Female founders of beauty brands to look up to: Huda Beauty, Tatcha, Lipslut and the list goes on...
Who run the world?
The beauty industry is not without its faults. Controversies from casual racism to homophobia run rampant — morally grey brands, founders, and influencers prove that there is still much to be learnt. Thankfully, there is still some good to be gleaned; namely, in how the field is dominated largely by women. In a world where gender income gap and sexism remain prevalent, it is heartening to find strong, successful lady bosses at the forefront of a booming industry. Below, our favourite female beauty founders we're crushing on.
When ex-Harvard MBA, Vicky Tsai quit her job in finance, she had no idea that she'd get into beauty, let alone spearhead one of the fastest-growing, woman-led companies on the Inc. 500 list. Tatcha began as a self-funded, skincare venture out of Tsai's garage — the entrepreneur sold her engagement ring (no joke) in order to get her business of the ground. A subsequent trip to Japan allowed her to discover a cure to acute dermatitis, which she credits to the ancient wisdom and practices of geishas. Think: skincare solutions comprising green tea, rice, and algae, all of which are carefully sourced and minimally manipulated to ensure a gentle, safe, efficacious formula. Today, Tatcha is a household name amongst beauty junkies, with big names such as Kim Kardashian and Meghan Markle calling themselves fans.
Best friends Adriel Denae and Jen Auerbach's clean, organic skincare label is out to heal all including eczema to chronic dryness. Their all-purpose balms and oils are a fixture amongst conscious shoppers, and have recently exploded onto the mass market due to the publicity garnered from their stand against abortion bans in America. Working with six other brands, Clary Collection ran an ad in The New York Times that affirms a woman's right to choose and pleaded big businesses to get on board. As the beauty community wise up, it's simply a matter of time before Clary Collection is welcomed by emporiums such as Sephora and Ulta.
Launched by wildly popular beauty blogger, Huda Kattan in 2013, Huda Beauty is a million-dollar beauty brand that has amassed 5.5 million fans on Instagram and counting. The social media maven has always been passionate about makeup; she created her first-ever product — falsies — for fun. Though she didn't have the parental support she would have liked to pursue her dreams, her sister encouraged her to sell her falsies. Soon after, Kim Kardashian made her purchase and the rest, as they say, is history.
The socially-conscious, viral makeup brand responsible for the iconic F*ck Trump lipsticks is run by — get this — a 22-year-old. Lipslut was born after Trump's inauguration in 2017 when Katie Sones realised that millennials weren't donating to charities because "they didn't feel like they could give their money away." But at the same time, Sones explains, "They thought they could afford to buy makeup. So, I decided to bridge that gap by creating a product that could give back." Enter Lipslut's range of highly pigmented, matte finish liquid lipsticks, where 50% of proceeds would go to charities and organisations directly impacted by the Trump administration. To that, we say: keep fighting the good fight, queen.
Run by single mother and breast cancer survivor, Cashmere Nicole, Beauty Bakerie is a labour of love since her days working as a nurse in 2001. The makeup mogul recalls spending her day working in the hospital, and dedicating her nights to developing her makeup business. She was later diagnosed with breast cancer, which inspired her to find non-toxic, vegan, and cruelty-free ingredients to feature in her makeup line. Eventually, Queen Bey herself caught wind of Cashmere in 2014, leading to a feature on Beyonce.com. Beauty Bakerie has since been stocked in massive beauty emporium, Ulta — and hopefully on our shores soon, too.