This inspiring story is of a rising startup called LaMonique Cosmetics LLC, started by Monique Glover. LaMonique Cosmetics’ goal is to become a prominent health-conscious cosmetic brand that is known for its quality, affordability, and sustainability. They aim to provide consumers with products that consumers do not select based on the allergy and intolerance to specific chemicals. Here is the story of LaMonique Cosmetics in Monique’s own words.

Introduce us to the idea of LaMonique Cosmetics

LaMonique Cosmetics is an all-inclusive indie curated brand of mineral-based innocuous products that are lavender aromatherapy infused and contain safe pigments, including titanium oxide, zinc oxide, and iron oxides. Freeze-dried Vitamins A, E & D adds to the functionality of the products.

Anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties are ideal for problematic skin. By not adding harmful chemicals LaMonique Cosmetics is safe to use on the most problematic skin. LaMonique Cosmetics gives the appearance of wearing no makeup, it’s 100 % non-comedogenic, non-acnegenic, chemically free, and hypoallergenic.

The natural minerals help to create beautiful skin with radiating light from within and a naturally healthy complexion. All of the products are free from parabens, which are known to be linked to cancer. LaMonique Cosmetics does not contain any glitter because of its harmful effects on the ecosystem. Even cosmetic grade glitter can disrupt human and animal hormones. My box packaging is made from recycled paper, and my lipstick tubes are made from recyclable plastic. My products are also cruelty-free.

What’s your strategy story? What led you to start LaMonique Cosmetics?

As Bronx N.Y. native that grew up with a love for fashion and trendsetting items, I’ve always had a love for cosmetics. The more I learned about harmful chemicals and toxins used in cosmetics and personal care products, the more I was driven to create a brand that offered healthier options.

To provide consumers safe, healthy & cruelty-free products was the core reason for establishing LaMonique Cosmetics. After extensive research, I attended The New York Cosmetics Chemist Society Suppliers Day Event, which happens annually. I could use my networking skills to find the resources I would need to start my brand.

My biggest challenge was to generate enough capital. After attending several business pitches without success, I decided to self fund my business by creating one product at a time.

What marketing, operation strategies are you adopting at LaMonique Cosmetics?

I started using social media ad campaigns with the small amounts of Facebook Business Credits given to small businesses. The ads have proven to be a great strategy and cost effective for my business. By using apps such as Canva, I can create an ad in a matter of minutes and limit the daily amount spent.

I just love the way social media ad campaigns have the ability to reach thousands of potential customers without breaking the bank. I’ve noticed a big increase in traffic on my website. Having a social media presence has made it easier for my customers to find me. They can easily find out when certain items have a discounted price. Social media also helps me to keep track of consumer engagement. It also gives me a better understanding of what my customers would like to see more of.

Our brand awareness has significantly increased because of social media, providing us opportunities to collaborate with other businesses in the industry. LaMonique Cosmetics was recently accepted into The Clean Beauty Box– The first professional makeup artist-approved subscription box dedicated to clean beauty.

Any strategy mistakes you have made and what did you learn?

Another strategy that I used to create brand awareness was to attend pop-Up Shops and vending events. Such events are a great opportunity for small business owners to meet directly with their potential customers. These opportunities can help to drive sales, broaden the customer base and test out an area or location if a business owner is thinking about operating a brick and mortar.

As much as these types of events can be quite helpful, attending the wrong events can also prove a waste of time and money. I’ve learned to set monetary limits on the amount I pay for space. Before committing to an event, I ask the coordinator about the attendees’ demographics, which proves to be very helpful. Having marketing ads and fliers posted weeks in advance with a diverse selection of vendors can also help make an event successful.

Finally what advice do you have for your fellow entrepreneur readers?

I think all entrepreneurs should start with a solid business plan. A great idea is just an idea without a plan to execute it. A business plan helps to clarify the objectives and what it stands for. Creating a business plan requires research that will help you better understand your competitors and their position.

It is also a great way to help you stay on track and acknowledge different milestones. As an entrepreneur, it is important to know your financial needs according to your business goals. Without a business plan, this can be not easy to determine. Also, having a well-documented business plan with documented revenue will help to attract investors.

Disclaimer: The information in the above story is provided by the startup and The Strategy Story takes no responsibility for the authenticity of the product and services offered by the startup. Reader’s discretion is advised.

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