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New Year, New You! Rise in Vegan Beauty Demand

Posted by Andrea Welzien on Friday, January 3rd, 2020

January starts a new year, and people all over the world are getting a start on their new year’s resolutions – many of them focused on self betterment, health, wellness and fitness. The beauty industry is not exempt from these goals that so many are trying to attain.

“Clean beauty” and vegan beauty have been on the rise over the past 5-10 years, especially in the younger generations including Millennials and Gen Z. Many beauty brands are making the switch to offering cruelty-free and vegan products as demand is increasing. A Study by Mintel’s Global New Products Database (GNPD) found a 175% increase in cruelty-free and vegan cosmetic launches between 2015 and 2018. There is even a non-profit organization called “Veganuary”, which encourages people to try veganism for the month of January to promote and educate about the vegan lifestyle. Being vegan is not only about which foods a person eats, but also about the products they use, including beauty products. Some of the most commonly used animal-derived ingredients in beauty products are carmine, bee’s wax, shellac, honey and lanolin.

Popular drugstore brands that offer vegan products include e.l.f., Eco Tools, Pacifica, CoverGirl, LA Girl, NYX, Physicians Formula, Pixi, Ardell, Milani, Catrice, MUA Makeup Academy, Love Beauty and Planet, and Batiste, just to name a few. If you’d like to celebrate “Veganuary” and try being vegan for the month of January (even just your beauty routine), these are some great budget-friendly beauty brands to help you make the switch.

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A Nail Polish Industry Legend

Posted by Andrea Welzien on Thursday, October 24th, 2019

She’s known worldwide as The First Lady of Nails. Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, a Jewish mom who is a second-generation Holocaust survivor, founded OPI in 1981.

Author of a book titled I’m Not Really a Waitress (which is also the name of OPI’s top-selling nail color), Weiss-Fischmann discusses her childhood in communist Hungary, to founding OPI and becoming one of the biggest names in the nail industry. Her book also talks about how she used to have a serious nail biting problem, and it continued into her career as Co-founder and Creative Director of OPI. Finally she gave up the habit as she couldn’t have awful chewed up looking nails as the head of a global nail polish company.

When Weiss-Fischmann started the company with her brother-in-law, George Schaeffer, they knew nothing about nails. They were running a dental supply company and noticed that the dental hygienists were buying dental acrylics to use as nail extensions. Weiss-Fischmann and Schaeffer also thought that the color options available for nail polish were seriously lacking. They figured there was a huge hole in the industry that they could fill. With Weiss-Fischmann’s eye for color and creative witty shade names, a successful nail empire was born.

Weiss-Fischmann credits some of her success to the environment she was raised in, and to her Jewish values. She said “There’s no limitation to women. The only limitations are what you put on yourself. I grew up where women were doctors, engineers, lawyers, and they were all university educated.” She not only made a difference in the nail industry, but she is a compassionate, generous person who enjoys giving to charities. She is quoted as saying “People always ask, ‘what can you do to make your life better?’ I always say that if you’re able to, give financially, or mentor somebody and make a difference in their life. If you can make a difference in one person’s life, you did good.”

Weiss-Fischmann made the decision to sell OPI to Coty in 2010, but she continues her role as a brand ambassador and is still responsible for the fan-favorite, humorous color names.

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History of a “Miracle Product”

Posted by Andrea Welzien on Wednesday, October 2nd, 2019

One beauty & personal care product we’ve probably all used at some point in our lives is Vaseline Petroleum Jelly. The history of Vaseline dates all the way back to 1870 when chemist Robert Chesebrough discovered petroleum jelly. Chesebrough first started his career as a chemist and oddly enough his job was clarifying kerosene from the oil of sperm whales. His job was no longer needed when petroleum was discovered later in Pennsylvania. Frustrated, Chesebrough traveled to Pennsylvania to see what other products could be created from this new fuel. This led to his discovery of petroleum jelly, which he marketed and trade-named Vaseline.

In 1870, Chesebrough opened his very first factory, and the production of Vaseline took off. Robert Chesebrough had the process for making Vaseline trademarked, and by 1874, stores were selling 1,400 jars of Vaseline every day! The Chesebrough Manufacturing Company was founded in 1875, and later became Chesebrough-Ponds, a quality manufacturer of personal-care products.

The success of Chesebrough’s Vaseline was attributed to his confidence and belief in his own product. In the beginning when he was unable to sell any product at all, he traveled to New York, demonstrating his product so consumers could see the results. He even went so far as to burn his skin with acid or an open flame, and then apply the Vaseline to his injuries. He would show past injuries and how they healed with his “miracle product.” To increase product awareness, he also distributed free samples.

Vaseline was purchased in 1987 by Unilever, and the company now has a whole range of products including the original Vaseline Petroleum Jelly as well as lotions, serums and lip products. Chesebrough lived to 96 years of age and was so confident in his product that he ate a spoonful of Petroleum Jelly every day! His legacy shows how hard work, determination and believing in yourself can pay off.

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More Beauty Shoppers Want Cruelty-Free Products

Posted by Andrea Welzien on Tuesday, September 3rd, 2019

A selling point that is sometimes overlooked by beauty brands is a cruelty-free manufacturing process. This means that the products are not tested on animals. A nationwide survey of 1,300 women found that more than 75% said it was “extremely important” or “somewhat important” that the products they buy are not tested on animals. This was the 2nd most important factor in purchasing decisions; cost of course being number one.

The survey, conducted by Vitacost, polled 1,266 women, aged 18-60+. Almost a third of women purchase cosmetics every 1-2 months. About three quarters of these women would buy a product labeled “cruelty-free” over the competing product if price and quality remained the same. 45% said that animal rights were “extremely important” to them, and 41% said they were “somewhat important”. 36.7% of those surveyed said that most or ALL of the beauty products they own are cruelty-free.

Here’s a look at just a few of the popular drugstore beauty brands that are cruelty-free.

One of the more recent in the news; CoverGirl decided to make the leap and is now officially certified that all of their products are not tested on animals. This was huge news for drugstore beauty fans who have been loyal to CoverGirl but also want to support cruelty-free brands.

Another great affordable cosmetic brand that saves animals from harm is Milani. With a wide range of Face, Eye, Lip and Nail cosmetics, they have a huge selection of cruelty-free makeup.

Love Beauty & Planet
From shampoo & conditioner to body wash, lotion & bath bombs, Love Beauty & Planet is a great go-to for cruelty free hair and skincare products. Bonus, many of their products are also vegan!

This newer but well-loved drugstore brand made the commitment to go cruelty-free. Some of our favorites are the Sweet Cheeks Blush and the Lip Lingerie Push Up Lipstick.

These are only a few of the many drugstore brands that have committed to going cruelty-free. Others include Ardell, Hask, Physicians Formula, e.l.f., EcoTools and more. Hopefully brands will see how important a cruelty-free manufacturing process is to consumers, and more companies will take the leap!

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The Success of e.l.f. Cosmetics

Posted by Andrea Welzien on Wednesday, July 24th, 2019

The launch of the company e.l.f. (short for EyesLipsFace) in 2004 was fast, and shoppers instantly fell in love with the brand’s quality products at affordable prices. Founders Joseph Shamah and Scott-Vincent Borba met at a party while Shamah was a business student, and Borba was experienced in the beauty industry having launched Hard Candy cosmetics. The idea for the company originated from the duo seeing women driving high-end cars, out buying cosmetics at dollar stores in L.A. Only a few days after coming up with the idea, they sat down to brainstorm, and within months they had a full business plan in place.

The cruelty-free cosmetic company—based in Oakland, California—started out with just 13 products. Items started selling at bargain price points of $1, $3 and $6 and eager shoppers of all ages flocked to shelves to pick up the makeup. Not soon after the launch of e.l.f., the company expanded to include more than 300 products ranging from skincare to mineral-based makeup, beauty tools and more. e.l.f. first launched in regional drugstores as well as Kmart, Walmart, Dollar General and a few Target stores. In 2011, a huge expansion brought them into the majority of Target stores across the country. Now available in 18 countries, their customer demographic spans a wide range, from teens all the way up to women in their 40’s and 50’s.

Marketing strategies have played a large role in the success of e.l.f. In 2007, they launched a beauty blog on their website offering advice and celebrity appearances. Not long after, the amount of time users spent on their website tripled, and online sales from their site quickly made up over half of their total sales! Using social media marketing, they’ve built up a loyal fan base, and have over 2 million website members.

The founders of e.l.f. cared not only about starting a business and becoming successful, but about giving back as well. Only a couple months after the brand launched, they decided to donate 20% of all proceeds from their popular “Shimmering Facial Whip” to Win Against Breast Cancer’s research and facilities. All e.l.f. products are cruelty-free; the brand prides itself on supporting PETA and never testing on animals. In 2011 they helped fund relief efforts for the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami disaster off the coast of Japan.

Then in 2011, TPG Growth bought a majority stake of the company, and Shamah and Borba parted ways. The company still continues their devotion to creating innovative high-quality products at prices that are affordable for everyone.

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