30 Jun Dean Rowland and Harry Derbridge see success after their pandemic-born makeup brush business booms
An Essex couple has spoken of their success after the pandemic sped up the creation of their makeup brush brand.
CEOs Dean Rowland, 31, and Harry Derbridge, 27, launched Celebrity Brushes back in 2020, a business they hadn’t planned to launch until the beginning of 2021.
“The month we launched we had makeup masterclasses booked all over the UK,” said Dean (pictured on the right). “But when the first lockdown hit everything was suddenly cancelled and we had all this time on our hands.
“At the time we’d already begun designing the brushes but hadn’t planned to launch the business until months later in January 2021.”
Dean and Harry, of Brentwood, agreed to speed up the process and design affordable brushes that didn’t compromise on quality. Having been involved with the TV industry, Dean knows first-hand how much money is spent on beauty products.
“I left my full-time job in talent management one month after we launched. While Harry used his ability as a makeup artist and with beauty to design the brushes, I look after the marketing side and make sure we’re getting these brushes to the right people,” Dean said. “We target normal, everyday girls – designing everything with our customers in mind.
“Everything we sell is vegan-friendly and cruelty-free.”
Dean adds that, despite not tying the business to their names initially, the response when they launched was surprising.
He said: “From the day we launched it was crazy. We mostly relied on social media and word of mouth but we were seeing people love what we had to offer.
“In the beginning we worked from our kitchen, not doing any ads but simply using social media to create a buzz. Now we have employees, a warehouse and an office.”
Celebrity Brushes also owes its success to the dedicated fans that regularly buy every new release the brand makes.
“Our UK fanbase is our biggest of course,” Dean said. “But we’ve seen huge demand from around the world – including places like Australia and Dubai.”
Dean and Harry, who have had to cancel their wedding twice during lockdown, are remaining committed 100% to their business and look forward to it growing in the future.