Submitted by GoDaddy
Samuelle Dilla, a Minneapolis-based makeup artist and GoDaddy customer who is featured in the company’s Icons of Minneapolis series, faced numerous challenges in life fitting into others definition of “the norm.” Growing up in North Carolina as the daughter of Filipino immigrants, she struggled with mental health. Being of Asian American and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander (AANHPI) heritage made her stand out from the other kids in school. Samuelle recalls, “I was one of the few AANHPI female teenagers in my graduating class, and as a teen who wanted to fit in, all I did was stand out.” So, she turned to makeup as a means of self-expression.
One of Samuelle’s fondest childhood memories was watching her mom apply red lipstick and instantly transform into a more powerful and confident person, a feeling that Samuelle struggled to find for herself. After graduating high school, her parents encouraged her to go to college, hoping to provide opportunities they did not have. However, Samuelle had different plans. She loved makeup and wanted to turn that passion into a career and help others feel the same confidence she experienced through makeup. She says, “The effect makeup had on me once applied was transformational. I felt beautiful, elated, and confident. It lit a fire within me to want to help others see their true beauty.”
After some time working for others, Samuelle started her own makeup business as a side gig, with the goal of providing her clients with a Beauty Inspiration Experience. Having struggled for years trying to change the way she looked to blend in, she realized true beauty comes from within, and that is the experience she imparts with her clients.
During her consultations with clients, Samuelle asks: "‘What can I find you doing?’ I listen and create a tailored way for them to recognize how much courage and persistence it took for them to get where they are and understand they should be celebrated!”
Samuelle spent many years behind a makeup counter at a department store, but what she wanted was to find success on her own. And according to GoDaddy’s Venture Forward research initiative, she’s not alone. Of the microbusinesses (those with fewer than 10 employees) surveyed by the company in 2023, Asian owners are 15% more likely to start their business to achieve more success on their own.
And that success will not only help Samuelle create a better life for herself, but also for her daughter, Sloan. As a single mom, there’s a lot of weight on her shoulders to provide for her one-year-old. But Samuelle is unfazed and that is a true testament to her mindset. “Being a single parent while running my business means so much to me because I get to show my daughter that she too can do anything to her heart’s desires,” said Samuelle.
Venture Forward data shows one in three women-owned microbusinesses are run by moms, and single moms are using their businesses to close the earnings gap. Samuelle has her mom to thank for her strong perseverance through tough times. Although she was not a single parent, her mother helped Samuelle’s dad build a business while taking care of four young children. Samuelle hopes that Sloan will one day realize that she came from a long line of strong women who didn’t allow their circumstances to shape their future.
Samuelle takes great pride in being a first generation American and a “mompreneur.” Her family made many sacrifices by leaving the Philippines to move to another continent, leaving all that they knew to pave a new path for their children’s future. And she is proud of her heritage. She says, “I am honored to represent those who have paved their way by relinquishing their dreams and happiness so I could have the opportunity to have mine.”
Watch Samuelle’s story as part of GoDaddy’s Icons of Minneapolis series, streaming now on YouTube.
GoDaddy is empowering everyday entrepreneurs around the world by providing all of the help and tools to succeed online. GoDaddy is the place people come to name their idea, build a professional website, attract customers, sell their products and services, and manage their work. Our mission is to give our customers the tools, insights and the people to transform their ideas and personal initiative into success. To learn more about the company, visit www.GoDaddy.com.
GoDaddy focuses on making opportunity more inclusive for all in the communities where we work, live and play across the globe. We rally behind inclusive entrepreneurship and other critical local needs that empower people to succeed through philanthropic and in-kind donations, volunteerism, strategic partnerships and advocacy.
Empower by GoDaddy is GoDaddy's global community and philanthropic program equipping entrepreneurs in underserved communities with training, tools and peer networks to accelerate their journeys. GoDaddy rallies behind entrepreneurs in underserved communities by building their confidence and skills to strengthen their small business’ digital presence. Entrepreneurs engage in customized learning experiences, work 1-1 with GoDaddy volunteer coaches and local mentors, and gain access to wrap-around services, in-kind products and networks boosting their small businesses success.
More from GoDaddy