Celeb brands have shown us that starting a business is NOT just for the rich and famous — but, the rich and famous sometimes leave us some really good inspiration for doing it.
Now, I’m all about learning from other business owners, regardless of whether or not they have Academy Awards or Leo DiCaprio on speed dial. But, lately, I’ve been getting a ton of inspiration from celebrity-owned brands in particular. The aspects of them that I think they do really well and I admire them, so it’s smart to study them. Whether it’s Shay Mitchell’s BEIS or Jessica Alba’s Honest Co. or something completely different, it’s always exciting to watch someone’s entrepreneurial journey unfold.
So, in case you’ve been feeling a little imposter syndrome or “idk if I can do it” vibes lately, here’s your reminder that you really DON’T need an MBA to start a biz. Just some passion.
Wait… Why Are Rich and Famous People Starting Businesses, Too?
I think it’s really easy to get jaded around things like celeb brands, especially if you think of them as a new revenue stream for people who are already wealthy. But, I like to think of it differently. I see it as more evidence that if you have want to achieve true lifestyle freedom — being able to work on other ventures that you love, financial independence, personal development and growth, etc. — working for someone else will never get you there.
A lot of the celebrities we see starting brands today have hugely successful careers already… and they still want to start a business, whether it’s to create a product they personally want or it’s to solve a problem that they feel called to solve. That’s pretty cool.
So are you feeling really pulled to starting a brand or business yourself? If so, go chase it. If Bruno Mars can do it, you can too. I promise.
My 10 Favorite Celeb Brands
There are a ton of celeb-owned brands on the market, and, honestly, there have been for a long time.
Does anyone else remember how good Britney Spears’ perfume line smelled? Or what about Mary Kate & Ashley’s clothing line?
Just like with any other businesses that exist, celeb brands are founded and run by smart teams with great ideas and legit business plans. And, while they’re not better than other brands because of it, it does make it easy and smart to learn from them, since they’re amplified by the names around them. Here are some of my favorites (that you can use to inspire your own):
Sona NYC — Priyanka Chopra Jonas
Did you know that Priyanka Chopra Jonas opened a restaurant?! She did, and the mission behind it is to provide timeless Indian fare in the city. Using her own heritage and background — along with a desire to fill a hole she saw in the food market in NYC — she worked to help create a beautiful restaurant experience that serves authentic Indian food. It’s such a great reminder that you don’t have to be the expert of all experts (in Priyanka’s case, an actual chef) to start something that you want to share with the world.
Favorite Daughter — Erin & Sara Foster
Erin and Sara Foster’s clothing brand, Favorite Daughter, is the perfect example of a celeb brand that came out of personal need. When it came to clothes, the sisters realized that there were certain pieces clothes they *wanted* to find in their closets, but didn’t have. So, they just made them themselves. According to Sara, the brand is really for the girl who is “kind of tired of shopping at Zara and wants sort of a level above that, but doesn’t really want to break the bank, but still look stylish.”
SelvaRey Rum — Bruno Mars
Celebrities + alcohol brands may seem like a tired formula by now, but Bruno Mars took a different approach with SelvaRey. SelvaRey was already a single-estate luxury rum brand before the “Uptown Funk” singer’s involvement. After they launched, Bruno Mars then came on board as a co-owner and the “creative vision” of the brand, driven by his own true love for the actual product. Sourced directly from Panama, it promises to be “the smoothest rum you’ll ever taste.” Oh, and the packaging is beautiful: with bottles that are tall, slender, and rich in color with a rounded cork and a raised seal, it’s the kind of quality that you’d expect from a good Champagne (and not rum!).
about-face — Halsey
Similar to celeb-owned alcohol brands, celebrities launching their own cosmetics lines has been the norm for a while. But for Halsey, it actually seemed like a natural next step for the singer who has been known to be her own makeup artist. She pulled on a lot of her own impact and reputation as an artist who pushes boundaries and doesn’t color in the lines here to create a makeup brand that reflected that — both electrifying and fun.
Once Upon a Farm — Jennifer Garner
Jennifer Garner is a mom who wanted more organic, easy-to-access foods for her babies — so she created more organic, easy-to-access foods for her babies… and yours. It’s that simple. From being the first WIC-approved refrigerated baby food to giving back to the community, the brand Garner co-founded has become a big deal in the kid food space.
Kinlò Skin — Naomi Osaka
Naomi Osaka’s brand, Kinlò Skin, was founded out of a need — and that need was for skincare that actually works on melanated skin. From sunscreen to skincare, Osaka’s brand fills a BIG hole in the skin market… real, functional care for skin that makes up a massive piece of the population.
Just Water — Jaden & Will Smith
Jaden Smith (yeah, that one!) got the idea for a brand that created sustainable water bottle practices when he was 10. TEN. He carried the passion that sparked in him when he saw a plastic water bottle floating next to him in the ocean as a child and used that passion to do something good — a definite reminder to all of us that ideas-turned-businesses really can change the world.
Hello Sunshine — Reese Witherspoon
After years and years in Hollywood, Reese Witherspoon knows how male-dominated the film and TV space can be — so she started a production company geared towards elevating female stories, and it’s been a massive, massive success. From Little Fires Everywhere all the way to Big Little Lies, Hello Sunshine has been an absolute hub of award-winning, insanely popular storytelling.
Fenty Beauty — Rihanna
After seeing that it was way harder than it needed to be to find makeup that fit shades of darker skin, Rihanna went all-in on starting Fenty Beauty, which has since become a massively popular makeup and skincare brand dedicated to providing fierce looks for all, no matter what color their skin might be.
PATTERN — Tracee Ellis Ross
Curly, coily, tightly patterned hair is BEAUTIFUL — but the society we live in has often told those that curly, coily, tightly patterned hair isn’t. Tracee Ellis Ross’ PATTERN turns that way of thinking into an OLD way with haircare products that embrace natural hair and curls without crazy high price points.
So, use this as a little inspiration… and remember, the brand you want to start is waiting for you to start it. Whether you’re an actress or an accountant or an astronaut, it doesn’t matter — entrepreneurship and brand-building can be for every single person to take part in. Take the jump. Start the business. Make the moves.
If you’re ready to dial in your business idea and create a confident, driven brand that can scale and grow and make magic, we have you covered. Come sign up for our free (!!!) Big Brand Confidence Training today, and let’s go. Together.