Friday, January 25, 2013

First Look Fridays: First Aid Beauty Founder Lilli Gordon

I think it's obvious by now that I am completely and utterly enamored by all things First Aid Beauty. Every product in the line instantly becomes a favorite, due in large part to the fact that they make my skin look and feel FANTASTIC. Huge thanks must be paid to the line's founder, Lilli Gordon, who is just an absolute genius -- and, coincidentally, so sweet and knowledgeable about all things beauty and skincare! I'm thrilled to feature her this week in First Look Fridays. Read on to find out how she came to create First Aid Beauty, her desert island product from the line and so much more!

Can you tell me a bit about yourself?
I grew up in Lynn, Massachusetts and went on to college at Bowdoin, where my father and two brothers also went! After getting my MBA at University of Chicago, I went on to work in finance for several years.

How did you first become interested in skincare, and what led you to create First Aid Beauty?
My experience in beauty began with another Boston-based beauty brand, Fresh, where I was a partner of the founders, Lev Glazman and Alina Roytberg. During my years at Fresh, in addition to successfully growing the business, I helped negotiate the sale of a majority interest of Fresh to LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton. That industry knowledge I gained at Fresh was key to starting First Aid Beauty.

I founded FAB in 2009 because I was tired of sensitive-skin products that were ineffective, seemed so medicinal and contained harmful and irritating ingredients. I did my research and learned that others felt the same way! Drugstore classics like Cetaphil, Aquaphor and Eucerin are considered workhorse products, but once I looked into it further, I learned some of these popular formulations date back to the early 1900s!

Needless to say, science has evolved to allow us to create highly effective formulations with gorgeous consistencies that are free of harmful ingredients. I was inspired to update the drugstore classics with skincare that was both modern and scientifically advanced and that incorporated luxurious formulations and chic packaging. It’s important to me to create products that people really rely on generally and also for specific, emergency problems. Every household has a first aid kit and every household needs First Aid Beauty products!

If you could only bring one First Aid Beauty product to a desert island, what would it be and why?
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream -- because it’s magic! This amazing cream hydrates dry, parched skin for the face, elbows and knees -- it is truly a fabulous multitasking moisturizer that no girl should ever be without, even on a desert island.

What are your top 3 skincare tips?
1) Less is more. So many of the problems that we see now are a result of overkill both in terms of the number of items used in a given application and the intensity of ingredients. That is core to the philosophy that inspires all of our products, but particularly Dual Repair. Dual Repair is a brand new way to treat aging skin. The three products in the line (First Aid Beauty Dual Repair Face Cream, First Aid Beauty Dual Repair Eye Cream and First Aid Beauty Dual Repair Power Serum rely on a breakthrough combination of ingredients to strengthen the skin barrier, stimulate the dermal matrix and reduce skin sensitivity in addition to a proprietary blend that delivers age defying actives. With healthier, stronger skin, the dermal matrix is reinforced and anti-aging actives are more efficiently absorbed for faster, more dramatic results.

2) The hands say it all! They also take a beating day to day. Everyday I use the First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads along with the First Aid Beauty 5 In 1 Face Cream with SPF 30 on my hands to keep them soft and youthful.

3) Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. Maintaining a strong, healthy skin barrier is central to beautiful, glowing skin.

What are some of the highlights you've experienced through creating First Aid Beauty?
1) Selling out on my very first QVC show!
2) Launching in Korea just this week and breaking every single record our retail partner has ever seen.
3) The industry is so supportive. Even my counterparts at competitive companies are always there to help out!

Now that Dual Repair has launched, what can we expect down the line from First Aid Beauty?
There is so much to do in terms of new, innovative products that reflect FAB’s philosophy of delivering safe, effective and luxurious solutions at a reasonable price point. Later this year, we’re excited to bring our Gentle Face Wipes and Facial Radiance Polish to the market.

Being the creator of First Aid Beauty must be fun, but what do you do in your spare time?
When I’m not working or traveling, the focus is always family -- children, parents and friends. And of course the gym!

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