It’s not everyday that you pick up an organic beauty product and fall in love with it, but ILIA shocks us with every single thing we touch…(You can read our ILIA reviews here, here, here, and here.)We loved the line so much we had to find out more, and that meant picking the brains of the mastermind behind ILIA – Sasha Plavsic. If you haven’t heard of the brand nor touched it, consider yourself missing out. Count on ILIA to change your mind and opinions about organic makeup… Here, she divulges how she got her start in beauty, what’s in store for ILIA, and what’s to come in the organic beauty industry.Long before beauty, Sasha has always embraced an organic and natural lifestyle as her younger brother suffered from acute asthma and allergies. She then got her start in the industry by accident, working with a creative staffing agency that led to a short stint with Urban Decay in 2009. She soon decided to fuse her love for design with beauty and embarked on an entrepreneurial journey that led to the contrivance of the ILIA Tinted Lip Conditioner, which most people see as a hybrid between lipstick and lip balm. She chose lipstick because it’s one of the easiest to ways to make you feel somewhat pulled together and empowered, and also because everyone loves lip balm! From there, she sent off samples to her ideal boutiques, like Colette in Paris, who picked it up, and things took off from there.We all know that there are challenges and rewards in any business, and Sasha confirms it, saying her toughest challenge is realizing that you can’t control external factors, but you can control how you react to them. It’s never an easy thing to do or remember, but completely necessary when times get tough. However, never forget that the rewards are many, which comes in the form of her team and celebrating small wins – they add up to much bigger rewards and successes.
Sasha’s top advice for aspiring beauty entrepreneurs is to remember that every problem has a solution, and you will learn as you go. There certainly isn’t a manual on how to run a beauty business…being more naive in the beginning worked to her advantage as it makes anything feel possible.As far as the organic beauty industry goes, Sasha says, “There is definitely more awareness here than before. I think defining what natural, organic, and clean mean will become important and how the customer can relate to those ideals. One thing is for sure, people are on the hunt for cleaner products that perform.” That means everyone in this realm will be powering up. Sasha is doing this with ILIA by refreshing the entire line… It will include a host of new products in nearly every category, which will launch over the next two years. (Watch this space… we’re super excited ourselves.)For the ILIA (or natural beauty) neophyte, Sasha recommends starting with the Tinted Lip Conditioner in Arabian Knights – it suits every skin tone, the Lip Exfoliator and Balmy Nights because they really work, and the Illuminator in Polka Dots and Moonbeams (both give that dewy but not glittery look).She keeps her routine super simple, starting with the ILIA Cucumber Water Stick (coming out in April) to prep the skin and add a quick boost of moisture, a light wash of the Vivid Foundation (in Gobi), buffed out with the Perfecting Buff Brush, the Multi-Stick in At Last for lips and cheeks, and a coat of a new mascara (which launches later this year)!
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