NEW YORK — Sara Strand, makeup artist and creator of the Pop Beauty makeup line, feels like she’s living in an airplane. Though Pop was started in the United Kingdom, its popularity has spread rapidly internationally, leaving the 24-year-old Strand midair these days, flying between London and the company’s new U.S. headquarters in Los Angeles.

This month, Pop Beauty introduced the newest product of Strand’s creative labor, Blush Cake. The cheek color builds upon Pop Beauty’s “funky and functional” strategy of packing several shades into one circular tin. Five stripes of color are designed to be used together by sweeping a brush over all of them. The Blush Cakes, priced at $19 each, come in three color palettes to complement light, medium and deep skin tones.

Blush Cake, Pop Beauty’s third new product this year, follows Ribbon Gloss, a container of five lip glosses for $15 that launched in April. “The Ribbon Gloss is really unique,” said Strand. “They work fabulously on the lips and the stripes are incredibly visual.” Naked Eye Cake, which bowed in May for $19 each, is a more natural version of Pop Beauty’s original eye shadow tin, Eye Cake. “With Eye Cake I was trying to come up with the colors that looked best on each eye color,” said Strand. “You have to have an artistic sense for color to accomplish this.”

Strand attributes her artistic talents to a life abundant in makeup and music. “I grew up in a house filled with makeup,” she said. “My oldest sister is a makeup artist and my other sister is a skin therapist. It kind of runs in the family.” At age 11, Strand began her own career as a musician. “From touring and being on stage at an early age, I can understand makeup from that perspective,” said Strand.

As a makeup artist, Strand said she is influenced by everything from music to travel. This variety of influence, she said, is the key to keeping herself and Pop Beauty current and ahead of trends. “I just keep an open mind and never get in a rut,” said Strand. “That’s the thing about Pop, it never stands still.”

This story first appeared in the June 21, 2006 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Future plans for the brand include a foundation that is currently in development. Strand anticipates that this year’s new products — Blush Cake, Ribbon Gloss and Naked Eye Cake — will bring in $1 million in revenue. In the U.S., the products are available at Sephora and Pop Beauty’s Web site, popbeauty.co.uk.
Crystal Martin

Marionnaud’s Charitable Boost
PARIS — Parfumeries Marionnaud is stepping up its philanthropic activities. The A.S. Watson-owned perfumery chain said it will continue supporting Cosmetic Executive Women — the not-for-profit organization that, among other activities, offers beauty treatments to hospital patients — for at least another five years.

Hugues Witvoet, chief executive officer of A.S. Watson’s Luxury Perfumeries and Cosmetics division, and Dominique Dubald, Marionnaud France’s managing director, presented CEW with a check for 51,612 euros, or $64,888 at current exchange, to create and run a new beauty treatment center.

Marionnaud also donated 72,696 euros, or $91,396, to French charity Fédération Nationale Solidarité Femmes, (National Federation of Female Solidarity), representing 2 euros, or $2.50, for every purchase made in its stores on International Women’s Day in March. The federation operates a help line for women suffering from violence.

“We have a role to play as citizens,” said Witvoet, who thanked Marionnaud’s 4,700-strong sales force for its charitable commitment.
Ellen Groves

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