Chandler business carves a niche in beauty industry The Chandler Arizonan

Chandler business carves a niche in beauty industry

January 12th, 2021 Chandler Arizona Staff
Chandler business carves a niche in beauty industry

By Kevin Reagan
Arizonan Staff Writer

Christie Kerner thinks she has found one of the secrets to a woman’s happiness: a smooth, clump-free, stress-free brand of mascara.

“Mascara is at the heart of what helps women feel good about themselves,” she said.

The Chandler resident launched her cosmetics company, My Little Mascara Club, earlier this year and aims to carve out a special niche in the beauty industry.

Rather than prioritize one-time purchases, Kerner’s company encourages customers to become subscribers to a unique brand of products designed to give women luscious eyelashes.

Patrons receive little beauty kits in the mail that include the company’s signature formula of mascara in little tubes designed to last about six weeks. When the make-up runs out, the subscriber gets another kit in the mail.

“We have the opportunity to change the shape of mascara,” Kerner said.

The company’s little tubs are different from the standard size seen in department stores.

Kerner said the small size helps reduce the possibility of mascara clumping together and becoming unusable.

“By bringing the size down, not only is it a better experience and easier to create beautiful lashes – but it is also less wasteful,” she said.

The company also emphasizes its mascara’s sustainability and safety since it contains mostly natural products.

“Mascara is known for being highly toxic and women kind of put up with it,” Kerner noted.

Kerner said she spent more than a year researching mascara formulas before settling on a group of ingredients that offers stunning results without all the harmful chemicals.

Mascara isn’t the only selling point to the company’s beauty kits. Every subscriber is regularly supplied with lifestyle tips and inspirational messages geared towards uplifting their spirits.

A woman’s emotional health is a top priority for Kerner and her staff.

That’s why the company’s website is filled with blog posts offering advice on how to navigate relationships, motherhood, and overcoming common insecurities that plague women.

Cosmetics aren’t just about making someone look pretty, Kerner added, because women can build intimate communities around their beauty knowledge.

She recalled how she would give mascara tutorials to her childhood friends as an 11-year-old girl and the joy they all felt sharing a ritual that made them feel more connected.

Despite her take-initiative attitude, Kerner’s professional background consists of helping other entrepreneurs bring their ideas to fruition. She ran Arizona State University’s Center for Entrepreneurship while she worked at making her own idea for a business become a reality.

She had been “Frankenstein-ing” her own mixture of mascara brands for years and longed to find a singular formula that could give her the dark, noticeable lashes Kerner wanted but without any hassle.

Once she had done her research and assembled a team, Kerner decided she was ready to start selling her own brand of mascara in March 2020.

The timing wasn’t great to start a new business venture, she noted, considering the economic ripples that were about to be unleashed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We were building the company in a bit of a crazy year where the first couple months were pretty intense,” Kerner said. “So, it was a rocky start.”

But Kerner seems to revel in the challenges that come with starting a business from the ground up. The thrill of running a business involves the obstacles that arise unexpectedly, she said, and force the entrepreneur to think with greater innovation.   

“You really get in there and try to solve a problem in the best possible way,” Kerner said.


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