Body jewelry is the perfect accessory to make women feel sexy and confident especially in the summer. Tanaya Henry, the businesswoman behind Lace by Tanaya, created a jewelry line with lip rings, chokers and rings tailored to make women feel beautiful. Her pieces have been worn by celebrities like Nicki Minaj, Beyoncé, Kim Kardashian, Cassie and many more. The 28-year-old moved to Los Angeles after living in NYC where she now serves as the face and creative director of her brand. We sat down with her to learn more about what it takes to run a business and how it feels to be worn by so many celebs.
BET: Who are your inspirations?
Tanya Henry: I’ve been lucky to have been surrounded by so many friends that are currently successful. My motivation came from people I was surrounded by like Drake, Travis Scott, when they were grinding and building, I was doing the same. My mother is also a huge inspiration for me. Jennifer Fisher, another amazing jewelry designer, was a huge inspiration for me. I’m truly blessed to know people that are chasing and following their dreams.
BET: How does it feel to be worn by so many celebrities?
TH: Honestly, it was overwhelming at first but great! I was in NY when Alicia Keys pulled one of my pieces for a shoot. I didn’t even have time to digest it and, before you know it, my piece was on a cover shoot! I think my biggest lesson was to be prepared. At that time, I was still making my pieces by hand, so I didn’t get a chance to utilize the exposure properly because I had nothing to sell, a great business lesson for me.
BET: What inspiration do you have for people like you chasing their dreams?
TH: Two things are key. Find your passion! It’s not just about likes and followership because that gets old. But find a motivating factor that propels you to a greater purpose. And secondly, remove yourself from illusions. Things aren’t always what they seem. Keep a safe distance from the world of social media and most importantly do what makes you happy. The social media world has created a world where we can’t even tell what’s real or fake anymore. It’s your job to discern between the two.
BET: Since you serve as the face of your brand, what are some ways you maintain a healthy body and aesthetic?
TH: I love everything steam. I go to hot yoga, steam rooms — all of that! It helps me decompress and it’s also great for the skin. I live by argan oil. It’s a must-have for me.
BET: How is dating going? I’m sure there’s a lot of Instagram DMs daily.
Dating is not bad. I’m seeing someone currently who supports and loves me, but it’s getting a bit hectic to balance work and love life but i’m trying. I’ve had a rough go with men in the past, so I’m taking it all easy and letting [it] all flow.
(Photos: Lace By Tanaya)
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