On her birthday last July, Tess Kemper ’15 pulled the ribbon off the gift her parents had given her and peered inside.
Inside was a product catalog for a cosmetic company called Doll Face. The last page read, “Happy Birthday, Tess! You’re a doll face, and it’s now your company.”
“My parents always knew that I was interested in makeup and cosmetics, so it was my present for my 15th birthday,” Kemper said.
Her father bought an existing company as a gift to her and is running the company until Kemper graduates college, when she plans to run the company herself.
“My dad wanted to buy a company with a great name already so we wouldn’t have to go through the process of making a whole new company,” Kemper said.
Currently, Doll Face’s main products are facial basics like lip gloss, lip stick and eyeliner. Doll Face had already created makeup products, but once Kemper became the owner, they created an entirely new cosmetic line. The products are mostly made in the United States and in Europe. Kemper uses the cosmetic products on her face daily.
“Right now, my favorite product is what is called the Lemon Drop Scrub because it smells really good and fresh,” Kemper said.
Kemper sits in on meetings for her company, and assists with choosing the packaging of Doll Face’s products.
“I have been helping a lot with the packaging because that is what really sells my products,” she said.
Kemper works with 360 Design Company, who also works with Smashbox Cosmetic Company to design the packaging of her products. Other than helping to design the product’s packaging, Kemper helps to test Doll Face’s cosmetics and fragrances.
Doll Face will be in stores internationally at Sephora and Ulta starting in January 2013, and later in department stores.
“I am most excited to see it launch and be in stores because it is something that I have dreamed about for a long time,” Kemper said.
In case she wants to create more businesses in the future, Kemper created a brand name, called Tess Olivia Beauty LLC.
“I started wearing makeup in the summer going into 8th grade,” said Kemper “because of my grandma’s cosmetic company, she would always give me makeup and I just immediately got interested in it.”
Kemper began wearing makeup as a seven year old when she performed in plays, and then regularly in eighth grade. Kemper was in “The Sound of Music,” “Peter Pan,” and “Oliver.” Her mother would put makeup on her for these productions, and since then she has become fascinated with makeup.
Kemper’s favorite products that she uses daily include the Nars tinted moisturizer, the Chanel translucent powder, and the Nars laguna bronzer. Her favorite blush is the MAC “well dressed” blush, which Kemper uses on special occasions.
“I would just say don’t go too overboard, because less is more with makeup,” Kemper said.
Kemper believes that focusing on one main feature of the face for your look, whether it is your eyes or your lips, it is important so that you don’t do too much with your makeup.
“I don’t like eye shadows as much because it is a tricky application,” Kemper said, “I feel it can sometimes make the look a little too dramatic. I would just stick to eyeliner and mascara for the eyes.
Overall, Kemper is excited for the future of her company.
“I’m really looking forward to seeing how the company turns out. When it’s eventually in stores I will be so happy and excited and I hope that it does really well, since I am putting so much work into it,” Kemper said.