Happy Women’s History Month!
I credit my beloved great grandma, Nana, for how and why I was able to get my face and body makeup product, Gleam, going. She was very proud of how far I came in my career as a makeup professional. She knew I was consulting with big beauty brands, helping with product development, and running the makeup for hit TV shows! She always said to me, “You’re gonna be a big deal.” Nana was a very smart woman who made great business and money decisions that ended up being huge blessings for the whole family.
When I needed a face and body makeup product that didn’t exist for my professional needs on Dancing With The Stars, other brand founders helped me find a lab to develop Gleam. With Nana as my angel guiding me, I took the scary step of investing in the production of Gleam and my company. I dove in head first, not really knowing what I was doing. My grandmother and mom were excited and pillars of support in both business and home-life helping with my daughter, Solaris, who was just six years old when all this started!
Trailblazing in the Industry
One of my biggest inspirations is Estée Lauder. She learned how to formulate skin care products by learning from family as well as herself…she wanted to create a product that didn’t even exist!
She then developed a bath oil with added fragrance so that women didn’t have to wait for special occasions to indulge in fragrance. Plus, they could buy it themselves and use it anytime, which was unheard of in the 1950s!
Coming Full Circle
Fun fact: This company started out as “Gleam” but I rebranded to “Melanie Mills Hollywood” after meeting with a top executive at Estée Lauder. On their advice, I reframed my vision to something bigger, beyond a single product, and I haven’t looked back since. Being in that high-rise building and meeting with executives was a full circle moment for me, since Estée Lauder is such a big inspiration in my journey as a cosmetic brand founder. Nana loved smart, savvy women and the Estée Lauder brand, too.
Nana was one of my first clients and even though her eyesight went bad towards the end of her life, she always insisted on looking put together! I have vivid memories of doing her makeup and choosing between the coral or pink Estée lipsticks and applying them for her.
I’m proud to celebrate 10 years of Melanie Mills Hollywood with an array of face and body makeup products that meet my standard of being pro-quality, multicultural, multifunctional and made with fantastic vegan and cruelty free ingredients. On top of that, nothing makes me happier than seeing my now 18-year-old daughter mirror the hard work ethic I hope to teach her. Seeing how she’s empowered now is the most incredible thing to see!