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Deepica Mutyala's commitment to creating a more diverse beauty industry began when she was 16 years old. "I grew up in Sugar Land, a suburb of Houston," she says. "I was surrounded by a very specific standard of beauty, to the point that I dyed my hair blond and got blue contacts." But even as she tried to replicate what she saw in her hometown and the media, Mutyala quickly realized she could (and should) be making efforts to challenge that standard instead.

Deepica Mutyala of Live Tinted
Credit: Courtesy Live Tinted

While working for a beauty start-up in 2015, she launched a YouTube channel. Her second video (in which she uses red lipstick to conceal dark under-eye circles) went viral, prompting Mutyala to become an influencer full-time. At first, posting selfies and daily outfit photos felt uncomfortable to Mutyala, but it was encouraging to know that she was building a welcoming space in her corner of social media. "I felt like I was changing the narrative of representation for people who look like me," she says.

Three years later, in an effort to include more people in the conversation, she started Live Tinted, a beauty- and culture-focused community platform that celebrates diversity. The brand has since created a line of creamy, multiuse Huesticks inspired by her viral YouTube hack. And as Live Tinted continues to grow, Mutyala remains dedicated to fostering true inclusion in the beauty industry and the world. "It can't just be about one ad campaign or one product," she says. "[A commitment to inclusion] has to be in every part of my business, and I'm proud to say that it is."