Meet PEEK Beauty: How a Beauty Brand Used Instagram to Grow Their Business

It’s no small effort for a brand to break into the beauty industry, especially when it comes to the makeup category. PEEK Beauty founder Cristina Bartolucci discovered how to use Instagram to find customers and make a name for her beautiful line of makeup that is cruelty-free, gluten-free and drama-free. Read on to find out about this smart Hubba brand making waves in the industry:

H: We’d love to know more of your story and how you came to develop the products at PEEK?

CB: I came to Los Angeles to write on soap operas back in the nineties after getting an internship on General Hospital after college. I eventually got hired as an assistant and thought that I had it made big until a new producer came on and fired all of us. My roommate at the time was a makeup artist working on a film. I went in to help out for a day and never stopped working for twelve years. It just clicked. The products I develop come from having done makeup on literally thousands of people. Famous people. Regular people. Just the act of putting in on and seeing what it can do inspires me to create it. I ask myself what women really want from a product? Here is my short list:

  • small enough to tuck into a pocket
  • chic enough to pull out of a purse
  • ecofriendly
  • multitasking
  • natural enough to be safe

All PEEK products have a reason for being. We don’t just make an eyeshadow to make an eyeshadow. There are already plenty of amazing ones out there already. It has to have a point of difference.

What has been the most interesting or rewarding part of building your business?

That is a great question. The whole thing came about when I was working as the interim creative director at NYX Cosmetics, right before Toni Ko sold it to L’Oreal. I realized that the whole industry had been turned completely upside down by social media. Girls were starting to post videos and set the trends that they used to follow. I saw the power of it first hand and for a product developer, there is nothing more exciting than getting to talk directly to your audience.

What do you consider the hardest part about getting attention in the industry as a new beauty brand?

Diving into social media. Honestly, it was so intimidating and I just had to hold my breath and do it. Once I started though, I realized that it was the same as anything else. Takes time and practice to get good and if you have something interesting to say, eventually people will start to listen.

You have a growing instagram following and it’s your main social media channel— what made you choose it to share the brand?

Yes! We have 1700 organic followers on the PEEK Instagram now and we are so proud and happy about it. May not seem like a big deal but to us it is everything.

The platforms are so different and we think that Instagram fits beauty the best. I knew that we could not do it all well anyway with our experience and resources and by focussing on one, I think we proved that we were legit in having something to share.

I was also really inspired by Eva Chen’s Instagram. I had a makeup company before this one back in the days when magazine editors were the only go to people to show new products and get them out there. Eva was just an assistant then but she had something special. A quirky smart style and this kindness that came with her cool. I think that she has found her groove with Instagram. Suddenly everyone can see the things in her that only we as brand owners got to see before. That is what is so great about it.

If you could change one thing about the beauty industry, what would it be?

Negative advertising. The fact that our industry often preys upon the insecurity that society creates in women to shame them into buying things. That is just crappy and it is important to work on changing it. No matter how daunting. There is enough suffering in the world and it doesn’t have to be that way.

See Peek Beauty products on Hubba and heart your fave items!