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7 May

Memorable Quotes From 25 Years of the WWD Beauty

Leonard A. Lauder

Photo courtesy of the Estée Lauder Cos.

 “Just because the twentieth century was the American century, so will the twenty first century be the Asian century. There’s a wave of Asian consumers entering the center class, and that wave is big and they’ll dominate this business in the following 10 to fifteen years.”

— Leonard A. Lauder, chairman and chief executive officer, The Estée Lauder Cos., 1997


Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones

Courtesy Photo

“We imagine that to remain alive and survive and to be really good when it comes to technology within the 20 years ahead of us, we’ve to amortize that technology over as many alternative sectors and activities and types as we possibly can. That’s the only approach to fund the research which is able to take us forward to the following century. An increasing number of, it can be the access to technology [that] might be the decisive think about determining the long run of brands and firms.”

— Sir Lindsay Owen Jones, chairman and chief executive officer, L’Oréal, 2002

Christopher de Lapuente, Sephora Inc.

Christopher de Lapuente, Sephora Inc.

Rainer Hosch

“Since 2010, we’ve tripled the business worldwide. We’re in 32 countries, [are] market leader in about half of them and [are] two, three and 4 in a number of others. But in answer to the query [as to] whether we’re challenger or leader, the attitude remains to be the identical. At the top of the day, what we aspire to do is to thrill customers higher than anyone else.”

— Christopher de Lapuente, global president and CEO, Sephora, 2018

Jamie Kern Lima

Jamie Kern Lima

Ahmed Klink

“After I see competitors knocking off something we do, whether it’s how we use before-and-afters, or our product or our message, I do know that they’re confused and so they’re getting distracted. Every brand connects and speaks with customers in a latest and different way, and the moment that way isn’t authentic to a brand’s DNA is when the potential of their great success gets diluted.”

— Jamie Kern Lima, founder and CEO, It Cosmetics, 2016

Madonna Badger

Harvey Bilt

“In today’s world, where consumers have nearly every part they need and so many decisions and a whole lot of superlatives, we must now innovate through empathy. True innovation comes after we listen with our hearts, and it’s then that we start to get a transparent picture of how a girl really thinks. And, in fact, it’s not one track but reasonably multifaceted, multilayered and multitasking.”

— Madonna Badger, founder, Badger and Winters Group, 2010

Eva Chen

Davide Maestri

“Our readers live and breathe the web. We’re taking a look at a time limit when teens and youth basically can influence the larger masses.”

— Eva Chen, health and sweetness director, Teen Vogue, 2012


Francis Kurkdjian

Francis Kurkdjian

Courtesy of Parfums Christian Dior

“A perfumer will not be a nose, the identical way a dancer will not be a body and a painter a pair of eyes or a pair of hands. I really like the intelligence of the hand. It’s moving to observe the transformation of fabric under the guidance of a creative mind.”

— Francis Kurkdjian, founder, Maison Francis Kurkdjian, 2013

Mazdack Rassi and Zanna Roberts Rassi attend The Fashion Scholarship Fund Gala at New York Hilton.

Mazdack Rassi and Zanna Roberts Rassi

Astrid Stawiarz/Courtesy of the Fashion Scholarship Fund

“It’s crazy to imagine that a consultant who went to Harvard Business School goes to predict cultural trends for you and your corporations. In fact, I say that with envy — I wish I had that type of education. Nevertheless it’s not the background to construct a relevant brand today.”

— Mazdak Rassi, cofounder, Milk Studios, 2018

Alex Keith

Alex Keith

Stephen Leek/WWD

“Our journey will not be the pursuit of becoming the largest. It is solely the pursuit of becoming higher until higher becomes best.”

— Alex Keith, president of worldwide skin and private care, P&G, 2015 

Nicky Kinnaird

Courtesy Photo

“The marketplace is changing and evolving at a rapid pace. At the top of the day, the client is evolving even faster, so we’re all playing catch-up and attempting to work out really give them the satisfaction they’re in search of.”

— Nicky Kinnaird, founder and CEO, Space NK, 2002

Deepika Mutyala and Alicia Yoon with Allison Collins

Deepika Mutyala and Alicia Yoon

Chris Carter/ra-haus/WWD

“As an emerging brand, we’re redrawing the lines. We don’t must play by the principles.”

— Deepica Mutyala, founder, Live Tinted, 2022

“[The customer] wants services out on a store floor, where there may be activity and motion, not in a quiet room. It’s one thing to know the statistics in your customer, it’s one other to see them of their store habits. We learn by talking to and watching them.”

Marla Malcolm Beck of Bluemercury

Jenna Greene

— Marla Malcolm Beck, founder, Bluemercury, 2016

Lynn Tilton

Stephen Leek

“We now not live in a world of survival of the fittest. It’s really survival of the adaptist. When you hold on tight, you’ll die.”

— Lynn Tilton, CEO, Patriarch Partners, 2014

“To be clear, multicultural will not be a race or a color of somebody’s skin. It’s a landscape that houses a mindset that young adults and teenagers share, brought on by three primary forces: proximity; the influence of MTV, music videos and entertainment, and the web. These combined forces have lent transparency to cultures, access to cultures. And yet we still, as an industry, need to put people in boxes…and demographics and charts and Q rankings, and it neuters us from understanding cultural impact and what affects these consumer groups.”

Steve Stoute

Mike Nagle

— Steve Stoute, chief creative officer and founder, Translation Consultation and Brand Imaging, 2006

Gail Federici

John Aquino

“The primary rule is don’t follow anyone else’s rules. Our mantra became ‘We must outthink because we will’t outspend.’”

— Gail Federici, CEO, Federici Brands, 2014



Lexie Moreland/WWD

“Prestige lines resembling YSL and Laura Mercier have been making an effort to diversify their foundation shades. Mass retailers: It’s your turn. It’s time to acknowledge women of color as a growing section of the market that can’t be ignored.”

— Iman, founder and CEO, Iman Cosmetics, 2012

Carole Bellaiche

“In 1996 or 1997 we competed for the acquisition of Sephora, but we weren’t prepared at the moment to pay such an unreasonable price. Now, those businesses are much greater and closer to maturity when it comes to size and still very, very expensive. So, no acquisition.”

— François Henri Pinault, chairman, Artemis, 2004

William P. Lauder

William P. Lauder

Mark Mann/WWD

“Change is a relentless. When you are standing still, you might be going backward. We’re in a consumer industry and which means you might be running up the down escalator. When you stop for a moment, you might be going backward. You’ve gotten to be running faster than the speed of the escalator to make some progress. When you’re not, another person will.”

— William P. Lauder, executive chairman, The Estée Lauder Cos., 2016

CEO Tarang Amin

CEO Tarang Amin


“I’ve been in the buyer space for 30 years, and each success I’ve ever had stems from an initial insatiable curiosity for the buyer.”

— Tarang Amin, CEO, E.l.f. Beauty, 2021

Tom Ford

Tom Ford

Alberto Rodriguez/Variety

“How will we get back in contact with that risk-taking gene that all of us possess, yet that’s muffled as business gets greater and the stakes get higher? We want to trust our intuition. If we’re bored while we’re designing a product, the buyer might be bored. If we’re excited, we will actually endow that product with an excitement that may translate to a positive response from the buyer. Today, greater than ever, the client wants something significant and daring. Half-hearted attempts to please everyone and offend nobody will simply come off as second-best.”

— Tom Ford, 2006

Violette Serrat

Violette Serrat

Courtesy Photo

“Beauty is something that has nothing to do with society’s criteria. It’s actually way more deep than that.” 

— Violette, founder, Violette_FR, 2021

Pharrell Williams

Pharrell Williams

Courtesy of Kristen White

“The universe is alive, it’s moving. It was here before you, it’ll be here after you, and it can give back to you. So once you see a founding father of color who has an organization and so they’re on this space, lean in the identical way you might be on this room. It’s going to be awesome. That is the Beauty Summit. I don’t think anything could possibly be more beautiful.”  

— Pharrell Williams, founder, Humanrace, 2022

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