Digital-first, maximalist beauty brand Il Makiage launches in Australia

Professional Beauty recently caught up with IL MAKIAGE Co-Founder Oran Holtzman to talk all things digital-first in beauty. The prestige professional makeup brand Il Makiage was originally launched 1972 by NYC-based makeup artist Ilana Harkavi, but has been little known outside of the professional circuit in recent decades. That changed in 2017 when a consumer-focused private equity firm invested $29 million USD in the company to accelerate brand expansion in the United States before taking it global.

The brand re-launched in its new, maximalist, digital-first incarnation in 2018 by brother-sister duo Oran Holtzman and Shiran Holtzman-Erel. “When I acquired IL MAKIAGE a few years ago, I had a clear vision for the future – to build a global, professional, high-end makeup brand,” said brand CEO, Oran. “We have invested significant resources to further develop IL MAKIAGE, building a state of the art R&D division, enhancing our product offering, and creating a unique shopping experience in our mono-brand makeup boutiques.”

PB: What inspired you to launch Il Makiage as a modern, digital-first beauty offering? 

“My sister and I sought to create one of the most inclusive, prestige beauty lines for all, while leaning heavily into technology. Out of the gate, we decided to build a digitally-native beauty brand since we truly believed that the beauty category was ready for digital disruption.

For a category with huge social presence, less than 10% of purchases online at the time just didn’t make sense for us. We knew that the online beauty industry was broken and through advanced tech, AI and industry-leading R&D, we have built the fastest growing beauty brand in the US.”

PB:” What inspired you to launch the brand with the PowerMatch quiz? 

“As part of our tech-first approach, IL MAKIAGE built the PowerMatch algorithm, an AI algorithm that utilises machine learning to precisely match beauty complexion products (foundation, concealer, etc.), with over 90% accuracy, without ever seeing the consumer’s face. We know how complex it is to find the perfect shade, so by utilizing technology, we could provide the solution that consumers clearly were looking for.” 

PB: How have you gotten the PowerMatch quiz to be so accurate?

“For more than a year, our data science, R&D and engineering teams have combined the results of millions of data points to create the initial algorithm. To date, over 20 million users have taken our PowerMatch quizzes which, using machine learning, continues to improve every day.”

PB: Why the move into Australia for Il Makiage now?

“As a new brand to the Australian market, it’s always exciting for us to see which products resonate in each territory, and we’re super appreciative of the instant enthusiasm from Australian consumers. It was clear to us that we would be launching in Australia ASAP after our UK and Germany launches as Australia is a key market in our strategic plan thanks to its high usage of complexion products and appreciation of the Australian consumer for high quality prestige beauty products like ours.”

IL MAKIAGE | Makeup & Beauty Products with High Standards

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