Kimberly Smith founded Marjani Beauty in January 2017 after she noticed a lack of representation of Black and brown women in mainstream beauty campaigns. Smith believes that women of color are trendsetters in the beauty world, yet she was not able to find companies that truly valued Black and brown women’s unique beauty.
Marjani Beauty’s CEO, Smith, created the company as a safe space in the beauty world where women of color could come and shop products made specifically for them. The store is an online and in-person beauty boutique based out of Washington, D.C. specializing in high-quality beauty products for Black and brown women.
“There is intentionality behind everything you’ll find in our stores and our website. This isn’t about just gathering a bunch of things and you sourcing through it. This truly is a prestige beauty boutique, and you are coming for things that your skin needs and things that you want.kim
“We are careful to select brands and products that are on the shelves and that they work well with our skin, our tones and our textures. Everything is curated and there is a lot of attention and detail that is happening behind the scenes to make sure that we are presenting what our customers want to see,” Smith said.
At Marjani Beauty, there are no beauty standards. Smith believes that anything can be beautiful, as long as a person wears themselves with confidence. In her stores, Smith helps women to break away from mainstream beauty standards by having clients focus on the specific features that make them feel most beautiful and by supplying products that enhance this natural beauty.
Smith wants Black and brown women to turn away from the standards that tell them they should not wear bold colors and blush and instead to seek out products that help them feel like their most authentically beautiful selves.
She explained, “There are no rules in beauty. It is about how you want to present yourself. If you are confident enough, you can wear anything.”
What sets Marjani Beauty apart is they will only sell you what you need and never more. Their beauty experts carefully curate products for black and brown women. Their curation is so finely tuned that they offer hard-to-find items you cannot find in other beauty stores. Marjani Beauty meticulously trains their master brown girl beauty curators who review and select makeup that women of color would actually want. In addition to makeup, these products include enhancing serums and non-toxic formulas that promote healthy and vibrant skin even when you are rocking a bare face.
Smith’s current favorite products available at their store include a non-toxic braiding hair by New Village, the Longwear Liquid Lipstick in fuchsia by Bossy Cosmetics, a vitamin c serum, and the Second Skin Foundation Stick by Glamazon Beauty Cosmetics.
In the near future, Smith plans to expand Marjani Beauty so that more women outside of the DMV area access their services. She also plans to start mentoring emerging Black-owned beauty brands to help them get ready for retail.
“I want everyone to know that we exist,” Smith said.
To other aspiring entrepreneurs, Smith advises you to “just start.” She said, “Procrastination can be the death of starting a business. If you have an idea that is keeping you up at night, then that idea is for you.”
You can shop Marjani Beauty by checking out their website, or by visiting them in stores on Connecticut Avenue in Washington, DC.