In the midst of BeautyCon in Los Angeles, I ran into Cleopatra Onyia. She was holding a gold mirror and handing out business
cards with a friend. I asked her about the gold vanity mirror she was holding. I mean it was BeautyCon after all, there were plenty of vanity mirrors.
She mentioned very nonchalantly that it was her product, Cleopatra’s Crown. I was astounded that she said it so casually like everyone creates a product. I asked her a bit about the product, told her I would contact her soon, as, at the particular moment, I was hungry. She was kind enough to talk to me as I ate a granola bar. Anyone, who allows me to eat, is good people to me.
I followed up with her, via Zoom a few weeks later and we chatted about her path into product development and entrepreneurship.
Cleopatra, and yes that is her real name, I asked her about it was born in Atlanta. However, she moved around a lot. Her family moved to Virginia and then s
he moved back to Atlanta to finish high school, then back to Virginia for college. She currently resides in Maryland.
“My mom loved to travel. So some days, she will be, ‘I want to relocate here,’ and then we will move,” shared Onyia.
While in college, she studied nursing. She came from a family of healthcare professionals and is of Nigerian descent, so a steady traditional route seemed like the most natural thing to do.
“Coming from a Nigerian family, there is a preference to the more traditional routes, such as a doctor, lawyer. There is not a lot of respect for the creative fields. If I told my parents I wanted to go to fashion school, they would have been like, ‘what you don’t want to be a lawyer?”,” shared Onyia.
Luckily her mother was a creative person who went to fashion school and was understanding about her daughter’s creative dreams. Onyia always had a flair for the arts from designing to dancing to singing. She just did not see it as a career option.
Her “ah-ha” moment to create her product, was when her mother passed away last March from breast cancer.
“When my mother passed, I learned so many things about her. She had a fashion degree, and I knew she always had dreams of opening up her store. Ironically we had the same dream, but she didn’t get to live hers out, so I am doing this for myself and her,” shared Onyia.
Onyia wanted to provide women with a vanity mirror because not everyone can afford a vanity or have the space to have a vanity. She wanted a product that was essential and made women feel confident.
While designing the product, it took her about four months to go back and forth with her manufacturer in China.
“I have had no issues with my manufacturer. However, I learned you have to be clear and direct on what you want,” shared Onyia.
While she is in the beginning stages of her new business, she is still nursing, (a girl’s gotta eat). She is managing her business during her evenings and weekends.
Onyia wants all new business owners to remember this. In business it’s about problem-solving, you are going to come across issues. So come up with a creative way to solve those problems.
You can purchase your own Cleopatra’s Crown LED Mirror on Amazon.