Nudestix Co-founder Ally Frankel Shares Her Journey Into The Beauty Business
Sometimes it can seem like the beauty world is all about seeing who can outdo each other with the most complicated techniques and the most number of products used in a look. It can get downright overwhelming—especially for those of us who don’t have a lot of time to spend on crafting the perfect look in the morning. That’s where Nudestix comes in.
The brand is all about keeping it simple and loving a natural look. Nudestix was launched by teenager sisters Ally and Taylor Frankel with their mom Jenny, a chemical engineer with more than 20 years of experience in the beauty business. We spoke with Ally to find out all about the brand.
How did the idea for Nudestix come about?
“Nudestix wasn't planned! Our mom, Jenny Frankel, has been in the beauty industry for more than 20 years. After graduating university as a chemical engineer, she formulated products for MAC Cosmetics. After, she co-created her own brand called Cover FX while my sister and I were in diapers. She worked there for 12 years and stepped down to take an ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ break—her ‘love’ being spending time with my sister and I. Throughout that time, she realized that Taylor and I weren't seeing what the beauty industry had to offer, even after being raised in the industry, and we were still looking in our mom's makeup bag. Beauty brands weren't speaking to us the way we needed to be spoken to. We don't like steps, loads of brushes and compacts, and the inability to bring our makeup anywhere with us without a giant case. Taylor and I also wanted to look like ourselves and to feel beautiful in our own skin without having to put on so much makeup. The industry at the time was giving two options, the first being makeup artistry and the second being skincare. There was nothing in between for us to relate to. We then created Nudestix, the NUDE in Nudestix meaning going nude, showing skin and looking like ourselves. The STIX meaning all pencils. Nudestix is all about fun, fast, easy, effortless makeup for all faces. “
Why did you choose to focus on stick applicators? Was that always the plan?
“We remember our mom coming home with lab samples of makeup pencils from a trade show, and when we saw them we were like, ‘Oh my God, these are the coolest things ever!’ [This] was very confusing for our mom, as makeup pencils have been around for at least 20 years already. Not only did we think that a pencil applicator was super cool, but using pencils for your makeup was also uber intuitive. We've been writing and drawing with pencils since kindergarten, so taking that skill to our faces was such an easy transition. Pencils give flawless precision but still make your makeup application fast and fun.”
Courtesy @nudestix Instagram
What's your typical workday like?
“If we're not in the office in Toronto, we are working on creating social content or going into stores such as Sephora to educate beauty advisors. Other times we travel to our major markets such as Mexico City, Los Angeles, New York, or Asia etc. While in the office, we are often testing, naming, and creating new products and always looking for innovation.”
What is it like working with your family?
“Working in a family business is amazing as you constantly have a travel buddy. It gives us a topic we can all talk about and relate to. Sometimes it's hard to be with each other literally all the time, especially sharing rooms while traveling, there are literally no boundaries! However, it's such an amazing experience that it's all worth it in the end, as we've grown so much closer.”
What is the biggest piece of advice you've learned running Nudestix?
“The biggest piece of advice we can give is that there are constant challenges and obstacles you will face while starting a business. However, you must continue to push through and continue to innovate. It's important to understand that a startup isn't your average 9 to 5 job, it's literally 24/7.”
What advice would you give to your younger self?
“We'd probably tell our younger selves to get some sleep, as we didn't anticipate how much we'd be lacking in the future!”
Courtesy @nudestix Instagram
What are your favorite products in the range?
“My favorite product in our range is our concealer! I have [sensitive], super oily, acne-prone skin with eczema, so it can be hard to find a concealer that not only looks good but feels good too. Our concealer is dermatologist tested and scored a zero, which is what water scores, so it doesn't matter if you have the most sensitive or allergic skin, we've got you covered! It's medium-to-buildable coverage, which you can layer without the makeup looking ‘cakey.’ “
What has been your proudest moment so far?
“One of our proudest moments was in our first year, we won CEW Indie Brand of the Year and WWD Best New Launch of the Year. For such a young brand to win these amazing awards was such an honor, and we will continue to push ourselves and work harder for another winning year.”
What's next for the brand?
“What's next for Nudestix is that we are continuing to expand globally and invent new ways to turn your makeup bag into pencils. Stay tuned.”
Have you tried Nudestix? What are you favorite products?
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