Vital Stats: Jeremy Johnson (l.), 34, and Jerrod Blandino, 37, of Too Faced Cosmetics Inc. in Irvine, California
Company: A chic line of innovative cosmetics
Projected 2008 Sales: $85 million to $95 million
Bringing Sexy Back
Full of attitude, Jerrod Blandino and Jeremy Johnson are the pair of creative masterminds behind Too Faced Cosmetics, a decade-old brand that shows no signs of aging. With unique names ("Marcia Marcia Marcia" for a champagne-infused lipstick) and innovative offerings (a mascara that encases each eyelash), the friends have captured the attention of what they call the "It Girl." Says Blandino, "We brought fun, flirty and [sexy] back into the industry."
Not Camera Shy
Already known behind the scenes on TV sets like Desperate Housewives, the brand is about to gain a wider consumer reach by appearing in front of the camera. A reality show offering an inside look into the business's operations and a VH1 series focusing on Blandino's life at Too Faced are both in the works.
Playing Hard to Get
With plans to expand to Canada, China, India, the Middle East and Russia, as well as extend the line to include clothing, accessories and fragrances, Blandino and Johnson are taking on the world. They aim to be big but never commonplace, so they limit distribution to specific retailers, like Sephora, and discontinue products regularly. Says Johnson, "We try to not leave anything out there too long."
Hey, Big Spender
Though both were armed with prior experience at Estée Lauder (Blandino as a sales consultant and Johnson as a business manager), the risk to start the company was great, as they racked up $250,000 in credit card debt. But the risk paid off: Just like the It Girl they pamper, Too Faced has become something everyone wants. Says Blandino, who just turned down another acquisition offer, "I love it; I can't imagine doing anything else."