After just 3 years since the launch of Kylie Cosmetics, Kylie Jenner is now being included in the Forbes’ list of ‘Richest Self-Made Women’. She is 27th on the list.
In an interview with Forbes, Jenner talked about creating Kylie Cosmetics and the ways she has racked up enough money to potentially became the youngest self-made billionaire later on this year. Three years ago, Jenner used the controversy and curiosity surrounding her ever-fuller lips to make a business empire. Investing $250,000 of her own money into the idea, Jenner created some 15,000 lip kits. When she launched them, the kits were gone in less than a minute. She said, “Before I even refreshed the page, everything was sold out.”
After this, Jenner partnered with Shopify and launched a proper business. Even though she often sets up pop-up shops in different locations, Jenner’s business is primarily done through social media. She owns 100% of her brand, and employs only 7 full-time and 5 part-time workers. Manufacturing, packaging, sales, fulfillment and finance are all outsourced to various other companies and professionals, including Momager Kris Jenner.
Kylie’s own part in her business’ development revolves around using her social media – 110 million followers on Instagram – following to keep public attention on the new products she keeps launching. Due to her large following on social media platforms, Jenner does not have to spend any money on marketing campaigns, meaning the publicity for her business is virtually free.
Before starting Kylie Cosmetics, Jenner worked as a model and did endorsement deals with Topshop and Sinful Colors. She also had and continues to own her own clothing line with sister Kendall Jenner. In the video feature on her cover shoot, she said, “I struggled for a minute with finding something to do on my own and what was I gonna do. I knew I was passionate about makeup but I didn’t know I could have fun everyday doing my job.”
She added, “I had an insecurity with my lips when I was younger, so I turned to makeup to help me feel more confident. I went to the makeup store and I didn’t even know really what colors I was picking, I was just like I want some lip liner that looks like the color of my lips ’cause I just want my lips to look fuller. But I could never find a lip liner and a lipstick that matched or even the right color that was perfect for me. So that’s where the lip kit started.”
She also talked about what excites her the most in the process of owning a makeup business. She explained, “I was so focused on like formula and color but everything else kind of just fell into place. I put so much love into everything I make and I make sure everything is perfect and something I would personally use. So then when I see my fans have it and they love it and their reaction, that’s the most exciting to me.”
Kylie also addressed making mistakes during the expansion of her business and how she found ways to tackle that, saying, “Starting a company on my own, and it being so big from the beginning, there’s not a lot of room for mistakes. Every company has mistakes and they learn from them and they change them but it’s probably owning up to them from the beginning and just being honest and changing them in front of everybody. I’m the face to my brand. And I take responsibility for everything that happens.”
Giving credit to Momager Kris Jenner for her hard work for the business, Kylie added, “I haven’t learned everything from my mom yet that I know that I need to. She teaches me something new every day about everything. She is my goals and each day, I’m like trying to take it all in. She’s definitely been a huge part of the success of Kylie Cosmetics.” Like she does with all of her children and client’s business ventures, Kris Jenner takes 10% for managing the finance and PR of Kylie Cosmetics, which means the success of the brand has meant very real returns to both mother and daughter.
During her interview, Jenner added that she wants to continue Kylie Cosmetics “forever” but that “maybe one day [I’ll] pass this on to Stormi, if she’s into it.” Since her brand launched, many other celebrities with large social media followings that had made a name for their personal style of makeup also ventured this route. This includes sister Kim Kardashian West who launched with contour sticks and Rihanna, who’s brand is built on inclusion and diversity.
Given Jenner’s ever-expanding business, she stands to become the youngest self-made billionaire sometime this year. She is currently number 27 on Forbes’ list of ‘Richest Self-Made Women’, and is featured alongside women like Oprah Winfrey ($3.1 billion), Sheryl Sandberg ($1.55 billion), Vera Wang ($630 million), Beyonce ($355 million), Kim Kardashian ($350 million) and Taylor Swift ($320 million).
Watch the full video feature below:
Watch the BTS shoot here: