Fifteen years ago, Lisa Thurman, co-founder of AmazingCosmetics, had an idea to launch a concealer that was missing in the beauty industry. The concealer was creamy, buildable and waterproof, and blended seamlessly into the skin. Today, AmazingCosmetics, which Thurman founded with friend Sue Katz, has grown into a powerful brand that includes foundation, primers and blush, and has a major cult celebrity following. Here, she talks how the brand took off, her go-to beauty products and boat tours in the Windy City.
1. How did AmazingCosmetics come about?
For years, my dream had been to launch a cosmetic company that would address some packaging issues I thought could be improved upon. Several years later, the timing was right and the Internet was an obvious vehicle in which a business could be launched leveraging a global customer, while overhead could be kept within the constraints of what I felt I could manage at the time. I approached Sue Katz, a friend of mine who was a makeup artist, and asked her to join me on this crazy ride. She came on board and the rest is history.
2. Your brand has such a cult following. Can you share how this happened?
The cult following began when we connected with the celebrity/professional makeup artist community. During our first year we met Joanne Gair, a renowned makeup artist and body painter. She loved what we were developing and began sharing it with her A-list clients and peers. To this day, we’ve built up an incredible group of amazing talent to thank for helping us achieve such a beloved, cult status.
3. What are some of the hero products in the brand?
Our hero product is most definitely the AmazingConcealer. It is the first product we introduced and continues to support the brand. The product is so popular because it solves a problem in a big way. The concealer does what is says. It always performs and people react to this—customers appreciate a product they can depend on. We’ve worked very hard in the last few years to develop additional products to the line that leverage the same tenets as the concealer. All of them are high performance, long wear, multipurpose with skin care like benefits. Other popular products include, our Anti Aging Face Primer and Line Smoother + Primer.
4. Can you share your favorite beauty products?
Some of my favorite beauty products are the AmazingConcealer, Anti Aging Face Primer, Line Smoother + Primer, Powderset, our hot pink blush and our bronzer. I also love Kiehl’s lip balm, The White Company’s Flowers lotion, Avenee Eye cream and face spray as well as Aquage Silkening oil, Fekkai’s Technician Color Care Luxe Masque and Clarisonic’s Mia device.
5. Your company is based in Chicago. Can you share your favorite places to eat, drink and explore in the city?
Chicago is truly a fabulous city. My favorite restaurants are Ralph Lauren’s RL and Le Colonial. I love drinks at the bar at NoMI at the Park Hyatt as well as appetizers and drinks at the Bar at the Four Seasons. One of my favorite things to do is take an architecture boat tour down the Chicago River and out to Lake Michigan. It’s a beautiful ride and wonderfully informative on the city’s history. Oh and if I’m lucky enough to score tickets to a Blackhawks or Bull’s game that makes for a great evening, too.
6. What is the one makeup trick you learned while working with makeup artists to perfect your brand?
I think the most important tip I’ve learned over the years is to really study and appreciate color tones within the shades of your products. It’s a science unto itself to understand how impactful color can be to a formula and then the final product.
7. Where are your favorite places to travel?
I love to travel and only wish I could do more of it. I absolutely love London. My favorite hotel there is the Landmark. We took a business trip to the South of France and I fell in love with that part of the world as well. My favorite type of trip though is at the beach. I’m crazy for the warm, turquoise waters of the Caribbean and Mexico. But when we stay close to home I’ve got admit one of my top picks is renting a home in Union Pier, Michigan and spending time with my family, again, on the beach.
8. What is next for AmazingCosmetics?
Lots of innovation leveraging the brand in the concealer category. Look for a plethora of “amazing” newness in 2016!
Photo by Anna Lynch at The London NYC