Women’s Wear Daily recently conducted an interview with Essie Weingarten of Essie Cosmetics and Charlotte Knight of Ciate. Both were profiled for their entrepreneurial spirit and innovation in the nail world.
The interview begins by asking each what got them interested in nails. Weingarten revealed that she always had her nails done as a little girl, if she behaved properly. Because she felt the colors were boring, she always brought her own polish from the pharmacy. Knight grew up doing nails as a way to make extra money. As both women got older they realized their passion could pay off so they met with manufacturers to start their respective companies.
When asked about the toughest decisions they had each made since being in business, Weingarten commented, “If you don’t make any wrong decisions, then you’re not trying hard enough.” Knight offered, “You have to stay incredibly dynamic and react super quickly.” “When you still have your finger on the pulse, you know when it’s right and wrong. You don’t have to wait a year and a half to realize you made a mistake,” says Weingarten.
The interview closed with a question about slowing in the nail business. Both Weingarten and Knight expressed optimism. “If you figure out how many new players there are, the pie is getting bigger, the pieces are getting smaller,” says Weingarten. “I know retailers are starting to get panicky, but I don’t think there’s anything to worry about. It’s the responsibility of retailers and brands to make sure that nails stay interesting. It’s up to all of us to keep it exciting,” says Knight.
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