Bombshells are killing it internationally!
And today, I am happy to highlight Estelle Domlan, the Paris based PR Director of Benefit Cosmetics:
Benefit Cosmetics is a makeup powerhouse that was founded in San Francisco, and is now owned by LVMH. As the head of PR, Estelle spreads visibility for Benefit worldwide, both in print and online.
She told us, “I’ve been in the fashion and beauty industry for over 20 years now. I started working at Giorgio Armani at the press office in Paris. I began as a press assistant, and then I was the PR manager, more targeted on celebrities. I did that for 6 years. Then I moved to beauty, first at Gucci for 5 years. Then Gucci took over other brands such as Dolce Gabbana, Trussardi, Lacoste, Hugo Boss and was part of the group Proctor & Gamble (or P&G Prestige). I was in charge of press relations as well at that time, so in charge of organizing events for the press. “
She continued, ” I moved to Benefit 5 years ago. We are an American brand even though we belong to LVMH, one of the leading fashion groups in France and the world. My role is to grow brand visibility in print media and social media. I have tight relationships with beauty, fashion, and lifestyle influencers, where I present them with the products that Benefit launches.”
After majoring in English at La Sorbonne and then getting a Masters Degree in communication, she scored her first job in the industry as a receptionist at Giorgio Armani–simply by picking up the phone and calling. She said, “I come from a modest family. Giorgio Armani was at Place Vendome. At the time, I had never been to Place Vendome, I couldn’t afford anything on Place Vendome, but I wanted to touch this fantasy world of fashion and beauty. I called them, and asked if they were looking for someone. And they said they were looking for a receptionist. I said, ‘I’ll take the job.’ And that’s how it started.”
She went from receptionist to PR Manager just by doing great work, dressing the part, and pouring passion into every project. She said, “I wanted to succeed. I showed my capabilities. They realized that picking up the phone was not enough for me. They started to give me more and more responsibilities. First as an assistant to the PR manager, and then as [PR Manager].”
She adds, “Nowadays it might be tougher to have this type of professional route, but if you try hard, and show your passion, you can succeed. Never give up. Show your passion, show that you care, work hard, show you are a professional, arrive on time, get dressed up, and it will show.”
For those looking to break into the industry, Estelle advises, “Be true to yourself. Show your passion. Be faithful to [your company]. Work hard. Show your expertise. And people will respect you. You get respect with hard work. Working hard means you show you care for what you do, and you develop your expertise.”
If you’re trying and trying with no headway, she offers, “Keep going. Keep trying. Show what you can bring to the brand. What makes you unique. Why would a brand pick you? Try to make something special. Try to be authentic. Being fashionable is a great way to differentiate yourself from the others. The way you look can definitely make you unique.”
Dressing the part and looking your best are essential parts of the game. But what if you can’t afford expensive clothes? She says, “I mix designer clothes with cheap brands. I am wearing a Kenzo dress with Zara accessories. I even wear Primark. I mix Louis Vuitton shoes with items from Primark. And if you have a fashion sense, you can find very cheap clothes even at the flea market, even if what you wear is only 20 Euros.”
Tips regarding fashion and beauty? “I work in communication and am the ambassador of the brand. Whenever I work, I do my hair and I put makeup on. I want to look good whenever I come to work. Once I was not feeling very well, and I came to the office with no makeup on and sneakers. And people noticed. I said to myself that me looking good is important for those around me, too.”
In closing, she leaves us with an acronym she learned at P&G: PIE, which stands for Performance. Image. Exposure. She explains, “I have to perform. I have to take care of my image. And regarding exposure, every time the CEO is coming, I make sure I stand out so that I can explain what I do, and my results.” Lastly, the mantra she lives by is, “I will succeed. I will do anything to succeed.” And she’s doing so fantastically well!
Be sure to follow Estelle on Instagram @TheGlamstel, and stay tuned for even more Breaking into Fashion Interviews from Paris!
What do you think?
Main Image: Guillaume Landry
PS Many influencers might want to know how they can work with a brand like Benefit! Estelle says, “I check first to see if they’re brand loyal. And then I reach out to them, and invite them to our events and to come see our new products. That’s how all of our relationships start.” To be a brand an ambassador, you have to love the brand before the brand loves you!
**Purchase some of Benefit’s most popular products below: