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Five Successful Influencer Marketing Campaigns by Major Cosmetics Brands

In the beauty industry, aesthetic advertising is especially important and collaborations with stars and influencers are widespread. The reason for this is, for instance, that many influencers have specialized in the fashion or make-up industry. Thus today, we take a look at five successful influencer marketing campaigns of major makeup brands such as L'Oréal, Maybelline, and MAC Cosmetics, among others.

Beauty influencer filming herself
Beauty influencer filming herself

Key Takeaways

  • Experts expect the global cosmetics market to be worth $863b by 2024.
  • Examples of successful influencer marketing campaigns in the beauty industry include
  • L’Oréal x Edward Zo on TikTok.
  • Fenty x Golloria, also on TikTok
  • rare Beauty x Selena Gomez
  • Maybelline x Trevor Barrett
  • MAC Cosmetics x Johnny Ross

Despite the health and economic situation, the beauty industry remains popular with consumers. As trends, features, and formats continue to evolve, brands in this sector must also adapt their strategies, create innovative content, and foster relationships with KOL and consumers. So before we share with you five successful influencer marketing campaigns from well-known beauty brands, let’s introduce you to the industry itself. These key statistics, seen in the Kolsquare study, can be important to understand the industry and your target audience better and to optimize your own strategy accordingly.

Key Statistics for Beauty Brands in Europe and Worldwide Regarding Influencer Marketing

The Kolsquare study “Beauty brands & KOL Marketing in 2022” is based on the analysis of more than 3m Kolsquare influencers, including more than 587,000 profiles that mentioned one of the 170 analyzed beauty brands or used one of their brand hashtags at least once. In total, we analyzed 8,636,335 posts between September 2021 and August 2022 that mentioned corresponding brands or hashtags on Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, Facebook, and Twitter.

According to the analysis firm Zion Market Research, the global cosmetics market will be worth $863b by 2024. In the Kolsquare study, we give you detailed information on key industry figures, major players, the most influential influencers, inspiring campaigns (five of which we  present here), and general trends for 2023. You can download the study for free here.

L'Oréal x Edward Zo

Edward Zo is not only successful on Tiktok but is also an actor who has been interested in film since he was a child. Born in San Francisco, the American learned improvisation and trained with Margie Haber, among others. During this time, he also began to build a community on social media, where he drew attention to his difficulties in Hollywood as an Asian American. While his acting talent was being discovered in film and TV roles, he was building his YouTube fan base, which has now grown to half a million followers. His filmography includes “The Brits Are Coming” with Uma Thurman, Sofia Vergara, and Stephen Fry.

@edwardzo TikTok made me try it: Glow Paradise in shade "Peach Charm" by @loréal paris 👄 #viralmakeup #makeup #targetfinds #mensmakeup #lorealparispartner ♬ original sound - EdwardZO

For the campaign with L’Oréal, the influencer and actor chose a  lipstick in the color “Glow Paradise”, which he bought at  Target. It looks quite like the TikTok video is not part of an official campaign, but rather shows user-generated content. Edward himself describes the video as “TikTok made me do it,” which means TikTok talked him into trying this lipstick. He also references the “fragile masculinity disclaimer,” which warns of tarnished masculinity, in the  27-second video. This is quite a trend in the beauty industry in general. KOLs try to confront and thus ultimately break down the typified beauty ideals and benefits.

Fenty x Golloria

Also successful on TikTok is Golloria, who describes herself as a lifestyle, fashion, and beauty influencer. The Texas-born TikTok influencer promotes beauty products for her dark skin tone. In collaboration with Fenty, she emphasizes that this would be the first foundation shade that truly matches her skin tone. With this, she addresses a problem of cosmetic brands, namely that they have primarily and mainly developed products for light skin.

The collaboration of Fenty and Golloria fits well since  Fenty Beauty has made inclusivity its mission. Especially through social media, underrepresented groups have gained more attention and eventually access to products. Access to products is promoted more than ever before.

Rihanna defines her brand’s values: “Fenty Beauty […] was created for everyone: women of all shades, personalities, attitudes, cultures, and races. I wanted everyone to feel included.”

rare Beauty x Selena Gomez

rare Beauty is yet another cosmetics brand founded by a famous person. Women’s Health writer Amelia Bell was skeptical when Selena’s brand became available in Europe in early 2022: “Promises with bold claims and familiar philosophies wrapped with a shiny new bow often cause me to steer clear of a new brand for fear of disappointment.” But she was taught better. She hears about an eyeliner that conjures the perfect lash line, a liquid blush with so much pigment it lasts all day, and a tinted moisturizer that went viral almost immediately on TikTok.

Selena Gomez herself is not only a singer, actress, and businesswoman but also one of the top ten most followed people in the world. She founded the brand with the desire to destroy unrealistic notions of beauty. The wish became a reality and the brand is a huge success. TikTok reviewers sing its praises, hailing the Soft Pinch Liquid Blush as “the best blush ever” and other influencers proclaiming the brand as “the new Glossier.”

Maybelline x Trevor Barrett

With a following of 790,000 and 10.7 million likes (and counting), Trevor Barrett is also a major player in the industry. Galore magazine writes about him, “His art embodies everything we love […]: a bold, wild and unconventional personality that exudes glamour, authenticity and a unique sense of beauty and fashion.”

On YouTube, he inspires his fans with makeup tutorials for Maybelline, while on TikTok he convinces his peers with his transformation tutorials. He also still breaks prevailing beauty ideals and normalizes makeup for men with his content. In an interview, he says he’s been interested in makeup since he was twelve.

@trevorbarrett We did this fall look on Live & a lot of you loved, so here’s a step by step!!🍁🥰Used ABH rose metals for this look & @esteelauder Eyeliner Pencil #makeuptutorial #makeuphacks #eyeliner #fallmakeup ♬ Lofi - Domknowz

MAC Cosmetics x Johnny Ross

No matter what tutorial you’re looking for, you’ll find it on TikTok, YouTube, Facebook or Instagram. Yet, Johnny Ross stands out because the Lyndhurst-based man combines products with performance and a message. His videos are more than makeup tutorials as they convince  you with comedy interludes and denounce gender bias to finally overcome homophobia in the beauty industry. He himself comments in New Jersey magazine, “As a man who does makeup, it’s much harder to get a foothold in the beauty industry on social media because there’s a one in 100 chance you’ll be mentioned. Beauty brands don’t want to feature men as often as they do women. And it’s incredibly difficult to get that attention.”

About Kolsquare

Kolsquare is Europe’s leading Influencer Marketing platform, a data-driven solution that allows brands to scale their KOL Marketing strategies and implement authentic partnerships with KOLs (Key Opinion Leaders). Kolsquare’s technology enables marketing professionals to easily identify the best Content Creators profiles by filtering their content and audience, and to build and manage their campaigns from A to Z, including measuring results and benchmarking performance against competitors. Kolsquare has built the largest community of influencer marketing experts in the world, and offers hundreds of customers (Coca-Cola, Netflix, Sony Music, Publicis, Sézane, Sephora, El Corte Inglés, Lacoste, …) the latest Big Data, AI and Machine Learning technologies to drive inspiring partnerships, tapping into an exhaustive network covering 100% of  KOLs with more than 5,000 followers in 180 countries on Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. As a Benefit Company, Kolsquare has been pioneering Responsible Influence by championing transparency, ethical practices, and meaningful collaborations to inspire change.

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