August 29, 2023
Entrepreneur Zobia Alvi launched KissAss Cosmetics with the goal to empower women with clean ingredient lipstick that magnifies their beauty. Zobia’s practical and inspiring words to other women entrepreneurs to just “get it started” sent her on her own path of product development and everything she has learned along the way. In this week’s Her Story, Zobia shares her experience in and challenges in starting her business that is for “Ambitious Women That Kick Ass”!
I started my business because I saw an opportunity to empower women with beauty...
Why did you start your business? What motivated or inspired you?
I started my business because I saw an opportunity to empower women with beauty instead of making them feel inferior to beauty products for corporate beauty gain and highlighting their insecurities. I wanted to build a product that enhanced every woman's existing beauty. Lipstick is an essential makeup asset which when used correctly should magnify and express a woman's individuality!
What is something you know now that you wish you knew when you started your business?
I wish I knew how hard logistics and managing inventory would be. Sometimes I feel I don't have enough space for me. There are lipstick products all over my home!
Why did you decide to join The WMarketplace?
I joined WMarketplace to be a part of a community that empowers women.
What has been the most challenging thing about getting your business up and running?
The most challenging thing about getting my business up and running was working through the challenges of manufacturing the products themselves. It was very important to me that the ingredients that went into the product did not take away from the brightness of the pigment shades, and would be plant-based and clean. It was also important to me to find a manufacturer that did not test on animals, because cruelty-free products are now almost a standard in beauty and I wanted to be a part of that movement too.
One of the questions I usually get is, “How do I get started without funding for a business?”, and my response is usually - you can start a business with less than $100. Just make what you have work until what you work on opens doors for you.
Do you have any advice for other women who are getting started in business?
GET IT STARTED. Whether you have an idea or you think you can come up with one - just get started. Buy a domain name, launch a site or social media account, and just start moving things along. Your idea can be perfected along the way - just get out there and push your concept forward. Talk to people. Get things on paper and then online and tweak it as much as you can. One of the questions I usually get is, “How do I get started without funding for a business?”, and my response is usually - you can start a business with less than $100. Just make what you have work until what you work on opens doors for you.
If a journalist were to write a headline about you/your business, what would it be?
Lipsticks for ambitious women that kick ass!
Thank you, Zobia, for sharing your advice and journey with the WMarketplace!
SHOP Kissass cosmetic
Launched in 2020, TheWMarketplace is a nationwide e-commerce marketplace for women-owned businesses to sell their products and professional and personal services. Offering favorable terms to its sellers, it also is a supportive community of women entrepreneurs that have access to learning opportunities through the trademarked HER-Commerce™ programs. With over 500 women-owned businesses selling 4000+ products and services ranging from home goods to coaching, in over 35 states, TheWMarketplace empowers shoppers with a new way to find the communities they want to support, including Black-woman owned, Latina-owned, AAPI-owned, Veteran woman-owned, and more. The Her Story Q&A is one benefit ThWMarketplace provides to sellers.