Glossier is redefining the future of e-commerce after launching with just four products in 2014.
When Glossier founder and CEO Emily Weiss first had the idea of launching a beauty startup, she began with a simple question: how could you make a beauty brand whose sweatshirt people would want to wear?
As founder of beauty blog Into the Gloss, which she started in 2010, Weiss had worked with household name beauty conglomerates on advertising and sponsorship deals, and found that many were struggling to engage with the new generation of millennial consumers. “I went through that exercise of looking across 20 or 10 beauty brands, thinking about whether or not I would buy that sweatshirt, wear that sweatshirt… I just kept coming up with the answer ‘no’,” she says.
After raising an initial $2 million (£1.5 million) in seed funding, Weiss launched Glossier (pronounced, as if French, “gloss-ee-ay”) in 2014 with four products: a moisturiser, a face mist, a skin tint and a lip balm. The company now employs more than 200 people and has over 3 million customers. Products such as Boy Brow, its bestselling eyebrow pomade, have become cult favourites among the hip and well-groomed; in 2018, the company claimed to have sold the equivalent of one Boy Brow every 32 seconds. In March 2019, Glossier closed a $100 million series D funding round led by Sequoia Capital that resulted in a company valuation of $1.2 billion.