DMU student opens cosmetics line amidst COVID-19 pandemic

By Mary De- Wind

A student from De Montfort University launched her successful cosmetics line in late May, during the height of the pandemic, and has now shipped orders worldwide.

Twenty-year-old Tamara Tavares studies Fashion and Communication at De Montfort University and is currently in her second year.

She said: “I’ve always loved fashion, but I never really wanted to go into design. So, I picked a course that does everything EXCEPT design.

“I’ve been a waitress since I was 14 and I’m tired of working in customer service. I wanted to find something I can do from home.”

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) the unemployment rate from June to August was 4.5%, which was 0.5% higher than the previous year.

Tamara continued: “Coming to university I realised everyone had their side hustle whether it was doing hair, food, nails or a clothing line.

“I was so focused on sports I pushed it to the side.”

During the pandemic Tamara came across a YouTube video about creating lip glosses and lipsticks. She began to learn more about it and do her research.

She decided she wanted to build a brand that would support her studies.

Photo taken by Tamara Tavares

Tamara launched Kriola Kosmetics in May 2020 and has sold over 80 lip-glosses as well as shipping products to France, Switzerland, Luxemburg, Portugal, and USA.

The word ‘Kriola’ comes from Cape Verde where she is from. Kriola was made for young, independent women fit for anyone. Currently, there are nine different shades of lip glosses. They are vegan, organic and cruelty free.

Tamara’s goal long term is to add more products as well as have someone who would help her in the production side of her business who would help her pack orders, make shades, and post the product.

“It’s a lot of work. I would rather solely focus on the content, product launch and technical elements,” said Tamara.

For those who are still in the procrastination stage of starting a business Tamara advises to “JUST DO IT and stay consistent. Consistency is key!”

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