Julie Bell, Benefit Cosmetics
Which product didn't do as well as you expected? What did you learn from that experience?
Big Easy, our BB cream, didn't do as well as we expected. Key learning: We need to stay true to our DNA (instant beauty solutions). All of our most successful product development has started with customer need. In the case of Big Easy, I got influenced by the industry around me and the BB cream trend. I'm still very proud of the innovative formula we developed but this product was a learning experience for me.
It had too many messages for our customer and too many stories. And to be perfectly honest, as much as I love the name Big Easy, it didn't tell customers what the product does. Since then our names have a DNA wink-wink factor but also offer the customer directional clarity so she understands what she is buying.
Tell us one unexpected way you use a cult product.
I use the POREfessional Face Primer on my body. The same way it smooths out pores on my face, it smooths out the look of those embarrassing "situations" on my body (aka cellulite). I use it on my upper arms, the back of my thighs, and now a new "pop-up" spot — the sides of my stomach. I go through tubes and tubes of it during the Summer. I'd take a bath in the stuff if I could!
What is your best advice to someone trying to break into the beauty industry in 2016?
Be passionate — passion speaks louder than words. You have to love makeup, wear makeup, and be obsessed with makeup. Beauty opportunities continue to come knocking for gals who are team players, uber curious, and bring lots of laughter, fun, and smart ideas to work every day.