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How important is it for a brand to have a good story/history behind them?


How important is it for a brand to have a good story/history behind them? Share!

I don’t pay a lot of attention to the background or history of a brand, but I consider it more of a bonus if it’s interesting/good/aligns with my personal values.

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I mean, I haven’t bought anything that isn’t from a cruelty-free or vegan company in the last year due to my personal beliefs but I sort of don’t care if they set out to be vegan and cruelty-free or if they just happen to be.

I always pay attention to the history of a brand. I seem to gravitate to brands with an interesting upbringing or anything really that gives the brand a more personal touch. To me it just makes the brand seem more authentic and luxurious.

I’m not interested in supporting companies that obviously have ethical issues and have had several controversies or issues. There are so many makeup brands in the world, I would rather give my money to a company that I trust.

Zero! The best story in the word can’t save a bad product. However, I do care about what a brand stands for. For example, organic beauty products are catching my eye, but I won’t excuse a bad product because of that.

If there is an indie brand that’s demonstrated a solid work ethic and extraordinary effort to put out an excellent product, I will purchase their products to support them. I also don’t mind paying a higher cost since their ability to mass produce is limited.

Companies like Lime Crime and one other indie company who has demonstrated bad faith by duping Beauty Bloggers on YT and blogs to promote their products and then don’t send orders out with months and months of excuses and lack of communication will never get my business.

Poor customer service is a deal breaker for me as well as rigid return policies.

I guess these things are more important to me than history. Well established brands often become apathetic and don’t put out the quality they started with when they were small, i.e. their customers are no longer their highest priority.

If there’s something skeevy in their background then I won’t support them. Questionable business practices and dishonesty are issues I can’t get past and I won’t trust brands who have a history of such.

This is really a very interesting question.
I was thinking about it the other day. To me a repetitive history about someone who died decades ago (A la Brand with two Cs) is even annoying than good. I like new creative names and color stories, not same thing over and over again. But probably I am minority here.

I could not care less. There are so many makeup products that I have no time to read any stories, even good ones. I choose by color and texture. For skin care I shop by ingredients, again skip any stories all together because my skin will react not to stories but the product. I am not saying the brand should not care about its image, but as long as it is not extremely weird, negative, visually sloppy, or inconsistent, it won’t push me away from the product.

Story/history only serves to provide me with an introduction to a brand, to learn their focus and what they felt was missing from other brands. However, I only buy products based on formulation and performance. As a rosacea sufferer I have learned not to trust brand claims, well-intended as they may be!

After reading the latest horror story about Lime Crime I’d say it’s very important. I love makeup but I don’t support companies with bad business practices or shaky morals. I prefer to support companies who are open, honest and respectful of all people.

Personally I like to know who/what I’m supporting when I spend my super tiny budget for beauty items. I don’t have much disposable income (if any) and I feel it’s important to know as much as I can find out about what I am buying and from whom, for health reasons and personal principles. I’ll pay a bit more for quality, honestly made products the maker can be proud of and is transparent about their retail business dealings.

I try to buy as consciously as possible whenever I shop (based on availability and reasonable prices), and that carries over to all areas of purchase.

I’m usually a bit curious why a brand was created in order to serve a target demographic, ie, brands that tend to use more “organic” ingredients, or target a specific skintone, but in the end, I still buy across the board of it catches my attention.

That said, there are brands that start out with an ideal, but then change ideals after they become more mainstream. For example, LORAC was a brand I was willing to to pay more money for as one of the selling points was they were talc-, paraben-, and petroleum-free, but looking at the more recent lists of ingredients, that has all changed. I think it has to do with wanting to lower prices in order to sell in stores like Kohl’s, but it’s really turned me off of the brand…

I think it’s very important for a company to have a good history or a record of supporting causes related to their consumer base. History has shown what happens when a company’s brand conflicts with their consumer base (ie see Lululemon). As a college student I participated in boycotts against U.S. companies that supported South Africa’s system of apartheid. Now that I’m an old geezer, I try to keep myself abreast of news relating to companies I patronize. I was recently informed that one of Revlon’s chief executives made derogatory comments relating to people of color. If true, it would certainly impact my decision to buy products from Revlon or its subsidiaries. So yes, a company’s history is relevant to me as a consumer.

I assume we’re talking about beauty products and the exotic tales that brands use to market them. When considering products that figure prominently in how we present ourselves, it’s perfectly natural to gravitate towards brands that reflect our esthetic taste, life style, cultural leanings, and fashion preferences. Because of that, an interesting story can serve as a good marketing hook to attract consumers, but if the brand doesn’t offer products that perform well, then consumers will move on to something else. However, when a brand come ups with an interesting and compelling marketing strategy and then backs it up with an outstanding product, it’s like striking gold.

Example: Tatcha uses an ancient geisha beauty book as inspiration and has made its exotic mystique the focal point of their beauty campaign. Images of ancient wisdom, serenity, timeless beauty, graciousness, and generosity abound—but so do excellent skincare products! It is the allure of Japanese culture that initially attracted me and keeps me connected to the Tatcha community, but it is the outstanding results I’ve gotten from the products that keep me repurchasing.

Complicated question. On one hand, if the products are bad, all the good intentions & good history in the world won’t make me buy again.

But on the other– I don’t buy from a brand who has demonstrated repeated shadybusiness and has a bad reputation for IP / customer service / hygiene issues, which is why one indie darling company will FOREVER be absent from my makeup collection.

OTOH, if a brand goes, “okay, we are going to fix all of the upsetting things in our brand history and try again,” after a reasonable amount of time, I’m willing to try them again. Which is why I own a lot of Aromaleigh– I appreciate the fact that they got their crap together.

I would say I’m typically more neutral about having a good story or history behind a brand. For starters, I like that Bite Beauty is Canadian (whoop whoop!) and has food-grade products. But I have (and love) lippies that aren’t food grade, too. I still expect good quality from Bite. And there was a 2013 Nars x Guy Bourdain collaboration which I wouldn’t purchase because of my own views of violence against women, etc. but I still own many other products from Nars. It really depends I suppose.

Well good products are good products anywhere, from anyone. But since my preference is Indie brands I definitely look for a good reputation and a well thought out presentation.

I generally don’t care about a company’s origin story. “It was started by a girl with an empty eyeshadow palette and a dream!” isn’t going to convince me to buy a product if the quality isn’t there.

On the other hand, I will pay attention to companies that have earned a reputation for mistreating customers and bad business practices. There are so many makeup companies out there now that there is no reason to support a company with a history of bad behavior

For the most part, not. A great story is icing on the cake. However, if a brand does something really shady (like some companies with a rep for bad customer service, or that have multiple reports of harassing and threatening to sue reviewers/bloggers), I won’t buy from them.

I think more customer service and product quality is important to me. Also, companies that offer no return policy, I don’t support. I am fairly new to the world of Indie brands and the news about Limecrime baiscally treating bloggers with disrespect took them off my list of likes. Stuff like that will knock a company off. So, now I always do my research before I buy. I think makeup should be fun and pretty and we should all get along in this pretty business amongst this cruel world. I don’t like the competiton crap..I left high school a long time ago with a huge smile on my face and haven’t looked back.

It’s fairly important. When a brand has an interesting story it gives it a more defined identity, and I’m more attracted to a brand that has a unique personality.
It’s also a double-edged sword. There are brands I refuse to buy from because some aspect of their identity or history makes me reject them entirely. Example: Tom Ford and his history of creating extreme misogynistic porn ad campaigns for his men’s fragrances.

To me it’s definitely important, like with recent events with Lime Crime I’ll never buy from them. It’s a shady company all around so they’ve been on the blacklist for years. When brands pull racist things like advertising (Illamasqua) or the Revlon events I just don’t even want to support them anymore. My makeup drawers are a happy place and I don’t have space or money for brands with questionable ethics.

I’m a writer and a history buff, so I like a company that has an interesting story behind it, although all the cool narratives in the world won’t make up for bad business practices or a subpar product.

If you mean reputation, then yes it is important to me. If a line is known for quality products then I like that very much. Ultimately the products themselves determine whether I like them or not : )

Absolutely! I think this question was inspired by what’s going on with Limecrime Makeup. It’s been rumored (and proved) that credit card information has been stolen after purchases within the last 3 months. This is very disappointing because as a customer, I should be able to trust your companies security that my information will remain confidential. Also, it is disappointing because Limecrime has had shady situations happen in the past that includes product repackaging (they used smaller companies’ products and sold them as their own), false vegan friendly advertisement, and many other things. Knowing all of this, even though I REALLY wanted to try their products due to praise, I will not. I cannot support a company that ultimately wants to scam their customers. That goes for ANY company, not just this one.

There are so many competing brands on the market, I’m interested to know what makes a brand different, what makes their products better, what the company thinks justifies bringing still more products of a similar kind into the marketplace, what a company thinks they’re up to — beyond the hype, smoke and mirrors.

If by story/history one means something like ‘track record’ (say, in customer service or ethics), then obviously I’m against brands with a bad one/multiple transgressions. If it’s an indie brand, I’m willing to give them more of a second chance, because the people running them are not necessarily comfortable yet with running a business/customer interactions/managing things as a solo operator and might just have had a bit of a meltdown that they can learn and grow from. Repeat offenders, however…

There are brands out there that have a really nice ‘story’ too (usually involving the word’ natural’ or ‘organic’), but it doesn’t appeal to me because it’s really all just fearmongering and marketing BS. The really egregious ones aren’t too common, but they certainly exist, and they kind of offend me. Note: I’m not implying that natural/organic-focused brands are bad (not at all!!), just the singular ones that treat us like idiots when they themselves can barely spell the things they’re trying to make you afraid of so you’ll give them all your money. Leveraging a lack of specialist knowledge to make a profit from (baseless) fear is so utterly cynical and despicable, I can’t even. T_T

If one means actual history/story in the temporal sense, then I find it to be a really nice bonus, and cool to look into. Especially really long-standing brands like Maybelline or Rimmel, because I’m particularly interested in the evolution of the products and their formulae. If it’s the story of an individual (like Chanel), then I also find it interesting, often because the individual themselves is quite complex and controversial. I wouldn’t excuse or buy a sub-par product on that justification, though!

I don’t buy into the “fear-mongering”, but I am willing to pay more for what I call “3-free” faceproducts (talc-, paraben-, & ppetroleum-free), as I have noticed a remarkable improvement in my skin since making the switch 3 years ago. I do however use more “mainstream” products on occasion, when I want something a bit more polished, but for day to day life, I’m good with a more natural look-plus, since my skin is sooo much better, I need less coverage. On a related note, I also don’t buy into more expensive brands being any better for ones skin than cheaper ones when it comes to mass-market cosmetics; in fact, alot of DS foundations lack many of the potentially irritating ingredients found in HE ones…

I think it’s pretty important if it’s publisised enough. Like, I can’t buy anything from Lime Crime because Doe Deere is such a questionable character. The story behind her company and the history of her business practices are kind of insulting. Other than that, ignorance is bliss. Don’t know- don’t care.

I prefer brands that deal ethically and are cruelty free. There is no excuse for animal testing in my view and I know a lot of companies don’t do it anymore. That being said, the product has to be excellent and worth the money they charge for it. Some brands have a lot of hype surrounding their product releases and yet the product itself is poor. Thanks to blogs like this one we can sort the wheat from the chaff.

I think it’s important that the product is of good quality because ultimately it has to work for you. But if a company is unethical or I don’t agree with what they do, even if the product is good I won’t support it.

I don’t really buy into a company’s supposed ethics for the most part. Take the vegan/all natural thing for instance – that has been touted by many a company because it’s a great selling point but then you do a little digging and find out their products aren’t completely vegan or all natural because it’s virtually impossible to mass produce cosmetics or beauty products without some kind of preservative or unnatural product that will have a lengthy shelf life. Lush comes to mind. They have some pretty good products but their prices are, to put it bluntly, stupid. $10 for a wee bottle shower gel because it’s vegan and has a sticker with the face of the person who supposedly made it? Nah!

I do find myself gravitating more toward niche or smaller companies these day though. I feel like most of the smaller one are forced to put more time and effort into their products than say, a company like MAC. I love me some MAC and have never, ever had an issue ordering from them or returning something, but they seem to be more about quantity than quality these days. I’m more inclined to pay a little bit more for a product that is great but doesn’t contain all the eye grabbing bells and whistles than I am for something that is supposedly “Limited Edition” that will inevitably pop up again in a year or two. In fact, I’m rather over the whole “Limited Edition” hype from everyone. I think it’s solely slapped on a product to cause a fervor.

This makes me think of a brand I was a rep for years ago. They decided to “rebrand” and the story that the founder had told over and over again suddenly including many new parts about natural ingredients and how devoted this person is to keeping out certain things. It was a decisive marketing tactic. And at that same time, they were trying to source more and more packaging and ingredients from China. It’s totally smoke and mirrors and PR. I do love good ingredients, but buyer beware.

Would you ever cease using products that are tested on animals and/or sold in China? Or do you feel the the performance of the product outweighs the negative aspect that is treatment of the animals? I honestly hope this doesn’t sound rude, I am genuinely interested in your response as someone who has tried more makeup than most, I feel like you probably have a very well formed opinion. Thank you.

Personally for me, I will not buy from a brand that has been involved in shady and controversial business practices, like lime crime for example. I can’t support a company that behaves that way. Or companies that have increasing and consistent reports of terrible customer service. I do support companies that are open and honest and hardworking. If they have an interesting upbringing or history then that’s a plus.

I think it’s important when they are trying to launch a very new idea or limited edition stuff. Sometimes the concept it’s whimsical and I love when they use fine art as inspiration , or trying to push a seasonal launches into a new level.
Niche brands like Tatcha, who uses Geisha skincare regimen as inspiration, perfectly explains and relives the traditional asian beauty essence with their story.
Also I agree with you, Christine, that I like the brand value aligns with my personal value.

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