We all know that there are diehard skin-care enthusiasts out there who spend hours researching the ingredients.
In 2021, Emily DiDonato and Christina Uribe launched skin-care brand Covey to target the opposite of that type of customer. Instead of “skintellectuals,” they’re focused on the busy millennial who doesn’t have time to go down what they call the “skin-care rabbit hole.”
Both founders are bringing unique expertise to the brand. As a fashion model who has worked with countless brands including Chanel, Louis Vuitton and Givenchy, DiDonato has had firsthand experience with time-consuming skin-care routines. Uribe, meanwhile, is still working full-time at Google, which offers her firsthand knowledge of the process of researching search trends to find what beauty shoppers want.
On this week’s episode of the Glossy Beauty Podcast, DiDonato and Uribe discuss the founding story of the brand, the Covey lip balm that went viral on TikTok, and the state of mainstream consumer awareness about popular skin-care trends like vitamin C and SPF.
Uribe: “The Covey consumer is the millennial working woman; she’s very busy. She’s not necessarily the skin novice or the ‘skintellectual.’ But in general, she doesn’t want to go down the skin-care rabbit hole. She doesn’t want to have an insanely extensive skin-care routine. She wants [the products] to come ready to go and easy to use, and to work for her and for her skin.”
The best platform for a product to go viral:
DiDonato: “TikTok has definitely been a place that I think everyone knows right now is the easiest way to get eyeballs and go viral. What’s hard about TikTok sometimes is you don’t know exactly what’s going to hit, so volume is important. But luckily, Christina and I are both always willing and able to create. …
“Something that went really viral for us was [a video where] I was just sharing my favorite lip color. And it was a combination of a Clinique Chubby Stick and our best-selling lip balm. I only shared it because it was a response to a question that somebody asked me. And that did incredibly well for us. And then we used it for paid ads, as well. But I really just incorporate copy as much as I can and just kind of share what my life looks like now and what I’m working on. Luckily it kind of all weaves together really well.”
The TikTok-sales connection
Uribe: “There is definitely a clear correlation [to sales] when there is a video that goes viral on TikTok. And then, basically, Google search is one of the key indicators where you really see that spike in searches for Covey or that particular product. TikTok is maybe not as advanced, from an attribution perspective, compared to Google, where you really can see a little bit more of that direct correlation to revenue. Same with Meta. But that’s what we tend to see, in terms of the connection between TikTok [and sales]; we tend to see it come through on Google search.”