Hot! Doe Deere, Lime Crime

Lime Crime of Los Angeles and New York, launched in 2008, offers innovative beauty products ranging from opaque lipsticks to eyeliners and eye shadows.

‘Ah ha’ moment that led to launching this business: I was posting make-up tutorials on my site, when I realized I wasn’t 100% happy with the cosmetics I was using. So I decided to create my own line.

Ideal customer/target market: Women ages 15-29.

First customer or client: I was lucky enough to already have a following as an internet personality.

Measuring success: I measure success in happy customers. Being named one of the Top 50 Most Inspiring Women Entrepreneurs by Self-Made magazine, along side Suze Orman and Arianna Huffington, was a big achievement for me. But simply receiving a thank-you letter from a customer can make my day, any day.

Biggest struggle: Being an online personality means you have your share of haters. Learning to ignore what they’re saying and instead focusing on being the best you can possibly be is the struggle I’m most proud of having conquered. Never let anyone tell you you’re not good enough.

Surprise!: How much it changed me — for the better.

Promoting business: Using myself as the face of my company has done more for us than I can express. Personality marketing has its pitfalls, but I enjoy sharing a piece of me and my world with my customers tremendously.

Two things you wish you would’ve known: How much work it would be. I’ve never had a job that required double-shifts before — and I enjoy every minute of it.

What keeps you up at night (business-wise!)? Excitement. Sometimes I get so excited about what I’m about to do tomorrow, my mind keeps going and can’t turn itself off.

Ever tempted to throw in the towel and just get a job? Never. I already have the best job in the world making beautiful designer cosmetics. How can I possibly better-deal it?

Pricing/advice on getting it right: Pricing is easier for me because I’m my own customer. Whatever I feel the product is worth and I’d be willing to pay, is its price tag.

Funding/advice on pursuing it: I invested my own money, and to this day my company is completely self-sustaining. People think you need a lot of money to start your own cosmetic business but it’s not true — what you need is an idea, and the passion to make it happen.

A few tips that are specific to your industry: Make sure your product is unique. Create your dream product — and customers will follow.

The absolute best part of owning my business is: getting to see my vision come to life and creating my dream products every single day.

If I had to start over again, I would have: done it sooner.

I never imagined: turning off my overly-excited brain at night would be so difficult.

If standing on a rooftop facing crowds of aspiring or struggling small business owners, I would shout, “Stay true to your vision, no matter how odd it might be.”

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