The following piece was contributed as part of Business News Daily's byline series:
My life completely changed when I was asked to provide my products, Mizzi Cosmetics, for the 2015 Oscar swag bags.
It started as a "science project" to create a lip balm that would actually work for my family's awful chapped lips. Nothing over the counter was working, so I sought to make something that was all-natural and would stay on longer than any balm I could purchase. This was a "no big deal" fun thing to do, so I did it.
After several attempts to find the perfect recipe, I made what I thought was the best balm ever. It had a fabulous gloss effect, as well as the health benefits.
Borne from the hard work was Lip Luxe. I made hundreds of balms and gave them away to friends and family. They all loved it and wanted more. The love of the product inspired me; and I began to sell the balm to local salons.
Within four months of launching the product, I was asked to provide Lip Luxe for two prestigious gifting suites for the 2015 Oscars. The media in my home state of Connecticut went nuts. We had every news station at my house, and I was invited to their shows to talk about our small growing business.
The Kardashian Effect
In the aftermath of the local media attention, I found an opportune moment to create better awareness for my brand. I sent my products to some public figures that may benefit from or love them as well, with the hopes of getting some recognition. I then reached out to the Kardashians' publicist, Cici Bussey.
She answered my email (out of the thousands she gets daily) and loved my story. Cici gave me the address of where to send Lip Luxe to and told me to "expect nothing."
Six weeks after sending the product, the youngest of the Kardashian-Jenner sisters, Kylie Jenner, posted on social media to her 40 million followers and subscribers to her app, about her travel bag. Lo and behold, there she was, holding my lip scrub and lip balm and telling her fans all about it, why she loves it and the ingredients.
My sales went through the roof over the next few days.Our sales increased by 400 percent and then continued on thereafter.
Mizzi Cosmetics tripled the amount of retailers we had, just because of Kylie's one organic endorsement. To top this all off, big name magazines started publishing all about Kylie's endorsement and how much she loved our brand.
We hope to start working with investors soon so we can truly take this business to the next level. We're dreaming big, for Ulta, Sephora, Blue Mercury, Target, CVS.
The sky's the limit.
About the author: Brenda Mierzejewski is the owner of Mizzi Cosmetics, a Connecticut-based beauty company that created Lip Luxe. Follow her on Twitter @LIPLUXECT.
Edited for length and clarity by Shannon Gausepohl. Have a great entrepreneurial story to tell? Contact Shannon at email@example.com to learn more about our contributed content program.