We had the good fortune of connecting with Melissa Michaels and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Melissa, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I came to design after acting and modeling because I wanted to express beauty in wearable art that has something to say. “I want the men and women that wear my designs to appreciate the brand name because it stands for something. I want it to be an experience. I want them to refer it as the go-to brand for protests and marches for positive social change—as well as comfort and beauty.”

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I hired pro-surfer Dominique Miller to be the face for my brand. She embodies the fierceness, boldness, beauty representative of Inpeloto. She’s environmentally conscious and a vegetarian like me. She lives in Oahu. Late 2019, she was in a surf competition across the border. Next day, we had an incredible photo shoot with photographer Navid Nader at Coronado beach.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If we all were not in quarantine, then I would recommend a city wide tour starting with Coronado, then jot over to the historic Gaslamp Quarter, leisurely stroll to the amazing Balboa park and all of the museums, visit La Jolla Cove, and finishing with Carlsbad flower fields.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Black Girls Surf for connecting me with my now spokesmodel, pro-surfer Dominique Miller. This organization is an empowerment and development surf camp for Black girls wanting to pursue professional surfing. They are changing the visual. This is important to me.

Website: www.inpeloto.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/melissa_michaels/, https://www.instagram.com/inpelotobymelissamichaels
Linkedin: https://lb.linkedin.com/company/inpeloto-llc?trk=recent-update_see-all
Twitter: www.twitter.com/inpeloto
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Inpeloto-INfinite-PEace-LOve-TOgetherness-170071770322385/
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCl4pF8VHGjggdpfGy4grrbA

Image Credits
Photographer Navid Nader

Nominate someone: ShoutoutSocal is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.