Most women love wearing lipstick — but not everyone loves the parabens and artificial dyes found in some commercial brands. That's why Ingrid Butler created LipScape (www.yourlipscape.com), lipsticks made from ingredients such as castor seed oil and shea butter.
"I took a trip to Syracuse, (N.Y.), and the harsh winter damaged my lips," Butler says. "I looked for a lipstick that would moisturize and rejuvenate my lips, but I could not find anything. I wanted something with a creamy feel to it. Then, I decided that I could make my own."
In April 2013, Butler started working out of her mother's kitchen to create her lipstick brand. Butler's advertising was strictly word-of-mouth until she created her website, where she sells her lipsticks nationwide. Soon after creating an online presence for the brand, Rise Boutique (3650 Magazine St., 504-304-5485; www.facebook.com/shopriseclothing) began selling the lipsticks, many of which come in unconventional shades like Imperial (a deep teal) or Embargo (a periwinkle-pewter). Suffrage is a deep red that flatters most skin tones.
"It's one of my most popular colors," Butler says. "The color is bold, and I felt that it needed a strong name." — LAUREN HARTMAN
Flashy was the intended theme for Fifi Mahony's (934 Royal St., 504-525-4343; www.fifimahonys.com) when Ryan and Marcy Hesseling opened the shop in 1997.
"We ... started with the idea of supplying cosmetics you couldn't find just anywhere," Marcy Hesseling says. "And they needed to be highly pigmented and pretty wild to go with our assortment of wigs."
Fifi Mahony's signature line of cosmetic products includes mineral foundations, blushes, glitter and nail polishes. This year, Fifi Mahony's added a homegrown brand to its sparkly arsenal: local makeup artist Nikki McCoy's original line, Killer Cosmetics.
"I love cosmetics and bright colors," McCoy says. "A lot of companies don't make things that are true, bright and colorful."
McCoy created her makeup line with versatility in mind: The vividly hued cream liners work on lips, eyes or as face paint. Heavily pigmented, the long-lasting makeup doesn't smudge, and products can be mixed to create unique colors.
"I like cosmetics that are multipurpose," McCoy says. "These let you step out of your comfort zone." — LAUREN HARTMAN & MISSY WILKINSON