Tyra Banks on Beauty, Business and ‘Badassery’

Tyra Banks

Tyra Banks on Beauty, Business and ‘Badassery’

The model-mogul spills the glam details behind her edgy new makeup line.

Published October 7, 2014

So, you wanna be on top? Tyra Banks is no doubt the person to look to. The supermodel and business mogul is continuing her beauty-meets-entertainment domination with the launch of her new cosmetics line, TYRA beauty. At a press conference announcing her latest venture on Monday, Banks revealed that she’s been hard at work developing the brand for the past few years and said it’s the reason why she attended Harvard Business School’s Owner/President Management Program two years ago.

“My line, in general, I created for the makeup enthusiasts who are obsessed with makeup, and also for those who are super intimidated by makeup,” Banks said. Rather than making her line available at department stores, Banks will hire independent contractors, “Beautytainers” (beauty-entertainers, that is) to spread the word (click to the link to learn how to join). She hopes to take the lessons she’s learned in business to empower others to become entrepreneurs and CEOs of their own lives.

“What we are doing with TYRA beauty is you can purchase the products on Tyra.com and experience those products right now. But what we’re gearing up for is something called CEOYou Selling, which is my version of direct selling. So if you think about Avon or Mary Kay or Amway, these types of companies that actually empower people to be entrepreneurs and to be their own bosses. And so that’s what we’re doing with TYRA beauty,” she said.

Beautytainers will attend the aptly-named Tyra University online to learn the tools and technology to run their businesses on their own schedule, she says. “We’re taking it to the next level and making it edgy and sharp and cool.” 

Functioning under the banner of “business, beauty and badassery,” TYRA beauty has no shortage of edge and coolness. Everything from the website’s bold, contemporary design to the sassy how-to videos Banks stars in mirrors the fierceness we’ve come to expect.

And because our girl loves a great catch phrase, she’s injected some fun ones into her products. For starters, there’s “Smack My Fat Lash” (a homage to her now infamous response to those criticizing her weight back in 2006), a volumizing and lengthening mascara, and Oops Liner, Banks’ favorite product. It’s is dual-ended with a felt-tipped eyeliner on one side and corrector tip on the other to clean up smudges and perfect any cat-eye.

“I was always intimidated by top liner, whether doing my makeup backstage at a fashion show or doing my face for the red carpet. I would always skip top liner because it was always so messy and just looked a hot mess. So I thought, what can I do to ease the insecurities that I have that I know millions of women have?”

The beauty even teamed with Motown’s newest recording artist STORi for “BOOTYful,” a club-inspired anthem Banks describes as a “badass rhapsody.” “I knew I wanted the TYRA beauty experience to have its own soundtrack, because I really wanted to touch all of the senses — sight, sound, touch, everything,” she said.

She said the banger’s catchy hook, “Work that hallway/Like a runway,” means “taking life by the horns and just going for it. You know, there’s so many people in life who tell us that we’re not good enough and are not going to reach our goals, so to take every moment and milk it and show the world that you deserve the best.”

She continues, “The fun part about it is, let’s have fun [with our makeup]. Let’s do things differently. When we go to work, let's throw on a false lash and a red lip. We don’t need to save that for nighttime. Working the hallway like the runway is just like going [full force] in normal situations and being unapologetic about it.”

The supermodel said she took her best tips and tricks from her years on the catwalk to create a line that works for all skin tones and textures, both young and mature. As for the one TYRA beauty product every woman needs to get runway ready, “I think it’s a 2 Minute TyOver Kit,” she said. (Pictured below). “It’s Sculpt in a Stick and Light in a Stick. Sculpt in a Stick is a contour stick that goes under the cheekbones. Light in a Stick is a highlighter that you use on top of the cheek bones, and you can even go down your nose and on your cupid’s bow. This really makes your bone structure really pop.”

Besides equipping women with the tools to pull off any beauty look, at the heart of her company, Banks remains focused on empowering others to achieve their dreams. And that’s something worth smizing about.

“I feel like there are so many people in life that feel like they are bound by their circumstance. Like, this is the life I am dealt. This is the block that I will always live on. This is the life I will always have based on obstacles. It is the main reason I started CEOYou Selling and creating this army of badass Beautytainers, people that are going to be the CEO of their lives. They are going to be able to change their lives if they’re dedicated and really have what I had in my career, which is tunnel vision.”

Are you excited to werk Tyra’s new cosmetics collection? Tell us in the comments section below!

BET.com always gives you the latest fashion and beauty trends, tips and news. We are committed to bringing you the best of Black lifestyle and celebrity culture.

Click here to subscribe to our newsletter. 

(Photos: Tyra Beauty)

Written by Britt Middleton


Latest in style