Top Secret: How These Beauty Brands Turned Into Multi-million Dollar Sensations

And how you can do so too 

Many times before making a purchasing decision, I’d turn to various social media platforms like Youtube in search of authentic reviews of the product I have in mind. Similarly, most beauty fanatics of today look for word of mouth recommendation by beauty influencers on Instagram and Youtube. Some brands choose to jump on the influencer marketing bandwagon and haven’t turned back since. In fact, these are a few brands that turned into multi-million dollar sensations because of it:-

Starting off as a beauty influencer herself, Huda Kattan began as a blogger and turned into an Instagram beauty influencer. She then launched her own makeup line under Huda Beauty starting with the false eyelashes in Sephora stores. Being able to understand what was most comfortable as a beauty blogger and understand her social media fans, the falsies, and subsequent products were an instant hit. Now Huda Beauty is worth more than USD$4 million.

NYX was lucky enough to benefit off unpaid organic reviews by beauty vloggers who sincerely enjoyed NYX beauty products. When they realized their sales were largely accredited to them, they quickly revamped their strategies and started to market themselves mainly through influencer marketing by sending beauty bloggers makeup to review. Unfortunately, the influencers of today look for monetary incentives instead of free products, but the NYX team was impressively wise in riding the trend when influencer marketing was only at its beginnings. Now they’re valued at USD$500 million.

Similarly, Becca‘s early success was linked to authentic satisfactory reviews by vlogger Jaclyn Hill. Being the smart marketer that they are, they subsequently went ahead to collaborate with her for their “Champagne Pop” highlighter. Famed for her highlighting skills, Jaclyn Hill’s 3 million Youtube subscribers were no doubt excited to obtain her look and the product broke Sephora’s record on the day of its release. The company was acquired by Estee Lauder for more than $200 million last year.

Despite being only 3 years old, the indie makeup brand ColourPop was clever and courageous enough to market their products solely through influencers. On top of that, they frequently collaborate with trendy influencers like Alexis Ren and Jenn Im. ColourPop quickly caught the attention of many millennials and now has 2 million followers on Instagram.

All these brands accredit their fame to the one thing: hardcore influencer marketing. Many brands stumble upon it, but few choose to continue and make the most of it. Evidently, those that do succeed. However, influencer marketing is not a one- off thing as these top beauty brands prove. In fact, it’s a science that should be constantly studied and refined. This post is going to shed some light on the lessons these brands have taught us about this tricky science.


1) Listen out

(Some influencers who’ve posted about #beccacosmetics arranged by the total views. Source: Popular Chips)

Like NYX and Becca, find out who is already talking about your brand and has a high traction to posts relating to it


2) Authenticity

(@imjennim ‘s top posts over the last 3 months. Source: Popular Chips)

Know that influencer marketing is so successful because it functions as a word of mouth recommendation by their favorite personalities as opposed to blatant advertising. Let social media influencers run the show by crafting your campaign to match their top posts, instead of putting them in the box to suit your campaign. Because no one understands their audience like these influencers.


3) Diversify 

A report by NPD highlighted that 92% of makeup users get information on beauty products from influencers. But understanding this is just the beginning of influencer marketing. I previously talked about the importance of having multiple accounts catered to specific countries.  So take your influencer marketing to the next level by studying the different beauty trends in different countries. This can serve as opportunities to specialize different facets of your brand like L’oreal. (Read more about their influencer marketing story here)


4) Flirt


There’s Benefit in being transparent about the whole process leading up to the launch of the product. Allowing influencers to talk to their audience about when and what to expect builds up their excitement.


5) Let the stars take the spotlight

Take it from MAC and Anastasia Beverly Hills amongst these top beauty brands to reach out to old and new consumers by collaborating with favorite influencers. Create a product or a whole line based on their personality. This will definitely be a big hit with the millions of followers they already have.

What are you waiting for? Get that whip cracking and choose the right influencer for your next campaign to become the next multi- million dollar success.






Written by Terri Tan

I am a quirky individual currently working with influencer marketing analytics startup, Popular Chips. I love writing about sassy and trendy topics, especially those related to marketing. Hit me up if you have any queries~

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