Every time I open up my Instagram, it seems like I’m introduced to a new celebrity beauty line.
I can’t say I blame these celebs — if I had massive influence and millions of Instagram followers, I’d want to cash in on this $50 billion industry, too. It’s what made Kylie Jenner a billionaire at just 21.
Other successful celebrity beauty lines include Fenty Beauty by Rihanna, The Honest Company by Jessica Alba, Haus Laboratories by Lady Gaga, and Rare Beauty by Selena Gomez. Jennifer Lopez is also set to release JLo Beauty in January 2021.
These women are some of the biggest stars in Hollywood. They’re talented, beautiful, and glamorous, so of course their fans are fawning over their beauty products.
But one of my favorite people to fangirl over long before I knew anything about hair and makeup was AJ McLean from the Backstreet Boys. And he’s now added his own line to the beauty mix. Yes, AJ McLean — the tattooed, “bad boy” of the group — now has a nail polish line called Ava Dean Beauty.
AJ has always been a beacon of individuality — it’s a reason his fans love him. One of his trademarks, besides wearing loud hats and sunglasses, is his manicured nails. He is known for wearing black nail polish, and no one has embraced this quirk more than his two young daughters, Ava and Lyric.
AJ McLean’s Story — The Brilliance of Ava Dean Beauty
I know what you’re thinking. Is there really room for another nail polish line in this cluttered industry? Does Ava Dean Beauty even stand a chance? The answer is “yes” because AJ is marketing it just right.
Here’s what makes this brand launch a success.
Let’s start with the obvious. AJ is a bit of the black sheep of the Backstreet Boys, and he’s certainly a black sheep in the beauty industry. It’s not often you hear of a beauty line created by a man. This fact alone is notable and will capture attention. It’s unexpected and unique, which makes it easily marketable.
Ava Dean Beauty also breaks down gender stigmas and promotes important conversation.
As Simon Sinek says, start with why. AJ had a clear purpose for starting Ava Dean Beauty: his daughters. At-home manicures became AJ’s way of bonding with his girls during those breaks in his busy schedule of recording, touring, and rehearsing. He wanted quality time with his family, and now, they’ve created something together.
Each nail polish in the Ava Dean collection is named after a member of the McLean family, including his wife Rochelle.
What’s one of the biggest drivers of a brand’s success? Passion. There are many instances where celebrities, or anyone, will create a company simply to make money. They design products or force deals that don’t make sense or align with who they are. It’s all business.
Thankfully, AJ made sure Ava Dean Beauty was true to him. This benefits not only himself, but his fans and customers. His brand isn’t a gimmick. He didn’t just slap a logo on T-shirt and watch the sales come in. He collaborated with his daughters to design something meaningful to them, which makes it meaningful to his audience. This connects people to Ava Dean Beauty on a deeper level.
It’s communicated with a story.
It’s no secret that I will support pretty much anything a Backstreet Boy does. They’ve marketed to me since I used my allowance to buy their CDs. But as a marketing professional, I’m especially proud to support Ava Dean Beauty and am impressed by their promotional messaging.
The homepage of the website immediately personifies the brand with heartwarming photos of AJ painting his daughter’s nails. The shots weren’t taken in a photography studio, but authentically in the comfort of their own home. The copy speaks to the brand’s purpose and creates an emotional connection.
When you click on to read their full story, it goes on to say:
This wouldn’t be the first time something a Backstreet Boy has done has gone straight to my heart! I happily pre-ordered my own nail polish and it should arrive in Spring 2021.
Perfection is Boring
On the surface, the beauty industry may seem like it’s all about perfection, especially when backed by celebrities who always look flawless. But the most game-changing players in beauty aren’t about perfection. Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty champions diversity, while Jessica Alba’s Honest Company is about ethics and safety. Ava Dean Beauty represents family and acceptance.
Whenever you stand for something bigger and more purposeful than your products themselves, your audience will get behind you.