Most haircare products are not exactly designed to be flaunted, and are usually secreted away in a bathroom cabinet or underneath the sink. But in creating Show Beauty, an offering of luxury hair styling products that hits Sephora stores in the US this month, founder Tamara Ecclestone was going for a high bling quotient on the packaging—think rose gold, dramatic black canisters and accents that are reminiscent of Waterford crystal. "A lot of products in the haircare sector come in very basic packaging," Ecclestone told JustLuxe. "You want to hide it away and not display it. I wanted to create something that looked and felt luxurious."
It goes without saying that Ecclestone would hardly put out a mass market product; her sensibility would not allow for that. She is, after all, the daughter of Bernie Ecclestone, the Formula One racing magnate from Britain who has an estimated wealth of $3.9 billion. She is a perennial London 'it' girl, a socialite and model who says she was driven to create her own product line. Nor is she just a figurehead for Show Beauty: she oversees every formulation and fragrance, weighs in on distribution decisions and has been having "lots of discussions" about where the brand is going next.
Although still calling London her home, Ecclestone spends a fair bit of time in Los Angeles, where she maintains a sprawling mansion behind gates in Bel Air. On a recent Tuesday, wearing denim shorts and a simple cream-colored top, she tucked her feet under her legs on the couch in the vast, contemporary living room, and talked to us about why Show Beauty means so much to her. "In the past, I've done lots of modelling, and had so many hair products used on my hair that I didn't love," she said. "When I was thinking about what I wanted to do, I wanted to be in beauty. And I realized there was nothing in the hair sector which is gentle enough, and works well enough, and where the packaging is as lovely and luxurious as the product."
She launched Show Beauty two years ago in the UK, and it quickly found a following at prestige stores like Harrods, Selfridges and Harvey Nichols. The 11 products within the line include a dry shampoo, a hair fragrance and a pure treatment oil. The collection is now sold in high-end stores around the world, including in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, Hong Kong, Canada and Italy, and now the US. It's for those who want the best for their hair: the hair fragrance runs to $85, and a limited edition of the pure treatment oil, in a small glass container featuring a lid studded with golden Swarovski crystals, goes for $242.
Ecclestone says that the heart of the products lies in their scent; she flew a number of times to Paris to meet with executives and formulators at Givaudan, the renowned flavor and fragrance maker which was making their foray into fragrance for haircare. "My brief was that I wanted it to smell like holidays and cr?me br?lée," said Ecclestone. "That's what it smells like to me. I don't wear perfume. This hair fragrance is my way of wearing a great perfume, and it's important to me that the same scent is carried throughout the line."
Early next year, she will launch a wet collection—a line of shampoos and conditioners in formulations to work with different hair types: one will be for volume, another for moisturizing, and yet another for repair. The same signature Show Beauty fragrance will be in the new offering as well.
She balances her dedication to her business with her responsibilities as a wife and mother; she married property entrepreneur Jay Rutland in 2013, and the couple have a 17-month old daughter, Sophia. "My daugher is my priority," she said. "I go to meetings and photo shoots and I travel, and I bring her with me everywhere. In many ways, being able to balance all of that ties in with my line. Why would anybody spend extra time doing their hair? Once you're a mother, it's all about speed." She says she never leaves home without a travel-sized container of Show Beauty's Dry Shampoo, and says she's a big fan of lip balm—so much so, that she never sticks to one particular brand, and tends to buy a different one each time she's in a drugstore or supermarket. She also loves Tom Ford's make-up collection, and the cosmetics from British make-up artist Charlotte Tillbury: in both cases, she's as drawn to the packaging as she is the quality and colors contained within them. "I was always confident that my line would stand out," said Ecclestone, stopping a second to squeal in delight as her toddler handed her something. "I developed this line from the ground up. It wasn't like I modified something that already existed. It was going to be different, and I was confident that it would do great."