Manna Kadar is the self-made, self-funded minority mompreneur behind the fast-growing Manna Kadar Cosmetics family of brands, which includes Manna Kadar Beauty, Goddess by Manna Kadar, Beauty and the Bump, Haute Dog luxury pet products, Mason Man Skincare, and Manna Kadar Luxe Bath and Body. She is a 20-year beauty industry veteran who is the creator of the “7 Minute Face,” Kadar’s three-step, award-winning Beauty Simplified System quickly gained the attention of national outlets such as “E! News,” “Good Morning America,” and “The Today Show.” The award-winning Beauty Simplified System separates the makeup application process in 3 steps; Step 1-Prime, Step 2-Polish, and Step 3-Perfect, with each product clearly indicates which step the product should be used.
Her innovative approach to both beauty and business earned her a spot among the “Top 40 Under 40 Beauty CEOs,” along with being named 2018’s USC Alumni Member of the Year. The Manna Kadar brand made Inc. Magazine’s 2020 “Top 5,000” list and is published among the fastest-growing enterprises in the Los Angeles Business Journal. Leading with heart, Kadar sits on the boards of Goodwill and USC’s Women in Business while giving back 10 percent of the company’s annual profits to philanthropic organization.
What’s the story behind Manna Kadar Cosmetics? Why makeup and beauty products?
“I was born in Paris, but raised in California by a strong single Asian mom and grandmother. I grew up in a tough neighborhood, so I witnessed first-hand the everyday battle to survive but was taught that education and enterprise were the way out of the daily struggle. So when I was 16, I purchased my first cosmetics kiosk at the local mall, and started to play the entrepreneur game. At the same time, I worked hard to get accepted into USC where I studied Finance and Distribution Management. I really took what I learned in the classroom to the real world and was able to grow my mall-based cosmetics chain to 7 stores in 6 years. After that venture, I developed a chain of tanning salons but realized I could maximize revenue by having a beauty bar in the lobby…this eventually led to the creation of my own line: Manna Kadar Beauty. By really listening to the needs of my customers, I developed products that delivered real-world beauty solutions. It’s pretty crazy to look back today and realize I have grown it now to six brands with more than 600 SKU’s in 40,000 stores nationwide – all without an outside investment. “
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How did you take MKC from the idea stages to where it is now?
“Trial and error, persistence and perseverance. Also, just dive in, sometimes it’s best to just start somewhere and learn as you go and grow!”
How much has your look changed since you started MKC?
“I think it’s important to evolve and change with the times, if not you are left behind! I describe my personal look as “Coastal Chic.” As for the brand, I try to stay on top of the trends (as far as packaging and color themes go) and then deliver a timeless product that is both effective and multifunctional.”
What is beauty to you?
“Beauty is not only on the surface… yes of course I believe in a good glam session (I invented the Beauty Simplified System: prime, polish, and perfect – that requires 7 minutes or less!) but I am a big believer of beauty on the inside. This means harnessing the power of kindness, and giving from the heart. That’s beautiful!”
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What advice do you have for moms pursuing entrepreneurial ventures?
“Being a “mom-prenuer” myself means a few things: it’s ok to ask for help, be a multi-tasker, schedule in time for you (like workouts and spa or self-care days). Oh and invest in a good business coach!”
What is your favorite product from your line?
“I think the Manna Kadar Cosmetics PRIME TIME concealer ($24 https://www.mannakadarcosmetics.com/collections/step-1/products/prime-time-eye-and-lip-primer ) Prime Time is like a 3 in one product. The primer will prevent eye make-up from smudging and creasing, while keeping eyeshadows vibrant throughout the day. Use Prime Time on your lips to prevent feathering and keep lipstick or lipgloss from fading. As an added benefit, Prime Time can be used as a concealer or highlighter.”
Products you dabble with?
“Here’s a handful of items I dabble with when I’m not using Manna Kadar Cosmetics 🙂 The complexion renewal pads from Zo skin Health, the Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Hydra-Gel Eye Patches from Peter Thomas Roth, the Living Proof Dry volume blast Shampoo and last but not least, the DPHUE Color Touch up spray.”