One on One with Amber Makupson of Meraki

Meraki, a hair care brand, was introduced to me by a friend and colleague. I have officially become obsessed by all their products. I use their products everyday from their Glow Oil to their amazing Conditioner. One of my favorite things about Meraki’s products are that they are infused with crystals, not only does it give my hair and body the best energy but it gives my soul the most fulfilling energy.

I had the chance to interview the founder of Meraki, Amber Makupson. She is a true gem and inspirationg. I am honored to have gotten to interview her for my series on amazing female founders.

Here is a little bit about the amazing founder, Amber:

Meraki was founded in 2018 by Amber Makupson, as a labor of self-love, self-empowerment and dedication to wellness.

A native of Ohio, Amber moved and settled in Atlanta, Georgia at a young age, and started to focus on a healthy, holistic lifestyle and make her own natural remedies during her pregnancy when she developed skin sensitivities. 

Her background as a licensed aesthetician specialized in botanical treatments helped when, after suffering a serious chemical burn from an over-the-counter beauty product, Amber was fed up of the toxic ingredients damaging so many other women and decided to create Meraki Organics, a non-toxic vegan haircare brand infused with gemstones to nourish skin, hair, body and soul.

1. Tell me how you got started. 

I started Meraki in 2018 after experiencing 2nd degree chemical burns on my face from an over the counter beauty product, I set out to curate my own collection of vegan, non toxic hair care and skin care products. I found great joy and passion in formulating, and learning about different ingredients from around the world and their natural Ayurvedic healing abilities.

2. Where do you want to take your already successful brand? I really want to continue to focus on organic growth within my direct to consumer channel. I also have a few really exciting retail partnerships that are launching this fall. Ultimately I want Merki to become a household name and continue to bring clean, innovative and healing  products to the market.

3. What are the top 3 things you have learned over the years building your brand? 

I literally learn something new everyday. My top 3 would be. 

  1. The importance of building a great team. This  is crucial to your success.
  2. Keeping a clear vision and being laser focused on the direction I want to take my brand.
  3. Understanding my customers’ needs and values.

4. How have you had to pivot during this last year?

Yes, one pivotI have taken this year is moving from inhouse manufacturing to contract manufacturing in order to keep up with inventory demand and to focus on growing my brand.

5. What values do you stand for? What values do you want to inspire in others? 

“ I believe self love is the key to unlocking your full potential in life. Keeping my  faith in God  is where I pull my strength and direction from. I trust the timing of my life. I believe that we all have special gifts that unlock our highest, truest selves.”

“The word Meraki means to do something with love, soul, and creativity; To put the essence of yourself in your work! I hope that my brand will inspire others to flourish in this beautiful space.”

6. What is your favorite piece of advice you have gotten? 

My favorite piece of advice I have received is never let fear stop you from achieving your goals. Also learning the power of my thoughts and the importance of controlling my thoughts.

7. What are your favorite books and podcasts to go to for inspiration?

A few of my favorite podcasts are How I Built This, Glossy, and Super Soul Sunday. A few of my favorite books are The Alchemist and 7 7 spiritual laws of success.

Be sure to follow along with Amber and Meraki on Instagram at @merakiorganics_Thank you to Amber for coming along on this. journey!

Have a joyful day!

~Iced Tea & Top Knots

Mother’s Day Gift Guide

“You are more precious than jewels.” ~ Proverbs 31:10

How do you shop for all the amazing mothers in your life? I have that thought every year when Mother’s Day gets closer. I have found 5 of my top favorite gifts to give the moms in our lives this  Mother’s Day shopping 🙂 Here they are below: 

  1. Jordan & Petersen Skincare products or an amazing gift card for their online shop 
  1. Soul Carrier Clutch 
  1. LEILAjewelryshop personalized birth flower necklace 
  1. Winc wine club membership 
  1. Shutterfly tilted heart collage art print 

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there! Sending I love you to my mom and all the moms out there!

~Iced Tea and Top Knots

P.S. What is your favorite gift to give your Mom? 

I love to give self-care items, sentimental or a piece that is a part of mom’s favorite interests.

Music at a Festival…Brings a Flock Together

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“There’s nothing like a music festival. People are ready to have a good time. I don’t think anyone comes to a festival going, “I’m gonna be a complete bummer today.” ~ Gary Clark, Jr.

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XI Floral Over Throw, Abound Tank, Stussy Feather Necklace, Side Braid, ABS Jean Shorts, Mossimo Peep Toe Mules, Olive& June Mani/Pedi

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Going to make this short and sweet because I don’t want you all to miss out on all the festival fun. Every year music festivals seem to get bigger and bigger, a lot of it is because music is universal. Music continues and will continue to bring people together.

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Voyage Clothing Blouse Tank, Celebrity Pink HQ Jean Shorts, Sam Edelman Gladiator Sandals, Mossimo Red Crossbody bag, Juicy Couture Sunglasses, High Pony, Rainbow Feather Earrings

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Mixing in the fun parties and wild, spunky fashion, crazy nail and body art, you then have yourself a fabulous music festival. Whether you are off to Weekend #2 of Coachella, Stage Coach or a hidden gem I haven’t heard of, but would love, here are some twists and treats on festival fashions. Remember, festivals are your time to go all out and have fun with your fashion !

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Floral Crown, Flowy Hair, Clear Heart Necklace (from Mom), Forever 21 Crop Top

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Eagele Cuff Bracelet, Anna Gill Floral Maxi Skirt

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When it comes to music festivals, what is your favorite thing about them?

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Floral Crown, Floral Patterned Jean Vest, Tilly’s Lace Bralette, Nordstrom Rack Lace Skirt, Cowgirl Boots

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My goal next year is to finally whoop it up at a festival and rock out to amazing music with amazing people 🙂

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Feathered and Free Cropped Tank Top, Denim Cropped Pants, Juicy Couture Sunglasses, Palm Tree Twist Headband, French Braid Pony, Tassled Bucket Bag, Mossimo Striped Slip On Shoes

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Volcom Hat, Juicy Couture Sunglasses, Braid Do, Marc Jacobs Key Necklace, Abercrombie Jean Jacket, Lucca Couture Romper, Laced Up Toms, Spiked Bracelets, Radio Tote

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