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After getting her start as a makeup artist on both editorial shoots and backstage at runway shows in the 1980s, Brown founded her eponymous cosmetics line, which focused on the idea of enhancing natural beauty, in 1991. Brown became a household name and eventually sold her company to Estée Lauder in 1995, though she remained closely involved with its operations.
Brown has dabbled in other industries in recent years, taking on a role in the digital media world during a short-lived stint as Yahoo Beauty's editor-in-chief. She also spoke at our very own 2015 "How to Make It in Fashion" career conference, during which she let attendees in on her career philosophy: "I only like doing something if it's a challenge," she said at the time. "Entrepreneurs aren't afraid to do things they don't know how to do to."
Brown also bestowed some insightful advice to those with beauty industry aspirations. "Figure out what you want to do. Try things," Brown told the FashionistaCon audience. "Be nice to everyone — and not only because they'll do something for you but just in general. You never know what people are going through. Have an open heart and an open mind." Sound advice for just about any field, it seems. We look forward to seeing what Brown's next chapter will hold.
Update 12/20/2016: Representatives from Bobbi Brown have confirmed that Brown will be stepping away from the brand but declined to provide further comment to Fashionista, as did representatives from The Estée Lauder Companies. Estée Lauder released a statement confirming the news via its company website, saying this of the brand's future:
Bobbi Brown Cosmetics will continue to capitalize on the growth momentum in the prestige makeup category, building on the strong legacy Bobbi created. The brand’s philosophy of “Be Who You Are” is more relevant today than ever before and the brand will laser focus on connecting, teaching and empowering women globally. Fueled by makeup artistry, engaging and impactful social media and some of the most beloved beauty products in the world, Bobbi Brown Cosmetics is poised to achieve its full growth potential in this dynamic environment.