Breaking Through the Barriers. Female Entrepreneurs Open Up.

Sonya Dakar International Womens Day 2021

A woman turned skincare into a bootcamp, the makeup artist who single handedly changed the beauty game with a sponge, and the entrepreneur who created a hair care line that blows out of Target. These are just some of the success stories of women who turned their passion into profit. In celebration of International Women’s Day we are spotlighting female entrepreneurs who are changing the beauty industry and inspiring us along the way.

What are you the most proud of accomplishing with your Brand?

Sonya Dakar, Founder of Sonya Dakar Skincare

@SonyaDakar First and foremost I am most proud of creating a brand my children have been able to grow up in, work in and now are making their own.

I am also proud of our dedication as a company to the environment. From reformulating cleaner products to repackaging in glass and recyclable packaging and reducing our carbon footprint. It is no small task, but a necessary one. We are proud to support various local charities as well as spearhead beach cleanups. So much to be proud of, from my skincare products, my family and our love for the planet.

@BeautyBlender Getting into Sephora and winning 12 Allure Best of Beauty Awards.

@SiennaNaturals The last couple of months have been such an exciting time for the brand where we have finally been able to unveil some things we were working extremely hard on for a while. Two of the biggest accomplishments are that we relaunched our DTC, and we are now sold nationwide at Target and Nordstrom. I have spent the last 8 years working on developing the formulas for Sienna Naturals. These are clean formulations made with some of the most innovative and efficacious natural ingredients in skincare and haircare world wide. The ability to be able to create formulas and scale them for nationwide distribution in two of the most prominent retailers without compromising on our formulas was no small feat and is something I am extremely proud of for the brand.

Additionally, Issa Rae has joined the company as a co-owner and face of Sienna Naturals. She is such an incredible spokesperson because she is an authentic voice that people identify with. She embodies the Sienna Naturals mission of taking care of hair and scalp health regardless of how you wear your hair, so this partnership has been such a natural fit. The trust her community has for her, has poured over into Sienna Naturals. She believes in these products and has seen the results first hand and now her audience gets to experience it too.

What is your biggest or most ambitious personal goal for 2021?

Rea Ann Silva, Founder and CEO of Beauty Blender

@BeautyBlender To keep up with healthy lifestyle habits. Before COVID I was traveling non-stop, and the quarantine has given me the opportunity to wind down and focus on my health and wellbeing. As we get closer to going back to normal, my goal is to continue to eat healthy, work out and take care of myself.

@SiennaNaturals A lot of my personal goals right now align with what we are building at Sienna Naturals, We have ambitious sales goals which of course is one of the biggest, but also it’s so important to me to continue to build and support my team during these unprecedented times, making sure they feel supported and heard.

Additionally, I want to be running a business and maintain my personal health and wellness. I think it’s so important to remain grounded, but it’s very easy to get rocked by the day to day intensity of running a business, so I have weekly calls with my meditation coach and I am trying to maintain a workout and diet schedule that adds to my wellbeing. I believe if I can lead a team and set the example of taking care of myself, my team will feel empowered to do the same and that’s important to me.

@SonyaDakar I am always working on my wellness. I am constantly on a mission and searching for natural ingredients and solutions in all aspects . Whether it be health, skincare, supplements, exercise. It's my passion. For myself and for my clients.

What have you learned in the last year that you've adopted as a foundation for yourself?

Hannah Diop, Founder and CEO of Sienna Naturals

@SiennaNaturals Coronavirus was a curveball no one saw coming. One thing that I have adopted for not only myself, but also my team is improving the way we communicate. Building a team, a culture and a business during a pandemic is not easy, and it took thoughtfulness for how we stayed connected.

We stay motivated by having really open and honest conversations about how we were feeling. I also like to bring in experts to help build the company culture I envision for Sienna Naturals. I feel very fortunate to have a group of extremely smart people who are excited to be a part of what we are building. We also focus on the positives and that has been imperative to my, but most importantly our success.

@SonyaDakar So much has changed this past year and we have learned to be able to pivot quickly to adapt to our new reality. Working from home, trying to form a connection with our clients that doesn’t include the personal and physical touch we are used to, from the one on one in-person relationships we have grown accustomed to working at a skincare clinic for over three decades. And most important, we learned the importance of personal relationships, family and love above all.

@BeautyBlender More me time. Building upon the question above, self-care is SO important.

What's your favorite trick that helps you feel prepared for the day?

@SonyaDakar I need to set intentions for my day, whether it's a physical or mental list, I juggle my skincare brand, skin clinic business and so much more. Starting my day with focus is key. I also need to put myself together every single day, and that starts with fresh, radiant, dewy skin. Which comes from daily exfoliation (I love my Flash Facial because it’s so gentle). I don’t like to wear much makeup, but I do love a light lip gloss, and dark eyebrows and a little mascara to frame my face.

@BeautyBlender I have learned that in order for me to have me time and mother myself I need to carve out time first thing in the morning so I have my team and my assistants know that I don't book anything before 10 AM. I use that morning time to exercise, walk, meditate, steam, mask or do whatever I need to do to prepare myself for the day.

@SiennaNaturals A little MCT oil in my morning coffee always gets the job done.

Your non-negotiable beauty product, routine, tip?

@SonyaDakar My most important (skin care) tip: BE CONSISTENT
Meaning follow a good regimen, A.M. and P.M. I have to teach my clients to stay consistent, come in for regular facials (if possible) and ALWAYS take really good care of your skin every single day. That means doing your full skincare routine morning and night, never skipping. Never ever going to bed with makeup up on (and a cleansing wipe does not count) no matter how tired you are. Consistency is key with every aspect of your life, fitness, health, business. If you want to achieve a goal it's crucial.

If you want to know about my favorite skincare product, it's hard to choose just one. But I can’t go a day without my Stem Cell Transformer (anti aging concentrate cream), Organic Omega Oil (for skin nourishment) and Blue Butterfly Balm, because if you know, you know.

@BeautyBlender A Beauty Blender of course!

@SiennaNaturals Of course, Sienna Naturals. If we are being honest I use all seven products every time I do my hair. But, more specifically, if I am wearing my hair heat straightened, I use Daily Elixir on my scalp daily, no questions asked.

Tags: Beauty Blender, Hannah Diop, Internation Womens Day 2021, IWD, Rea Ann Silva, Sienna Naturals