Anyone who works in beauty will tell you that it’s a fun, inspiring place, full of creative ideas (and the occasional free sample!), but exactly how do you break into the beauty industry? In this series, we’ll be chatting with beauty industry insiders to find out what their jobs involve and the paths they took to get where they are now.
From makeup artists and beauty editors to social media assistants, brand founders, and web developers – these stories are proof that you can enter the beauty industry via any career path.
Meet Remi Brixton, founder and CEO of Freck and her COO, Des Wilson.
What did you want to be when you were younger?
RB: Throughout my entire childhood I wanted to be an orthodontist, I honestly think this is where my love for the beauty industry began. I studied interior design in college and did that until a year ago– even while I was starting up Freck, I was always doing interiors & building out hotels/ restaurants. Freck began as an after-hours passions project with the hopes of other people wanting freckles, who knew it would become a full-fledged beauty brand!
What attracted you to the beauty industry?
RB: I get this question a lot and the honest truth is that I started Freck when Glossier was just launching. Did I know about Glossier? No. Did I know that there was going to be a beauty revolution for girls who wanted no-makeup-makeup? No. I just knew that me & my friends wanted freckles, and figuring out how to bring faux freckles to market was an exciting enough puzzle that pulled me into an industry that I felt had never catered to what I wanted to look like. I had a hunch, and if you have one, I would strongly encourage you to see where it leads.
What did you study and how did this guide your current role/how do you use the skills from your degree in your job?
DW: I studied video game programming, actually! The late night studies and tedious attention to detail definitely help with this sort of industry; particularly when you are in the process of production and formulation.
What path did your career take after graduation?
RB: I graduated with a degree with interior design which I threw out the window a year ago. I always knew i wanted to own my own business which is why I went to interiors, but Freck Beauty is so much better.
What does your day-to-day entail?
DW: My day-to-day is definitely different day-to-day. I wake up around 5am. The morning is my favorite time.. sitting with a cup of tea while the sun is rising with my laptop, answering emails.. peaceful to say the least. Then we go into work mode. This is a hard question to answer, to be honest, because no day is the same. Some days we are putting out fires and others we are coasting– meetings with our chemists, photoshoots, packaging, selling etc. We have a small team so everything is very hands on.
What skills and experience do you need to succeed as a brand founder?
RB: A friend told me forever ago that I have “stick-to-it-tiveness”. That’s what you need, cause babe, you’re gonna face problems at every turn. If I had a dollar for every time I almost gave up on Freck..
What are some common misconceptions people have about your job?
DW: The most common is that it’s glamorous, for which it is not! Hah.. we love what we do, what we create, and the way people experience our products but the process behind it is a lot of work. From A-Z… it’s not easy! I can recall one night recently where Remi and I stayed up until 4am packing orders. Obviously, there was wine involved!
What is the best part of your job?
RB: This might sound cheezy, but the best part of my day is getting on Instagram and seeing our customers rave about Freck Beauty. It makes all the late nights of creative decks, financial reviews, all the boring shit of running a business worth it. You guys keep me going when I’m completely burned out, and I’m not joking when I say there would be no Freck Beauty without all our incredible customers who breathe life into the brand every day.
What has been the most surreal moment of your career so far?
RB: I’m still waiting for the moment when I go up to some cute af girl saying “I love your freckles” and she says “omg let me tell you about this brand, Freck”. There have been so many crazy cool moments so far, but that’s really what I’m looking forward to.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to start their own beauty brand?
RB: Surround yourself with mentors and peers who really understand what you’re doing & why. Seriously. Of course, if you believe in what you’re doing and are willing to work hard you can do anything, but it’s a hell of a lot easier with a support system. Those are the people who are going to remind you why you’re working so hard when you get tired and overwhelmed.
What deskside essentials are vital to you doing your job? (can be anything from coffee to bullet journal, hand cream etc)
DW: My notebook, my Juul, and most importantly, Freck’s Rich Bitch moisturizer. I use it for my hands and my face. My skin gets so dry during the days!
What’s your top piece of beauty advice?
RB: Go to therapy. Use sunscreen every day. Wear earplugs when you go to shows. The amazing part of beauty is that you can play around and transform yourself every day– but sun damage & hearing loss are irreversible. Take that shit seriously.