Anna Diamantakos @LiquidSunshine | On Building a Beauty Empire

Meet Anna Diamantakos, Owner and Operator of Liquid Sunshine Sculpt, an airbrush beauty boutique that encompasses everything from skin services, lashes to lymphatic drainage and body sculpting. Anna is a beauty industry professional for over 15 years, and a licensed aesthetician. As a certified makeup artist, master airbrush technician, and licensed permanent makeup technician, Anna’s passion came to life when she created a one stop shop for all of her mastered skills and trades. 

A business woman at heart, she fell unto an opportunity to purchase a beauty bar she loved very much and turned it only four years later into a beauty empire! With four locations and counting, Liquid Sunshine Sculpt has become a haven for women in New York and surrounding areas. She took an opportunity and seized it, proving that you can truly achieve anything your heart desires when you work hard and believe in your dreams. She is an exemplary leader, a wife, a mother and a determined visionary who sees and achieves success. Her open mindedness and positive outlook on life has brought her to places she could only have dreamt of. Here’s to Anna Diamantakos, being a true #girlboss.

Tell our readers a little bit about your personal journey.

I got my Bachelors degree in Communications with a minor in English. I dabbled with a couple of life choices such as being an English professor which came and went just as fast. I worked with MTV after College but it just wasn’t really my path. After that, I went into the beauty industry, working for a cosmetic dentist for many years while running his practice. Ever since I was a teenager, working for my parents in the textile industry, I was always dealing with people, answering calls, ultimately being in customer service. My family was also in the gym business which once again led me to engage with people and to service their needs in any given industry I was in. 

What got you into the beauty industry more precisely as a business owner?

Shortly after I left the dental clinic, I became pregnant with my son. I was already in my 30’s at that point. I was fortunate enough to be able to stay home with my son, Micheal for the first 3-4 years. After that, I knew I wanted to go back to work but this time I wanted to do something that I truly loved. I went back into makeup and worked with MAC cosmetics. At the same time, I was approached by the previous owner of Liquid Sunshine Sculpt offering me to buy out her business, of which I myself was a client. I always envisioned I’d someday have a place like this of my own. I never thought in my wildest dreams that I would end up taking over the business and even less that I would grow the brand to where it is now.

Walk us through the process of how you built this empire from scratch.

It took about a year, I was still working in cosmetics and freelancing on the side until we finalized all the details and I took over the business in 2017. I took this business over with the intent to expand it and build something that is up to par with my vision. I didn’t know it was going to lead me to so much more but that was enough for me at the time to get started. It opened up a whole new world to me, and I never thought that at 41, I would be in this amazing place that I am in today. 

When I bought @LiquidSunshineSculpt it was strictly an airbrush boutique, what I like to call a specialty boutique. We were the specialists in that sector. It did really well here in New Jersey because we are by the shore. We had clients that had issues regarding the sun for an array of reasons and therefore I had a very nice little community of clients that were loyal to the brand and boutique.

Little by little, I started incorporating other services to the business. We brought eyelash services, makeup, teeth whitening and just incorporating parallel services to the main air brush service of the boutique. For the most part it was simple and easy services to incorporate and brought in more clients, recognition and more revenue. People don’t realize but spray tanning is the quickest ten minute confidence booster out there and so from that we add little extra boosters to go with that. Simple and effective. We get amazing messages and feedback from our clients on a regular basis.

From there came my second location in Staten Island all thanks to a client who had a commercial space to offer us and suggested that the business would thrive there. So I did my due diligence and fell in love with it and our second location was born. What was unique about this store is that we brought on an aesthetic nurse because we had the space for it and started offering new services with like minded people involved.

Right after I opened the second boutique in Staten Island, Covid happened. It was a big hit and I think that goes for millions of people and businesses around the world who can’t just switch to online services. Before covid happened, we had a technician who was offering body sculpting services. I quickly realized that my clients were extremely happy with the holistic approach without any need of lasers or anything invasive. In the Interim of the 2-3 months that we were closed, I decided to follow the course and get certified myself. I wanted to see where it would lead and even if I didn’t use it in the end I was ok with that. When we re-opened, it really took off with the sculpting service and I think the reason is because my clients trust me whole heartedly and know I would never lead them to a service that I didn’t believe in myself or even worse something that would harm them.  

The business literally took off like a space rocket since I got certified. It was one of the best investments I did for myself and the business. For that reason, 2020 was one of my greatest years. Covid was the catalyst and the time off I needed to make this happen and unfortunate not everyone can say the same. I am truly fortunate in that sense. I believe everything happens for a reason. Things went so well from there that my clients on the shore wanted me to offer them that service too but the commercial space I had didn’t have space for that. Fortunately, I was able to make some changes and expand it. 

As I was doing all the body sculpting and the lymphatic draining, I somehow connected with a very high-end plastic surgeon in New York City, Dr. Ryan Neinstein who was pivotal to my success. The way this happened is that we had a mutual client who after going to see him came to see me and was so impressed with my services, spoke about me to Dr. Ryan Neinstein and our relationship just grew from there. It was divine intervention. We work very closely together on a regular basis and go over our common patients and their needs.

In the middle of 2021, I saw that a lot of people were coming from New York City and Westchester. Both my boutiques locations where too far for them. I realized then that this was a perfect opportunity to open a new location with a guaranteed flow of clients. I was literally getting non-stop emails, dm’s and everything in between with an overflow of clients. It was the perfect moment to make that move. I found  a location and signed the lease that day. Needless to say the business and my team has had a beautiful expansion since my purchase in 2017. We started as a team of three and we are now ten and the best part this all happened in the last year!

Where do you see the growth of this business heading? 

There is so much room for growth in this business. I am overwhelmed by the inquiries from people, including surgeons, from all around the country interested in our services. We are really specialists in what we do. There are maybe a handful of Post-op Specialists but it’s our technique that makes us truly unique. I like to call this the “Liquid Sculpt Method”.

Can you describe a challenge that you faced while growing your business?

The hard part was in the beginning. People get used to dealing with a person and create relationships especially with the years. My main focus was offering the same service and retaining the clients. Another part that had me worried was convincing people that I was as good or better because the truth is, spray tanning is not rocket science, but people still come to you in a vulnerable state, and it’s important to make them feel safe and welcomed. There are always options for almost every business out there, so keeping the clients trust and loyalty is crucial to the survival of the business.

I sit and look back and I’m amazed as to where I took the brand. I know that this is exactly where I am suppose to be and that in itself amazes me when I look at my life a couple years back. I eat, sleep and breath my brand and everyone who knows me knows how hard I work every day. 

How do you set goals with your team and achieve them?

I have an amazing team around me and the brand that strive to be the best, constantly levelling up. I always give them the opportunity to make more and become better every single day. I always take care of my team. They have become my family, and I am not their boss but more of a friend and mentor. I want them to be able to approach me with anything so that I can help them. I rarely have any issues with them because they feed off my energy and everything works out smoothly on a daily basis. I do not consider this work or a job. Rather, a lifestyle. 

Talk to us about this Post-op service that you offer and what in entails?

What we offer is a Post-op ice recovery. Basically what it entails, is using our hands with a frozen gel, which is made up of healing herbs and arnica. What this does is it helps alleviate pain that comes after surgery. It helps alleviate not only pain, but discomfort, bruises and inflammation that comes with most surgical procedures. 

Immediately after our session, the client feels more flexible and in a better overall condition. Alongside this gel, we do lymphatic drainage. What this does is help with wellness and immunity because after surgery the body is in distress and needs to get rid of toxins. Any type of surgery is extremely hard on our body due to the fact that it is so overloaded. Our job is to help speed up the recovery with the least amount of time and stress possible for the client. As we go along on their journey, we then start to incorporate different techniques depending on the specific needs of each client and all this once again manually. We try and keep the doctors’ work as perfect as possible while keeping the body sculpted and at its best.

Whatever you goal is, we are there to get you where you want to be. It’s truly an Art. One of our most popular services, especially before a big event or vacation, is our advanced approach to ice and wood therapy, which detoxes the body, all while sculpting for a leaner and tighter feeling and look.

Throughout your journey, what is advice you have given yourself and that you would give other woman that might want to pursue their own business?

If you believe in something don’t ever give up on it. 

For so many people it’s easy to give up because it’s either money or time ; it’s usually that you feel like you need double the money or double the time.  IT’S NOT TRUE! You have to just keep beating at it and it will happen. I promise you, whatever it is that you believe in, you can achieve and make it happen. I believe that with all my heart and I’m living proof of that. I put everything I have into this business as I do in everything else such as my family and it all works out. You have to just see it through.

The money is always the BONUS. The business is the COMMUNITY and the LOVE. That’s the secret.

What inspires you to go for more and to think of the bigger picture?

There are so many things. Social media has always helped me push farther than what I started out as. Every time I see someone succeed, it makes me think what do they have that I don’t; nothing! So I thrive to get more for myself and it really gives me that extra boost. 

When I see woman on Forbes or in magazines, I remind myself that they are exactly like me and that if they can achieve it, so can I and so can every other woman who puts her whole heart in it. When I see great things happening around me it only makes me want to be better and do the same. I learn something new every single day of my life.

What does success represent to you?

Success to me does not have a monetary value, rather the impact we have on other people’s lives.  The “Liquid Sculpt Method” was designed by incorporating the different techniques and manual methods learned and perfected on my journey. Through classes, research, trial and error, studying other masters in the post op and body sculpting fields we have honed our skills to confidently say our client’s results are our success. Regardless of having surgery or not, the “Liquid Sculpt Method” was created to keep the lymphatic system (the bodies “fighter”) in optimal health. 

No relationship has had a greater impact than Dr Ryan Neinstein. As a top plastic surgeon in NYC , he has been positive, inspirational, and most importantly my biggest advocate.  The role he and his team play in my day to day life and career has been immeasurable. Dr. Neinstein and I share similar work ethic, business principals, and values. By treating the majority of his clients I like to believe a referral is the best compliment. Everyday we positively impact lives, we learn, and most importantly we smile while doing it. THAT is my definition of success!

All Photo Credit : The Social Butterfly Media

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