Founded in 2012, Violet Grey is a venture-backed content and commerce beauty company with a readership base that spans 170 countries and a luxury shopping destination that brings together the best in beauty. Violet Grey’s digital shelves are lined with the best beauty products on the market, curated by its community of trusted make-up artists, hair stylists, and stars. The company also has a flagship boutique in Los Angeles where customers can shop expertly-curated beauty products and exclusive offerings. To learn more, go to www.violetgrey.com
Specialty Retail, Ecommerce, Cosmetics
Los Angeles, CA
Improve productivity, enhance security & compliance, and improve scalability.
DevOps (CI/CD), Containers, Migration, Security
Improved DevOps productivity
Enhanced security & PCI compliance
Improved scalability for ecommerce
With nClouds' expert DevOps and migration help, we’ve streamlined our infrastructure. Our engineers can now spend more time innovating to support our growing business and less time managing DevOps-related tasks.”
CTO, Violet Grey
Violet Grey sells beauty products for women and has a large presence online via their website. Its site, running on AWS, is essential to their ecommerce business. Managing DevOps-related tasks was time-consuming for their engineers, so the infrastructure needed streamlining to improve productivity. They wanted improved scalability to support their fast-growth business. And, in preparation for a PCI assessment to validate compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), Violet Grey wanted to enhance security and compliance.
The CTO at Violet Grey reached out to APN Premier Consulting Partner, nClouds, for help in streamlining their AWS infrastructure and enhancing their security and compliance. After a technical deep-dive discussion, Violet Grey moved forward with nClouds’ recommendations and leveraged nClouds' expertise and best practices in DevOps, containers, migration, and security.
After in-depth discussions and infrastructure analysis, nClouds recommended that Violet Grey switch their Content Delivery Network (CDN) from Instart Logic to Amazon CloudFront to save money, reduce latency, and improve performance on their website. To optimize performance and security and effectively manage cost, CloudFront works with Amazon S3 to serve and protect the content.
nClouds streamlined the infrastructure by using CloudFormation to automate resource creation, and by migrating microservices (that were running on Cloud66 and Ruby services on AWS Elastic Beanstalk) to a single Amazon ECS platform.
The CloudFormation core infrastructure buildout includes an Amazon VPC with three AWS AZs to enhance availability, fault-tolerance, and scalability. In each AZ is a public subnet and two private subnets. AWS Auto Scaling between the public subnets and private subnets monitors Violet Grey’s applications and automatically adjusts capacity to maintain steady, predictable performance at the lowest possible cost. Three of the private subnets each include an Amazon EC2 instance. Amazon ElastiCache for Redis, Amazon RDS Primary, and Amazon RDS Read Replica reside individually in the other three private subnets. AWS ALB supports content-based routing between the public and private subnets, and between the private subnets.
In preparation for Violet Grey’s PCI assessment, nClouds installed Alert Logic WAF as a Service on CloudFront in front of the application. Security groups in the Amazon VPC act as a virtual firewall at the instance level to control inbound and outbound traffic. IAM roles manage access to the Amazon VPC via temporary security credentials. AWS Systems Manager Parameter Store integrates with IAM to provide fine-grained access control to individual parameters or branches of a hierarchical tree. AWS Secrets Manager protects the secrets needed to access applications, services, and IT resources.
Teaming with nClouds, Violet Grey now has a streamlined infrastructure for their fast-growth business. The project has yielded numerous benefits:
Violet Grey’s engineers have improved productivity and can spend more time on innovation. Streamlining the infrastructure — with CloudFormation’s automation of resource creation and the migration of microservices to a single Amazon ECS platform — has significantly decreased the time the engineers spend on DevOps-related tasks.
Violet Grey’s enhanced security has prepared them for a PCI assessment to validate compliance with PCI DSS. Security and compliance are supported by Amazon S3, Amazon VPC, Amazon EC2, IAM, AWS Secrets Manager, AWS Systems Manager Parameter Store, and Alert Logic WAF as a Service.
Violet Grey’s infrastructure now has three AWS AZs to enhance availability, fault-tolerance, and scalability. CloudFront, working with Amazon S3, optimizes their application’s scalability, performance, and security while effectively managing cost. Improved scalability is also supported by Amazon ElastiCache for Redis, Amazon EC2, Amazon ECS, AWS Auto Scaling.
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