Professional Beauty Association (PBA) members, Billion Dollar Brows, is the first company to focus solely on brows. Co-Founder and CEO, Natalie Plain, has appeared on numerous television and radio programs as a brow expert and she wrote the book, The Plain Truth About Brows sharing everything she’s learned in her many years on the industry.
We caught up with Natalie, and she told us the Billion Dollar Brow story in her own words:
Billion Dollar Brows was inspired by my own eyebrow journey. When I was young, my mother took me to see a brow professional in Beverly Hills, California. The experience became one I never forgot—how special it made me feel, how much better I looked, and how simple it was to look polished and put together just by changing my eyebrows.
I was determined to keep my brows beautiful but somewhere I lost my way. By the time I finished college, I looked at photos of myself and wondered what was wrong with my face. I looked okay at first glance, but something seemed off.
It dawned on me that the problem was my eyebrows! I had over-plucked and didn’t feel I looked my best. That’s how my obsession was born!
It also affected me a lot that around the time I had my eyebrow revelation, the world was in the midst of the 1990s war on brows. So many people were in the same boat as me with thin, over-tweezed eyebrows. Not only did I want to help myself look better, I wanted to help the world do the same.
I developed a product called Brow Boost to strengthen and maximize brows and the world was definitely ready because we sold out almost immediately. Billion Dollar Brows was born.
Since then, brows have grown into a BILLION dollar industry worldwide. In fact, according to NPD, brow products took the lead in all cosmetics industry growth with a 30% increase worldwide. It makes me feel validated and I love that I get to bring beautiful brows to people around the world.
What is the one kit or product you and the BDB Staff can’t live without?
All BDB products are my babies that I nurture from simple ideas until they are finished entities so it’s difficult to name a favorite, but I find it impossible to not be in love with the Brow Buddy; there is nothing else like it on the market. I learned early on that facial symmetry is key to looking good. The Buddy allows every person to achieve balance without making it difficult or intimidating.
We are really emphasizing the Brow Buddy in our professional channels because it’s a simple way to offer customers perfect, symmetrical brows. There is no better way to gain client trust and loyalty. We advise our stylists to use the Buddy to demonstrate what perfect symmetry looks like before any hair removal; this reinforces confidence in their knowledge and skill–A confident client is a happy client.
We are also using the Brow Buddy as the cornerstone of our new brow extension education course; when doing brow extensions, proper symmetry is essential.
Brows are one of the most prominent features on the face. In your opinion, what is an absolute must when it comes to brows, before leaving the house everyday?
One of our key messages is that brows should not be intimidating! Fill in any sparse spots with powder or pencil then hold them in place with a clear brow gel. I like BDB’s Universal Brow Pencil because it looks great and it’s easy to use; the color is so universally flattering. If you like your brows a little more styled, we just released a new kind of pencil—it’s called the Brows on Point micro pencil and the tip is so fine, it allows you to create individual hair-like strokes that look amazingly real. It’s really all you need to look completely put together!
We just finished shooting some educational videos specifically for brow professionals. The demand for training is skyrocketing and we just launched a new pro-specific website (pro.billiondollarbrows.com) AND an entire education program with classes both for people starting out in the business and seasoned professionals who want to expand what they offer. Our Brow Master Class offers full training in the high-demand brow extension category. New extension products and techniques offer long-lasting, completely natural-looking results to clients and an extremely profitable add-on for professionals.
Response to our new educational opportunities has been amazing and we are planning even more videos for professionals and non-professionals alike in the upcoming months. In fact, the new videos are key to our training programs.
Will you be exhibiting at ISSE 2017? What’s your favorite thing about trade shows?
Yes, we will be at ISSE 2017! The best thing about trade shows is seeing what is cutting-edge in the industry. It’s a fantastic way to connect with other professionals or, on occasion, interact directly with consumers; it’s so important to keep your finger on the pulse of what is going on at the forefront of the industry both in terms of innovative products and business and marketing ideas.
Right now, we are heavily promoting our education courses, both our Brows 101 which is essentially a turnkey “business in a bag” and our Master Course which teaches the fundamentals of brow extensions. Trade shows are where we connect with the pros ready to start or grow their businesses.
What does it mean to have an association like PBA advocating for the industry?
Beauty as a business isn’t always pretty. It’s sometimes tough to navigate the waters. We’ve found that PBA is your best resource when it comes to running a successful beauty business. For one thing, PBA focuses on education which is what keeps industry professionals on top of their business; this is especially apparent to us at BDB as we launch our own targeted education programs. We’ve learned that the fastest way to advance (and stay on top) is staying relevant through education. Also, the fact that they continuously advocate for fair, profitable and professional treatment of those on all sides of the beauty business resonates with us; there is a voice in addition to ours with astounding reach—from a single waxing chair to the highest levels of government.
Visit BillionDollarBrows.com for more information.