Bobbi Brown

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Bobbi Brown
BBallure - Retouched by Ben.jpg
BornApril 14, 1957
OccupationMake-up artist, businesswoman, entrepreneur
Known forFounder of Bobbi Brown Cosmetics
Spouse(s)Steven Plofker

Bobbi Brown (born in 1957)[1] is an American professional makeup artist, author, and the founder of Bobbi Brown Cosmetics.[2][3][4][5][6][7] Brown created ten natural-shade lipsticks which according to Entrepreneur "revolutionized the beauty industry".[8] She has written nine books about beauty and wellness.[9][10][11]

After leaving Bobbi Brown Cosmetics in 2016 she launched Beauty Evolution, LLC and became certified as a health coach through the Institute of Integrative Nutrition.[12][13][14] Brown also started a line of beauty-inspired wellness products.[15][16] She curates an editorial website.[17][18] She and her husband Steven Plofker reimagined The George, a 32-room boutique hotel located in Montclair, New Jersey.[19][20]

Logo of Bobbi Brown Cosmetics


Born in Chicago, Illinois to a Jewish family, Brown graduated from Emerson College in Boston with a degree in theatrical makeup and photography.[3][4][21][22] In 1980, she moved to New York City to work as a professional makeup artist.[3][9] Brown became known for a makeup style that included moderate and natural tones, which was a stark contrast to the bright colors used at the time.[3][23][24]

She and a drugstore chemist created a line of ten lipsticks on beige pigment. In 1991, Brown and her husband partnered with another couple to launch the brand Bobbi Brown Essentials, which debuted at Bergdorf Goodman in New York City.[21] Estée Lauder bought the company in 1995, retaining Brown as an employee of Bobbi Brown Cosmetics.[3][4][25] In October 2016, Brown stepped down from the company.[26][27]

Her work has been featured on the covers of magazines such as Elle, Vogue, Self and Town & Country.[4][28][29][5]

Brown has received the Glamour Woman of the Year Award, The Fashion Group International Night of Stars Beauty Award, and The Jackie Robinson Foundation's ROBIE Humanitarian Award.[30][31][32] She was appointed by President Obama to the Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiation and has been inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame.[33][34] She holds honorary doctorates from Montclair State University, Fashion Institute of Technology, Monmouth University, and Emerson College.[35][36][37][38] Following the release of her second make-up company in 2020, Allure magazine labeled Brown the "world’s patron saint of 'natural makeup.'"[39]

Cosmetic lines[edit]

Bobbi Brown Essentials[edit]

In 1990, Brown worked with a chemist to come up with ten natural lipstick shades.[9][40] In 1991, the ten shades debuted under the name Bobbi Brown Essentials at Bergdorf Goodman.[41] She was expecting to sell 100 in a month but instead sold 100 in a day.[42] The following year, she released yellow-toned foundation sticks.[41] Estée Lauder Companies Inc. bought Bobbi Brown Essentials in 1995, but Brown retained creative control of the makeup line.[40] In 2007, the first freestanding Bobbi Brown Cosmetics retail store opened in Auckland, New Zealand with a makeup school in the back of the building.[3][1] In 2012, Bobbi Brown's cosmetics were estimated to represent approximately ten percent of Estée Lauder Companies' total sales.[40] As of January 2014, there were approximately thirty free-standing Bobbi Brown cosmetics stores.[25]

In December 2016, it was announced that Brown would step down from the company by the end of the year.[43] Following this, she continued creating new lines and participating in the beauty industry through other projects like beauty podcasts,[44] a makeup MasterClass,[45] and her website[46]

Jones Road[edit]

In late October 2020, Bobbi Brown launched her second beauty brand, Jones Road.[47] The launch marked twenty-five years since she first sold her original line to Estee Lauder.[48] It has been described as a "clean beauty" brand.[49] According to Yahoo, which reviewed the line, this "approach is evident in the brand offering: a curated edit of makeup and skincare that doesn't overwhelm."[50] Its original offerings included balms, moisturizing cream colors, mascaras, glosses, washes, eye shadow, eye pencils, and powder. They were also sold in combination in a start-up kit.[51]

Other product lines[edit]

Bobbi Brown has a collection of fragrances[41][52] and a collaboration with In 2013 Safilo Group S.p.A. for an eyewear collection.[53][54] She is a creative consultant at Lord & Taylor.[55]

Evolution 18[edit]

In 2019, she founded Evolution_18,[56] a “lifestyle-inspired wellness line”.[57] The products she developed for the line included supplements, collagen, and effervescent tablets,[58] and were sold at outlets including Walmart.[59]

The George Hotel[edit]

In 2015 Brown and her husband acquired a historic inn located in Montclair, New Jersey, which was built as a private residence in 1902. It became The Georgian Inn in the 1940s,[60] and after they purchased it, they renovated the property and renamed it The George Hotel.[61][62] The hotel was opened in 2018 and has 32 guest rooms.[60][63][64]

18 Label[edit]

Brown cofounded 18 Label, a film and television studio based in New Jersey. Networks that have filmed in the studio have included CNBC, BSTV,[65] and the Food Network.[66] Brown has appeared on Food Network series, including The Kitchen[67][68] The studio is housed in The Annex (also cofounded by Brown), an 11,000 square foot studio and event center.[69]

Media work[edit]

Editorial work[edit]

Bobbi Brown is the Beauty & Lifestyle Editor of Elvis Duran and the Morning Show.[70] She partnered with Duran to produce a "Elvis Duran bronzer" as a part of her cosmetics line.[71] Brown served as Yahoo Beauty's Editor-in-Chief from February 2014 to February 2016.[43] A chance meeting with the grandmother of an NBC Today Show producer led to a 12-year run as a regular beauty consultant on the show.[72] Brown has also written columns for PureWow, Naturally, and Danny Seo.[73][74][75][76]


  • Bobbi Brown Beauty: The Ultimate Resource (1995) (ISBN 0-446-58134-8)[1][41]
  • Bobbi Brown Teenage Beauty: Everything You Need to Look Pretty, Natural, Sexy and Awesome (2000) with Annemarie Iverson, New York Times Best Seller (ISBN 0-06-095724-7)[77]
  • Bobbi Brown Beauty Evolution: A Guide to a Lifetime of Beauty (2002) (ISBN 0-06-008881-8)[21]
  • Bobbi Brown Living Beauty (2007) (ISBN 0-8212-5834-6)
  • Bobbi Brown Makeup Manual: For Everyone from Beginner to Pro (2008) (ISBN 0-446-58134-8)
  • Bobbi Brown Beauty Rules (2010) (ISBN 0-811-87468-0)
  • Bobbi Brown Pretty Powerful (2012) with Sara Bliss (ISBN 0-811-87704-3)
  • Everything Eyes (2014) with Sara Bliss (ISBN 978-1-4521-1961-8)
  • Beauty from the Inside Out (2017)[78]


Bobbi Brown Cosmetics launched The Pretty Powerful Campaign for Women & Girls on International Women's Day in 2013.[79] Pretty Powerful supports organizations that seek to empower women through job skills training programs and girls through education.[25][80] Beneficiaries to date include Dress for Success, (she is also an ex board member of the organization),[81] the Broome Street Academy High School, and the Girl Rising Fund.[25][82][83]

Personal life[edit]

Brown is married to Steven Plofker and together they have three sons: Dylan, Duke, and Dakota. The family lives in Montclair, New Jersey.[84] She spends her summers in Sag Harbor of the Hamptons, New York.[85]


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External links[edit]