While most people spend their university days staying up late, partying and sleeping in until noon, Iris Smit was busy building a beauty empire.
The 24-year-old from Perth founded the Quick Flick winged eyeliner stamp at the age of 21, using breaks in between classes for her Interior Architecture degree to work on her design.
Now, just over a year after launching the innovative eyeliner and after turning down a $300,000 deal from the Shark Tank’s Andrew Banks, Iris’ company has expanded and it’s now worth $10 million.
Iris first thought of the idea for the Quick Flick back in 2016, when she became tired of having to spend 20 minutes drawing her winged eyeliner on everyday.
“I was just searching on the market for other tools or little hacks on how to do it and they were all just really awful and if anything they made the process even more difficult,” Iris told Yahoo Lifestyle.
After seeing the success Kylie Jenner had with her lip kits, Iris thought it would be genius to create a winged eyeliner kit, which made the process of drawing on eyeliner easy for beauty lovers.
“It’s got everything in it ready to go. One tool that helps with the whole look rather than having lots of different things,” Iris explained of the tattoo-like stamp, which helps people creating a perfect flick by simply stamping the wing on the side of the eye.
Just three months after launching the Quick Flick, Iris appeared on Channel 10’s Shark Tank, where businessman Andrew Banks offered her $300,000 for 27.5% of her business.
Despite accepting the deal, by the time it came to signing the paperwork five months later, Iris was ready to back out and go it alone, as her business had exploded.
“It wasn’t even worth the evaluation that it had been given on the show, it was worth so much more,” she said.
“And to be honest I didn’t really need the $300,000 anymore I had very healthy cash flow, I already had retail opportunities from Priceline coming in.
“The only thing that would have helped me maybe was Andrew’s contacts or advice but at the same time I kind of trust myself that I could do that on my own. I didn’t think it was the right fit anymore so I declined the offer.”
Business is booming
One year after the show went to air, Iris’ business is booming and it’s estimated to be worth $10 million. However, it took a lot of hard work to get it to where it is today.
“The night the show aired we did a few months (worth) of sales in a number of days. It was really challenging for me as a business owner,” she said.
“Most people scale their business to that level over a few years. I literally had to do it overnight. I really quickly had to put systems in place to meet those orders.”
The Beauty Fridge
Now Iris has created another game-changing beauty product that’s sure to disrupt the industry - the Beauty Fridge.
After noticing a lot of people were blogging about keeping their skincare and cosmetics in their regular fridge, a light bulb went off in Iris’ head.
“I noticed quite a few people were purchasing bar fridges from Amazon. But ugly bar fridges for beer and coke cans and then repurposing them for beauty fridges,” she said.
“They were calling them ‘my skincare fridge’ or ‘my makeup fridge’ and I thought this is really cool, there’s a new market that’s developing here.”
Iris began her research and she found at the time there was no other product out there that was marketed as a beauty fridge, designed specifically for skincare or cosmetic products.
That’s when she realised that consumers were after an aesthetically pleasing beauty fridge that didn’t take up too much space and could keep skincare and cosmetics at the correct temperature.
So that’s exactly what she did, creating a fridge that was set at a constant 4 degrees so that the products wouldn’t be spoiled and also added the ability to put it on a hot setting if someone wanted to use it for hot wax or hot towels after a facial.
Available in Priceline from September, the $129 Beauty Fridge claims to help to extend products’ ‘shelf life and reduce the risk of harmful bacteria becoming present’.
As for the next big thing on Iris’ radar, she’s constantly on the forefront of new innovative products, so watch this space.
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