Meet Shan Berries, Founder of the Cosmetics Line ‘Shades by Shan’

By: Paulina Aguilar

Today we bring you the story of Shan Berries, a first-generation immigrant who has fulfilled the American dream at a young age. Her company Shades by Shan has established her as an important entrepreneur in the beauty and cosmetics industry. Shan’s mother immigrated to the United States from Ecuador. She was born and raised in San Francisco, California in 1989. “I am very honored to call San Francisco, which is a melting pot of cultures, my home,” Berries says.


What did you want to be when you were little? Did you ever dream about becoming a TV/Radio host or a beauty mogul? 

I probably dreamed of becoming everything BUT a TV/Radio host! Lol! I have old school projects that my mom has saved that say I want to be an astronaut or paleontologist. Never did I imagine that I would be on a television and radio host, or that I’d own a cosmetics brand and nonprofit!

How did you get the idea to create Shades by Shan? 

I started noticing a trend of influencers collaborating with various makeup brands. I thought to myself, “Wow – they have so many followers. Why don’t they come out with their own brand?” That’s when it clicked for me. I love makeup, and I wanted to start my own business. Why couldn’t I do that? That’s when I decided to start Shades by Shan with an emphasis on giving back to the community.

Tell us 5 words that define you?

Family, Laughter, Persistence, Hard Work, and Philanthropy

In your experience, what’s your best advice for Latinas who want to become entrepreneurs?

Just start! Too many people come to me saying they want to start businesses but are too scared to implement their ideas. The longer you hold off, the further away you’ll be from achieving success. I tell people, if you’re not embarrassed by your first launch, you launched too late! ¡La cosa es empezar! The rest will fall into place. Just be prepared to have thick skin. It’s the people who quit when it gets hard that don’t make it. It’s the ones who put out those fires and keep pushing forward that succeed. It WILL get hard, you WILL have moments of doubt, but work on the days when you don’t feel like working. That’s what a true entrepreneur does to get to the top. And remember, if it were easy, anyone would do it!

What’s the biggest challenge you faced while creating your brand?

Photo credit: Instagram/@ShanBerries

I think the biggest challenge was not having a background in cosmetics. I had to learn and teach myself from the very beginning the ins and outs of the cosmetics world, develop a rapport with the makeup community, and really build my brand from the ground up. I was a nobody in a huge industry and I was going to stand out. However, I also think this was one of my biggest blessings, being that everyday consumer spending so much money on makeup, only to go home and be disappointed by the $30 lipstick I just bought! I knew the game had to change, I knew what I liked and disliked, and I knew that there must be other women in my shoes who simply wanted to find a consistent brand, knowing they are getting quality makeup with every purchase. 

What’s the next step for Shades by Shan?

We always have something up our sleeve! BIG THINGS ARE COMING! Get ready for our fall collection to drop soon as well as some COMPLETELY brand-new products we are welcoming to our line!

Tell us more about your Mamaberries Foundation? What’s the reason behind it?

Anyone can come out with a makeup line. We wanted to be different. We wanted to be an impact-driven enterprise giving back to the community in a positive way. My sister Erika and I were both raised by our single mother, and we saw how hard she struggled day in and day out to provide for us on a fixed income. When we started Shades By Shan, we were looking for charities to donate to that helped single parents. Back then, there were none. The statistics of single parent households are staggering and we knew millions of families needed help. That’s when we set out and started the MamaBerries Nonprofit Foundation where we are proud to say a portion of every purchase goes to help single parents in need! With our customers support we have been able to help over 30 families. We have made it our mission to raise awareness and help these true heroes!

What’s your biggest dream? 

Photo credit: Instagram/@ShanBerries

My biggest dream is to buy a single parent and their family a home one day! We have seen the conditions some single parent households live in, so if we can really make a difference and buy one of these families a home, that would mean the world to me!

About the author: Paulina Aguilar


Graduate in Communication Sciences, pizza taster, cat whisperer, Muggle expert and specialist in series and movies.

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