The Angel Investor Who Shares A Manicurist With Oprah


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“Hi! I’m Arian Simone (@ariansimone). I was born and raised in Detroit and am currently based in Atlanta. I’m a former PR and marketing specialist, and I recently co-founded the Fearless Fund, which is the first VC fund built by women of color, for women of color. As an investor in the beauty space, I see how hard WOC beauty brand founders work to bootstrap their way onto the shelves of big retailers. For example, we recently invested in Range Beauty, a brand that boasts makeup specifically formulated for acne and eczema-prone skin in a full range of shades. Bearing witness to the dedication it took to bring their product to market was truly inspiring. I also believe in the importance of mentorship, so in addition to providing funding, Fearless Fund helps these business owners acquire training and needed skills to gain access to capital. We call this our Get Venture Ready program.

I remember the first time I got my makeup done professionally. I did catalog modeling for major department stores when I was a child, and it got me hooked on beauty from a very young age! Now, my beauty philosophy is all about using makeup to outwardly project who I am on the inside. I have a few foundations I love—Range Beauty’s, of course, in the shade Cabana. It has brown-red undertones, is easy to apply, and leaves my skin feeling nourished. That’s my go-to when I’m looking for a dewy, natural look. I find myself reaching for Fenty’s Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation when I’m looking for something full-coverage—it matches my skin so well it almost looks like I'm not wearing makeup! I also love MAC’s Studio Fix Fluid with SPF 15 in the shade NC 45. It gives great full coverage and keeps my makeup looking fresh all day. My best makeup trick is contouring—contouring your nose will change your face. I take a small brush with a little bit of Aesthetica Cosmetics’ Contour Cream to trace both sides of my nose. Once that’s outlined, I blend the lines with a Beautyblender sponge until I see a nice contoured shadow. To complete my look, I love to use lipstick. MAC’s Ruby Woo is my signature color. It’s such a nice, bright red that pops on all skin tones. But if I’m going natural, I like to use Lip Bar’s Muva. It’s ultra-soft and easy to apply.

The majority of products in my skincare regimen were prescribed or recommended by my dermatologist, Dr. Jing Jing Harris. The So2 Nice to See You Sulfur Cleansing Complex from her personal line is my favorite—you only need a small amount of it to really lather, and then I let it sit on my face like a mask for six or seven minutes before I rinse. I see real results! It keeps my skin free of any blemishes and helps me glow without extra product or makeup. Next, I follow with a prescription hydrocortisone lotion and, occasionally, a Neocutis Bio Firm serum with peptides concentrated around my eyes. At night, I add Dr. Harris’ Pearl Cream to keep my skin even-toned. And for daytime I’m obsessed with the Hydrogel Cream from Honest Beauty. I found that one on my own, and I always rely on it for a perfect dewy look. The finish is so good that sometimes I don’t even use makeup on top. My current favorite SPF is Neutrogena’s anti-aging SPF 110—can’t forget that!

Growing up I had a standing hair appointment every two weeks. Now I mostly style my hair myself—I wear it in wigs for about half the year, and out the other half. When it’s natural, I love to use products from the brand Mielle Organics. I stock up on their Edge Gel to help me tame the curls that frame my face, and I swear by the Growth Oil to help keep my hair strong and healthy. Try as I might, nails are one aspect of my beauty routine I have not mastered on my own. I rely heavily on my local salon, Tu La 2 Nail Salon & Company, for that! The team is top-tier, exclusively uses natural products, and services everybody from Tyler Perry, to Usher, to even Oprah.

To me, self care is about staying grounded. In my daily routines, exploring my spirituality (through meditation and prayer) and spending time outdoors (getting physical exercise) are key. And though it might sound surprising, activities like skiing, riding ATVs, and ziplining are key to my relaxation! I find a lot of joy in travel and adventure.”

—as told to ITG

Photos via the author