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After 2017’s collective anti-harassment cri de coeur, 2018 might just be the year women rewrite the script of the beauty industry, long a feminist target for promoting unrealistic standards for women. In February, godmother of the #MeToo movement Rose McGowan is launching her decade-in-development The Only Skincare line with just two products, TheOnlyWash ($32) and TheOnlyLotion ($48), for “a revolutionary approach to healthy skin that eliminates the need for overpriced, overly complicated beauty regimens,” the company website says.
McGowan has written that she is launching the line because “We became disenchanted with the beauty industry and how many products we were told we needed.” And now that she has become a leader in the harassment discussion, a source tells THR she’s looking for a philanthropic partner for her business, which was in development long before #RoseArmy became a rallying call for women in Hollywood and beyond. (Brave, McGowan’s memoir out Jan. 30, might also have been an apt brand name for these times.)
Celebrity-fronted brands that align with a star’s values are proving to be marketable, notes Larissa Jensen, beauty industry analyst at The NPD Group, pointing to Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty and its focus on diversity and Kat Von D Beauty’s emphasis on being cruelty-free.
But tapping into a social cause doesn’t guarantee success, says Jensen. “The key is to do so in a way that is ingrained in the fabric of the brand.” Two recent examples? Jecca, a line makeup artist Jessica Blackler created specifically for transgender people, launches Dec. 16 with a correct and conceal palette designed to address beard shadow among other concerns, and a portion of sales going to LGBTQ charities. Created earlier this year by three college students in San Luis Obispo, Lipslut raises money for women’s charities (including Planned Parenthood and the National Organization of Women) with its F*ck Trump and F*ck Hollywood lipsticks.That’s not just lip service.
A version of this story first appeared in the Dec. 18 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
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