Tired of the 1980s trends towards gaudy, bright lipstick and eye shadow, Bobbi Brown launched her signature makeup line featuring more natural colors. Brown earned a degree in theatrical makeup from Emerson College and then began doing freelance makeup for magazine covers and model shoots. Unhappy with the over–the–top looks that were popular at the time, Brown worked with a chemist to create ten natural lipstick shades and a line of natural-colored foundation sticks, launching Bobbi Brown Essentials in 1991 at New York’s Bergdorf Goodman. The muted colors were a smash hit with consumers and designers who were shifting away from 1980s trends. When Estée Lauder bought the company in 1995, Brown retained creative control of the makeup line, which generated ten percent of Estée Lauder’s sales in 2012. In 1996 Brown published Bobbi Brown Beauty, her first instruction manual on using makeup to achieve effects like “smoky eye,” or office versus evening looks; as of 2014, she has published eight such books. In 2007 she opened the first combination Bobbi Brown cosmetics store and makeup school; as of 2014, there are roughly 30 such stores. Brown also blogs through Everything Bobbi.
How to cite this page
Jewish Women's Archive. "Bobbi Brown." (Viewed on August 18, 2019) <https://jwa.org/people/brown-bobbi>.