Reporting Natalie Nyhus
BLOOMINGTON, Minn. (WCCO) — You know how there are some Minnesota bands that sell out concerts in New York City, but barely draw a crowd here? That’s kind of the same story with a Minnesota business that’s exploding around the country, and around the world.
The New Brighton-based business Sigma Beauty was started online by a veterinarian and an engineer. And now they have a new brick-and-mortar store at the Mall of America.
From one little brush, Simone and Rene Xavier launched what’s now one of the fastest growing companies in the beauty industry.
“It would take me forever to paint my entire face with (a brush) this shape and this size,” said Simone Xavier. “I don’t have much time, I want to do my makeup quick and be on the way.”
So they engineered a better solution — a thicker brush with fuller bristles.
“This is what really put Sigma on the map. We rewrote foundation application history,” Simone Xavier said.
She comes from a veterinarian background, and he came from engineering, but as Simone Xavier said, they both come from backgrounds emphasizing research and function.
After four years, the company sells online in more than 100 countries, this year they say they will do $25 million in sales.
“For a four-year-old company, it’s crazy. We would never think we’d get this far. It started as a hobby, a side-project,” Simone Xavier said.
Every year brings new innovations. They patented a special glove used to wash brushes.
“You can wash the brush now in one-fourth the time you’d spend using your hand,” Rene Xavier said.
Another innovation is a synthetic brush that replaces the traditional goat hair. They claim they sell thousands of that brush online every week.
Now with a space at Mall of America, they want Minnesota to know what’s happening right here.
“We are very famous outside Minnesota,” Simone Xavier said.