Have a connection with your audience. You need to be able to directly connect with your audience in order to build brand loyalty and trust.
As a part of our series about “Five Things You Need To Know To Succeed In The Modern Beauty Industry”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Desiree Verdejo.
After struggling with acne in her teenage years, followed by a horrible bout of adult-hormonal acne and stubborn hyperpigmentation, Desiree Verdejo was left feeling disappointed by all of the skincare options available on the market. Unable to find a skincare line that was dedicated to addressing key problems that many men and women of color face, Desiree recognized the extreme lack of diversity within the skincare space.
Instead of surrendering to disappointment, Desiree set out to create Hyper Skin, an easy, results-oriented skincare brand rooted in multiculturalism. With Hyper Skin, Desiree has hyper-targeted her efforts on treating dark spots and discoloration for all skin types and skin tones.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dive in, our readers would love to learn a bit more about you. Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
I’ve struggled with acne since I was a teenager and that was always followed by notable dark spots. Over the years, it became obvious that there really wasn’t an impressive solution to tackle hyperpigmentation, despite how prevalent the skincare concern is. On top of that, there has always been a major lack of diversity in the skincare and beauty space. As a woman of color, and a skincare enthusiast, I always felt the lack of representation in the skincare space, from who the products were formulated for to the advertising of products. So many dermatologists and chemists receive little to no training on how to treat melanin-rich skin. I founded Hyper Skin because I wanted to solve both of these issues that I ran into by creating an easy, fun, results-oriented skincare brand that is rooted in multiculturalism. My goal is to not only target dark spots and discoloration but to do so for Black and brown skin tones and really shine a spotlight on celebrating diversity.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?
So many interesting things have happened to me since I began my career as a beauty founder, but one of the things that excites and interests me most is having the opportunity to work with people that I’ve always admired. Since beginning my career, I’ve had the chance to work with several people that I’ve always admired from afar. From a graphic designer I had followed for years to an editor friend that I always thought was brilliant, there’s really nothing like working with talented people who you’ve been cheering on all along. Being able to actually work with colleagues that you think are awesome and having a platform to do so is by far the most interesting and exciting part of the business to me.
Are you able to identify a “tipping point” in your career when you started to see success? Did you start doing anything different? Are there takeaways or lessons that others can learn from that?
Hyper Skin’s success has been gradual, but consistent. With Hyper, we really started to find our community when we launched. We’re still a growing brand, and we’ve continued to expand little by little since launching. We were able to find pockets of consumers, editors, and retailers that appreciate the fact that what we’re doing is different. They truly appreciate the void that we’re filling in the beauty space. When we realized that finding those groups of people worked for us and our brand, we just continued to dig deeper into that. There was no dramatic tipping point or defining moment. It has been consistent month-over-month growth as an existing brand and by continuing to hone into who we are and what we’re building.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person to whom you are grateful who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
I love meeting people and sharing stories and information. It’s one of my favorite aspects of being a founder: communicating with other founders, entrepreneurs, and professionals. There’s no one person, but there have been so many along the way that have shared their expertise with me from various backgrounds (law, finance, beauty) and I know that Hyper Skin wouldn’t be on the same trajectory that it’s currently on without the help of those people along the way.
The global beauty industry today has grown to more than half a trillion-dollar business. Can you tell us about the innovations that you are bringing to the industry? How do you think that will help people?
The global beauty industry is huge, and our focus is really on hyper-targeted solutions. One of the things we realize is that although the market is so large, the beauty industry has failed to speak directly to certain communities- to Black and brown communities. So, our uniqueness is really focusing on and creating space for those under-addressed communities. Hyperpigmentation isn’t a niche–it’s the most common skincare concern for skin of color–but it’s one that the industry has failed to speak directly to. Those are the types of concerns that we plan to hone in on and work to solve.
Can you share 3 things that most excite you about the modern beauty industry?
I’m most excited about the innovation, ingredients, accessibility, and technology. I’ve always been results-oriented and I love treatments, so the constant innovation and experimentation that is constantly occurring within the beauty space really speak to me. On the other hand, advancements in technology have always been extremely exciting to me. The connection between social media and beauty is really fascinating because it makes everything accessible to all, and it does that in a fun, creative way. Anything that brings community and beauty closer together excited me.
Can you share 3 things that most concern you about the industry? If you had the ability to implement 3 ways to improve the industry, what would you suggest?
My biggest concern and my motivation for launching Hyper is that I wanted Black and brown folks to experience the same benefits of advancements in the skincare arena that benefits everyone else. There are very few Black dermatologists, textbooks are written to highlight how skin conditions appear on White skin, many developing skincare treatments aren’t created for and don’t work on darker skin tones and many chemists and brands aren’t testing formulations on all skin tones. Darker skin has unique concerns and needs and currently, those are severely under-addressed.
Can you share a few ideas that anyone can use “to feel beautiful”?
As someone that has always had acne-prone skin, for me to appreciate my own beauty I first had to realize that so many things that have been positioned as skin problems are actually incredibly normal–things like texture, oiliness, breakouts, and scars. These aren’t “flaws” as the beauty industry told us for years, they’re normal, can happen to anyone, and should be viewed as such. So, my number one suggestion that anyone can use to feel beautiful is to stop being so hard on yourself and remember that current beauty standards aren’t always consistent with what the norm is. You are beautiful the way you are!
Based on your experience and success, Can you please share “Five Things You Need To Know To Succeed In The Modern Beauty Industry”? Please share a story or an example, for each.
- Have a unique perspective. The beauty space is cluttered, so offering a one-of-a-kind perspective for your community to connect with is really important.
- Have a connection with your audience. You need to be able to directly connect with your audience in order to build brand loyalty and trust.
- Be passionate. Customers are passionate about who and what they connect with, so it’s vital for founders to have that same passion.
- Be able to tell your story. There’s so much pressure to tell your brand story, and tell it well. Being able to foster a community that believes in your brand starts with the story.
- Keep going. Sometimes, as a founder, there’s no time to celebrate the wins or reflect on the challenges. You just have to keep pushing and moving forward.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
My favorite quote that I live by is “just do it.” I know, it’s incredibly cliché but I’ve lived a few lives as an attorney, beauty founder, mother, etc., and I’ve learned that one of the most challenging aspects for me in all of these positions has always been to get started and just do the new thing. Once you’re able to get started, you really do start to see progress. Something will always blossom from the work that you put in. The hardest part is just taking the leap and pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone.
How can our readers follow you online?
Website — www.gethyperskin.com
Instagram — https://www.instagram.com/hyperskin/
Facebook — https://www.facebook.com/gethyperskin
Thank you so much for joining us. This was very inspirational.