SHOW & TELL
70+ beauty brands bring their wares to Dallas
Los Angeles, New York… After hosting successful Indie Beauty Expo events in these major cities, co-founder of Indie Beauty Media Group (IBMG) Jillian Wright asked exhibiting brands what city should host the next one. They voted Dallas, beating out strong contenders like Miami and Chicago. “It’s no surprise to me,” says Wright. “I started visiting Dallas when we began our partnership with Neiman Marcus and I was blown away by the thriving art, fashion, and wellness community.”
And so in spring 2017, Dallas hosted its first Indie Beauty Expo. A resounding success, the expo is now returning for a second year, May 9–10. “But every expo is different,” says Wright. “It’s because all the brands are different—no two events are the same.”
What can we expect this year? For starters, the chance to discover, connect with, and sample more than 70 brands from around the world. Unlike trade shows, which often just provide real estate in a convention hall of crowded booths, Indie Beauty Expo builds a platform for emerging brands in an ever-growing (and tough!) market.
Participating brands receive coaching on ways to grow their business and forge important connections with retailers, investors, and press. (Plus, they’re all vetted by Wright and her team, meaning every brand you’ll encounter on the expo floor is a yet-to-be-mined gem.) Organic, all-natural, and highly niche lines are among the highlights.
Wright, an esthetician who previously ran her own clinic and skincare line, created the expo because of a need she felt during her own business’s journey. “Before I started my skincare line, I was totally focused on my clients and running my business,” she says. “So when I launched, I just assumed: If you build it, they will come.” Not so in the chockablock beauty world. And so in an attempt to network, Wright committed to a spa trade show. “I didn’t know how to design a booth, or set up, or pitch… I felt so deflated after because there was no support or community. That’s when I got the idea to do my own show and do it really differently. This way, brands get exposure; buyers attend to find the next big thing; and consumers get to shop new products.”
Next week will be the eighth Indie Beauty Expo. Not only has the number of exhibitors doubled since the first, the event itself has expanded to include a retail leadership summit for entrepreneurs, BeautyX. “We wanted to focus on ways to educate and empower business owners to feel confident while scaling their companies,” says Wright. (Virgina Acosta, Director of The Spa at The Joule, will be among the featured panelists.)
Though many of the names in attendance hail from international destinations—Haiti, Switzerland, Australia, et al.—a few didn’t have to travel far. Hummingbird Farms, milk + honey, and Beauty by Earth are among the more than two dozen brands representing the Lone Star State. “The caliber of brands this year is one of the highest we’ve ever had,” says Wright. “Dallas is a beauty city, so we’re excited that it’s all taking place here.”
The Details: Indie Beauty Expo, May 9–10. Thursday, May 9, 5–9 p.m. is open to the public. $30 for general admission. Purchase tickets here. Thursday, May 10 is reserved for buyers, press, and industry professionals. Click here for more info. Sixty Five Hundred, 6500 Cedar Springs Road.