FounderMade The Future of Beauty was held downtown in New York City’s TriBeCa neighborhood at Spring Studios on Friday, June 2nd. Dozens of founder-led brands were on hand featuring their latest and greatest products in beauty, personal care, oral care, nutraceuticals, devices and tools, etc. Cosmetics Design was there to take inventory of the trends and learnings.
Several brands exhibiting at FounderMade were quite new. The skin care brand Karité Shea Butter launched in February with its signature product Crème Mains. The women behind the brand—Naana Boakye, Abena Slowe, and Akua Okunseinde—grew up in Ghana and source the shea and palm oil used in the product formulation from that country.
Smoothie Beauty, a fresh, organic facemask brand, launched in January. Founder Stephanie Peterson’s line of masks are each formulated with 5 or fewer edible ingredients (and nothing else). The products require refrigeration and have a short shelf life. Each spout pouch contains 2 applications worth of product and can be kept unopened for 30 days and for 1 week once opened.
Active beauty brand, Phyte Club, which uses sandalwood from Pondicherry, India, in most formulations and incorporates the farmers growing the trees in its social responsibility initiative, used the FounderMade show as its launch platform.
Other brands used the event to showcase product re formulations, like lip color brand Stiks Cosmetiks, which in now a natural beauty brand; while others like Soleil Toujours were showing new products or line extensions. Soleil Toujours highlighted its Organic Set + Protect Micro Mist SPF 30, a makeup finishing spray that can also be used throughout the day to refresh the skin and reapply sun care. And according to Mary Fromme, the brands’ client account manager, it functions well as hassle-free facial sun care for men too.
Educational panels ran throughout the day (with the exception of a lunchtime break given over to networking on and off site).
A panel moderated by Kara McGrath, Deputy Editor for Beauty and Fashion at Bustle, was all about How to Leverage Digital Marketing. Brand founders including Nikki Eslami of the hair extensions company Bellami and Danielle Choen-Shohet of GlossGenius shared insights and anecdotes about what has worked well for their respective brands.
In a nutshell, effective marketing looks different for every brand and must align with the product, the story, and the audience. And many of the panelists agreed that with all the marketing options available today, the best ROI comes from PR.
Other FounderMade panels addressed innovation, investing, entrepreneurship and brand growth, and distribution.
Many of the brands exhibiting at FounderMade told Cosmetics Design how valuable it was to have investors attending the show and visiting their stands to learn about the brands first-hand.
Among the firms that spoke at the event and browsed the Beauty Discovery Lounges were The Carlyle Group, Beechwood Capital, Mead Growth Partners, and Trinity Ventures.
Other financial services companies attended the event too. Stage 1 Financial, a California-based company that provides accounting, managerial finance, capital raise support, tax consulting and the like to (beauty) was there. And New York City – based CohnReznick, which specializes in accounting and tax services for a spectrum of industries, was at FounderMade last week as well.