The Authorities: The go-to experts for top brands seeking growth
Cosmetic chemist, founder and CEO, BeautyStat Cosmetics
Cosmetic chemist in residence and Skincare Advisory Board member, Rhode
For years, beauty editors have turned to cosmetic chemist Ron Robinson for his take on formulas and ingredients — he’s quoted in countless publications. In 2019, Robinson, launched his own brand, Beauty Stat Cosmetics, which quickly became known for its vitamin C serum, the Universal C Skin Refiner. Beauty Stat’s home page reads “A Cosmetic Chemist Founded Company” — as such, Beauty Stat is the first brand of its kind to break through. This year, in addition to launching at Ulta Beauty in February, Robinson also helped Hailey Bieber launch her brand, Rhode, and closed a Series A funding round. Investors included True Beauty Ventures along with other undisclosed investors — the funding is intended to drive growth and expansion in Ulta Beauty.
What do you consider BeautyStat’s highlights this year?
“Along with celebrating three years, the biggest moment was our expansion into Ulta Beauty in February. Now we’re in all 1,300 Ulta doors across the country. We also had some great moments with Hailey Bieber supporting the brand and naming our vitamin C [product] and our eye cream as favorites [on social media].
There was also my support of [Bieber’s] brand as one of her chemists-in-residence and advisors in [the development of her brand, Rhode].
We closed some funding in July.”
Why has the Ulta Beauty expansion been so substantial for the brand?
“We started as a direct-to-consumer brand, and that was three years ago, pre-iOS update. And there were a lot of other big direct-to-consumer players. We almost knew what was coming and started [to think about] becoming more diversified, in terms of our channels. We first went into Violet Grey, and that put us on the map, in terms of other retailers’ [attention], including department stores like Saks and Neiman Marcus and specialty chains like Blue Mercury and Cos Bar, all of which now carry the brand. And then we went on QVC, where I’ve been the on-air spokesperson, and then into bigger chains like Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s.
The only thing we were missing was a big beauty retail partner. The fact that we were playing in prestige skin care with a high-performance, cosmetic chemist-founded positioning was really interesting to Ulta. They wanted to support Black-owned brands, as well, and they wanted to get behind a brand that would deliver results for all people, all skin colors.”
How did you get involved in the development of Rhode?
“Early last year, Hailey reached out to me and said, ‘Ron, I really respect what you’re doing.’ At the time, I was thinking Hailey might be a great person to help support BeautyStat and perhaps be an ambassador, not knowing that she had this idea of creating her own brand and looking to me to help advise her on ingredients and formulation. I was working with her for over a year before Rhode’s launch in June, and in return, she’s been supporting BeautyStat.”
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