BET.com’s THE GLAM GAP is a weekly video series spotlighting Black entrepreneurs, executives and influencers in the beauty, fashion and lifestyle space.
There’s a pretty good chance that you have Micaéla Verrelien saved somewhere on your Pinterest boards. The content creator, creative director and model regularly provides some of the most original and awe-inspiring fashion inspiration that’s ever graced timelines while encouraging originality and body-positivity. BET.com caught up with the creative to find out about her journey and the power of Black sisterhood.
“Growing up Caribbean, I always saw my mom getting dressed up in the morning whether she was going to work or going to church,” Verrelien tells BET.com. “She would always have so many different fabrics and different colors she never stuck to just one look.” As Verrelien grew older, she adopted the same attitude when it came to her own wardrobe. “I would describe my personal style as being super versatile,” she says. “I’m very much a chameleon because I feel like I can wear so many different things.”
Her culture’s love of bright colors and creativity have served as the driving force for her career. “For me personally, I didn't grow up having everything that I wanted so I had to make due with what I had,” she says. “But you learn how to make it look good. Everyone used to ask me, ‘whoa where'd you get that from?’ and it was more than likely $5 at a vintage store.”
However, while her passion has always been fashion, it hasn’t always been her profession. “The first job I got out of college was on Wall Street,” she shares. “But I always knew that I never wanted to sit and count somebody else's money forever. What I love about millennials is that we're the first and last generation to live before and after the internet. And through watching the internet evolve, we realized that we can kind of do whatever we want, and take control of our own lives.” That’s exactly what Verrelien did, quitting her job in finance to pursue fashion full-time. “I’d always wanted to be in an editorial,” she says. “So while working on Wall Street, I started posting really cool images that I loved on my Instagram page and then from there I met with a few editors from different publications and became a contributor, that’s how it all started.”
Since then, the growth of her brand has been impeccable, something Verrelien attributes to authenticity. “I always feel like being yourself is what helps you grow your following on social,” she says. “It’s because when you actually do get that following, you won't have to feel intimidated by having to change yourself because you're comparing yourself to other people,” she says.
And while she’s all about being herself, she prides herself on having a circle that she can pull inspiration from and feel supported by in a high-pressure industry. “It's very important to have Black women and women of color in my circle as a creator because we are so often overlooked,” she says. “And to be quite honest, I think we are the smartest, most creative people usually in the room. So for me, the more the merrier. The better we can work together, the more I feel like it will be effective for us in the future. It’s a sisterhood for me and it feels comfortable and feels like love. What I want my content to always inspire, is love.”
Follow Micaéla on Instagram @micaelaverrelien.