There aren’t a lot of big second acts in the beauty industry, and only a few names ever come to mind where the lightning of success has struck more than once. When former Founding Creative Director Nonie Creme left the wildly successful butterLONDON, many were surprised and wondered if we’d hear from the beauty pioneer again. Well, for those fans of Creme’s incredible creativity, she’s back in a big way as the Founding Creative Director of the brand-new masstige beauty line, Colour Prevails.
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“When you have some time to yourself, you have the opportunity to think carefully about what’s next,” explained Creme in our interview. “You only get so many chances in your life to do these big companies, so you’ve got to get it right. My background is fashion and prestige-based, so I wanted to think about how to bring that to a larger audience. I felt like I was able to identify a blank space in masstige, and the great thing about it is that it can have prestige quality, but accessible to millions of people at an accessible price point.”
Creme is excited about the opportunity to take the knowledge she learned from her kitchen table start-up roots and apply it to creating products she really wanted to use. “I wanted to make colorful, beautiful products with a strong point of view, so I started contemplating what makes me happy as a consumer. I think it’s important to point out that I’m NOT a makeup artist, I’m like everybody else: I use a lot of cosmetics and I’m passionate about them. I wouldn’t know how to use fifty different types of brushes, so I made the ones that I knew I’d be able to use. I’m challenged by contouring, so I created products that made that easier, like our dual-ended stick with a highlighter on one side and a contour on the other that looks like a big crayon and was designed to be used without brushes. You draw your contour and highlight where you want it, and then use your fingers to blend. The products are easy to use and not intimidating.”
Creme set out to create those new products in a familiar way: by returning to the kitchen table. “I think our hero product will be the Precision Painter, which is currently patent pending. Since my background is nails, I always want to create a way for women to paint better, and that’s about how you hold your brush. So, I designed a cowl that naturally fits into the hand in a very instinctive way; it’s ergonomically designed like you’re holding a pen, which is instinctive so you’ll know how to use it. It started at my kitchen table designing with my daughter’s Play-Doh.”
Creme’s kitchen table dreams have now become a reality with a visually stunning color cosmetics line of 150 offerings exclusively at one of the most accessible retailers in the country: Walgreens. “Walgreens was my first and only choice, and they’ve been a wonderful partner; extremely committed to breathing new life into their beauty aisle. I’m lucky to be one of the first out of the gate with this new endeavor. These stores are quick grab-and-go, and we want to encourage you to stay, play and shop in a new way.”
Designed to replicate the department and specialty boutique counters with testers and a good range of products, including the nail products for which Creme is known, the line is poised for success with an attractive price range of $8 - $19. “This might be a new experience for some customers. It brings the experience prestige beauty shoppers have come to expect with the affordability and access of mass market. You can also expect nails from me in the same 5-free safe formulations for which I’m known. Eyes, lips, complexion, nails, concealer – they’re all there. Complexion-wise, there are 8 foundation shades with a broad range of skin tones.
So, how did she come up with the name?” I was doing a little bit of a soul searching mission after leaving my first company and thinking about what makes you and what breaks you. Essentially, it came down to this: when you know what makes you and/or breaks you, know who you are, and commit to being that person, you will succeed. It’s a hard lesson, because we all try on different hats as we move through life. At 43, I know who the hell I am and I’m dedicated to being that person. You can wear a Mohawk, you can wear grey hair: I’m committed to all these things about me as an individual every single day.”