Plus One: Mr. Flawless
Title: Jeweler
Words Roger Krastz

Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared in the Winter 2014 issue of XXL Magazine.

Over the years, hip-hop has helped make many jewelers famous, and now it’s Mr. Flawless’ time to shine. Born Greg Yuna in Queens, N.Y., the 32-year-old bling specialist first got his start in his industry as a salesman in 2009 at his family-owned shop, Flawless, in Manhattan. While toiling away in the store, an inspired Yuna began designing his own pieces and was soon hired by Floyd Mayweather Jr. (who coined the nickname Mr. Flawless) to craft a “Jewish Rosary” worth $12,000. That got Yuna the attention he needed to snag a few more celeb clients and over the next five years the popular jeweler crafted product for celebs such as Drake, Meek Mill, Victor Cruz and more. XXL spoke to with Mr. Flawless to talk about the success he’s had in the world of diamonds and gold.

On The Biggest Challenges Of Being A Celeb Jeweler
Mr. Flawless: Not being original, but staying original because there’s a lot of competition in the jewelry world. We spend so much money making things proper and then you go down the block and they just took something you spent all your time on and it’s watered down. It may look the same, but it’s not the same quality, so it sucks that you get imitated a lot in this business. It’s tough being and staying original.

On Celebs Wanting Jewelry For Free
A lot of these celebrities want something for free because of who they are, which is fine, I get it, but that’s not what we do over here. We stay sucker free over here because our quality is good and our product is very detailed. I’m not going to give an artist an expensive chain for free just because they’ll post it on Instagram and be my friend. I don’t want to pay for our friendship. I have the product, buy it. A lot of jewelers out here give things out for free just to get clients in the door. I get that, it’s marketing, but at the same time, I don’t respect it because it’s not a genuine relationship you’re building with the celebrity.

On The Keys To Success In The Jewelry Industry
If you really want something you just have to push for it—it really just depends on how bad you want it. There have been nights that I couldn’t sleep because I wanted something done so bad, so you have to set goals, have ambition and you have to be hungry even if you’re eating.

On Advice For Aspiring Jewelers
Stay true to yourself and don’t try to copy what other people do. Even if you think something is not right, if you believe in it, there’s somebody out there that will believe in your work as well. You might think something is so ugly, but someone might come in your shop and say that’s a beautiful piece, so you never know who your audience is. Just believe in your craft and stay in your lane.