Bobbi Brown, the makeup mogul who pioneered the “no makeup” look in the early ’90s, is back with a new adventure.
Based on the belief that the world “doesn’t need more beauty products, it just needs better beauty products”, her new brand, Jones Road, which she launched during the pandemic, offers a range relatively small number of “clean” products, formulated to remove potentially harmful ingredients such as parabens, phthalates and sulfates. And, in keeping with its less is more approach, many items in its new line are multi-functional, such as a balm that can be applied to cheeks, lips and eyelids.
Jones Road comes decades after Brown sold his eponymous label and years after leaving the company.
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Brown first entered the beauty world in the 1980s as a makeup artist, when the overly makeup look was all the rage. “It was Studio 54, Liza Minnelli, Jerry Hall,” Brown recalled during an interview with CNN. “I tried to do that and it didn’t work. So I thought, ‘let me make people more natural,'” she said.
Contrary to the trend, she bid on consumers who wanted a more natural look and launched Bobbi Brown in 1991, creating a company that was so successful that Estée Lauder came knocking on her door a few years later. According to Brown, then-CEO Leonard Lauder called her to tell her she was beating the cosmetics giant in every department store. He invited Brown and her husband to dinner and asked if he could buy the brand. “We’re not for sale,” she told him at the time, but eventually Lauder made an offer she couldn’t refuse.
“When Leonard said to me, ‘what if I could promise you that we can grow your business and you could do what you love’ — and it touched me — ‘you keep doing all the creativity, we do everything else’ and you can be a really good mother and have your family and not spend your life traveling,” I said OK. He was the right partner at the right time,” Brown said.
She remained with the brand for more than two decades after the reported $74.5 million sale, but eventually came to regret a non-compete agreement she signed that would prevent her from launching new brands of beauty for 25 years. “I’ve always put my name only on things I believe in. That’s one of the reasons I left the last brand,” she said. “At the end of my term, I was forced to approve things that I never had the chance to approve. I refused. I never put my name on anything in which I do not believe.”
But there were still four years left on the non-compete agreement and she finally had the luxury of figuring out what she wanted to do next.
In her second act, Brown went back to school to get certified as a health coach. “I didn’t go back to school with a purpose. I went because it was the first time in my life that I had time to think about what I wanted to do,” he said. she declared. “I’ve always been a health nut and foodie, so going back to school I found healthier ways to eat the foods I love.” During this time, she said she started wearing even less makeup.
“Honestly, I kind of stopped wearing it after I left the brand. I was healthier, less stressed, and looked better,” she said.
Brown said she could see what was happening on social media with the emergence of many direct-to-consumer beauty brands, but she saw a gap in the market for the business she was quietly starting. to imagine, which was “somewhere between the old Celine, when Phoebe Philo was around, and Suprême.”
She launched the brand on October 26, 2020, the day her non-competition was lifted.
Brown is now seizing the opportunity to speak directly to consumers. Credit: Jones road beauty
Brown also used the platform to address critics. One of the brand’s foundations had received negative feedback from users online – some didn’t like that the oil-based foundation was separate in its container, others felt the cover was not enough. She responded with a series of videos defending the product and explaining how to mix it well and how to apply it.
A lot has changed since Brown launched her first brand, but she seems to be seizing the opportunity to speak directly to consumers and share positive beauty messages.
“I believe in life, you have to use what you have and stop fighting for who you are,” she said. “I truly believe in empowering people to be the best versions of themselves.”
Bobbi’s Top 5 Beauty Tips:
1. Smile a lot, you look so much better when you do
2. Stay hydrated, it doesn’t matter if it’s water or herbal tea – it makes such a difference in how you feel
3. How you feel is tied to how you look, so instead of running around to get work done, ask yourself “why am I not feeling well?” and make some lifestyle changes
4. Wear sunscreen and wear a seat belt
5. Streamline your regimen: find a few beauty products that only take you a few minutes to apply and that make you feel good no matter what, where and when
Update: This article has been updated to clarify that Jones Road first launched in October 2020.