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Erica Hackett: “Early growth phase”

Feeling beautiful starts from within and works it’s way outward. Beauty is more than the way someone looks. Someone’s personality has the ability to make them the most beautiful person in the world and vice versa. Beauty is love, beauty is caring for others, beauty is helping and sharing. Loving yourself is the way to […]

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Feeling beautiful starts from within and works it’s way outward. Beauty is more than the way someone looks. Someone’s personality has the ability to make them the most beautiful person in the world and vice versa. Beauty is love, beauty is caring for others, beauty is helping and sharing. Loving yourself is the way to start, then spread love and joy to others.


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 Erica Hackett.

Developed in 2020, Erica Hackett and 10-year-old daughter Jada wanted to take over the beauty space one jar at a time. Jada began her young entrepreneur journey by telling her mother Erica she wanted to start a business that they two could be a part of. They both began to use their love of skin products and the influence of music to create something bright like glitter and bubbly like champagne. After doing thorough research, they created an artisan and cruelty-free body care line, Dreamstar Cosmetics. This unique body care for women and men mixes an ode to 90s/00s fashion, music references, and of course: BLACK GIRL MAGIC!


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?

Believe it or not, my 10-year-old daughter Jada is the one who brought me to this career path. We were up late one night talking and she said that she wanted to start a business for the two of us to do together. We initially agreed on a lip gloss business, but it was too complicated. Having invested in all of the ingredients from the lip gloss project, we didn’t want them to go to waste. After doing some thorough research, we learned that most of the same ingredients used in lip gloss could be used in high end body care! Jada and I knew it was time to launch Dreamstar Cosmetics!

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?

Being in our “early growth phase” we decided to ship a PR package out to Tabitha Brown and Choyce Aniya from Very Good Mondays. We knew that this was a shot in the dark to get their attention but to our surprise, they featured us right away! Having this reach to their audience definitely helped contribute to our initial boost of sales, confidence, and overall presence.

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?

We noticed with Very Good Mondays, speaking engagements, gorilla marketing, and press that they all go hand and hand for success. I would say key takeaways: don’t be afraid to just start. Getting started is the hardest part but once you start, it’s so rewarding that energy is unlike no other!!

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 am definitely grateful for my daughter for always pushing me. She has taught me so much. There are times when I feel like I’m not doing a good enough job at something or I get discouraged and she’s always right there with an encouraging word. She is truly a blessing to me. She saves me from the darkest parts of myself. I am so happy to call her mine.

Ok super. Let’s now shift to the main part of our discussion. The global beauty industry today has grown to more than a 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?

I think innovation is a broad word that can be interpreted in many ways. For me, innovation is finding the gaps and where I feel our brand fits those gaps. Our product is organic, cruelty-free, and handmade by a mother and daughter team out of New York. Many of the best ideas and innovative companies started during a recession, while we know this is a different time, we are committed to bringing a unique and fun product to both men and women. Our retention rate is high and our word of mouth orders are booming!

Can you share 3 things that most excite you about the modern beauty industry?

  1. Diversity; there are so many more brands owned by women of color.
  2. Collaboration over competition! Having other brands support you versus look at you as competition
  3. The trends rotating back into play. Our brand has a 90s/00s vibe to it and it resonates not only with the 30+ year old crowd but the younger generation who is being exposed to that era!

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?

  1. Scale — larger brands tend to knock off smaller brands due to capital
  2. Continued animal testing. This must be abolished completely
  3. Difficulty to break through to “big box stores” is more difficult but it is a goal of mine!

You are an expert about beauty. Can you share a few ideas that anyone can use “to feel beautiful”?

Feeling beautiful starts from within and works it’s way outward. Beauty is more than the way someone looks. Someone’s personality has the ability to make them the most beautiful person in the world and vice versa. Beauty is love, beauty is caring for others, beauty is helping and sharing. Loving yourself is the way to start, then spread love and joy to others.

Here is the main question for our discussion. 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.

  1. You need to know your product.
  2. You need to know your customer.
  3. You need to offer something new and different
  4. You need to have your finger on the pulse of what’s trending in the industry
  5. You have to be uniquely you. Don’t try to be another brand or do what someone else is doing.

You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

I would make self-care and self-love a mandatory subject taught in schools across the world for every single grade starting from pre-k all the way up through college. I think that the world would be a much different, kinder place if that was implemented. Wishful thinking!

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

“Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside while still alive.”-Tupac Shakur

This quote is always in the front of my mind. I self-published a book in my early twenties, I painted in my early thirties (fun fact: 50 Cent owns one of my paintings) and now I run a bath and body company with my 10-year-old daughter. When I’m ready to leave this earth, I want to have used up every single thing inside of me. I make sure to at least try every single thing that I’ve ever wanted to do. That’s important to me. To not wonder what if.

How can our readers follow you online?

www.dreamstarcosmetics.com and on Instagram @dreamstarcosmetics


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