Nikos Mouyiaris, founder and chief executive officer of Mana Products, died on Friday, Jan. 5, in New York. He was 73.
The cause of death was cancer, a spokeswoman for Mana Products said.
Mouyiaris founded Mana Products, a contract and private label cosmetics manufacturer, more than 40 years ago with a $6,000 loan from his brother. More recently, Mana Products was known as the developer of Make Beauty, a luxury, cruelty-free cosmetics line sold on Net-a-Porter and at Selfridges. Another well-known Mana Products line is Black Opal, a mass-market brand of skin care and makeup for women of color, which Mouyiaris founded with the help of his wife, Carol.
A well-known figure in the beauty industry and in philanthropic circles, Mouyiaris was respected for his generosity, humble nature and pay-it-forward attitude.
“My father was a visionary entrepreneur and leader in the beauty industry whose loss will be widely felt far beyond,” said Mouyiaris’ daughter, Ariana Mouyiaris, Make Beauty’s creative director. “His impact and influence as a humanitarian and philanthropist will continue to touch generations to come.”
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The late Mouyiaris was deeply involved with charitable endeavors, particularly those involving Greece and Cyprus, from where he emigrated as a student in the Seventies. He founded the Hellenic American Leadership Council, served on the board of the Coordinated Effort of Hellenes, the Pancyprian Association of America and as Elytis Chair at Rutgers University, and was involved with SOS Children’s Villages in Greece, along with organizations in the U.S., Greece and Cyprus. He was also the recipient of the respected Ellis Island Medal of Honor. His philanthropic efforts extended well beyond Greek and Cypriot concerns. Mouyiaris was a supporter of Paradise 4 Kids, an Ebola orphanage in Sierra Leone and the Malaika Foundation, educating young girls in the Congo. A percentage of Make Beauty sales are donated to the We See Beauty Foundation, which supports women-led, worker-owned cooperative businesses across the Americas.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the following organizations: the Hellenic American Leadership Council, the Mouyiaris Foundation, the Pancyprian Association of America, Inc., Paradise 4 Kids or the Malaika Foundation.