MADE Magazine Global Impact Issue - Page 41

MADEINC row F O U N D E R S YOUR FRONT ROW SEAT TO ENTREPRENEURIAL SUCCESS HOW DOES MENTED STAND OUT FROM THE CROWD IN THE COSMETICS MARKETPLACE? “We are the consumer as well as the owner and we have this very authentic approach to beauty, the company we want to build and the space we want to create for inclusion within beauty. I think that’s something that the big box beauty brands can’t replicate,” says Johnson “We say all of our products are about solving problems. We would never create something that we wouldn’t wear ourselves. Being the consumer as well as the owner really helps us in thinking about solving real problems and putting the consumer first as we create our product. None of our products will ever be ashy and none of our products would not show up. These basic things that women of color need for beauty, we’ll always be able to address and do it in a different and better way.” WHAT ADVICE FOR RISING ENTREPRENEURS ON STARTING A BEAUTY BUSINESS “I think the number one question is really around passion for the idea,” says Miller. “Prior to Mented, I attempted to launch a number of startups and never really followed through fully with any of them. Never quit my full-time job for any of them and at the end of the day, the passion just wasn’t not there. It’s got to be something you wake up thinking about, you go to bed thinking about it. You’re always texting your partner saying, ‘Hey, what about this? Or we could do it like this.’ There’s just this passion and excitement that you really can’t clamp down. I think if you’re in that boat, then you’re probably in a good place to really move forward with something. I think if you have an idea, but Long gone are the days of settling for a nude lipstick that does not compliment our complexion. The founders of Mented Cosmetics, KJ Miller and Amanda Johnson, had the same problem and after three years of looking for the perfect nude shade, they decided to create their own line of cosmetics for women of color. Mented Cosmetics (short for ‘pigmented’) has created its own lane in the beauty industry as a luxury beauty brand that celebrates and prioritizes women of all hues and different ethnicities. MENTED KJ MILLER & AMANDA JOHNSON it doesn’t excite you all that much, then you really want to rethink it.” “I never thought of myself as an entrepreneur before Mented. Finding the right partner and the right idea gave me the confidence to go after this, but I just encourage women to explore entrepreneurship as a career,” says Johnson. “I think it can be intimidating and you can think it’s something for only rich people or white people or males, but I think we as a community need to start normalizing it even more and going after it and taking the risk. Sometimes it will not work out, but it’s worth the journey and it’s worth the effort.” Keep up with the cool things happening at Mented Cosmetics by following them @ mentedcosmetics. | 41