Made from good-for-you ingredients and with a weightless, modern-matte finish that stays put all day, our newest product—Power Play Foundation—is a true game changer. So in celebration of its release (FYI—it’s already a bestseller), we’re shining the spotlight on beauty and lifestyle experts who also never fail to eclipse expectations. From superpower CEOs to makeup mavens and more, these #Powerplayers inspire us with both their how-I-got-here stories and their tips for living a beautiful life.
This week we are taking the Power Play launch festivities up a notch with our Power Play Power Panel, an in-person conversation among a few of our favorite #Powerplayers. The panel’s moderator—and our lady crush—is the one-and-only Deepica Mutyala. Deepica is beloved for the way she playfully schools followers on her YouTube channel, blog, and Instagram on everything beauty. A social media sensation, she boasts a massive reach. Case in point: her video about how to mask undereye circles with lipstick has famously garnered over 10 million views. The former beauty exec is such a star that she has appeared in commercials for Samsung and L’Oreal.
But while we’re obsessed with Deepica’s beauty tips, we’re even more in awe of her mission. Her latest project, called Tinted, seeks to showcase and create a community for what she calls “mid-tone” women—namely South Asian women and others whose skin colors are rarely represented in mainstream beauty. Read on for more from Deepica.
We love the story of how you climbed (no, skyrocketed!) the professional ladder from beauty intern to makeup exec to industry sensation. To what do you most credit your admirable success?
Deepica: This is going to sound very cheesy, but it has to be my family. I love my mom and I feel like I get my business acumen from her. It’s my dad who is my driving force. He came here from India and everything he did was an effort to provide for his family. He made so many sacrifices for us and only as an adult do I understand how much he gave up.
Basically everyone is my family is a medical professional. I have 40 first cousins and all are doctors except for one cousin, who is my cofounder at Tinted. I broke that path first by working in beauty, and then by going out on my own as an influencer. I knew I would be fine, but I wanted to show them I could be successful on my own terms and that was a huge motivator for me. Now every time my dad says how proud he is of me, it means the world to me. It’s better than a Samsung commercial at the Oscars!
What is one piece of advice you give other aspiring vloggers—in any industry—who want to stand out from the crowd on YouTube, in particular?
Deepica: Find your niche. My niche was owning the fact that I was South Asian. In the beginning I made videos for everyone. I didn’t want to be the brown girl who was doing beauty; I didn’t want to be defined by my skin color. But the reality is that it’s so important that there is representation on YouTube for every kind of ethnicity. There was no one on YouTube saying, “Here are 10 lipsticks for people with brown skin.” So when I started to do this and was honest about who I was and what my family was, that’s when it really took off.
Tell us about what motivated you to start Tinted, your newly launched campaign to celebrate “all the shades in between.”
Deepica: Doing the influencer thing for the past three years has been such an incredible experience. Partnering with so many great brands has been a dream come true, and what I’ve enjoyed most about that was to be able start a conversation about putting brown girls into story. So many brands I worked with have diversity in some respect, but virtually none had a South Asian girl.
So is Tinted about pairing brands with influencers?
Deepica: Not originally. We started Tinted as a community to promote and connect people who have the kind of skin tones that are underrepresented in beauty. But already, brands that follow me are now following Tinted and trying to discover more women beyond white women and the token black and Latina women that you usually see in campaigns. These women are out there and their voices need to be amplified. If we are doing that, we are doing it right.
Who, exactly, are the women Tinted is celebrating?
Deepica: It’s not just about South Asian women, though they are a huge part of it. There’s this whole “mid-tone” market of skin colors—so many other beautiful and talented brown women out there that haven’t been getting the spotlight.
And Tinted isn’t just for big names (or aspiring names!); it’s about everyone who doesn’t feel they see themselves in most beauty products and imagery. We are really trying to remove the idea that beauty and makeup shades are about race and to show that they are more about the tint of your skin. For example, just because you are Indian and I am Indian, it doesn’t mean the same lipstick works for both of us.
We are so thrilled to have you moderate our Power Play Power Panel! What are you most excited about?
Deepica: Let me just say that Cover FX is a true exception to the rule. It’s a brand for women of every shade and that is what Tinted is all about. Because of that, there is no other partnership that feels more right for Tinted.
The brand of Cover FX and the female empowerment message of Create&Cultivate, plus what Tinted stands for —it’s a perfect mix. And everyone on the panel has a story to tell—a guy, a mom, a cruelty-free expert, an actress who can speak to the role of beauty on set. . . So many voices to hear from!
What three things do you never fail to do every day?
Deepica: I wish I had three things I did every single day! I just moved to L.A. from New York and I am still figuring out my routine. I would love to say I work out every day! I try to do a 10-minute meditation. I drink a gallon of water. I take vitamins!
What’s your favorite Cover FX product?
Deepica: I am obsessed with the Customer Enhancer Drops for foundation. When I was in college I did a paper saying there should be a way to customize your foundation because people’s shade and skin colors change throughout the week and the seasons. Now the product exists!