From The Ground Up: Amika’s Education Director On Making It In The Beauty Industry

From makeup to hair to a global platform

Have you given your hair some TLC lately? In today’s heat and humidity, you might have experienced the struggle to keep your hair healthy and strong. Good thing we met Becca Cullati, the Director of Education at Amika, who inspired us with her insights and her passion for all things hair and beauty. We sat down with her to get an inside look into how she was able to work her way up and help women embrace their inner beauty and confidence. Plus, she also shared effective haircare tips for anyone with dry and frizzy hair.

Amika’s Director of Education, Becca Cullati.

Amika’s Director of Education, Becca Cullati. 

If you’re unfamiliar with Amika, it’s a certified B-Corp (meaning it’s able to meet high standards of social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability) Brooklyn-based haircare brand. It’s devoted to cultivating community and empowering self-expression and is known for the Perk Up Dry Shampoo, the Soulfood Nourishing Hair Mask, The Wizard Silicone Free Detangling Primer, and the Blowout Babe, the TikTok-viral thermal hair brush. While the brush isn’t in Singapore yet, the brand’s other products are now available via Sephora. 

Becca Cullati on her humble beginnings and working her way up in the beauty industry

Becca Cullati shares that she has been in the industry ever since she can remember. Although it wasn’t her lifelong dream to be in makeup or the beauty realm, a door opened for her. She decided to take that first step and since then, she never wanted to leave. “I got my first job at Bath & Body Works as a part-time gift wrapper. And I've worked my way up one job at a time until Director of Education at Amika,” she shares. 

But life wasn’t always a bed of roses. She had to overcome obstacles like getting laid off as a counter manager in 2011. “I couldn't find another job, I took my last USD1,000 and I bought a makeup kit. And I started doing makeup around Los Angeles for anyone who would have me for free. Sometimes I was working for lunch, sometimes I was working for the cost of the makeup,” she recalls. Her hard work paid off and she ended up landing jobs for Fashion Week before forming her own makeup services agency.

Becca on dismantling toxic standards in makeup and haircare

Amika's vision for beauty

“Cosmetics or hair… is about teaching us that we're beautiful right where we are.” (Photo from:

Becca didn’t expect to move away from makeup and enter into the world of haircare. However, she saw common ground in both areas, one being that toxicity was prevalent, and it was expected to keep women’s voices down. This lit a fire in her to be more vocal about her ideas. She states, “Beauty is about inspiring our confidence and dismantling some of the toxic standards that have been rolled out to us as women for so long. So it’s about embracing that inner beauty. And I think cosmetics or hair — however you go about it — it’s about teaching us that we're beautiful right where we are.”

With Amika, she now has a bigger platform where she can learn the science behind the products, teach people how to use them, and impact the larger conversation about beauty standards.

Aside from this, she personally decided to move into haircare after seeing that the ingredients she found in makeup and skincare were also being used for the “skinification” of hair (a trend that treats the scalp and hair like the facial skin by adapting skincare routines and ingredients). 

Becca on being involved with Amika’s mission to be inclusive and transparent

Among all the haircare brands out there, Amika’s message resonated with Becca. She shares, “Amika is about disruption… [it] taught people then, in the 90s, that we didn't have to conform and that we could be ourselves… and that really appealed to me and I knew I could use my voice to reach others that could use that same message.”

Going deep into the matter, Becca also reveals that what she liked most about working with Amika is that she has “so much runway to be creative”. She creates learning tools to help others easily understand hair damage and other concepts. 

Becca also gave us an inside look into what the process looks like behind the scenes at Amika. She says, “We have panels internally with marginalised voices, [and we ask], are you feeling like you're represented? And if not, what can we do? And we also are very, very transparent.”

Becca on Amika’s vision for the beauty industry

Amika’s vision for the beauty industry

“There's room at the table for many women now.” (Photo from:

Inclusive and empowering beauty feels like a lofty vision, but that’s what Amika sets out to achieve. What does this look like on the ground? Becca makes it a priority to keep asking questions with an open attitude. “[We make] sure we're constantly asking because I think a pitfall that so many can fall into, including myself… is like, I know what's best here, and not really asking the questions,” she says. 

While it’s a work in progress, there’s definitely hope as Becca looks back and relays, “It's different than it was when I started. There's room at the table for many women now.”

Speaking of empowerment, Amika raises awareness and gathers funds to support HairToStay, a nonprofit organisation. It’s dedicated to helping low-income cancer patients afford scalp cooling, a treatment that can dramatically reduce chemotherapy-induced hair loss. It claims to have raised over a million dollars for this endeavour. 

Becca on the next big thing for the haircare industry

Amika's sustainable and vegan ingredients

Amika uses sustainable and vegan ingredients like sea buckthorns.

Aside from sharing Amika’s vision for beauty, Becca let us in on what she thinks is the next big thing: sustainable and vegan ingredients will take centre stage. Becca shares that Amika takes pride in its efforts to use sustainable and vegan ingredients. An example is that Amika uses sea buckthorns, a shrub native to China and areas of Europe which has medicinal properties. It’s also one of the only vegan sources of Omega-7, which is important for hair, scalp, and skin health.

Becca’s hair care tips for dry and frizzy hair in Singapore

hair care tips for dry and frizzy hair in Singapore

What’s your haircare routine like?

The heat and humidity levels are constant in Singapore, so we asked Becca for some tips for dry and frizzy hair. 

Tip 1: Go with what works best for you

Becca prefaces, “Don’t be afraid to try different things.” She then explains her first tip: “It really is about realising what's right for you might not be right for the person next to you… and reminding ourselves that feeling good about ourselves is, like, the best thing we can do.”

Tip 2: Look at targeted frizz solutions 

If you have frizzy hair, Becca recommends The Wizard Silicone Free Detangling Primer, which is similar to a makeup primer. It helps with frizz and protects your hair from the heat. For maintaining hair health, try the Perk Up Dry Shampoo which can also help extend your wash day if that’s what works for you. 

Becca also teased that Amika is coming out with a new frizz solution which is the Smooth Over Frizz-Fighting Treatment. Stay tuned for its release in Singapore!

Tip 3: Check the ingredient list

Be aware of the ingredients of your hair products. Amika doesn’t use silicones in its products. But she also mentions that there are some scenarios which call for this ingredient, for example, when you need extra shine. 

Once you’re aware of the ingredients and how to use them, establish a consistent routine.

Amika’s heat protectant products.

The beauty industry is a vibrant, ever-evolving, yet challenging field. For anyone who wants to come alongside the change-makers, Becca says, “You can start anywhere… you don't have to be employed by a company to be talking about things you love. If beauty is something you love and you start talking about beauty, eventually people will hear you talking about beauty and the doors will begin to open in different ways.”

This interview was edited for clarity and brevity.

Next, discover how this K-beauty brand founder makes her mark in a saturated market.

Comments, questions or feedback? Email us at [email protected].

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