Candice Galek is an American model and entrepreneur who is best known as the founder and CEO of the online swimwear retailer, Bikini Luxe. She garnered notoriety after posting an image of a bikini-clad Miss Universe contender on her LinkedIn profile in March 2016. Galek is now a columnist for Inc.
Galek began her career as a model in her early twenties but found that she didn't enjoy photoshoots as much as anticipated. Instead, she became interested in the swimwear brands and styles themselves. In 2013, she founded Bikini Luxe, an online retailer of swimwear, clothing, and accessories. Bikini Luxe's website went live in June 2014. The company achieved some early success largely due to Galek's use of social media and affiliate programs. In 2015, the company's Wanelo account had 30,000 followers and its Pinterest page had accrued 5 million impressions by February 2016. Galek has been interviewed for her business acumen in a variety of publications including, Forbes, Business.com, American Express, BM Magazine, Inc., TheStreet.com, Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Richtopia and many others.
In March 2016, Galek posted a photo of Natalie Roser, a Miss Universe contender, wearing a bikini from Bikini Luxe on the business networking service, LinkedIn. The title of the post read, "Is This Photo Appropriate For LinkedIn?" The photograph of the swimsuit model sparked a debate that would end up going viral. The post accrued 50,000 views, 500 comments, and 30,000 new followers.
LinkedIn's content algorithm, however, soon deleted the post and Galek's profile picture. Galek spoke to high-ranking employees at LinkedIn for several days and eventually came to an agreement that allowed the posts and pictures to return to her profile. She also received a "Follow" button on her profile. As a result of the controversy, sales originating from LinkedIn spiked and Galek's contacts grew precipitously. She also became a columnist for Inc.