How Beauty Upstarts Succeed

Bobbi Brown founded her namesake beauty brand in 1992 and helmed it for more than two decades.
Bobbi Brown founded her namesake beauty brand in 1992 and helmed it for more than two decades.

I recently had the pleasure of listening to a day of talks from Howard Murad (founder of Murad), M.D., Bobbi Brown (the eponymous founder and former head of the legendary beauty brand) and Carrie Gross (CEO and co-founder of Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare) regarding life as a beauty startup. Each founder launched his or her business in a different decade, but retained lessons that still resonate today.

This month’s digital exclusive, “The State of Beauty Startups,” delivers expertise from investors, founders and retailers about what it takes to succeed as an emerging brand in 2017, including:

  • Founders: A strong founder story creates excitement among investors, retailers and consumers, and gives brands a distinct point of difference among the competition.
  • Digital & direct: The internet and social media have lowered the barrier to entry for distribution and marketing in the beauty industry, giving even the smallest brands a direct connection to consumers.
  • Speed-to-market: Indie brands can launch products in as little as six months, compared to the lengthier process at top multinationals, which may require as much as three years to introduce new products.
  • Beyond the hero: Brands must have a strong concept that can expand and evolve beyond a single product in order to sustain growth and avoid fading away.
  • Money: While financing is obvious, many new brands underestimate how much capital they’ll burn through. Failure to properly calculate can sink even the most innovative brands.

New Faces on the Board

I’m delighted to welcome two new additions to our advisory board: Jessica Estrada, co-founder of Hue For Every Man, and Fadi Mourad, chief innovation officer, Dollar Shave Club. Estrada has more than 25 years in the fashion industry and after noticing a lack of high-end men’s grooming products geared toward a polyculture market, she left the apparel industry to focus on men’s grooming. Working as a freelance brand strategist, she has helped more than 20 apparel startups gain more than $50 million in new business.

Mourad’s role at Dollar Shave Club includes overseeing product development, package development, regulatory and R&D, while also expanding the product portfolio and bringing product concepts to life. His past experience includes time as a chemist at Bath & Body Works, overseeing the development of Lab Series Skincare for Men at Estée Lauder and fragrance brands Aramis, Tommy Hilfiger, Kiton and Sean Jean. Most recently he acted as vice president of product development and innovation for Bumble and bumble.

Estrada and Mourad will have a hand in shaping Global Cosmetic Industry’s content and mission, and we’re so excited to begin collaborating.

I hope you enjoy this month’s issue. See you in September.

Jeb Gleason-Allured
Editor in Chief
[email protected]

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