacInnis

Intrigued by the dynamic world of publishing? Curious as to how multiple contributors, including editors, stylists and advertisers culminate to create an organized, comprehensive and brand representative publication month after the month with the same level of quality alongside stimulating content? Well that is what internships are for – to take a peek into an unfamiliar world – to learn the ins and outs of what could potentially be your next career.

Renowned for its Canadian pride, FLARE Magazine is one of Canada’s premier magazines with a keen focus on fashion, cosmetics, skin, hair care, careers, relationships, wellness, celebrities and culture – plus a readership of almost 1.2 million! Want to be a part of the fashion movement that is FLARE? Well here’s some advice from FLARE’s finest, Tara MacInnis – Assistant Fashion and Beauty Editor.

Find out her story, learn from her experiences and join her team at FLARE!

Style Circle: Tell us a little bit about yourself. Can you tell us your story of how you got to be where you are?

Tara MacInnis: It all began when I was studying business at a small university in Nova Scotia, which I didn’t particularly enjoy. Soon after, I started working at the campus newspaper, where I had a fashion column, and the paper quickly became where I spent all my free time. That’s where I fell in love with journalism and fashion, so I applied to Ryerson for their Masters of Journalism program, and moved to Toronto to complete that degree. I interned four times, at Canadian Living, Cosmetics Magazine, the National Post, and ELLE Canada. After my last internship, I got a job at a PR firm, which was a great learning experience, but wasn’t really for me. I then got a job at a magazine called Walmart Live Better, where I worked for 11 months, but then a job opened up at FLARE, which was always my dream workplace. Sounds cheesy, but it’s true! I was the Editorial Coordinator here for a few months, and then I was promoted to Assistant Fashion & Beauty Editor.

SC: Congratulations on that promotion! Can you tell us a little about your roles and responsibilities as Assistant Fashion and Beauty Editor?

TM: One of my bigger responsibilities is managing six interns – five fashion, and one beauty. I make sure everything they are working on is going smoothly alongside managing both the fashion and beauty closets. I also assist the fashion and beauty teams in various ways, attend events, go on press trips occasionally, and I write as often as I can.

SC: To what extent, do you believe that your past internships were an integral part of your career and your professional journey?

TM: I honestly don’t think I would be anywhere near to where I am now without my internships. They helped me understand how magazines work, connected me with editors and other professionals in the industry, and gave me hands-on experience.

SC: As an intern in this day, how do you think one can make a lasting impression on their employer?

TM: It’s so, so important to give 110% everyday at your internship. Editors will notice, and you really will make their lives so much easier. Also, maintaining a good attitude, especially on the hard days, is integral. It shows me that you understand that seemingly menial jobs are important, and that I’ve asked you to do them for a reason. It also shows me that you don’t think you’re too cool for school. Everyone has to start somewhere, and if you’re always cheery and willing to work your hardest, I will remember you.

SC: When you are interviewing for intern candidates, what characteristics do you look out for?

TM: Personality and ability to communicate confidently with me is really important. If I feel like you wouldn’t be able to get on the phone and represent FLARE well with a PR contact, I will be reluctant to take you on. Also, if you can show me you have good organizational skills, that’s a great characteristic to have, since days in the closet can be hectic. Lastly, this is a tough one, but if I can get a sense that you work well under pressure, that makes me excited to hire you.

SC: Advice to students looking to intern at FLARE Magazine?
TM: Love us! Follow us on Instagram, read the magazine, pay attention to the website. Before you can work somewhere, you have to understand how that place works. Also, have a good social media following, but don’t overdo it. Too many selfies are a bit of a turn-off. Know Canadian designers, and international designers, and know how to pronounce their names. Send me a cover letter addressed to me, with my name, not ever the horribly generic “to whom it may concern.” And watch out for spelling mistakes! Attention to detail is really important.

A huge thank you to Tara from FLARE for taking the time out to share invaluable advice for students wanting to make a splash in the Canadian publishing industry. If you’re interested in reaching out to FLARE, send us an email at and we are more than happy to connect you!

In the meantime, check out FLARE’s latest issue at a newsstand near you and log on and check out for your daily dose of well curated lifestyle news!

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