These days, you'd be hard-pressed to carve a space for yourself in the beauty industry. From entire lines helmed by , , and , to millennial pink packaging dominating our Instagram feeds, the market is veering on oversaturated and start-ups are grappling to create something unique and refreshing for beauty junkies and novices alike. Influencers Marianna Hewitt and Lauren Gores Ireland, who struck up a friendship in 2010, set out to achieve just that.
Their first-ever product, , launched this past March and had all of the makings of a wild success story: a marketable name, sleek packaging befitting any influencer's Instagram grid, and plenty of buzz from beauty editors, YouTubers, and bloggers. The hydrating mask swiftly became the number one best-selling skincare product on Sephora, beating out established heavyweights including , the Ordinary, Sunday Riley, Glam Glow, and SK-II.
It quickly sold out and the rave reviews came pouring in. Versatility was key—the invisible, nearly scentless mask could be layered under foundation as a primer, used as a daily moisturiser, or, true to its namesake, utilised as the most subtle face mask you could possibly apply on an airplane. When slathered on overnight for eight hours, the wearer would emerge with refreshed, dewy, and plump skin.
As the beauty sphere awaited the introduction to an entire Summer Fridays line—or at least whispering of another launch—it wouldn't come until summer was already nearly over. The , a product nearly two years in the making, hit store shelves at the end of August. The pumpkin-scented exfoliating formula is gentle enough to use as a daily treatment and was unveiled to similarly glowing reviews. Here, CR caught up with the duo about their one-product-at-a-time strategy, their skincare routines, and the beauty products they can't live without.
Why was the timing right for Overtime Mask to be your second launch?
Marianna Hewitt: 'Everyone's in the mood for pumpkin spice lattes and we also love that it can pair really well with Jet Lag Mask. We really feel like at this time of year, too, when your skin is starting to become dry with the change in weather, you really want to exfoliate and get rid of any of that dead skin..'
What inspired you to launch only one product at a time?
MH: 'For Lauren and I as bloggers and influencers, even today we have so many packages, we're so overwhelmed by stuff. Everyday when we come home there's packages and boxes and so much PR gifting. We're really fortunate to receive all of these products, but we know it's even more overwhelming for consumers. It's easier for us to understand one product at a time to get to know the benefits and see if it's really worth it.'
Lauren Gores Ireland: 'We really wanted to allow people to add it into their routines. We're both big product junkies and by launching one at a time, it allows people to add it into their current routines rather than thinking they have to change everything around.'
Why face masks?
MH: 'We love how inclusive skincare is, especially face masks. Lauren was pregnant when we formulated our products, and we are a clean skincare brand, so we love that so many people can use our products without worrying if it's going to break them out.'
What are some of your beauty secrets?
MH: 'In the morning I usually keep it pretty simple. My favourite cleanser right now is from . Then I'll use some sort of vitamin C serum and follow up with Jet Lag Mask to hydrate as a daily moisturiser. I'll use because we're in California and it's really important to wear sunscreen every day. I also love beauty tools—anything that's going to massage my face, from jade rollers to . I have an ice roller that I got on Amazon that I keep it in the freezer, and when I'm super tired in the morning and my eyes feel exhausted, I'll just roll it around my eyes and it's like a shot of espresso for your face. As far as makeup, I can't live without my . I feel like it's a must-have tool—you can apply skincare, primer, foundation, concealer, cream blushes, contour, everything works.'
LGI: 'I'm always running late, always in hurry, because of mum life, so I have found super fast ways to get ready. is by far my favourite make-up line, because I can use it on my cheeks, on my lips, on my eyelids, like literally everywhere. I also love . I spray that multiple times a day.'