LEXINGTON, KY. (Nov. 11, 2021) — Combining their expertise in communications, the beauty industry, medicine and women’s health, two University of Kentucky alumnae are using their passion for helping women to change the skincare industry.
Cecil Booth, a 1984 advertising graduate (now integrated strategic communication) from the College of Communication and Information, left behind a 20-year career in a Fortune 500 global beauty company to start her own company. In 2006, she started Beauty Booth with her sister, gynecologist Rebecca Booth, a 1981 general studies graduate from the College of Arts and Sciences. The sisters are equal co-founders and owners, but Cecil Booth serves as president and CEO, while Rebecca Booth serves as vice president and scientific officer. Together they founded the brand VENeffect.
VENeffect is named after the Venus effect, a metaphor the Booth sisters came up with to describe women at peak hormonal vitality. The idea behind the company came after Rebecca Booth, who had 20 years of experience at her own medical practice, talked to Cecil Booth about the lack of understanding women have about their hormones and the few solutions to their hormonal challenges.
“As a marketer working in a beauty company, I kind of had an aha moment,” Cecil Booth said. “Why don’t women know more about this so they can be strategic and plan for it, and where are the solutions that talk about the effects of hormonal change? And that’s when we decided to start the company.”
With years of experience working for Alberto-Culver (now Unilever) in brand managing, new product development, acquisition, public relations and advertising, together with the stock options she had accumulated through her work, Cecil Booth was well-equipped to launch her business. What’s more, she felt her best work came when she was working on something she was truly interested in, which was the intersection of beauty and wellness.
Two years after forming Beauty Booth, the sisters launched their first product. Rebecca Booth authored a book titled “The Venus Week: Discover the Powerful Secret of Your Cycle…at Any Age” which details the intricate design of women’s unique hormonal cycle and how they can implement strategies through a diet, lifestyle and beauty program to maximize overall health and vitality throughout their lifetime as women.
Considering the book’s focus on hormone optimization, the sisters spent six years researching and developing skincare products that followed suit. In 2012, they launched VENeffect skincare, their first product line. What was originally four products at launch has now grown to 10. While the sisters plan to expand in other categories such as hair, body and supplements, Cecil Booth said it’s unlikely their brand will grow to hundreds of products as they simply wish to “provide focused and effective solutions” for women.
“What makes our skincare line special is it’s the first line of skincare dedicated to optimizing skin based on hormonal variation throughout a woman’s lifetime,” Cecil Booth said. “Much of the beauty world is geared around the sun or environmental factors or genetics or just pure surface improvement. But for women, the way that hormones ebb and flow throughout the month and then decline, estrogen over time has a dramatic effect on our aesthetic. Estrogen is often misunderstood or vilified. So VENeffect is needed because women need to understand the science and understand their hormonal cycle and then they need to be given options for how they can optimize.”
If you would like to learn more about VENeffect, visit www.veneffect.com/.
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