Millennials are some of the most ambitious and fearless young people you will meet. They want to create their own destiny and are not afraid to branch off and do something that they really love. Melissa Butler is the perfect example. This Detroit import decided her corporate job wasn't cutting it and opted for creating beauty products in her kitchen and grew it into her business, The Lip Bar, a luxury cosmetic line. At, 27 she has already begun to create a beauty empire, and her lipstick cocktails have grabbed the attention of celebrities, magazines and the every day diva alike. She branded herself as lipstick connoisseur, hand-crafting her all-natural creations in shades you wouldn't even imagine. Learn more about how she's created her beauty brand.
Describe your personal brand in three words:
Leader- fire starter- disrupter
30 second elevator pitch, Go!
I'm a dreamer, a believer, and most of all a product junkie! I'm obsessed with all forms of cosmetics but lip color is my passion. Considered by my friends as a health freak, I'm very conscious of the things I put inside and use on my body. So naturally, when I decided to start my own cosmetic line I took a natural approach. To be as natural as possible without compromising the boldness of the lip hues, was my focus and empowering women through my lipstick is my goal.
Current position: CEO of The Lip Bar
What steps did you take to get there?
Research and just doing it! I wouldn’t recommend anyone approaching something blind. Like they say, there’s nothing new under the sun. That being said, learn about your industry and learn from other companies’ mistakes. No need to reinvent the wheel and follow behind someone else’s flawed steps.
What is a typical day like for you?
My days are dynamic. I could be making cosmetics, handling customer service inquiries, analyzing financials, doing an interview with a magazine or strategizing on a new product or campaign. The list goes on. But everyday i’m making the decisions that matter whether it’s about branding or about company operations. Being a CEO of a small business you’re involved in every aspect because you want the world to see your product as you envisioned it. So no day is the same and each day I learn something either about the industry, the brand, or myself.
How did you garner press coverage and media attention?
If you build it they will come! No but really, if you have a unique product that is great quality, the stars should align for your time to shine. And if they don’t, be certain to create your own shine. Social media is the easiest and fastest way to get information to your consumer. Use it to your advantage, and once you get a following, the press will be there to cover every minute of it.
What has been the greatest opportunity you have been offered?
Goodness! So many awesome things have happened this year but Nylon Magazine selecting The Lip Bar to be sold on their Shop NYLON marketplace was the one that made me scream the loudest.
What keeps you going?
I’m a winner, and winners don’t quit. Even when situations aren’t ideal, I remember that nothing will ever be perfect and that there will always be light at the end of the tunnel. God didn’t bring me (or you) this far to give up. So if you’re brave enough to become who you were created to be, then you should be equally brave enough to repel feelings of inadequacy and fear.
Additionally, I have an amazing support system. And I couldn’t do any of this without the love, encouragement and support of my friends, family, Lip Bar supporters and the Lip Bar Team.
Who are some of your mentors and why?
I get inspired so easily and generally I’m able to find beauty in everything. What’s important isn’t who your mentor is. It’s that you can take criticism, be inspired by and take direction from someone whose opinion you value. I have several people who mentor me at different points. At any given moment, it could be a friend, Oprah or Steve Jobs. lol
What were the steps you took in college that impacted your professional success?
Creating meaningful relationships and networks has always been one of the most important factors of any person’s success. Whether it’s in your career or collegiate experience, the people that you are able to attract are the people who will help catapult your success later.
What would you say to a young person who wants to follow in your footsteps?
Just do it! There’s no better time to follow your dreams than now. Don’t be afraid of failure and certainly don’t be afraid of competition. It’s healthy. But whatever you do, please don’t watch the competition and make your decisions based on what the rest of the world is doing. If you do what feels right, ultimately the world will see your passion.
What can we expect from you in the near future?
The Lip Bar will be the premier cosmetic company for women worldwide! I’m a firm believer of making affirmative statements to set the standard and then making sure that everything I do makes the goal more attainable. The Lip Bar is up next and we’re starting with expansion to all forms of color cosmetics. So in the near future, I look forward to serving you all Top Shelf Beauty!
Connect with Her! All lipsticks are sold online at www.thelipbar.com. You can snag a freebie by connecting on social media too!