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This March ORLY is celebrating Women’s History Month by featuring twelve women who inspire us.

Each day we’ll be posting a Q&A and a New Woman’s History Month polish trio hand selected by each of our featured women.

The celebration doesn’t stop there - 10% of sales from all Women’s History Month trios will be donated to Downtown Women's Center.

Act fast!
Trios will only be available through March 31, 2020.
Click here to shop.

 

ALLISON MCNAMARA

Founder, MARA 

How did you know you had the right idea? How much did this idea change from initial concept to launching your brand?

I rely on my instincts when we are formulating and I knew when I received this submission that there was something really special about the formula. It has this delicious spa-like scent from a touch of bergamot and it sinks into the skin so beautifully while still giving you amazing hydration–all of which were attributes I was looking to achieve. I didn’t have a set plan when we were creating MARA, I just wanted to create something beautiful and effective, everything else fell into place organically.

How do you handle adversity and doubt? What about self-doubt? 

Owning any business comes with adversity–for me, it’s mostly production related. At the beginning I would get really worked up about it but I try and remind myself that there are some things that are out of my control and it’s pointless to get upset about them. Being a business owner has made me much more calm and more solution-oriented. I haven’t come across a load of self-doubt. I do think my background as an on-camera host gave me very thick skin, which I am so grateful for. I do my research, I believe in my products and ultimately, I just hope people love them even a quarter as much as I do. I’ve been really lucky so far, people seem to really be resonating with our products.

What has been your biggest set-back or road block and how did you handle that situation?

We’ve had to push launches because of components getting stuck in customs or tied up, we’ve also had some of our exotics on world wide shortage–meaning that there was a world shortage on the supply. It happened last year right as we were about to sell out of our Algae Retinol Face Oil, which is a power SKU for us. Luckily, it all worked out and we’ve learned. We are constantly monitoring our production cycles and our ingredient supplies so we don’t run into this issue while still maintaining the freshest ingredients. 

As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? 

So many things–a TV host, an actress, a scientist… I’m lucky, I’ve sort of been able to touch all three.

What advice would you give your teenage self? 

Stop trying to look like everyone else! And lay off bleaching your hair and self tanning. 

What was your dream job before building your brand? 

Anchoring E! News. I got pretty close, I was the co-host on POPSUGAR Now on PopTV and got to co-host On the Red Carpet at the Oscars for ABC.

What inspired you when you were younger? What inspires or motivates you now?

Being in nature, the ocean, a long bath… I don’t think that’s ever changed.

What piece of advice would you give to young women today? 

If you have an idea that’s burning a hole in your mind, you should absolutely go for it. But, don’t start a brand or business just to say you have one–it takes a lot of work and most businesses don’t succeed. You have to really freaking love it.

Allison McNamara Bundle

$28.50
The shades in this bundle were curated by Allison McNamara of Mara. 10% of proceeds from this bundle will be donated to Downtown Women's Center, the only organization in Los Angeles focused exclusively on serving and empowering women experiencing homelessness and formerly homeless women.
This bundle is exclusively available through March 31. 2020.

Shades included:
  • Coffee Break
  • Snuggle Up
  • Prince Charming

All shades are Leaping Bunny Certified Cruelty-Free, Vegan, and Free From Harmful Chemicals.

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