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Nyakio Grieco in the Miller dickey jacket and Grant jeans, photographed by Kate Jones

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#MAKEITHAPPEN

Nyakio Grieco, Beauty Entrepreneur

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Make inclusivity happen—that's the goal of our latest #MAKEITHAPPEN woman, Nyakio Grieco. As the co-founder of thirteen lune, an e-commerce beauty platform, she’s changing the way we shop for cosmetics and personal care—one BIPOC-founded brand at a time. "With thirteen lune I’ve set out on a path to make the beauty industry more inclusive and to evoke joy through the discovery of these amazing brands," Grieco tells us.

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Together with Melissa Magsaysay, the head of content at thirteen lune, Grieco is shifting the beauty space with a powerful message—to support Black and Brown businesses that are dedicated to creating change in an industry that connects ALL women.

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But it doesn't stop there for Grieco. She's also the founder of her own skincare brand, Nyakio Beauty, which carries clean products that are inspired by beauty traditions from around the world. And then there's Girls Inc., where Grieco serves as a board member and mentor—guiding the next generation of female entrepreneurs on how to make it all happen.

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Here, we chat with Grieco on everything from what (and who) inspires her, her beauty must-haves, and why giving back is so important.

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Q&A

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What are the driving passions that set you on your path?
Making the beauty industry more inclusive and celebrating timeless beauty rituals from around the globe—these ideas set me on my path to create beauty products and co-found thirteen lune. Thirteen lune is the first of its kind, a truly inclusive beauty retail platform, where 90% of the brands we carry are created by Black and Brown beauty founders who create incredible beauty products for ALL people.  

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Tips on breaking barriers and challenging the status quo?
It all starts with self-confidence, self-love, and the unapologetic belief that you can create the business you want to see in this world. 

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What does #MAKEITHAPPEN mean to you?
Just do it! Despite any challenges or obstacles I might face, I stay committed to my goals. With thirteen lune I’ve set out on a path to make the beauty industry more inclusive and to evoke joy through the discovery of these amazing brands. I’m deeply committed to amplifying, celebrating, and lifting others through the lens of beauty. 

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And who or what inspires you to make it happen?
The founders whose brands we carry at thirteen lune inspire me to make it happen. Both our BIPOC founded brands and our ally brands are dedicated to moving the needle for change in an industry that has the power to connect us all.  

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Top essential work/life hacks to make it happen?
Let go of the notion of “balance” and surrender to the fact that 100% is not evenly divided. The most important thing is to give myself the most when it comes to mind, body, and soul care. This provides me the space to show up fully with my family, loved ones, girlfriends, and work. The best hack is to go easy on yourself. You can welcome that while some weeks your career gets more, other weeks your family and loved ones get more, and that is absolutely okay.

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3 must-haves to make it happen?
Sleep, laughter, and living in my purpose.

Top 3 beauty hacks?
1. Wash your face, I prefer to double cleanse.
2. Use your ring finger to pat eye cream gently around the eye area. Never drag the skin, it causes more fine lines.
3. Use oil to fight oil. Hydration is KEY to healthy skin. 

And the wardrobe MVPs that help you make it happen?
Comfortable yet stylish shoes. Anything that defines my personal style of classic meets boho. And my Veronica Beard wardrobe of course! 

Pro tip every entrepreneur needs to know...
Stay authentic to your personal vision, be a good listener, find mentors, and when you can, BE a mentor. 

Your fail-safe success habits...
Forgiveness. When you fall down, the only failure is staying stuck. Get back up and head exactly where you’re meant to go next. 

Share one example of how you made it happen through adversity...
In my 20-year beauty career, I’ve had many stops and starts. In those moments of stops, I allow myself to feel the pain and reflect on what I’ve learned in the process. I stay deeply gratified and grounded during the wins and have fully accepted that entrepreneurial life is not for the faint of heart. If it was easy, who wouldn’t want to be their own boss? Stay the course, learn from the challenges, and with all that is HOLY, revel in the joy of seeing a dream realized. 

Tell us about the one thing or person who changed your life and POV?
Every mentor, girlfriend/chosen family, my own amazing family, colleagues, and even those inspirational change-makers I’ve never met, have steered my journey of making beauty shopping even more meaningful. 

Advice to others to make it happen?
Believe in yourself. There is only one you, so do you and share your magic with the world!    

Last but not least, because #VBGIVESBACK and paying it forward is an integral part of our brand, how do you give back? What are the causes important to you—and why?
I am deeply committed to helping young girls find their power. I have mentored and served on the board of Girls Inc. of Los Angeles for several years. Girls Inc. creates programs to inspire young girls to be strong, smart and bold. These girls have been deeply challenged, especially the last two years—their resilience inspires me daily! They are the next generation of bosses and I’m blessed to be in their presence. 

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