Shanesha Brooks-Tatum and Mercedes C. Lyson

Shanesha Brooks-Tatum is Founder and CEO of Savoir Faire Beauty, a research hub and eco-beauty boutique for discerning beauties.  She is a researcher and green beauty aficionado, and for the last 10 years, she has been actively engaged in the green beauty and wellness community as a consumer, creator, researcher, and observer who formerly owned and operated her own green beauty line.  She is passionate about bridging the worlds of research and green beauty to create a space where its fans and supporters can engage in higher-level conversations and conscious consumption of the kinds of products and information that they love.

Shanesha is Founding Vice President of Creative Research Solutions, an evaluation and research firm in Georgia, as well as Founder and CEO of the Life Balance and Wellness Institute, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to support Black women in their quest to live well and thrive.  She has been fortunate to receive several prestigious fellowships and has won national and international awards for her work, including a recent National Association for Women-Owned Businesses Award (2017) and the Rising Star Award from the International Journal of Ethnic College Health (2016).

Shanesha earned her Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, and her Bachelor’s Degree from UC Berkeley, summa cum laude.  She is an invited radio and television guest, a featured writer at outlets such as The Feminist Wire, and has published several books and articles in the fields of educational and community research, evaluation, and self-care.


Mercedes C. Lyson is a hybrid academic-beauty blogger who brings both a refreshingly authentic perspective on beauty combined with critical social analysis to the social media beauty space. She began her YouTube channel and blog, L’Amour et la Musique, in 2014 after having been immersed in what was then a burgeoning green beauty community. L’Amour et la Musique also provides a creative outlet where Mercedes documents other evolving facets of her quest to articulate a beautiful life – namely through music (Mercedes is also an avid underground dance music aficionado and has dj’ed since the mid-2000s), alternative health practices (acupuncture, body work, energy work, medical intuition), and spiritual development (meditation retreats, crystal healing).

In the era of the “professional blogger,” Mercedes strives to remain as transparent and ethical as possible in her product affiliations and reviews, and L’amour et la Musique remains a labor of love and passion as well as a tool of social awareness and activism. Mercedes holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Latin American Studies from the University of Chicago, and a Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy in Sociology from Brown University. She currently lives and works in Boston, and at present her research sits at the nexus of health interventions, the workplace, mental health and stress, and participatory technology design.