Every once in a while a beauty influencer or brand comes along that’s so extraordinary in their efforts to give back, attention must be paid. Each Feel Good Friday, we’ll highlight these do-gooders along with simple ways to support their efforts.
There’s a reason I chose to name my site, “Random Acts of Lipstick.” Like a simple act of kindness, lipstick has transformative powers. Hate your overall look? Swipe on a lip color for a bold, new focal point. Nervous heading into a big meeting? Drip that pucker in a lipstick that makes you feel brave and confident.
And while my personal experience with the positive powers of red lipstick cannot be overstated, some people are just not that into a lippy, and that’s OK too. The beauty of beauty products is that using them is a choice, and it’s a choice that should be accessible to anyone.
“Beauty knows no gender or race; it can be found in every face at any age. All beauty is equal and deserves to be celebrated,” shares celebrity makeup artist Justin Tyme founder of Tyme Cosmetics, a brand that recently launched Gender Fluid Lipsticks.
“When you look at the beauty industry, it is primarily geared towards high-femme glamour. This lipstick line is meant to break free from the stereotypical beauty guidelines. Every person who wants to wear lipstick can and should,” he continues. #Amen
The man who paints some of the most recognizable faces in Hollywood (think: Kate Bosworth and Lisa Edelstein) founded the nonprofit I Wore Lipstick to help raise awareness of equality issues faced by those who wear lipstick. One dollar from the sale of every $20 Tyme Costmetics Gender Fluid Lipstick will be donated directly to the foundation.
And I couldn’t think of a better time to interview Tyme about a line that stands for equality than October, LGBT History Month. Here, learn how the trailblazer plans to change the way we think about the cosmetics customer, his newest partnership with The Covenant House, and his celeb clients’ favorite shade from the line.
Alexis Farah: It’s genius that you created a lipstick line to symbolize equality! What sparked the idea?
Justin Tyme: The idea to start Tyme Cosmetics came on the one year anniversary of founding equality nonprofit I Wore Lipstick (IWL). I wanted to get a makeup line involved in the work I do for the nonprofit, but realized it could be quite some time before IWL would garner that sort of attention, if at all. I decided to look into creating a line of lipsticks to get that ball rolling myself and it was at that point that a long-standing “problem” I had with the beauty industry came into focus. There are very few lines whose marketing addressed the full range of the gender spectrum. In this day and age, lipstick wearers span the entire spectrum and beyond. These wearers deserved to be addressed and the idea to name the series “Gender Fluid” seemed only natural. I’ve loved makeup since I could understand what it was. I have so many emotions and memories attached to it. For me, lipstick has always been a symbol for equality. One day it sort of dawned on me what a large percentage of the human population (both throughout history and the present) has worn or wear lipstick, we all share this common bond. Each person has had a connection these inanimate objects, whether they’re conscious of it or not. This tiny piece of makeup can be associated with the worst and best times of your life. Just as it can for many of us, it’s the perfect symbol of equality.
AF: And where does the money from I Wore Lipstick go?
JT: The money donated to IWL goes to support organizations that help to increase equality awareness and help to benefit lipstick wearers. We recently became involved with The Covenant House in Hollywood, which helps to combat youth homelessness and assist in providing education and job training for its residents. I Wore Lipstick wants to help accessorize and elevate the work they do in any way we can. This will include upgrading current education programs in beauty, art, and entertainment as well as bringing in industry professionals to speak and teach in various fields. In the future, we hope to set up scholarships. The sky is really the limit at this point!
AF: Do your celebrity clients have a favorite shade from the line?
JT: Without a doubt the most popular shade is “Love”. It’s a warm, golden pink that really gives a beautiful luminescent nude finish. It’s one of those “dress it up or dress it down” shades and the very name brings a smile to everyone’s face.
AF: What was the biggest challenge you faced launching a nonprofit?
JT: For me personally it was all challenging, but that biggest challenge was just keeping calm and remembering that whatever happens, you’re doing this to help others! Starting any kind of corporation is scary and a nonprofit was something I had zero experience with. You don’t realize going into it just how much time and effort it takes not only to get it running, but also to garner attention and funds to keep it going. In the first year of having a nonprofit you don’t have your 501C3 tax-exempt status and there’s a chance you may not receive it. Fundraising can prove difficult without being tax exempt, people need to trust you and know that your nonprofit is headed in the right direction and that your mission is secure. I’ve learned so much through the creation of I Wore Lipstick and I’m very fortunate to have a supportive board that is there to help aide in the learning process. We each have our own strengths and experience to bring to the table, which has helped tremendously. Shout out to my board Courtney, Xandrea, Tanitra, Limore, Josh, and Lauren!
AF: This is all amazing – now how can we help?
JT: There are a few different ways to get involved!
– Following us on social media is a wonderful way to support in the digital age @iworelipstick on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
– I Wore Lipstick would love to hear your stories about emotions and memories attached to lipstick shades, please share with us on our Facebook wall.
– Donations to I Wore Lipstick are always welcomed and appreciated! Visit www.iworelipstick.org
And finally, if you wear lipstick, or want to buy a gift for someone who does, please check out Gender Fluid Lipstick by Tyme Cosmetics. $1 from the sale of every lipstick will be donated to I Wore Lipstick. Visit www.tymecosmetics.com