ST. PAUL, Minnesota (FOX 9) – Lip Esteem, a new black woman-owned business selling plant-based cosmetics, celebrated its grand opening in St. Paul on Friday.
Tameka Jones, who grew up in the St. Paul’s Rondo neighborhood, was a makeup artist for more than 20 years when she was laid off due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
But that’s when she took her destiny into her own hands and her dream of starting her own cosmetics business came true. She took all her savings to create her own line of lipsticks, called Lip Esteem. And despite the pandemic and people wearing face masks, she found so much success at local pop-up events that she opened her own store in the Rondo neighborhood on Friday afternoon.
“I have to create generational wealth for myself, and not just for myself, but to help build the community,” Jones said.
She grew up in Rondo and saw a thriving community of black business owners, and she wanted to be part of the ongoing revitalization efforts in the neighborhood.
Tameka Jones of Lip Esteem (FOX 9)
Lip Esteem is a cosmetics company that makes plant-based, gluten-free, and cruelty-free products. Jones said this was important because lipsticks containing other fillers harm women.
“I want to have a product that will be beautiful and flirty for women,” she said.
Jones hopes to expand the cosmetics line to include eye shadow, mascara and more.
Lip Esteem at 876 Selby Ave. in St. Paul, opened on April 15.