An Insight into Vanden’s Blossoming Entrepreneurs: Crystal Clear


Danali Hardwick, News Editor '23

Several Vanden High School students have formed an interest in entrepreneurship and created their own small and blossoming businesses during the time that students and staff were away from school. These young women have shown to their peers and the internet the beauty of healing jewelry and how it can be utilized.


“I first got into crystals around mid-2018, over the summer,” Dania Cuevas, a senior at Vanden, states about her business. She creates products like crystal pendants and bracelets. “Everything I make is handmade– and it does take me a lot of time and effort but I put a lot of love into it and that’s really what matters,” Cuevas describes. She markets all of her handcrafted products on Instagram (@dani.wraps.crystals).

Motivation and interest play large roles in any business, Cuevas’s especially. “My biggest inspiration to start this business was a Tik Toker named Tayswraps.” She reveals that upon discovering Taylor Hitchen’s Tik Tok account in 2019 and Cuevas has been following her ever since. “The way she wraps crystals [are] amazing… and just seeing her business grow inspired me,” she elaborates on Taylor’s work. Dania maintains a positive attitude and it shows through her hard work and support for other women, like Tayswraps.

Much like Tayswraps, there has been an uproar in interest for crystals and their healing abilities. A well-known crystal amongst students is Rose Quartz. Cuevas reposted the meaning of this crystal from stating, “Rose quartz is the stone of universal love.”

Crystal pendants posted by Cuevas on her Instagram account.

Crystals have also been widely popularized by another famous Tik Toker, Paeka Campos (known as Paekadegallo on Tik Tok). The 19 year old influencer found herself in a conflict between her and several other influencers. This controversy involved a rose quartz crystal that was supposedly used by Paeka to manipulate a guy of interest. While this was all social media drama for these people of higher platforms, young users of these platforms created jokes and videos about Paeka’s alleged intentions with the crystal. Of course, it is love crystal after all.



A Vanden graduate, Malia Padilla, provides customers with many types of healing products, like Cuevas. She finds inspiration through different aspects in her life, “My mom had also tried to start her own business with crystal jewelry, which never ended up happening.” but Padilla has changed that and sparked up a new possibility for her mother’s dream in creating the healing jewelry. “I love coming up with ideas every day for new products and my mom helps me put them to life.”

Padilla endured some setbacks before she began her business. “After I graduated high school, I applied to cosmetology school. A few weeks before my first day of school I broke parts of my leg,” She tells about a difficult point, but then things started to look up for her. Crystals and jewelry came back into her, and her mom’s life, when Padilla her interest in them began to grow. “This has really been my dream because, [as] a teen mom, I love that I can just be home with my baby and not have to worry about a babysitter,” Padilla explains. 

One of Padilla’s newest products is Jasmine-Scented Candles. As one who loves candles, Padilla elaborates on the meaning of the candle. “It symbolizes love, beauty, purity, and sensuality. In Thailand, Jasmin represents motherhood and signifies love & respect.”

A hand poured Jasmin Candle by Padilla.

Padilla was featured in a pop-up shop on September 5, 2021, and rumor has it that she will be in several more!

As Cuevas and Padilla, both continue their businesses, it is crystal clear that they both have an undefinable passion for what they do. “Not only do I want people [to leave] more confident, I hope to leave people at peace with their mental and spiritual well-being,” Padilla declares.