Any beauty lover knows about the cult following behind Glossier, the direct to consumer beauty company launched by former Vogue employee, Emily Weiss, in 2014. Starting with just a couple of products, Weiss had earned a couple million dollars in seed funding from investors. The original products were a major hit, and Glossier began its plans for expansion from skin care, into the beauty and cosmetics industry.
Today, Weiss runs a company that just reached a valuation of $1.2 billion after its most recent round of funding. The latest round of funding was secured through Sequoia Capital, which raised the company over $100 million to take it over the billion dollar mark. The beauty company is known for its simplistic approach to beauty, emphasizing that good skin care is the foundation of feeling confident.
Glossier quickly climbed to the top of the beauty chain with products like its Milky Jelly Cleanser and Balm Dotcom, both of which have earned the company a cult-like following. Positive reviews from magazines like Vogue and Allure, celebrity endorsements from figures like Kim Kardashian, and some killer advertising and social media marketing catapulted the brand into the cultural zeitgeist of the millennial generation.
The brand proved one thing; that packaging and marketing are everything. While the products work, much of Glossier’s success is owed to its minimalist packaging aesthetic and overall marketing strategy. Pop up shops around the country proved that the brand could become a successful brick and mortar shop as well. But it would mean venturing into a new realm of business. Nevertheless, two permanent brick and mortar shops were opened in 2018. Its flagship location in Manhattan’s SoHo area serves as a showroom for new products. Meanwhile the brands Los Angeles shop on Melrose has become a selfie hotspot for its customers.
Once the company had a stronghold in the skincare department, it was time to venture into a new line. Glossier began releasing new makeup products every couple of months. The brand focused on its original image of maintaining a “no makeup makeup” look. It did this by releasing minimal blushes, highlighters, brow gels, and liquid eye shadow. The aim of the line was to emphasize natural beauty, not draw attention away from it.
The products were successful (Beyonce was part of the initial launch for the company’s eye shadow, lidstar). But it was time to experiment with new colors and textures. This didn’t fit the brand, though, so Glossier sought to expand its horizons into a new business—Glossier Play. The new line was announced very ambiguously through social media at the beginning of 2019. Just a few months later, Glossier Play was released online. The makeup line has been the icing on the cake that brought the brand into its billion dollar fortune.
It’s hard to say where the company will go next with its newfound riches. A pop up shop recently opened in Miami for a limited time, and the brand is heavily promoting its new Mango lip balm flavor through food carts around the city.