Danessa Myricks, MUA Turned Entrepreneur, Wants to Help You Discover Your Signature LookOctober 14, 2020
Tell us a little bit about your background and how you got started as a makeup artist in the beauty industry.
I often call myself an accidental makeup artist. I was introduced to the world of beauty while working in marketing at a publishing company that produced a series of hair and beauty magazines. Although I never saw it possible for myself, I admired the makeup artists that came to photoshoots and created these beautiful transformations. The owner of this company decided to change gears and close the business and I was left to start over again at the age of 30. I made a decision then to be more in control of my financial future. I wanted to work for myself doing something I could feel passionate about.
What was the concept behind your makeup brand?
Like so many others, I never saw myself represented in beauty. As I journeyed through the industry as a professional, I noticed so many more gaps and saw so many opportunities to create. I thought about makeup and its usage differently than how it was being presented. I became extremely interested in making makeup easy, accessible and most of all, fun.
Danessa Myricks Beauty was founded on the principle that race, gender, age and personal style should not limit anyone from experimenting with makeup and discovering their signature look. When we launched we reimagined what makeup can be and developed innovative, multifunctional products that work on every face. Our high-performing products give makeup artists and consumers alike the freedom to play outside the box.
Tell us about how you're feeling regarding the beauty industry and the Black Lives Matter movement. What changes would you like to see in the beauty industry as a whole?
I’m optimistic change is coming. Whether by force, by fad or by genuine desire to do better, brands are moving in the direction of inclusivity. With that being said, the depths of the issues at hand run deeper than adding shades to a collection. It really involves changing the minds of people and opening their hearts to upstanding the roots of the problem and taking steps on many levels to address the imbalances and inequities that perpetuate the problems that exist. Although the potential for real change is certainly possible, the reality of the situation is that some brands won’t prioritize it at all, and others will take a while to get there.
I feel that there are so many new voices in beauty that have pushed their way through the cracks that are filling the needs, showing a new ideology of purpose and inclusion and creating incredible products. These brands are the real future of beauty.
Share with us some of your favorite Black-owned beauty brands
What does a typical day look like for you?
COVID-19 has shifted what my typical day looks like tremendously. I normally spend about 80% of the year traveling. My days have now taken a complete turn. I’m up at 5AM daily. I start with water, meditation, a workout then spend a few hours connecting with my customers through social media. The rest of my time is split between creating new products, being on set doing makeup and photography, teaching classes through Danessa Myricks University and running the day-to-day operations of the brand.
What does your personal makeup routine look like, what are your favorite products from your brand to use on the daily?
My makeup style varies throughout the week from super simple, barely-there makeup to smoky eyes and lashes. I really like to get into the energy of all of the customers who use my products. I like to experiment and make sure I’m serving all of their needs.
My daily must-haves are The Beauty Oil, Prism FX Lotion in Peach and Vision Cream Cover Foundation. I can leave the house on any day using this magic formula and feel polished and put together for any event
How has working on your makeup brand impacted your life, and what moment in your career are you most proud of so far?
Developing the brand has filled me up more than I could have ever imagined. It opened up the whole world to me. It’s been amazing for me to see how beauty connects us. This industry really gave me a platform to both discover and refine my purpose. It has allowed my children to see what could be possible for them. It has given them the permission to experiment and discover.
I’m most proud of myself for not giving up. There have been so many obstacles and storms throughout my journey building the brand which have felt unbearable and impossible to move beyond, but we did it. When I think about all of the conversations I’ve had with my supporters from all walks of life and have heard how the brand has impacted them, I’m so happy I stuck it out and continued to push forward.
What does the future of Danessa Myricks look like to you?
My dream is to reach more people. There are so many people who still don’t have access to the brand in a tangible way. Our brand is literally a playground of color and texture and it's meant to be explored. I imagine people from all over the world, from all walks of life never wanting to leave our gondola because all their beauty desires are being satisfied.
What's your advice for an aspiring beauty or makeup entrepreneur?
I would encourage them to be brave with their ideas and stay true to their ideals. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Constantly remind themselves of why they got started and never let go of it. Most importantly, I would encourage them to be authentic. That is where all the magic will come from.
And finally, what does beauty mean to you?
Beauty for me means being fully aware of oneself, loving every bit of it and expressing it full out, unapologetically.