“We started our brand in 2017,” Randa Fahmy, founder of Makeup America!, tells Cosmetics Design, adding, “we have found that many of our customers (and we’re building our customer base right now) want made-in-America cosmetics.” And she goes on to explain what that signifies for her consumers: ingredient transparency, ethical manufacturing, cruelty-free product development, etc.
The same year the Makeup America! launched, Cosmetics Design was noticing a resurgence of home-grown cosmetics, personal care, and fragrance brands. (Read about a small selection of those brands here.) And while few, if any, others are branding themselves as American, it’s certainly a compelling niche. It’s worth noting too, as Fahmy has quipped, that 'America' branded business—Bank of America, American Airlines, American Express—are quite common, popular, and successful in an array of industries.
“As a child, I loved the 4th of July,” Fahmy says in her recent conversation with Cosmetics Design. And she goes on to recount an endearing episode of her youth and how her passion for this country grew to become a career in law and politics and now beauty as well, which isn’t a detour for Fahmy at all. In fact, Makeup America’s social purpose is linked to her knowledge of the US government, how it functions, and how it could function better for women across the country.
“Our social purpose is paying down the US national debit,” Fahmy tells Cosmetics Design; and she explains that, “as I have had a career in Washington for 30 years, what I realized is, no politician is paying down the national debit—none. I don’t care what your party is, or if you’re of no party, nobody’s paying attention to it.”
Makeup America! hopes to set an example of corporate giving that draws attention to the importance of the national debit and to the potential that business has to make a difference. Fahmy even suggests that prominent brands already leveraging Americana do what Makeup America! does and donate a portion of product sales to the Treasury for debit reduction.
As an entrepreneur, Fahmy is doing that while carefully building a new kind of beauty brand: one that “reflects the best of the American spirit” and celebrates an aesthetic that is “diverse, free, independent, and beautiful.”
Watch the full video interview above to learn more.
Deanna Utroske, CosmeticsDesign.com Editor, covers beauty business news in the Americas region and publishes the weekly Indie Beauty Profile column, showcasing the inspiring work of entrepreneurs and innovative brands.