From Celebrity Brushes to Business Strategies: Amanda Jacobellis's Unconventional Path to Success
In an exclusive interview with the founder and CEO of
MAKEUP MANDY, Amanda Jacobellis, Chris explores the remarkable journey of this entrepreneur and the evolution of her business empire. From her beginnings as a celebrity makeup artist to her pioneering role in the world of eyelash extensions, Amanda's story is one of passion, innovation, and unwavering determination. As the mastermind behind MAKEUP MANDY and a thriving e-commerce venture, Amanda shares her insights on navigating the beauty industry, adapting to changing landscapes, and the art of staying motivated in the face of challenges. Join us as we uncover the secrets behind Amanda Jacobellis's remarkable success.
Amanda Jacobellis - Founder of MAKEUP MANDY
A discussion with Amanda, Founder of MAKEUP MANDY
To start off, can you please introduce yourself briefly? And I'd also like to know what inspired you to start your current business.
My name is Amanda Jacobellis, and I founded MAKEUP MANDY in 2006. I began my career as a celebrity makeup artist and stumbled upon eyelash extensions at a convention. It was a relatively new concept back then. I remember there was a DVD with instructions, all in Korean with subtitles, which is how I learned.
However, I saw the potential in this technique to transform someone's appearance without makeup, and it gained immense popularity. I already had a celebrity clientele, so the transition was smooth. The key difference with eyelash extensions compared to makeup is that it's a recurring service, allowing me to quickly build and maintain a loyal client base. Eventually, I opened my first salon and realized the need for better and safer products, which led me to create my own.
That's fascinating. So, you were running your own offline salon and working with celebrities. But at the same time, I noticed you also have online store, right, on Shopify?
Yes, exactly. As my salon became increasingly busy, I found myself working six or seven days a week, seeing ten to twelve clients daily. I realized that the available products in the market weren't up to par. People experienced allergies, and many products contained harmful toxins. We'd advise clients to clean their eyes, but the existing eye washes would damage the extensions. It was a catch-22 – if they didn't clean, they risked bacteria, but if they did, they'd lose their lashes. So I knew we needed safer and healthier solutions.
One day, I was discussing this with a client who happened to be involved in product development for brands like Murad and Freddrick Fakkai. He offered to help me create the products. That was my entry into product manufacturing, and all our products are unique, not private label. Since we needed to produce in larger quantities, we decided to sell to other professionals who might have similar needs. That's how our product manufacturing and e-commerce came about. We have two e-commerce platforms – one sells directly to customers, and the other caters to spas and salons on a wholesale basis. We currently serve well-known clients like JWS, Ritz Carlton, MGM Group, and many private salons and spas across the country.
Chris: Impressive! Your business has grown significantly.
Amanda Jacobellis: Thank you, but there's always room for more growth.