Makeup artist/entrepreneur, Sonia Kashuk, is a pioneer who is responsible for creating the unique category of luxury at mass. She started her career in the early 80’s collaborating with esteemed photographer Arthur Elgort where their work together led to assignments for Vogue, Elle, Bazaar and numerous other fashion publications.

From 1989-1997 Sonia joined Aveda as creative director of Cosmetics. In 1997 she co-authored Cindy Crawford’s Basic Face, an instructional beauty workbook. In 1999 Sonia partnered with Target in launching her namesake beauty brand, providing exceptional cosmetics and professional beauty tools that focused on great quality and beautiful design with an affordable price tag. This was the first for a retailer to partner with a makeup artist, making Sonia the first makeup artist to enter the mass market. Sonia published her second book Real Beauty in 2003. That same year she was honored with the prestigious Cosmetic Executive Achiever Award for recognition of her visionary thinking and unrelenting dedication to the beauty industry. Allure magazine named Sonia Kashuk one of the top innovators/influencers of the year in 2009.

2015 was a big year for Sonia. She was honored by Cancer and Careers with the Beauty of Giving award for her philanthropic support of the charity. It also marked the sale of the Sonia Kashuk brand to Target. Sonia currently resides between Miami and New York City with her husband Daniel Kaner, founder of Oribe Haircare and their two children Jonah 22 and Sadye 18.

Q&A with Sonia

1. How did you get into beauty?

By accident! I was working on the video for the song Funkytown doing the wardrobe and at the last minute the makeup artist cancelled…I had NO idea what I was doing, but I loved it!

2. Why do you love indie beauty?

The word indie is not intimidating…it gives everyone the opportunity to start something they are passionate about.

3. How can you help indie brands?

Hopefully my background and insight of starting a brand can help others that have that same desire. Also, I am a BIG believer that there is always room for a great idea no matter how crowded the space may be.

4. If you could give indie brands one piece of advice, what would it be?
Go for it! But have strong belief and passion in your vision. Stay focused.

5. What is the best piece of advice you’ve gotten?
It is time to sell your business. 🙂

6. Favorite motto or inspirational quote?

“Think ahead.” and “As one door closes another one opens.”

7. Must-read email, blog, publication?

Business of Fashion, CEW Beauty Insider, Robin Report, WWD, Glossy and Lean Luxe.