Alicia Scott’s Range Beauty Develops Products For Every Skin Tone And Shade, Here’s Why

·5 min read

When building your own company from the ground up, people may not realize how much time, energy and money go into creating your company. This is true for the beauty company founder Alicia Scott. After being recruited for an episode of the renowned show, Shark Tank, Scott took her company Range Beauty to higher heights.

Scott became the first Black woman-owned company to secure a deal on the show. To do so after going through the general application process was unprecedented. Range Beauty focuses primarily on catering to people battling acne and eczema, and the goal is to provide them with cosmetic items that will not irritate their skin.

Scott has had skin issues such as cystic acne, dermatitis and eczema. Eventually, Scott yearned for makeup products that didn’t irritate the skin as many did then.

“I want to be able to put on makeup and not have this anxiety throughout the day, like, what is going to happen when I take this off? It’s going to be so much worse,” she expressed while reflecting on her journey. “So it was really pertinent to me that I not only prioritize chronic skin conditions but that I also prioritize melanin-rich skin tones.”

Many beauty consumers complain about not being able to find their shade. Specifically, many cosmetic companies do not cater to darker hues of brown that may be needed for some. The Shark Tank winner has made it a point to work beyond previously set barriers to take time with her team to develop various products for every shade or tone.

“It shocks me because year after year, it comes out that Black women are spending the most. We still outnumber in beauty spending with 7.5 billion annually, 80% more on makeup, and two times more in skin care, and we’re still not seen as worthy of being like their customer,” Scott said.

The beauty developer even shared her experience in seeking a manufacturer and experimenting with different ingredients to find the perfect combination to begin production. This helped her realize that it was indeed possible for women of color to be catered to after seemingly making over 20 shades of brown with her initial $150 investment with the manufacturing company.

Scott shed light on the Fitzpatrick Scale by expanding upon the product testing process and the disparity we see within the beauty industry. The Fitzpatrick Scale was created in 1975 as a metric to help measure skin hues as they respond to UV lighting. Within the scale are six primary shades, with only two primarily catering toward light or dark brown skin.

Everyone needs to be represented and speak up when things may not align for a specific community or demographic in the spaces where the magic happens and where products are created.

“When you look at how their team is funneled down, there’s not really Black people on the formulation side, on the product development side, on the R&D side,” she continued. “We need to be there in the kitchen making these products and speaking to like ‘no, that’s going to be too ashy’ or ‘all Black women don’t have red undertones,’ or ‘that’s gonna show up gray on their skin.’ We have to be in the room in order for that to happen.”

The journey into entrepreneurship has never been easy, especially for Black women. Many entrepreneurs initially worked regular 9-5 jobs and were able to transition to being full-time business owners. After starting Range Beauty as a side hustle, Scott has been on a continuous journey.

The harsher reality was that she didn’t have all the finances and resources to help push her company forward when initially starting her business. Scott wanted to help push out the stigma that Black-owned businesses are low quality or cheap, and this directly correlates to the notion that they are also less professional. This led Scott and her team to intentionally work against the stigma and listen to the consumer when it came to their feedback. The strategy keeps momentum in working toward letting go of her idea of perfection within her company. Having a genuine relationship with her team and customers contributed to her company’s success.

“I decided to focus more on community rather than product,” Scott said. “Like, I wanted to know what you guys honestly think about this; how does it make you feel? What can we do differently?”

While calculating her expenses and meeting with executives from Target, Scott realized that she was not ready to launch into the retail sector and didn’t have enough money to support the business needs.

How was she going to get the money to support marketing and inventory? Grants, of course!

Scott began researching grants and business funding, which led her to participate in her first-ever pitch competition with Jackie Aina, and she won. With hard work and dedication, grant applications were going out weekly and are now what she credits for her company’s success.

Scott has even helped to educate other business owners or aspiring entrepreneurs in assisting them to receive grants and funding for their businesses. This content also includes methods to pitch yourself to potential investors and tips for better productivity as an entrepreneur. Scott advises those looking to start their own business to “just go for it!”

“you shouldn’t be terrified of failure, but you should be terrified of regret,” Scott said about a quote that helped her on her journey.

Range Beauty’s goal is to be known as the number one makeup brand for ultra-reactive skin and continue to cater to those with melanated skin so everyone can embrace their beauty. 

To keep up with Alicia Scott and Range Beauty. Follow her here.

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