Behavior Cosmetics: Remodeling a inexperienced enterprise in the direction of development

By Yulia Idemenko

March 8, 2021

Aja Frierson, founding father of Behavior Cosmetics

How an proprietor of a non-toxic natural make-up enterprise constructed relationships with producers, overcame the hurdles of a pandemic, and efficiently ramped up enterprise.

Ever since Aja Frierson was a younger woman watching her mom diligently apply her lipstick within the mirror, she was obsessive about make-up, particularly the way in which it was used for self-expression and private care. As a youngster, Frierson turned depending on make-up to cowl up her acne-prone pores and skin. It wasn’t till she was in faculty that she tried totally different detox diets and located {that a} low-processed natural vegan weight loss plan supplied much-needed reduction from her pores and skin issues. When she needed to equally detoxify her make-up routine, Frierson struggled to seek out clear magnificence manufacturers that represented girls who appeared like her.

Quick ahead to his first job out of school as a colorist for a number one model within the trend trade, the place Frierson realized the way to put collectively stylish coloration palettes that could possibly be worn in any shade. of pores and skin.

“It was at that second {that a} mild bulb went off for me that I used to be ready to make use of this new talent to create collections and coloration merchandise, and on the similar time assist all girls who need to really feel represented and who need to heal by merchandise that promote well being. ” she says. At the moment, Frierson started to work on growing a group of fresh cosmetics, and so it’s. Cosmetics Behavior was born.

Higlighters Make-up Vegan Behavior Cosmetics

Since its inception in 2013, Behavior Cosmetics has grown right into a profitable make-up model that makes use of non-toxic, vegan, and cruelty-free formulation and sustainable packaging.

Since its inception in 2013, Behavior Cosmetics has grown right into a profitable make-up model that makes use of non-toxic, vegan, and cruelty-free formulation and sustainable packaging. They supply excessive efficiency cosmetics which are bought in almost 100 shops throughout the nation, together with Walmart and on-line. The present assortment consists of nail polish – the one one available on the market to make elements from recycled plastic – multi-purpose natural colours for lips, cheeks and eyes, and natural cream highlighters in reusable aluminum jars and glass.

Construct relationships with producers

Whereas make-up is completed in California, Behavior Cosmetics depends on its abroad producers for his or her signature bamboo on caps and different recycled plastic elements which are all sourced from China.

“I am so lucky to have the ability to work with the producers that I make and depend on their experience,” says Frierson. “And it actually offers me the boldness to know that the formulation I’ve created with them are completely wonderful.”

Business Check 2021 announcement

Regardless of the current political local weather that has created negativity round China, together with sourcing from China, Frierson has had solely the most effective experiences working with Chinese language producers, though it took some time to seek out and sustaining relationships with the suitable producers for every make-up part.

“I’m now working with a few of the finest producers within the enterprise,” she says, “who’ve actually gone above and past my expectations to verify I am joyful and who’re additionally continually working with me on totally different options that I do not essentially have. discovered elsewhere. ”

To entrepreneurs who’re contemplating bringing in international producers, Frierson says, “Do not be afraid to supply from China. I feel there are some fabulous companions on the market who’re able to work with you and provide help to create options simply to your model. ”

Overcome the obstacles

As a feminine coloration entrepreneur, accessing funding has been the largest hurdle for Frierson, particularly within the clear magnificence trade wherein Behavior Cosmetics operates. And the statistics, sadly, mirror it. In keeping with Fundera, the USA has a complete of 12.3 million women-owned companies that generate $ 1.8 trillion yearly. Final yr, 64% of latest women-owned companies had been began by girls of coloration. Regardless of all this, female-owned startups obtain solely 7% of VC funds, and feminine entrepreneurs, on common, ask for about $ 35,000 much less in enterprise funding than males and get a mean quantity of mortgage almost $ 5,000 lower than their male counterparts.

Lastly, the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic has had a major impression on small companies in all sectors, pressure quite a bit to rotate, go browsing or fully shut their operations. The information means that small companies have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic, with round 48% of corporations with one to 4 workers experiencing vital or extreme impression. Behavior Cosmetics gross sales weakened in the beginning of the yr when a few of their bodily retailers closed on account of authorities shutdowns. Have a giant on-line presence has helped Behavior Cosmetics preserve its head above water and inclement climate throughout these making an attempt instances.

Scale your rising enterprise with a packaging change

Creating a enterprise is sort of all the time a problem. Making a enterprise mannequin that enables what you are promoting to generate income with out including enormous prices alongside the way in which requires the suitable infrastructure, flexibility, and enterprise methods in place. That is very true when a small enterprise like Behavior Cosmetics will get a big retailer like Walmart that requires giant minimal orders for every kind of product.

“Scaling was an absolute problem for us, and till a number of years in the past it was actually tough for us to scale,” says Frierson. The explanation was that the sturdy elements and the meeting course of prevented them from producing numerous models. It was solely when Frierson modified its packaging that Behavior Cosmetics might evolve.

Behavior Cosmetics has all the time been intentional about their use of sustainable packaging. On the similar time, sustainable packaging is dear, laborious to seek out, and never one thing that many producers are prepared to work with. It’s notably tough for small companies that wouldn’t have ample dimension and ample monetary assets to decide to utilizing one of these client packaging.

Prior to now, every part Behavior Cosmetics made was assembled by hand and their bamboo cups needed to be glued by hand onto small elements.

“I’m so fortunate to have the ability to work with the producers that I make and to depend on their experience. And it actually offers me confidence figuring out that the formulation I’ve created with them are completely wonderful.

-Aja Frierson

Behavior Cosmetics non-toxic vegan nail polish in numerous shades

“It was a fully ridiculous course of,” feedback Frierson. So she discovered a producer able to producing recycled plastic and redesigned the caps to be detachable. With this variation, Frierson was capable of fully outsource meeting to its producers in order that merchandise could be shipped straight from the producer to the distribution middle and wherever they should go.

“It took some time, and it took a bit of creativity for my makers to determine it out,” she says. “I am actually proud of our processes now.”

Have the suitable monetary companion to help what you are promoting

“I can not say sufficient about Agnes Lew and his crew at East West Financial institution. They actually went above and past for me in each approach, ”says Frierson, who not too long ago turned a consumer of East West Financial institution. To assist offset the results of the pandemic and keep money stream, Frierson utilized for a PPP mortgage, which the financial institution is presently serving to to safe.

“I’ve by no means had such a stage of assist and private consideration from a financial institution earlier than and I really feel like East West is actually invested in my success as an entrepreneur and businessman, ”she continues.

What’s subsequent for Behavior Cosmetics

On the recommendation of Agnes Lew, who pitched to Frierson the thought of ​​collaborating with up to date artists, Behavior Cosmetics is ready to launch 14 new nail polish shades, three of that are co-creations with up-and-coming artists like Kezia Harrell. , Alake Shilling and Lauren Halsey.

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“What’s actually thrilling about these new colours that we have co-created collectively is that 40% of the proceeds will go to the causes that every of the artists helps,” says Frierson. For instance, Lauren Halsey helps a corporation referred to as Crenshaw City Middle, and their mission is to purchase again the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza and redevelop it for the local people, by the neighborhood.

Frierson had needed to evolve his model in a extra mission-oriented route for a while now, however simply did not know the way to do it in an genuine approach. Final yr, with the rise of social justice actions, she felt it was time for her model to begin giving again.

“That is why I am excited to maneuver ahead with this artist collaboration and help their causes, and it is one thing I need to proceed to do with my model sooner or later,” says Frierson. .

For extra ideas, take a look at our enterprise continuity toolkit with the most recent assets on the way to take care of the pandemic.

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