Professional Beauty brings to you our Powerful Women series – interviews with the leading ladies behind some much-loved salon industry brands across the skincare, cosmetics and technology spaces. Anita Quade caught up with Curtis Collection founder, Victoria Curtis.
Victoria Curtis, tell us what inspired you to set up your company?
“Beauty was always my passion, although I never actually intended on working in the industry. The opportunity I received when I finished my university degree as an Accounting and Marketing Graduate was somewhat fortuitous. I was given the incredible chance to work in Marketing at L’Oreal Australia. During this time, I spent two years working with clients who owned beauty salons and Medispas and noticed a gap in the market – a makeup product that works for your skin rather than against it, while creating the radiant glow and finish that every woman is seeking. By combining these two elements, Curtis Collection was born. Designer cosmetics for the salon and spa industry that are actually good for your skin. What more could a woman, and her makeup bag, want?”
What was one of the hardest challenges starting out?
“In my case it was managing the rapid growth the brand experienced in the initial years. Whilst the momentum was exciting, it also called for processes and procedures to be established quickly in order to manage the growth and deliver on our promises to customers and retailers. This meant adapting quickly to the market and making swift changes if required. We listened carefully to our clients feedback and tailored our products and the service we delivered to meet their needs.
This was ultimately the key to our success. We stayed true to our brand and its identity, however made the necessary adjustments to stay relevant and competitive in an ever changing market.”
Being a powerful woman as a business leader – what is an important piece of advice you can share with your peers?
“To stay in your lane! The energy you waste looking left and right at your competition, is energy you could channel into our business and your own personal growth.
I truly never spend time worrying about what others are doing. I am, of course, aware of our competitors and the market. However, if you differentiate your brand enough, there should be no competition at all. Be unique, believe in your brand and what it has to offer, and stand apart from the rest. No one is you and that is ultimately your power.
Finally taking no risk, is the biggest risk of all! Take a calculated risk if you believe in yourself and what you have to offer.”
“After 10 years in business, I still love the thought of being able to create ‘confidence building’ products that meet the beauty needs of women.”
How have you found the support from likeminded women in the industry (any examples)?
“I have been inspired by many incredible women throughout my journey. Most of which have been my customers, the salon owners who stock our products and the supportive women in my family. I love the thought of being a cheerleader for other people’s success! I’ve been fortunate to have women in my life who believe in me and have always supported and believed in my brand. In order for my brand to grow, it required the support of salon owners, many of which did not know me or my brand in the early years. They simply believed in my passion, my commitment and my vision for what we could create together. I could not be more grateful for their loyalty. It’s a true example of women lifting each other up and changing the game!”
What is it you love most about being an industry trailblazer?
“After 10 years in business, I still love the thought of being able to create ‘confidence building’ products that meet the beauty needs of women. When creating a product, I focus heavily on common beauty concerns and what we can do to provide a product that solves these concerns. I discovered years ago that this can literally change the way a woman feels about her face and her appearance. This ultimately builds confidence which I believe is the most beautiful quality in a woman.
From a professional and personal point of view, giving back to an industry that I love, changing the game and creating a path for young women who also want to pursue a career in beauty is an absolute honour.
This is without a doubt the most rewarding part about what I do.”
This article originally appeared in the March-April 2022 issue of Professional Beauty.
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