Lottie Tomlinson's transformation from 'shy' teen to beauty boss

Gillian Wolski
Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
Lottie Tomlinson is way more than just One Direction star Louis' little sister. Photo: Instagram/LottieTomlinson.

We’re calling it now, Lottie Tomlinson might just be the next big beauty mogul after billionaire Kylie Jenner.

While many may know her older brother, Louis Tomlinson of One Direction fame a little better, the talented makeup artist is making a name for herself all on her own with a new line of self-tan - and all at the tender age of 21.

But just five or so years ago, the softly spoken Londoner was a long way from the international-brand-owning business boss she is today.

The Instagram star - she boasts 3.4m followers - used to be so timid that she ‘didn’t dare speak,’ her best friend/business partner Lou Teasdale reveals in an exclusive chat with Yahoo Lifestyle.

Lou (left) and Lottie show off their tans. Photo: Instagram/louteasdale.

Lottie and Lou, who are in Sydney for the Aussie launch of their new tanning brand, Tanologist, met in 2015 on One Direction’s ‘On The Road Again Tour’. Lou was a primary hairstylist/makeup artist, while a then-teenaged Lottie was her ‘geeky’ makeup assistant.

“Lottie was 15 when she came on tour with us, and she didn’t dare speak, she was so scared,” Lou says.

“And she knew she wanted to be a makeup artist, she was such a geek. She’d memorised all of the [product] codes of the stuff in MAC and I thought, she’s cute,” she laughs.

“I was really shy,” Lottie pipes up.

Lottie reveals her past battle with shyness. Photo: Instagram/LottieTomlinson.

While she may have stayed quiet, Lottie was taking everything in.

“I was just like, learning about the industry and watching Lou work and getting tips from her. I think the main thing that I learnt was just to work well with people in a team,” she says.

The learning went both ways, Lou explains, with social media-savvy Lottie teaching her a thing or two about platforms like YouTube and Instagram which were just gaining traction at the time.

“Together we learnt so much from each other. Lottie taught me about YouTubers and all this weird exciting stuff that was happening on social media that people my age in the industry were quite slow on picking up,” she says.

The pair joined forces and began ‘putting up pictures and being experimental with beauty’ on Instagram, successfully engaging One Direction’s older female teen fans.

With a hefty social media following and a ‘crash-course’ courtesy 1D under her belt, it was natural for Lottie to build her own brand.

Lottie and Lou's Tanologist range is vegan and cruelty-free. Photo: Instagram/Tanologisttan.

Enter Tanologist, a line of Self Tan Water, Mousse and Face & Body Drops in several shades so you can ‘personalise’ your tan.

“I’ve always been into self-tanning but over the years I struggled to find one that worked for me, it would always clog my pores and make me break out,” she explains.

It’s fair to say that Lottie’s had her share of self-tanning disasters on her search for the ‘perfect’ tan - patchy coverage, stained bedsheets and that ‘green-y coloured mousse on my carpet!’

“So I decided to create a range that did everything I couldn’t find in an existing tanning product,” she says.

Their new formula is clear, so it’s bedsheet and clothing-friendly, as well as vegan and cruelty-free, something the pair knew their consumers wanted thanks to feedback on social media.

“It’s important for everyone to be able to use it,” Lottie says.

And with Tanologist on shelves in the UK, the US and now Australia, Lottie’s on her way to steal Kylie’s krown, er, we mean crown.

The Tanologist range starts at $17.99 and is exclusive to Priceline.

Some of the links in this article may return revenue to Yahoo Lifestyle Australia.

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