After a record year for stress and anxiety we could all use some relaxation. A silver lining of the collective trauma experienced throughout the pandemic is the importance of self-care that has been illuminated. Makalah Emanuel, CEO and Founder of Melaxation Box, is on a mission to continue amplifying the message of self-care through her business which sells boxes filled with hand-made gifts, thoughtful activities, and products from Black-Indigenous-People of Color-(BIPOC) owned businesses. “After a crazy year a gift of self-care felt like the most appropriate gift to give family members and friends,” Makalah says.
The business has continued to see growth in just its first year, which Makalah attributes to the support she has received. In addition to her family and friends, Makalah sought assistance from the SBDC and has been meeting with North Metro Lead Consultant, Jesse Esparza, throughout her inaugural year. Makalah describes her time with the SBDC saying, “I walked into the experience not knowing what to expect. After several calls I realized it was something that I can’t imagine Melax getting to where it is without that experience. Jesse helped me with my business, strategy, marketing, and brainstorming and gave me a sense of relief and guidance. If you are walking into unknown territory, use the SBDC as a way to stabilize yourself.”
This last year has also been a time in which the racial inequalities minority business owners face has been front and center. Being a minority business owner herself, Makalah says, “There is so much that goes into wanting to bring who I am, my identity, and my culture into my company and wanting it to appeal to my culture but also to everyone’s self-care. For Melax to include BIPOC owned business’s products in the boxes has been the perfect fit.”
“It can be a challenge for people of color to feel like they have to catch up or that they have extra layers of hurdles they have to balance,” Makalah says. One of the ways she balances these hurdles is by doing all she can to support others who are balancing those hurdles as well. She is a part of several networking groups to stay connected to others through communities like a Moms Business Group, a Denver Business Group, and a Black-Owned Business Group.
Makalah has inspiring advice to give other minority business owners, saying, “You are so special, you are seen and valued, and there is space for you and all your dreams. If you are waiting for validation, let this be it, you’ve got this.”
Melaxation Boxes has a bright future and big goals. Their one-year anniversary event is coming up in October and to celebrate they are hosting Relax with Melax: A One-Day Self Care Event. A big part of Melax’s mission is to help other business owners by collaborating to include their products in Melax boxes. If you are a local business owner, you can connect with Melax here.