These impressive entrepreneurs have gone from social media and silver screen stars to eCommerce moguls.
Despite demanding schedules, busy family lives, and the constant watch of the ever-critical public eye, more and more female celebrities are taking chances and following their business dreams. Over the last 10 years, we’ve seen an increasing number of famous women building apparel, beauty, and homeware brands from scratch and discovering new skill sets along the way.
As we celebrate the women changing the face of the eCommerce industry with our Amazing Women in eCommerce initiative, we’re also recognizing some of these ambitious female celebrities who are eCommerce trailblazers in their own right and whose businesses inspire and push forward other women in this space.
1) Ivy Park by Beyoncé
Beyoncé founded Ivy Park in a joint venture with Topshop in 2016. She hoped the activewearline would “push the boundaries of athletic wear and support and inspire women who understand that beauty is more than your physical appearance.” Each piece is designed to flatter the female figure and to solve fit problems that Beyoncé herself had frequently encountered. Earlier this year, Beyoncé acquired 100% of the brand, severing ties with Topshop. The singer’s loyal fans have propelled the brand forward, with 40% of Ivy Park’s online shoppers having also purchased her music.
2) Goop by Gwyneth Paltrow
From movie star to a “modern lifestyle” guru, Gwyneth Paltrow is at the helm of a wellness empire that raised $50 million in Series C funding earlier this year. Goop’s eCommerce site features a collection of painstakingly curated products, including everything from luxury sweaters to crystal-infused water bottles, and tarot cards. While Goop began as a newsletter offering lifestyle advice to its readership, Paltrow, both CEO and creative director of the company, had the foresight to use content to develop the educational platform into an exclusive shopping experience. With its latest round of funding, Goop has its sights set on international expansion.
3) The Honest Company by Jessica Alba
Actor Jessica Alba launched The Honest Company in 2012 with the goal of providing a source for ethical, toxin-free household and personal goods for families. Inspired by the birth of Alba’s first child, The Honest Company focuses on baby products, but also includes beauty and home lines. In 2017, the business was valued at just shy of $1 billion, confirming that consumers are indeed looking for the safe, effective products The Honest Company strives to create. Alba’s venture is also dedicated to social responsibility, donating personal care products and raising money for communities in need.
4) Kylie Cosmetics by Kylie Jenner
At only 21, Instagram star Kylie Jenner is set to become the youngest ever self-made billionairethanks to her endlessly coveted Kylie Cosmetics brand. The company, which skyrocketed to unprecedented success within a (literal) minute of its launch two years ago, has expanded from Jenner’s passion project of lip kits to include a full range of beauty products. Jenner has been famously able to use her intimate connection with her fans and customers via social mediato create the products they want most while staying true to her trademark aesthetic.
5) LC Lauren Conrad by Lauren Conrad
In 2009, former reality television star Lauren Conrad launched an exclusive namesake labelwith department store Kohl’s. LC began as an apparel collection launched in 300 Kohl’s locations and has since grown into a complete lifestyle brand featuring jewelry, accessories, and home goods at more than 1,500 stores. Conrad works with Kohl’s to dig into customer data, and she seeks out feedback through social media to find out what her customers like and don’t like and to develop her brand in kind.
6) Draper James by Reese Witherspoon
Actor Reese Witherspoon founded apparel and homeware brand Draper James in 2015 as a tribute to the Southern lifestyle and culture with which she grew up. The brand, named for Witherspoon’s grandparents, quickly rose to popularity and raised $10 million in Series B funding. Recognizing her customers’ dedication to her products, Witherspoon formed partnerships between Draper James and other booming brands to continue expanding her customer base and product lines. Most notably, Draper James has teamed up with direct-to-consumer brand Eloquii on a plus-sized clothing collection and with Crate & Barrel on an exclusive home goods collection.
7) The Row by Mary-Kate & Ashley Olsen
While many celebrities use their name to propel their brands forward, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen did just the opposite in establishing high fashion line The Row just over a decade ago. For the twins, it was critical that this luxury line and its sister label Elizabeth and James be known for their exquisite tailoring, unique silhouettes, and fine fabrics rather than their famous founders. The twins’ hard work and personal passion for both fashion lines have paid off, with their clothes sold on eCommerce strongholds like Net-a-Porter and ShopBop, as well as the recent expansion of The Row into menswear.
8) Elle Macpherson Body by Elle Macpherson
A pioneer in the celebrity brand space, former supermodel Elle Macpherson created Elle Macpherson Intimates in 1990. In 2016, the brand evolved into Elle Macpherson Body, which Macpherson says is designed to suit women of every size and shape, and is “the antithesis of traditional lingerie.” Macpherson’s goal of making women feel comfortable and confident in their lingerie proved to resonate with her audience, with her products being sold both on the brand’s namesake website and at more than 150 other online and physical retailers.
9) Fenty Beauty by Rihanna
Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty, which launched in 2017, immediately drew attention not just because of the singer’s celebrity status, but also because of its revolutionary inclusivity. The beauty line offers foundation in 40 shades, providing a solution for people of all different skin colors, while its competitors fail to come through. Fenty Beauty, also known for using diverse models, was named by Time Magazine as one of the best inventions of 2017. Most recently, Rihanna took her inclusive approach to the lingerie industry, creating Savage x Fenty, a size-inclusive intimates brand that has taken off since its launch this past May.
10) Fabletics by Kate Hudson
Actor Kate Hudson’s subscription-based athleisure brand (a subsidiary of TechStyle Fashion Group) was founded in 2013. A digital-first brand, Fabletics gained direct insight into customer needs and surpassed $300 million in revenue within just five years. Some 75 Fableticsbrick-and-mortar stores are currently set to open worldwide, bringing the total to 100 physical locations. Despite entering a crowded industry, Hudson’s brand has managed to grow to 1.4 million members — and with singer Demi Lovato joining the team, that number is likely to keep growing.