Meet The Woman Behind Cult Beauty Line Drunk Elephant And See What She Has Up Her Sleeve Next

Drunk ElephantPhoto Credit: Drunk Elephant

If you haven’t heard about Drunk Elephant, it’s time to get on board. Luckily, we’re here to trumpet about the brand for you! This cult skincare brand was created by founder Tiffany Masterson because of her own personal skin issues—an oily T-zone, sensitive skin, the occasional break out, mild rosacea and visible pores. She sought a solution, identifying six ingredients that she believed were at the root of her issues—the “Suspicious 6″—and because she couldn’t find products on the market that addressed these concerns, she made them herself.

Such as this: When skin is exposed to irritants and sensitizers, damage can be imperceptible and cumulative, leaving it in a reactive mode; skin isn’t so much “sensitive” as it sensitized over time.  She formulated her products with high percentages of actives at the ideal pH levels, and make sure all the ingredients were easily absorbable and recognized by the skin, resulting in a new category of skincare that she describes as “clean-compatible.” Here, we chatted with Masterson about her cult brand, what products you need to try and what’s next for the brand influencers just can’t get enough of!

Tiffany Masterson Photo Credit: Drunk Elephant

Tell us about your recent House of Drunk experience. What made you decide to create the pop-up? Was it successful? Will you be doing similar initiatives in the future and if so, what?

It was so much fun. I loved coming face to face with the fans and also people who were just learning about the brand and philosophy. We launched the UK and Singapore with a pop-up and it was so well received that we decided we wanted to test it out in NYC, the home of many devoted customers. I would classify it as a success, yes, and we would love to take it on the road. We think we may be in Los Angeles in the spring of 2020. It’s really nice to bring the brand to life and have people step inside to experience Drunk Elephant.

Who is the Drunk Elephant woman? Who do you find is using the brand predominantly?

What we are discovering is, it’s not just a woman…it’s a baby, a teenager, a grandmother, a husband, a woman, a man, a whole family. We see all ages, ethnicities, backgrounds. The one thing they all have in common is the search for products that really work to solve whatever issue they may be dealing with or want to avoid.

Drunk ElephantPhoto Credit: Drunk Elephant

Have you found there’s a cult following for one or two particular products? What are they? What is the feedback?

No, I have found there’s a cult following of the philosophy though. We avoid the suspicious 6 ingredients, Essential oils, silicones, chemical screens, SLS, fragrance/dyes and drying alcohols: the unnecessary ingredients that we believe are the top contributors to unhealthy, dysfunctional skin *and* at the root of skin “behaviors” like sensitivity, acne-prone, combination, redness, excessive dryness/oiliness, etc. When removed, my theory is that skin can do what it knows how to do and reset to a healthy state. The overwhelming feedback is that when people use Drunk Elephant exclusively, or take “a clean break”, their skin transforms to normal and balanced. It’s strange for a skincare brand to not have one or two heroes, but honestly, the products take turns at the top due to the tendency of our consumer to use the whole line instead of just one product.

Why did you decide to re-create Lala Retro, a fan favorite product?

I believe there is always room for improvement, so when it occurred to me that ceramides needed a more prominent place in my line, instead of making a whole new product, I decided to add them to an already great one. I didn’t know I could like it more, but I do.
If you think of skin cells as bricks, think of ceramides as the mortar holding them together. Ceramides are lipids that are naturally present in skin, but sun damage and age deplete them. They help form a protective layer that locks in hydration, helps maintain balance and protects against visible damage from environmental stressors. By giving them back to skin, we are feeding the surface barrier what it needs to protect itself and thrive. More hydrated, plumper, firmer-feeling skin is the result.

What’s next for Drunk Elephant?

Possibly more categories! That’s what the consumer is asking for more than anything and it would be exciting for me to deliver that.

Drunk Elephant House Of Drunk
The recent House of Drunk experience in NYC

Photo Credit: Craig Barritt/Getty Images for Drunk Elephant

What products do you personally use every day?

I use most of the products on a daily basis, but I really listen to my skin and let it tell me what it wants and when. I only cleanse at night. I apply a mixture of C-Firma, D-Bronzi, Lala, B-Hydra and A-Passioni every morning. I top it with Umbra sunscreen. I cleanse at night with Slaai or Beste, and then apply a mixture of Protini, Marula, TLC Framboos and B-Hydra. I use Lippe multiple times per day. I use the eye creams morning and night.

What is your beauty mantra?

Be yourself and bare skin is the best revenge. 😉

What would you like to tap into in the market that hasn’t been done before (or hasn’t been done for awhile)?

I’d love to tap into other categories using my philosophy, which hasn’t been done before. My community has been asking for it and I think it could be very interesting!