Star of Stranger Things Millie Bobby Brown is about to launch skincare and make-up line Florence by Mills. At just 15 years old, she’s the youngest celebrity to break into the burgeoning beauty business, and in doing so giving Gen Z what they clearly want – given that she’s one of their own.
While we presumed it was only a matter of time before the actress would bag a beauty contract – fronting a fragrance or similar, she was busy working on her own brand for the last two years (between filming two series of the cult Netflix show, campaigning as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, designing a customisable collection of Converse shoes, covering magazines like Italian Vanity Fair, endorsing Samsung and UEFA, plus a whole lot more). As teen entrepreneurs go, Brown’s breaking ground.
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so here it is, florence by mills. literally the love of my life, i cant begin to explain the love i have for this and how hard but crazy excited i was to create it. 2 years of creating a beauty and skincare brand jeez... that's a long time to keep a secret but now i can finally share the news with u all !! thanks for all the love and support you guys give me every single day, ohhh and also follow @florencebymills ily
When it comes to Florence by Mills – which pays homage to her great-grandmother and references her own nickname – the concept is of clean, cruelty-free formulas with sharable names, photogenic packaging and the ethos of enhancing self-expression. All very 2019.
In the line-up comes skincare including a ‘Clean Magic Face Wash’, ‘Zero Chill Face Mist’, ‘Dreamy Dew Moisturizer’ and ‘Swimming Under the Eye Gel Pads’, all presumably intended to target the specific skin needs of teens (hormonal breakouts, dehydrated complexions, late night-induced under-eye baggage) – and the impulse to selfie. Why else would the gel pads be purple and the face mask shimmering pink?
The make-up looks similarly playful – as it should – with colour cosmetics like ‘Glow Yeah Lip Oil’, plus the more practical products such as ‘Like a Light Skin Tint’.
Brown’s Instagram video announcing the news has received nearly four million views in a day, while the brand account which has been live for the same time already has upwards of 300k followers. It proves what Beach House, the brand’s parent company who have worked with Brown on the collection, already know. Founder Shaun Neff told WWD of the news that the actress “probably has more influence over Gen Z than anyone else in the world.” She's capitalising on her own influence with the knowledge of the needs of her generation, which feels so much fresher than lending her presence to a big company to do so on her behalf. It harkens back to Estee Lauder's failed partnered with Kendall Jenner on The Estee Edit which flopped soon after launch, while her little sister was building her own empire, Kylie Cosmetics, one that has led the celebrity beauty start-up explosion.
In a market so saturated, Brown is somehow filling a gap. Whether a teen needs a ‘Look Alive Eye Balm’ isn’t the point, not only is beauty the ultimate celebrity merchandise (and hey, this is infinitely better curated than the Spice Girls Impulse body spray of the ‘90s), it lets them feel represented, and lends them the tools to decide what beauty means to them. Which, no doubt, is what the future looks like.
From Harper's BAZAAR U.K